If a dog is labeled as a ‘rescue dog’, it means that they have been rescued from a potentially hazardous situation by a rescue agency. Thousands of pet dogs every year are rendered homeless through abandonment, natural disasters, or abusive home environments. The job of a rescue agency is to take in a rescue dog, and determine if it will ever be able to be adopted by another family. Some dogs that have undergone traumatic situations are emotionally scarred, and may not be able to interact with the world on a healthy level ever again. However, most dogs that have been through bad situations are able to become wonderful pets, though they do require a bit more care than a regular dog.
Adopting a Rescue Dog
If you are considering adopting a rescue dog, you have a responsibility to provide a loving, caring home to a rescue dog. After a dog is rescued, the rescue agency engages in several different tests to figure out if a dog will be able to be adopted. However, when you are adopting a rescue dog, you may have to go through a long and tedious evaluation process by the rescue agency. While this may seem insulting or unnecessary, it is actually standard procedure for most rescue agencies. This is because a rescue agency wants to do everything possible to prevent a rescue dog from going to a home that will not provide them with a good environment.
There are many beneficial factors to adopting a rescue dog. First, and foremost, you are caring for a dog that has undergone a traumatic situation. Also, many rescue agencies will neuter, vaccinate and de-worm a rescue dog before you adopt it. Any pre-existing medical conditions that a rescue dog has are identified and treated by the rescue agency. This is a huge bonus, since it saves on many veterinary expenses.
Special Needs of a Rescue Dog
Once you have adopted a rescue dog, you need to prepare for the special needs that your dog may have, especially proper pet care. Rescued dogs may have deep-set emotional issues, which may be extremely hard to break. However, with a lot of patience and loving care, most rescue dogs can eventually lead a happy, normal life with a new family. When training a rescue dog, try to identify the things that they are most afraid of. Depending on the dog, this could be anything from thunderstorms to men with hats. Once you have identified what makes your rescue dog afraid, you can begin to lessen their fear of it.
The best tactic for training a rescue dog is constant positive reinforcement. A rescue dog may be emotionally fragile, so it is very important to refrain from yelling or spanking them when they misbehave. Instead, focus on reinforcing their positive behavior with treats, praise and other rewards. Be gentle with your rescue dog, especially when helping them to deal with their fears. Through a lot of hard work, patience and love, you should be able to incorporate a rescue dog as a part of your family.