Tips for Introducing a Dog to their New Home
Give your adopted dog a stable fresh start with these easy to follow tips.
Introducing a dog to a new home is always anxiety-inducing, especially if the dog has had a rough start. We’re sharing some tips to help make the transition smoother for your adopted dog and you.
This article is brought to you by Powered by Mom team member Amanda and her adorable dog Izzy. Thanks for sharing!
Introducing a Dog to it’s New Home
Opening your home to an adopted dog comes with ups and downs. Even though, the reward of a loyal fur friend is worth every bit of it.
Not that long ago, I met a dog by the name of Izzy. She is half blue heeler and half dachshund. You can see the mix on her face as one side is white with black spots and the other is black. I met her through someone at work. The first thing I noticed about her was that she wagged her tail in excitement when we met. It was instant love…. lucky for me, she was looking for a forever home. After finding out she was treated poorly by her previous owner, it didn’t take long for my family to decide she belonged with us.
Since she was in a temporary living situation, we did not have much time to waste bringing her home. Her foster mom told me that she could be a very anxious dog due to her history of abuse and we needed to find a way to ease her into her new home with as little stress as possible.
Don’t overwhelm your new family member
Since introducing a dog to their new home can be stressful, I didn’t want Izzy to be overwhelmed. Letting her into the house immediately could be stressful. Instead, I thought it would be easier for her to take her for a walk around the neighborhood. There is a park just down the block from my home, and since Izzy loves visiting the park I thought this would be a great place to start the walk. We would end the walk in her new yard.
Be Prepared for Your Walk
Going for a walk is one of Izzy’s favorite things to do. To make it even more enjoyable for her, I brought along some tasty dog treats to reassure her along the way. This gave her something to focus on which I think helped relieve some of her anxiety. With the treats in my pocket and leash in hand, we headed to the park.
When it was time to get her out of the car, she hesitated. I did not want to force her. Instead of picking her up out of the car, I decided to see if the dog treat would do the trick and convince her that it was ok to leave the car.
I let her smell the treat and then I encouraged her to jump out of the car. It worked! Izzy gobbled up her treat and started wagging her tail. We headed off on our walk. I let her stop when she wanted. If she walked off the path, I followed. I wanted the walk to be as calm and fun as possible. After she did her deed, she got another treat. Izzy was very happy trotting along. She was eager to explore her new neighborhood.
When we made our way to Izzy’s new home, I took her off the leash and let her explore in the backyard. Her tail was wagging. Her nose was wet. She was very happy. After she rolled around in the grass I decided to see how well she was trained.
When I pulled out the last treat from my pocket, she immediately sat in attention! I tried a few other commands. Izzy followed sit, lay down, stay, rollover (not a complete rollover, she shows you her tummy and expects a good rub!) and up! The only command I could not get her to follow was, speak. When I gave her the command, she would lower her head and break eye contact with me. It looked like she felt sad. That grin of pride disappeared off her face. Instead of pushing her, I stopped and gave her the sit command. The grin came back and she was proud and happy once again.
When I started thinking about it more, it dawned on me that I had never heard Izzy bark. I had a feeling it had to do with her history. Poor Izzy didn’t have a voice. It became even more of a high priority to nurture and protect this dog. She only deserved the best.
After she marked her new territory I opened the door to the house. It took a few sniffs and off she went into her new home. She browsed for a bit, found her new bed, and snuggled in for a nap. It was official. Izzy had found her forever home.
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Not too long after we brought her home Izzy found her voice. It happened one afternoon when the mailman knocked on the front door. She now speaks on command and is quite proud of herself.
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