How To Get A Rescue Dog To Trust You
Taking on a rescue dog can be a difficult challenge, especially if they have existing issues. You need to build up trust and help to improve their confidence. Settling into a new environment is always going to be daunting for a dog, the first few weeks will be the toughest while they adjust to their new surroundings. If you have a new rescue dog then here are some tips to help you to get them to trust you.
Get into a routine
The first thing you need to do is settle into a routine. Be predictable and stick closely to your new dog's daily routine. They will become more at ease once they know what is expected of them on a daily basis. This means having set feeding times and walking times. Always let them out to the toilet first thing in the morning, when you return home, after eating and last thing at night so they know when they will be able to go. Settling into a routine will help to build trust between you and your new rescue dog.
Feed them and offer
One of the best ways you can get any dog to trust you is to give them food. However, if your rescue dog is not very food orientated you may have to try other rewards such as giving them a toy. Simply giving your dog their daily meals will help to improve your relationship.
Give them tasty treats regularly and they will gradually begin to trust you. If there are a few people living in your household make sure everyone spends time with your new dog and gives them treats.
Play with them
Play is an excellent way to build a bond with your dog. Spend lots of time with your new rescue dog playing different games such as fetch and tug of war. Find out what sort of toys your dog likes the most by trying out a range of toys.
Go on walks together
Dogs tend to trust and respect the person that takes them out on walks. Take your dog out for regular walks to different places.
Don't get agitated to show that your are annoyed if your dog is taking a long time to get to know you. Some rescue dogs have been through awful ordeals and it can take years for them to get back to normal. You will see small improvements but don't expect a miracle. If you put too much pressure on your new rescue dog you could make them worse. Every dog is different , it depends on their background and temperament as to how long it will take them to trust you.
Give them space
The worst thing you can do when trying to build trust is be over the top. Sometimes giving too much affection can make your dog feel uncomfortable. Remember not all dogs like to be hugged as it can make them feel confined. Give them some space to start off with until you know each other better.
Don't leave them for long periods
Try not to leave your new rescue dog on their own for too long when you first get them. Leaving them alone in a new environment could cause them to become very anxious. Help them to trust you by gradually extending the time you leave them for and never leave them for longer than four hours.
Teach them basic obedience
Doing some training and spending time teaching your dog some simple tricks is great for building your relationship. Your new dog will get used to your tone of voice and begin to read your body language.