Selecting a Dog from a Shelter or Rescue
The Humane Society shelters are government organizations, city vs. nonprofits which are private entities. Don’t assume that selecting a dog from a shelter, would save on cost. If cost is one of your biggest deciding factor on where you get a dog, then myself Ryan Matthews the best dog trainer suggest you wait until you can afford it.
You can’t be cheap when raising a dog. If you are going to the shelter to help save a life, that is the reason to choose a shelter dog.
If you take a step back and look at it, owning an untrained rescue dog that hasn’t had any guidance in its life that destroys valuable furniture in your house far exceeds what it would cost to get Good Dog Training. It would be to your advantage to invest in higher quality training.
Most rescue and shelter dogs come with baggage from not being exposed to new environments. Be prepared to be calm, patient and loving. Shelters can often be an option for less expensive dogs.
You will see a variety of dogs young and old at rescue shelters. Don’t be afraid to consider an older dog. Go there with an open heart and open mind to find a dog that fits you… and you fit it. There can be a lot of benefits to an older dog. You CAN teach an old dog, new tricks. Dogs can learn at any age, it’s all about your ability to motivate the dog and its willingness to learn.
Remember that when dealing with shelters, you are likely dealing with a lot of volunteers, so don’t be turned off by their lack of knowledge to answer questions or the dog’s lack of obedience. This is normal to witness in a rescue or shelter. In fact, most Humane Societies and rescues don’t try to put any obedience on their dogs. If the dog is misbehaving, don’t be scared away from adopting that dog. One of the main focuses of shelters is to get the dog out for a walk and exercise rather than being concerned if the dog is walking at the heel position.
Dogs may lack environmental exposure. Some rescue dogs have been locked in a kennel crate their entire lives. Although this weighs heavy on the heart, we can rehabilitate these dogs that lack life experience. We would do this through many positive experiences in various types of environments.
When selecting a rescue dog, don’t judge the dog by their looks, lack of obedience or barking; instead, focus on the dog that speaks to your heart.
I do feel compelled to share some training mistakes that I see all too often with pet owners of rescue dogs. Now, to be honest, I don’t blame people for their actions but… they need to think of how the dog is hard-wired. What I mean is, pet owners of rescue dogs think they need to love their dog through the dog’s insecurities or fearfulness. Well, My self Ryan Matthews have some sad news! There is no amount of love alone that will make your fearful rescue dog more confident. I know it sucks, I wish it weren’t so but it’s true. Instead, give the dog the primal things they need, in doing so you will help the fearful rescue dog become more confident. I’m sure you’re asking yourself, so what’s the process?
First, establish yourself as the leader in a kind and loving way. Not dominance but instead think of it as your dog looks to you for guidance. In doing so they will rest more assured that you have things under control. I am not talking about doing the “it’s okay” while petting your dog if/when they are being uncertain.
Secondly, give plenty of exercises. Things like runs, long walk or even teach your dog to walk a treadmill. I have a dog training Ecourse on it actually “World Of Dog Training eCourse Treadmill Training.”
Next, give your dog a job or outlet. Something to occupy their mind, after all, we have jobs and hobbies- so should your dog.
If you do these few things once you get your rescue dog, you will be well on your way to having the dog of your dreams. Trust me this will work!