When it comes to bringing a rescue dog home, we often have our work cut out for us. No matter how much we want to prove to the animal that they are loved and in a new, safer home, we cannot always predict just how they might behave due to the learned behaviours and situations of the past. This can be tremendously sad to think about, but also hopeful because now they are certainly in the right place and it’s up to us to prove that to them.
How to get a rescue dog to trust you
So, how can we help a rescue dog trust us and sustain that loyalty that comes naturally to well-kept canines? Well, it’s important to realize that this can be something of a long process, and that you shouldn’t lose heart just because things don’t feel immediately perfected the night you first meet them.
Second, it’s also important to consider the environment you have at home. Bringing a fraught rescue dog home in a household of small children and many other pets may not be a good idea unless you have a tremendously experienced idea of what you’re doing. From here, you might consider the following:
Be Slow, Careful & Consistent
It’ll take some time for them to trust you. What matters is being confident, consistent, and careful. This means making sure they have a safe area of the house to occupy, and that they deal with you, and that you do not engage with hostile behaviour. This way, you can show them just what your boundaries are, and how bountiful your positive treatment is if they behave. This allows them to feel more natural around you and trust you to be a calm presence. It may take some time before they’re happy for anyone else other than you to stroke them. Make sure your family are informed in this regard.
Feed Them Well & Reliable
They say that the best way to someone’s heart is through their stomach, and this is such a ubiquitous truth that it applies to pets as well. When using the best healthy dog food and feeding them as regularly as is necessary (it may be more frequently applied for younger dogs), you can focus on caring for them, and they will begin to see you as a trusted source of comfort.
Bring Them To A Specialist Trainer
Bring your dog to a specialist trainer if you can. It really does make the difference, and it really can help them slowly conform to healthy discipline. Not only this, but specialist trainers are often more than equipped to deal with rescue dogs. However, it’s very important you tell them about your situation, the approach you have taken at home, their history, and anything else they ask. This helps them assess your case and define what is needed, or they might refer you to another professional. This can help you get the best chance of success and bonding with your pet.
With this advice, we hope you can have your rescue dog trust you and that you can enjoy a great life together.