Frequently Asked Questions

Pet Adoption: First Days with your Senior Dog Edition

You can’t buy love, but you can rescue it! Welcoming a rescued senior dog into your home may be one of the most rewarding things you can do. Giving these elder pups a new leash on life never gets old; they will thank you with an endless amount of affection and your family will have a new furry addition to love. If you decide to open your home to a senior dog, make sure you are prepared to help make the transition from shelter dog to adopted pet an easy one. The first few days in a new home are crucial for dogs, so keep these tips in mind as your four-legged friends start their new lives with you.

Suggested: Pet Adoption: Senior Dog Edition

Exploring their new home. Adjusting to a new home, even as a human, can be a lot to take in. Imagine how stressful it is for your new pup! Allow your furry friend to take their time to explore the house. This is necessary for them to adjust and become familiar with their new surroundings.

Make them feel comfortable. Give your adopted pup a designated spot in the house where they will feel comfortable. This designated spot should be a location in the house where they can run to if they feel overwhelmed or scared. Providing them with a blanket and soft bed will make them feel cozy and relaxed when the anxiety of a new environment sets in.

Loss of appetite. It is very likely that your new barking buddy may initially refuse to eat due to the stress and overwhelming nature of adjusting to a new home. This is normal. Just make sure their food and water dishes are accessible and easy for them to find when they are ready to eat. If you notice your new pup’s lack of appetite continues over the course of a few days, contact your veterinarian.

Start a routine. Although your canine companion might show symptoms of little to no appetite, it is important to start getting them used to an eating, sleeping, and walking schedule. The faster they get familiar with their routine, the more comfortable they will feel. Knowing what their day is going to look like will help reduce their level of stress.

Show lots of love! It is normal for adopted senior dogs to initially come off a bit standoffish. Their behaviors are a result of unfamiliarity. Show them lots of love and affection when they are open to interaction. Allow them to feel wanted in their new home. Once they adjust to their new pet family, they will be more than happy to return all the love they received their first couple of days!

There are so many warm results that you get from adopting a senior dog. Pushing through the first couple of days with them will not compare to the love and companionship you’ll receive in return.

Read More: Caring for Senior Dogs: Greyhound Edition

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