National Rescue Dog Day: What You Need to Know About Adopting a Dog

National Rescue Dog Day on May 20 is intended to encourage potential dog owners to adopt a dog in need of a loving home. Before you go to the shelter or visit a rescue, you should be aware of the challenges a rescue dog can present. Adopting a rescue dog is an awesome decision on your part, but a rescue dog can have a checkered past, have annoying habits that need patient correction, or not have a lot of training at all. None of this is the dog’s fault, nor is it the shelter or the rescue’s, but you want to be prepared for potential issues that need work. You’ll also want to make an appointment with our vet clinic in Bend for a health check that can uncover problems that aren’t immediately obvious. Following is a look at what you need to know about rescue dogs:

Give Them Space and Time to Adjust

A very common issue with rescue dogs is that they come from a neglectful background where they weren’t valued. Rescue dogs are rescued because they live in poor conditions, aren’t fed regularly, don’t get a lot of positive interaction with people, and may have never lived in a home, much less sat on a couch. They may be fearful at first, reactive to the slightest of stimuli, shy, and don’t want to engage right away. You can gently set boundaries such as where they can and can’t go and shape their environment and expectations in the meantime. It’s also a good idea to make an appointment with a dog vet in Bend to get a health evaluation to rule out behavioral issues caused by an illness.

Prepare to Work on Training

Rescue dogs may or may have been trained in the basics such as heel, sit, come here and signal to you that they need to go out for a potty break. Their leash training may also be rudimentary. Rescues don’t always have a lot of time to spend on instilling more than the basics in rescue dogs, and they don’t always have a clear history on a dog’s training. You may find it necessary to work on your rescue dog’s training to turn them into an enjoyable companion. If you find yourself needing support with training issues, talk to your dog veterinarian in Bend for advice and help.

Rescue Dogs Sometimes Need Extra Healthcare

Dog rescues usually have their dogs vetted prior to adoption, but the pressure of running a rescue sometimes means that good intentions don’t always get followed through. Make an appointment with an animal vet in Bend after adopting a rescue dog for an exam to make sure that your new companion is healthy. Sometimes rescues take in dogs that haven’t been de-sexed which means you’ll need to get services for spay and neuter in Bend.

Behavioral Issues May Not Show Up Right Away

Rescues and shelters do their best to rehabilitate and train dogs to be good companions for their next owners. What they can’t always compensate for is the fact a rescue dog is experiencing stress from the rapid changes in their life. A rescue dog may bury their normal behavioral issues as tension and anxiety are forefront in their need to survive. A dog may seem calm, quiet, and reserved in the shelter, but once they’re relaxed and comfortable, the dog can revert to their normal self and tear your house apart in no time at all. Re-training can go a long way towards resolving the issues, and our veterinarians in Bend can be of help as well.