Rescue Dog Series – Preparation

Welcome to the first article in our rescue series! My name is Valerie from SSH Canine Academy. I’ve been working with dogs since 2015 and helped countless dogs and their owners adjust to their new life together. This series is for those that are about to introduce a new rescue to their home! We will be covering everything from the preparation stage all the way to common behavior problems and some options on how to deal with them. This article will be covering the preparation stage and everything you can do to get ready for the arrival of your new family member.

Preparation Stage

1. “Puppy” proofing

Regardless of if you’re adopting an adult or puppy, it’s important to remove anything that can be harmful to the newest member of your family.

This is an often overlooked step that can lead to your new dog getting into something dangerous/hazardous or destroying valuables; which can lead to frustration for both the dog and yourself. It’s important to understand that your new dog is still learning the rules of their new home. At the early stages this is one way to set them up for success!

2. Safe space

Make sure your new dog has a safe space set up in their new home. A place where they can retreat to calm down if they are feeling overwhelmed or need to rest. They are just entering a new environment and need time to adjust. Avoid giving them too much space to explore (limit the access to 1 or 2 rooms with supervision) so they can stay out of trouble and do not hurt themselves.

3. Supplies

When adopting your new furry friend, it helps to have everything you need before they arrive so you don’t need to worry about grabbing last minute items from the store. Here is a list of items you can get to make the first 24 hours a little more manageable.

  • Crate or Xpen: A crate or xpen will allow you to have a safe space to place your new dog when you cannot supervise them. This will allow you to use the bathroom, shower, or eat something with the peace of mind that they are safe and sound.
  • Enzyme Spray and Paper towels: Having some cleaning supplies ready for potty accidents is always a good idea. Regardless of your new dog’s age or training level, when introduced to a new environment there is always the chance that they will regress in their potty training. If that happens, these supplies will come in handy to quickly clean up the mess.
  • Bedding:To make your crate and xpen more comfortable, you can buy some bedding for your new dog. In my experience, if you are feeling unsure about your dog’s potty training do not spend large amounts of money on a dog bed. Kids blankets from Dollarama are $4 and are quite large! Not only are they cheap, but they are also easy to swap out and wash.
  • Leash and Collar: A leash and collar make your pick up a breeze and it will be something that you’ll be using again and again. If you know your dog’s name you can also get some pet tags to identify your pet if they ever get lost.

It’s always exciting when welcoming a new member of the family so this checklist should help with preparations you may have not thought about! We hope this guide has helped you and your new dog settle in easier. Stay tuned for the next article in this series “Your First 24 Hours with Your New Rescue”.

Article by Valerie, Founder and Owner of SSH Canine Academy

Helping Pet Parents understand their dogs building better bonds and communication.

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