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Adopting a rescued dog is one of the most life-changing experience for you and your new pet. It demands a higher level of commitment and patience, but it is entirely worth it at the end when you form a lasting bond with your rescue. The thing is, there’s no way of knowing what your rescue dog has been through, he/she could have been abused, neglected, and undoubtedly abandoned. Their relationship towards human beings might have altered, and you will have to regain their trust. Bonding will not happen overnight, but even shy dogs can learn to break down barriers. Here are a few tips on how to bond with a rescued shy dog.
- Give your dog its space.
When you bring a rescued dog into a new and unknown space, and you need to know that you cannot expect too much from them in a short amount of time. The new living situation can be overstimulating for a rescued shy dog. Firstly, stand back and let your new dog grow accustomed to you and its new environment on its terms.
- Play Time
Set aside specific time for play every day, and include lots of interactive toys. Balls, tug toys, anything he/she can fetch. Toys with treats are always a hit, as they involve play and tasty treats. When you start introducing new games into your daily interactions, it can go a long way to helping build that loving bond.
- Go for Walks
Walks are a great bonding opportunity. As you know, dogs love to walk, sniff, and explore the outside world and with you at its side, he/she will feel more comfortable.
Your dog is shy around you, and there's a good chance that it is also shy around strangers and new dogs. Time your walks in such a way that you go for wals during the quiet time of day when you are less likely to come across strangers.
- Basic Training
Training is a great way to facilitate in creating a trusting relationship with your dog. Start casually with basic commands every day and as your bond becomes stronger, you can step up the training with an obedience and skills classes.
- Give your dog lots of praise
Whenever your dog does anything right, from eating its food to reacting to the right command, shower it with compliments and approval. Making a big fuss over it makes your dog feel more loved, and just like humans, dogs love to approval and positive reinforcements.
Most of the time, you could be doing everything right, but it is not your fault, because your rescued dog's past experiences can be hard to get over. All you can do is be patient. Remember not to give up on bonding with your dog to form a friendship.