Socializing an Adult Rescue Dog

Hey everyone, welcome to another episode of Dog Sense!

As always, Sarah and I are here to share some super useful dog tips with you. Plus, today, we're once again joined by Nikki, so you know this is going to be a fun episode! 

Now, let me ask you a question: When you hear the word socialization, what's the first thought that comes to you?

For most people, it's puppy socialization! And yes, socializing a young puppy and exposing him to the world is suuuper important.

But, there’s another category of dogs that also needs socialization: Adult rescues!

After all, you can't just bring your newly adopted dog home and invite 52 people (and their dogs!) over the house that day, even if you're excited about them meeting him or her!

So, how do you properly socialize an adult dog when you're well beyond the critical socialization window? 

Well, this is exactly what Sarah, Nikki, and I discuss in today's episode of Dog Sense, so tune in now to learn more!

How to Socialize Your New Adult Rescue Dog

The First 24 Hours

The first 24 hours with your new rescue dog are all about decompression. We always tell our students to let  their new pup just ….. chill for a bit. 

Don’t just pack his schedule full of activities; that can be done after he’s acclimated to his new living situation and recovers from the inevitable stress that comes from a big change. 

We promise, you’ll be able to go on fun adventures together soon enough.

And as Nikki says in this episode:

“One of the things that I would do before I even go outside or anywhere else is build a little bit of a relationship with the rescue dog [inside of the house]. You can do so by just eating meals together, playing a little bit with the dog, etc….”

The Honeymoon Phase

The honeymoon phase can last up to two or three weeks, and you just have to be ready for it. What’s the honeymoon phase, you ask? Well, simply put, it’s that time period at the beginning when your dog is still getting used to his new environment.

What’s reaaaaally important during this timeframe is to make sure that you’re teaching your dog what you want to see more of. If someone rings the doorbell and he doesn’t bark, praise and reward that calm behavior! Make sure to communicate what you want by rewarding him for it. Don’t just take it for granted. 

Personal Space Is a Must

Another important thing you’ll have to do is give your dog personal space by utilizing a crate, a ‘gated community (gates), or other safe, confined area. Your new rescue puppy needs a secure, comfy space, structures, and boundaries. Those just those three things initially will help your dog thrive. 

We share a lot more tips in the episode above, so, if you’d like to learn more, make sure to give us a listen!