Adopting a rescue

When you decide it’s time to bring a new dog into your life and family, it’s always nice to consider getting a rescue. There are so many wonderful homeless dogs (of all sizes, shapes, colors and ages) just begging for the opportunity to be part of a new family. But it’s not always easy to know which ones to choose and some may require special attention.

I certainly would never discourage anyone from choosing what, in most cases, will be a wonderful dog, but, keep in mind, rescues can be challenging. To be honest, some of the dogs that end up in rescues are already psychologically troubled and ill-equipped to cope with the rescue itself, which involves a period of kenneling and, if they are lucky, re-homing. These dogs may find unfamiliar environments and new routines particularly stressful. In order to avoid tipping an already fragile personality further toward instability, it is essential that the rescue process be carefully managed, or you risk triggering behavioral issues that could range from annoying to potentially destructive or even dangerous.

To greatly increase the chances of successfully integrating a rescue into your life, you should consider contacting an experienced, qualified trainer before choosing your new family member – and I can’t stress experienced enough. You’re going to want someone who has been through the process many times before, as they will be able to recognize which dogs are best suited for you and your lifestyle. An experienced trainer will also be able to identify dogs that may be too aggressive around children or other pets. You should expect them to explain, simply and in great detail, exactly what your new pet needs. By fulfilling those needs, you’ll greatly reduce unnecessary stress and anxiety and ensure you help your new friend feel safe and happy.