Rescue Journal

settling new dogs

Carol  ·  Oct. 13, 2016

blah, blah... having cookies and milk waiting for the magic 0630 am for when i should be getting up for work.
keeping an eye on the new dogs...careful not to be pushy or intrusive, yet gently inclusive, wanting them to know i am happy to welcome them to their new temporary (sigh, or permanent) home. ultimately who knows what tomorrow holds?
i don't worry too much about the past or the future, i am more into today.

here is the thing about new dogs....
they are unsure, usually a little afraid.
they are not sure what to this a good or a very bad day?

so with new animals...
rescue 101..
fake it til you make it.
they want everything to be ok. and if i am saying so, they want to believe.

but it is a fine line in respecting and validating their current insecurity and helping them feel hopeful.
so my philosophy is always go at settling new dogs gently.
give them some space, let them make some choices on how much, how little, how near or far they feel comfortable in stepping while being available and open.
do not cripple a dog by making them feel they are pitiful.

there is a thing that we forget to do in rescue...
we forget to treat them like normal dogs.
now i will admit i probably have the biggest houseful of abnormal dogs..
here abnormal is normal so there you go.
it is a new kind of normal.

coddle a new dog and drip heart wrenching sympathy all over him and he will instantly feel that he is risk. why else would this human be acting so freakishly weird?

but go about your business, say a cheerful hi on your way by, give an occasional gentle pat on the head, break off a chunk of the oreo cookie in your hand and share it as you walk past.
hmmm..this place just might be ok.

i like ricco and harry buddy..and i can tell, they already kind of like me too...yay!