Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Dog Rescue - How to Deal With a Rescued Dog

Helping a timid rescued dog regain confidence

This post is all about what a poor German Shepherd Dog taught me how to deal with a timid rescued dog. A timid dog is a real difficult dog!

I have an experience with a rescued dog Rani, a beautiful German Shepherd princess. She was probably one and a half to two years old when I rescued her from her owner who used to torture her. Candidly speaking, I didn’t go to that owner’s place to bring her. My friend brought her to me and asked me to save her as she had been tortured since almost the very dawn of her life! This way Rani became a part of my pack one fine evening. She was timid, fearful and had lost almost all GSD behavioral instincts. It was really heartbreaking to see a two years old GSD showing submissive behavior when somebody was approaching her with no threat. I wrote about her and how I changed her gradually in my German Shepherd Dog blog. My Experiment with Rani taught me a great lot of things that I want to share with you guys and fellow dog lovers. Rani lost total confidence and this planet was a hell for her.
dealing with difficult dogs, timid rescued dog
Here’s what Rani taught me…

Patience is poultice for all wounds.” It didn’t happen overnight. The first night I remember I slept in the kennel with her. She didn’t eat, nor did she have water. Biscuits… yes, two or three biscuits she had, but that too not form my hand. She had them from the guy who brought her to me. I called her by her name calmly, but she was so confused that she was waging very slightly, looking at me blankly. A timid rescued dog may not come to you at once the first day. Everything must be in a slow process. Don’t stare… just look at him/her lovingly. Talk to him/her softly. Better don’t touch him… let him come to you first. This may take time. So be patient and let him feel that you are for him.

Stress can only worsen the condition.” I wasn’t tensed, as I had prepared myself from the beginning. I knew that things won’t be as easy as in case of Rex and Reva, my other German Shepherds. Remember, if you are tensed as an owner, you are in stress. And a rescued dog is already in stress and anxiety is already a problem for him… so don’t make him feel that you are tensed. Dogs can hear the voice of our mind. They have highly attuned sense of our body language and attitude. Remember, YOUR Stress Affects Your Dog Adversely!

helping a battered dog regain confidence, dog confidence“True prosperity is the result of well-placed confidence …” If the dog is approaching you, don’t approach towards him. Let him come and sniff you thoroughly. If he is too timid, and still tend to approach you, you should crouch down to his level as he will not be confident enough to come near you if you are standing before him. It’s just a way you can boost up his confidence level a bit. Allow him to smell you and you can touch him softly and slowly. While dealing with Rani, my motive was just to regain her confidence in humans.

“Fearful and stressed dog would not accept food.” All you need is to regain his confidence at the first place. Before you offer him something to eat, you need to establish a comfortable situation for the dog. On the contrary, offering some treats is the best way to build up a healthy bondage with the newly rescued dog. So what should you do? Chicken or beef flavored dog biscuits is the best option! Toss off a couple of biscuits at his feet. If he is refusing to accept the treats just leave him alone with the biscuits and walk away. Don’t peep through the corners. Leave him alone for ten minutes or so and come back with a few more treats for him. Throw one again but not as near as you did the last time. If he is looking at you, he is still confused. Talk to him softly and ask him to eat it… don’t insist him to run and grab the food. This time things will be much easier for him. If he is still refusing to eat… leave him alone and repeat the same cycle. After repeating the cycle thrice, you can offer him the biscuits in your hand. Look at him softly and don’t keep strong eye to eye contact. This will be considered as challenge. On accepting the biscuits from your hand praise him with loving voice.

responsibilities of a dog owner. dog responsibilities and dog ownershipControlling your emotion is of utmost significance! Don’t just try to embrace the rescued dog until he has developed confidence in you. Patience is again the most important factor to play its role here. I know how frustrating it feels when the new dog denies accepting your hug. But remember you have rescued a dog that has lost his confidence. You need to regain it first and it requires a good deal of patience.

It’s your responsibility to build the relationship. Once the bondage is built, you will find him the most admirable companion!

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