The 3-3-3 Method You Need To Know When Adopting Adult Dogs

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Using The 3-3-3 Acclimation Method When Adopting Adult Dogs Works!

“When adopting adult dogs be prepared to allow some time and they will tell you exactly what they need,” says Deb Davis, Volunteer Coordinator with God’s Dogs Rescue. “Our 3-3-3 Acclimation Method helps reduce the number of dogs being returned to shelters and pet rescue centers.”

photo credit cesarsway

God’s Dogs Rescue highly recommends this dog-101 method to adopting families for success with their adult rescue dogs. Allow your rescue dogs the time to acclimate to his or her new surroundings, it makes for good family dogs.

Days 1, 2, and 3 Let Your Dog Just Relax

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Your dog can sense you relaxing. Your calm behavior and low activity expectations are vital at this time. How you act will lend to his success in getting to know your family bonding in his new location. It’s good to allow at least three days for your adult rescue dog to settle in.Davis exclaims, “For a dog to just unwind from their situation to settle in and relax takes about three days.”

Think of the new-normal your dog has to adjust to. Such as life in a cozy crate, consistent availability of food and water, taking potty breaks on a leash and finally having a safe place to sleep. This most desirable of new-normals takes some getting used to. Be prepared, it may take a little more time for extreme situations. “You’ll know when your adult rescue dog has arrived at that peaceful place, he’ll sleep like he has never slept before.” grinned, Davis.

Restrict Outside Interaction The First Three Weeks To Help Your Adult Rescue Dog Get Comfortable

Milton Brown

Don’t invite your friends and neighbors over to meet the new love-of-your-life right away. Consider holding off for about 3 weeks to allow her to get comfortable with her new surroundings.

Welcome-to-the-family parties can be overwhelming for your adult rescue dog. It’s also too soon for trips to the dog park. The smells and pheromones floating through the air will not be helpful. And you need the time to discover any triggers or temperament issues as well.  Take some time and let your rescue acclimate to you, her new pack leader, and her new-normal life.  

Check out these tips on Pack Leadership

You’ll See The Dog’s Personality Emerge Within The First Three Months

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By following the 3-3-3 guidelines you can expect to see your adult rescue dog’s personality come out within the first three months.

It’s your responsibility to protect and provide for your dog as best as you can. So please take heart and allow him or her 3-days to relax, 3-weeks to get comfortable, and 3-months to allow her true personality to show. It’s worth your time and effort for the long term.

Have you adopted an adult rescue dog? Share why you chose an adult dog in the comments below.

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  • We adopted an adult rescued from the streets of Los Angeles (a Rhodesian Ridgeback). It was initially adopted by a young couple in Tacoma who let it stay on their third story balcony while they went to work. Charlie had so much anxiety about being left alone, he jumped off the balcony and broke his leg. Went to Pet Doctor for surgery. (The couple said to put him down; they wouldn’t pay the bills.) Pet Doctor said, No, they will keep him. He stayed at Pet Doctor for six months and then we discovered him and decided to adopt him. He could not stay alone; he would chew the molding off the doors, etc. Two and a half years later he developed cancer (lymph nodes), and we gave him chemotherapy for about a year ($2-$3K a month); then he was kept alive with different cancer treatments and prednisone, but he died last week. We miss him. But we know he had a good life with us.

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