The Adopted Dog

The Adopted Dog

Let's imagine for a moment that you've been sent to live with a family you have never met before. The faces, sights, sounds, smells, and activity in their home are totally unfamiliar to you. Nonetheless, you are expected to adapt and do so right away. Do you think you would be a bit confused? Maybe a bit nervous?

Now, try to imagine that your new family speaks a totally different language than you do and you can't understand what they are saying. Do you think you would be able to meet all their expectations right away, and do so without making any mistakes? Can you imagine how nervous and scared you would be?

This is the scenario an adopted dog goes through every time it is rehomed.

So if you are the slightest bit unsure or are going to place unrealistic expectations on a dog, it is better not to adopt a dog right now. It will be far worse for you, the dog, and the dog rescue if you take home a dog and then want to return it because it was more trouble than you bargained for. So first things first: Before you run out to get a dog, ask yourself: Are you really ready to own a dog?

If you are truly ready to own a dog and have decided on adopting a dog from a dog rescue or shelter, that's wonderful. These unwanted pets need loving forever homes and you will feel good knowing you are saving a life.

Just understand before jumping into it, that many of these dogs have some type of behavioral and/or physical challenges you'll need to deal with, also. Then again, no dog is perfect. Even a purebred puppy from a reputable breeder still needs to be house broken, socialized, trained, and so on, right?

The key to a successful transition of an adopted dog is an informed pet parent. There is no simple how to adopt a dog guide to follow. Each dog is very different and has been affected by its past experiences. It is therefore up to you to assess the type of dog, their existing behavioral and medical issues, and answer honestly if you will be able to invest the time, patience, and financial obligations in order to help the dog you choose.

Adopting the Right Dog

The first thing you should consider is what type of dog would best fit your lifestyle. If you only have time to walk a dog in the morning and evenings, do not apply for a dog that needs lots of physical exercise, just because you think its cute.

Next, consider the medical needs of the dog. Besides routine care, are there other medical costs or daily treatments needed you are uncomfortable with performing. If you aren't comfortable administering shots, don't adopt a dog that requires injections. Or, if a dog has a manageable ailment that requires a lifetime of expensive prescription meds you can't afford, don't bring home that dog. And so on. It is so important that you are realistic and truthful about what you can and cannot handle.

When you are ready to select a dog, be sure it meets the criteria you have outlined because it is so important that the dog's next home be their home for life. Ask lots of questions and get as much background information on the rescue dog you are considering, before making your final decision.

Questions to ask animal rescue before adopting a dog:

  • How did he come to the rescue?
  • Was the dog surrendered by a previous owner or was it a stray? If it was surrendered, what reason was given?
  • How long has the dog been at the rescue?
  • Was the dog previously abused?
  • Has the dog been adopted out before and returned again? If so, why? 
  • What behavioral problems have been observed?
  • What training has the dog received?
  • Does the dog like children? Other dogs or cats? 
  • Besides basic care, What additional medical concerns/needs does the dog require?

Rescue organizations want the adoption to be successful and are more than happy to answer all your questions. They will tell you about a dog's likes and dislikes, personality traits, as well as any behavioral or physical challenges the dog might have, so an informed decision can be made before placing the dog with a family.

This can't be stressed enough: Ask the rescue any and all questions and/or concerns you may have about a dog you are considering to make part of your family. The last thing anybody wants in this process is for an adopted dog to be returned because he was not a good fit with a family.

Tips for a Successful Dog Adoption

In summary, adopted dogs need and deserve permanent, loving homes. The success of such a transition lies in choosing the right dog for you and your family. Do not base your decision on the cuteness of a dog or puppy or some other emotional factor. Do your homework and stick to your criteria and you will adopt the dog that is best for you.

Tips for Success

  1. Choose the Right Dog - Come up with your criteria or list of what you want and expect from a dog you bring into your life.
  2. Dog Proof Your Home - Get your home ready for a new dog. Be sure all medications are out of reach; Close closet doors to prevent access to clothes and shoes; Secure loose wires and electrical cords; Put away the trash bin, and so on. Anticipate what a new dog coming into your home might want to explore and then put it away.
  3. Dog Supplies - Before you bring your dog home, go ahead and get the essential dog supplies like food, bowls, leash, collar, a few toys, grooming items, and bedding. And be sure to order a dog I.D. tag right away. note: Some dog rescues may provide some of these items for you.
  4. Adjustment Period & Bonding - Provide a kind, loving environment with lots of positive reinforcement and praise. Be patient with your newly adopted dog. He isn't making mistakes on purpose to make you angry. He wants to please you. He just doesn't know all your rules yet. You can really help your new furry friend make the transition by establishing a daily routine. Dogs like routine and consistency.
  5. Be a responsible dog owner. When at all possible, bring your newly adopted dog home during a time when you have a few days to devote just to him (like the weekend or during a vacation period). It is important to spend as much time as possible with your adopted dog, especially during the first few weeks to help establish a relationship.
  6. Veterinarian - Schedule an appointment with a Vet for a complete doggy exam right away. Your vet will inform you about dental care, heartworm meds, flea and tick prevention, vaccinations, and so on, to keep your dog healthy. He will also make you aware of any medical concerns and discuss proper exercise and weight management for your dog.
  7. Dog Training - Begin training your new dog right away. It is important for every dog to learn the 5 basic obedience commands. Use positive training methods and be consistent. Training is another great way of bonding with your dog.

The Pay Off: A Lifetime of Rewards

You walked into an animal shelter one day and adopted a dog. You invested time and patience with your new family member. It took a little longer than you thought, but you never gave up on your new furry friend.

Today your dog is confident and thrives. Together you enjoy day to day life and are creating lasting memories. You trust your dog and he trusts you. You share a very special bond that is like no other.

It's hard to believe the dog that was once considered disposable by someone else is now such a wonderful pet, one you can't imagine living a day of your life without. Your adopted dog, a loyal friend and companion whose love for you has no limits.

Adopt a Mini Schnauzer & Save a life.

Rescue dogs deserve a second chance in life, a forever home with a family to love and one that loves them back. Could it be yours? Click on the rescue Schnauzer photos below to read the inspiring stories of the once adoptable dogs that found their forever homes.

If you adopted a Miniature Schnauzer we would love for you to share your story with us! Your Miniature Schnauzer Rescue Story

"Knowledge Share"... If you found this article on the adopted dog helpful and informative, please share it with your dog-loving friends by clicking on one of the share links (like facebook, twitter, and google +1) located at the top right or bottom of this page.

Go from Adopted Dog to About the Miniature Schnauzer on Schnauzers Rule

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