Please fill out an online
Adoption Application here
advice for successfully adopting a rescued dog
A little preparation goes a long way to help your new dog transition to his life in your home. We strongly recommend you have or buy before, or immediately after the adoption: food, bowls for water and food, a leash, collar, and bedding. Ask the fosterer about the food your dog has been eating. If you intend to feed a different food, remember to transition to the new food slowly, to prevent digestive distress.
It is the adopter's responsibility to travel to complete the meet and greet for any dog. This includes taking any resident dogs with you to the meet and greet. We also require that you are able to keep the adopted dog along with your resident dogs separate from each other in the vehicle for the trip home. This means either crating the adopted dog or driving two vehicles to the meet and greet. Please bring a leash and collar with you when picking up your dog. Purchase an ID tag and local dog license within 5 days of bringing your dog home. Some pet stores, such as PetSmart, have machines where you can create an ID tag immediately. Please take your new dog to your veterinarian within two weeks of adoption.
To set the tone for a positive relationship from the beginning, proper introductions with each dog in the home are essential, regardless of the dog's age. Children should NOT handle a dog during introductions. http://www.citydogsrescuedc.org/dog-introductions.html provides clear steps and excellent advice to help all the pets in your home become accustomed to the new group dynamics.
Because your home will be at least the 3rd home your newly adopted dog/puppy has known: his original home, the shelter or foster home, and now your home, your dog will need time to adjust to his new life. It may take a few hours, days, weeks or months for him to ''normalize". We encourage you to keep in touch with us, to give us updates on your arrival and progress. We are available for advice and support, when needed.
When he's first settling in, your dog may experience shyness, anxiety, restlessness, excitement, crying or barking. He may exhibit excessive water drinking, frequent urination, or diarrhea. His appetite may not be good. If any of these symptoms last more than a few days, call your veterinarian.
Understand that grabbing at, hugging, and kissing are all human behaviors, not canine behaviors. It is normal for a dog to resist this type of handling, if your dog has not been socialized well.
As a Rescue, part of our mission is to inform prospective adopters about the responsibilities and costs of bringing a giant breed dog into their homes, with the intent to provide the dogs with the best chance to live in a safe environment. We are, unfortunately, too aware of the risks of allowing your dog off leash in an unfenced yard. At the worst, the dog may be killed or severely injured by cars on nearby roads, or lost on undeveloped acres, if the dog chases a toy, a child, or perceived intruder or prey. At the least, the dog may wander unwelcomed onto neighboring properties. We must advise you to keep your dog(s) on leash with you, when you are in an unfenced area. Tie outs are not acceptable.
We urge you to enroll your dog/puppy in a training class about 2 weeks after bringing him home. Please use this site www.ccpdt.org for certified trainers and www.iaabc.org for behaviorists. Choose an instructor who uses motivational, or positive training and who does not promote the use of choke, prong, or shock collars. If your dog has a tendency to pull on the leash, use pull-control harnesses for walking him. If you have any training questions, or concerns about your dog's adjustment or behavior, MTM will be happy to provide information, training assistance and advice to help you and your dog(s).
Establish a routine for feeding, walking, exercising, etc., to help your dog get used to a predictable environment. Consistency and predictability is comforting to your dog and will help him adjust to your home.
Dogs are naturally pack animals. Pack animals always share a defined space while sleeping. To promote a feeling of safety and security, we recommend having the dog sleep in the same area as the owner, even if the dog is crated.
Your dog should have access to fresh, clean water at all times. If he is crated, please use a water bottle designed for use with crates if he knocks water bowls over.
We encourage you to feed your pets with the best food you can afford. Many "common problems" in dogs are caused by feeding improper foods and inadequate nutrition. The cost of quality food will always be less than the cost to treat illness or allergies caused by poor nutrition. http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/ provides unbiased food reviews.
You will find excellent training advice, health and wellness information at www.whole-dog-journal.com
Dr. Sarah Wooten has recently written a free online guide to encourage potential pet owners to adopt shelter dogs. She named this eBook “
Adopting a Shelter Dog, The Official Guidebook, 2019 Edition
.” In this free guide, she offers professional advice on things like selecting a shelter dog, preparing your home, making them feel welcome and so on. If you click on the link, you can check it out.