Behaviour Support for Adopted Dogs
It is becoming increasingly common for some dogs to be adopted outside their country of origin. CFAF acknowledges that there are some concerns about this trend because most countries already have dogs that are in need of homes; however, we also recognise and know from our own experiences, that re-homing dogs within their own country is not always a viable option for various reasons. In addition, sometimes people from overseas are keen to help an individual dog, which is a worthy cause and can be a truly fantastic outcome for the animals involved.
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Whether dogs are purchased from a breeder or rehomed from an animal shelter, all dogs can struggle at times to cope with change and there are many avenues of support for pets and their owners. Dogs adopted into another country from where they started life often have additional needs and require a little extra specialist help to enable them to cope with new experiences. For example, dogs who have spent their lives roaming might struggle with being confined in a new home and the sights, smells and noises associated with being a family pet. Other dogs who have experienced life in a rescue shelter might have difficulty adjusting to being in a home. In addition, dogs who have been transported a long distance to their new country of residence may not have been appropriately prepared for time in a travel crate and are likely to have found the journey overwhelming.
The process of welcoming a dog and helping them to settle into their new home can also be very stressful for their human carers. Some adopted dogs have had negative experiences with people and might be fearful of their new owners or people they meet. Behaviours such as toilet training, appropriate play and walking on a lead are all areas that need to be introduced in way that is enjoyable for the dog; however, owners often receive advice that is inconsistent with modern compassionate training and positive behaviour modification. Some dogs cause extensive damage to property, have abnormal behaviours that are not easily recognised or have a level of fear that is beyond what owners and local trainers know how to address. It’s sadly not uncommon for such dogs to end up relinquished to another rescue centre.
But CFAF is here to help! We have a network of qualified and friendly trainers and behaviourists across the world who are experienced in helping dogs adjust to life in a new home. We only advocate modern reward-based training methods that do not harm the dog and that will not cause additional problem behaviours, as some other training methods do. If you’re an owner, or potential owner, of a newly adopted dog, especially one adopted from overseas, please get in touch and we will link you up with someone who understands. We have arranged special rates with behaviourists and trainers for clients that come via CFAF, and in some circumstances help is available at no cost to the owner.
We are in the process of linking with rescue organisations that send dogs to new homes internationally and support will be available through some of these organisations as well as directly via CFAF. If you need help, advice or a friendly person to talk to about your dog’s issues please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will explore the options available.