Adopting an adult dog can be a perfect solution for a ‘would be’ dog owner who longs for a canine companion but doesn’t have the time to devote to bringing up a puppy.
When you adopt a dog from ‘rescue’ it is well worth enrolling in a course of obedience classes just to re-inforce lessons your new dog may have forgotten or never learned. Classes will also help the bonding process between dog and owner.
Rescuing an older dog can also be very rewarding. Many of them will already have given years of loyal companionship to owners who have died or who can no longer care for them due to a variety of reasons. They make ideal pets for those who are home all day and their demand for exercise is usually less.
When you decide on your dog, arrange to bring him/her home when you have time off so you can settle him into the household and help the children and any existing pets to adjust to the newcomer.
Remember to take a collar and lead when you collect your dog. Try to make sure he/she has ‘emptied’ before you load him into the car, to avoid a mishap. You won’t know if he is a good traveller so be prepared in case he is sick during the journey. Cover the inside rear of the car with a blanket and take an emergency clean up kit. If the dog seems nervous he might welcome somebody sitting with him if it’s possible and also make sure the dog is secure in the car, either in a crate or contained behind a well fitted dog-guard, it is against the law nowadays to have an animal ‘jumping around’ in your vehicle whilst you are driving.
You will need to be patient with your new pet when you arrive home. If he has been in kennels for a few weeks he will have to adjust to a whole new routine, new sounds and voices, added to this his surroundings will be strange and unfamiliar.
Give him time and space, let him explore his new domain, un-neutered males may well ‘mark’ their territory so BE PREPARED!
It can take several weeks or maybe, months for an adult dog to really settle in but then you should have a good friend and loyal pal for the rest of his/her life.
We, in G.G.S.D.R. want to ‘get it right’ both for the new owner and the rescue dog, so you must expect to be asked questions about your life-style and experience with dogs.
You should ask why the dog is in rescue, was it badly treated, is it safe with children, what diet is it used to, if it is a bitch, is it spayed, and if not when was she last on heat. We will always tell you as much as we know about the dog and will always advise you if you feel you need help