What is National Rescue Dog Day?

It appears that May has gone to the dogs—rescue dogs, that is! Mark your calendars for National Rescue Dog Day on the 20th! We are fully committed to supporting this cause. In fact, many of our patients are rescues who have faced difficult circumstances in the past but are now thriving as cherished members of the family. In this article, a local Fayette County, KY veterinarian delves into the topic of rescue dogs. 

What Is The Origin Of National Rescue Dog Day?

This pet holiday is relatively new, having been initiated in 2018 by Lisa Wiehebrink, an author of children’s books. As the executive director of Tails That Teach, Lisa is dedicated to educating children about the wonderful world of pets. In honor of her own rescue pup, Cooper, she established Rescue Dog Day.

What’s The Purpose Of National Rescue Dog Day?

There are ultimately two goals here. The first is to celebrate the incredible rescue dogs that have captured our hearts, become part of our families, and brought so much love and joy into our lives. They never fail to make us smile with their happy dances, wagging tails, and adorable snoot boops.

Secondly, it’s an excellent opportunity to inspire individuals who are contemplating adopting a furry friend to choose a rescue.

The 3/3/3 Rule For Dog Adoptions

Consider this as more of a guideline from a Fayette County, KY vet as opposed to a hard and fast rule. It’s important to remember that our furry friends may need some time to adjust to big changes, like joining a new family. 

Although Fido is heading to a fantastic and caring forever home (which we believe all dogs deserve), it will still take some time for him to adapt to his new environment. According to the rule, your new pup will need approximately three days to adjust to his new surroundings, three weeks to settle in, and three months to truly feel secure and loved.

Applying the 3/3/3 rule is a straightforward process. Here’s how you can do it:

The 3-3-3 rule serves as a helpful guideline for smoothly transitioning a rescue dog into his new home and aiding in his adjustment. It is recommended to allocate the initial three days for acclimating to the new environment, the subsequent three weeks for instruction and building connections, and the first three months for ongoing socialization and training.

Days 1-3

Your first priority is ensuring Fido’s sense of security. Ensure that he has a comfortable and tranquil space where he can settle in and unwind. Although it’s important not to go overboard, now is a perfect opportunity to spoil your new pet with some delicious treats. Opt for smaller portions to avoid overfeeding your furry friend. When you want Fido’s attention, simply speak to him in a warm and friendly tone. If he enjoys receiving affection, feel free to pet him, but if he’s more reserved, be patient and give him space.

It’s not uncommon for your four-legged friend to sleep a lot in the beginning, especially if he’s recently spent time in a shelter. Dogs often find the shelter environment to be frightening and stressful. Your furry companion may require some additional rest as he gets used to his new surroundings.

If your new pet does something wrong, such as making a mess in the house, it’s crucial to emphasize the importance of positive reinforcement over punishment. If necessary, verbal reprimands are okay, but anything more will probably be scary and overwhelming.

Weeks 1-3

Once your pet has settled into his new environment, it’s time to start building a strong bond and addressing any training needs. Make sure to take your furry friend for daily walks and set aside some time each day to engage in playtime with him.

When taking your pup for a stroll, it’s important to use a reliable leash. There may be unknown phobias or quirks that you haven’t discovered yet, such as a particular fascination with squirrels or a deep-seated fear of other dogs. By using a proper leash, you will be able to maintain a secure grip on him if he attempts to make a sudden escape.

It’s also important to schedule a visit with your Fayette County, KY vet. Even if your new pet has already been fixed and is current on his vaccinations, he’ll still need a comprehensive nose-to-tail examination. Now is also an excellent opportunity to get some tailored advice and guidance regarding his care requirements.

During this stage, your new pup may also push your boundaries a little. If you encounter any concerning behavioral issues, don’t hesitate to contact your Fayette County, KY veterinarian for guidance.

Now might also be a great time to consider getting a doggy DNA test done, particularly if your pet isn’t a purebred. This can provide valuable insight into Fido’s behavior and alert you to any potential health issues he may have.

Months 1-3

By this point, you and Fido should have become somewhat acquainted with each other. Building a strong bond of love and trust should be a top priority. Bringing your furry friend to places like parks can boost his confidence and make him happy. Just remember – when it comes to your pet’s schedule, consistency is key. By now, your canine companion should be fully integrated into your family.

Should I Crate My New Rescue Dog At Night?

There isn’t a definitive yes or no response to this question. A lot of dogs find crates to be a secure and comforting space. Providing Fido with a cozy retreat can help ensure that no surprises disturb his peaceful slumber. On the other hand, if your furry friend has spent too much time cooped up in a kennel or has developed negative feelings towards them, it’s best not to pressure him.

One approach may be to train your pet to voluntarily enter his crate while keeping the door ajar. Another option is to place the crate in your bedroom. Being close to you can provide a sense of security and create positive feelings. Plus, he may feel better being able to keep a watchful eye on you.

Things To Avoid When Adopting A Dog

Understanding the potential pitfalls of rescuing a dog can be just as valuable as knowing the right actions to take. As such, it’s important to be aware of certain things to avoid in this situation.

Don’t overlook the importance of pet-proofing.

Each and every one of our furry friends has their own special quirks. While some dogs may pay no attention to shoes or houseplants, others may have an insatiable desire to chew them up. Protect your home, your belongings, and your new pet by addressing any potential temptations and being mindful of potential hazards, such as toxic plants, small or sharp objects, chemicals, medication, plastic bags, personal items, and wires.

Don’t rush things.

One common error that people often make is attempting to rush the process of integrating a dog. It is imperative to understand that rescues may require additional time, training, and above all, affection, to truly flourish. Adopting a rescue dog can bring immense joy and fulfillment. That said, your furry friend might feel a bit disoriented, anxious, or even a little depressed because he’s longing for his previous caretaker. Have patience and allow love to develop.

Why Should You Consider Adopting a Rescue Dog?

We are thrilled to witness rescue dogs finding loving furever homes. Indeed, most rescuers agree that the dogs they’ve adopted through shelters or rescue organizations are the best companions they have ever had. It’s understandable. After all, Fido is certainly intelligent enough to recognize and value someone who is looking after him and treating him with kindness. 

Rescue dogs possess an unwavering loyalty and an abundance of love. You also have the opportunity to choose your ideal companion. Rescue dogs come in a wide variety of sizes, colors, breeds, ages, and activity levels.

Adopting rescue pups can be a budget-friendly choice as well. In addition, they might already be fixed and trained, which is not only cost-effective, but also convenient.

Get in touch with Your Fayette County, KY Pet Clinic

Do you need more guidance on how to properly care for a rescue dog? Get in touch with us, your Fayette County, KY animal hospital, right away!

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