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(17,894 posts)
Fri Jul 1, 2022, 01:53 PM Jul 2022

Looking to adopt a dog from a hoarding situation

He is a 9 month old mini-Aussie. My family has quite a bit of experience with the breed and associated breeds (Collie/Border Collie/Aussie mix, Aussie, Border Collie, and Sheltie). He came out of a horrible hoarding situation in which he received little or no acclimation to humans. He is doing ok in his foster home, but it took quite a while to warm up to the husband (the wife runs our local shelter). A prior placement fell through when the dog was so scared of the husband that he hid, and the shelter administrator actually had to drive an 1 1/2 half at night to retrieve him. He would be a local dog adoption for us.

I have yet to meet the dog. I want my first meeting to go as well as possible. Any suggestions on how to handle it. I hope that he is my dog (like my Collie mix who passed away two years ago was). I went in deep depression when Arlo passed, and it took over a year to finally get my head on straight and start exercising and caring about my diet again. A dog was kind of prescribed by my doctor because I walk a lot, and it does get lonely (Arlo and I would go onto up to 20 mile walks). I am back to pretty long walks now after losing over 80 pounds.

I plan to set up a bit of a playroom for him in the basement and try to keep him out of the face of my 15 year old Aussie. Of course long walks which he apparently likes would be expected. My daughter might also do agility with him, but first I want him to bond with me.

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Looking to adopt a dog from a hoarding situation (Original Post) exboyfil Jul 2022 OP
Your a good person Maine Abu El Banat Jul 2022 #1
Congrats on your new fur baby! SheltieLover Jul 2022 #2
Talk slow and sit on an ottoman. Be equal Tetrachloride Jul 2022 #3
I would take the tastiest treat I can think of. Beef jerky comes to mind. AndyS Jul 2022 #4
Take your time chowmama Jul 2022 #5
Give him lots and lots of time roody Jul 2022 #6


(57,073 posts)
2. Congrats on your new fur baby!
Fri Jul 1, 2022, 01:58 PM
Jul 2022

And on getting yourself back on track.

Pls keep us posted & share pix, if able!


(14,559 posts)
4. I would take the tastiest treat I can think of. Beef jerky comes to mind.
Fri Jul 1, 2022, 02:33 PM
Jul 2022

Go slow. The dog has obviously been hurt by a male person and it will take a while to get past that. The walks will do wonders I think. It took months to gain my last rescue's trust.


(437 posts)
5. Take your time
Fri Jul 1, 2022, 11:31 PM
Jul 2022

and be prepared to be creative. He may or may not be food motivated. Certainly, he is not socialized. The long goal is to find what reward he finds most valuable and use it to gently guide him to live with humans and in a (hopefully) variety of environments.

My chow (mostly neglected and sllghtly abused) cared nothing for food. I spent months turning her into a praise junkie. (High pitched, soft crooning.) She was my first personal rescue. I knew nothing.

When my MIL visited for Thanksgiving, weeks later, she found me reading studies on behavior of dogs and wilder canids. Since the dog was so fearful, there was a real possibility she would turn into a fear-biter. Pressed for time, I sat on the floor, insisting that the dog lay beside me, and read out loud to the dog. My thought was to be efficient and learn the material while getting the dog used to the quiet sound of my voice. MIL returned to Chicago and told everyone there I was attempting talk therapy with the dog.

My sister's rescue would not eat at all. She had to hand-feed her, because the dog was convinced that everything in the new house belonged to the humans. Taking it might result in punishment. When the dog, weeks later, finally wandered away from the family and the sound of crunching was heard from the kitchen, the sound of cheering was heard from the living room.

On the other hand, my second dog required a sonic boom to get her attention and then just thought we were annoying her. Food was the big reward - she'd go right down the chow's throat if she needed to. The chow let her.

2 points. 1) Every dog is different and has its own pace. It will be at least several days for a normal puppy and often a lot longer for a rescue to get to the "Honey, I'm home!" period when learning can really begin. When they're frozen with fear and uncertainty, their brain is frozen as well. Teaching isn't going to happen. Let them calm.

2) Teaching is eventually necessary. I was told by well-meaning people "If she wants to spend the rest of her life behind the couch, let her! She's been through enough." Behind the couch is not enjoying life, which is the end goal. For this, some manners are required, as much as with a human child. She can't relax completely if she doesn't know what to do and what not to do. Nobody wants an automaton, but teaching is communication, and you can't have a relationship without it. Early teaching, for me, involves a lot of "Don't do that, do this, good dog!" Don't chew that, here's your toy. Good dog. No mouthing, sit. Good dog. Repeat 10,000 times. They'll get it.

What you need may not be in a book. Be prepared to read your dog and make it up as you go along. Good luck and best wishes!

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