Planning, Play, Patience

by Susan Linden on Tuesday, February 7, 2012

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in Susan’s Bookshelf

Lots of Good Advice, and A Pleasure to Read

Love Has No Age Limit: Welcoming an Adopted Dog into Your Home. Patricia B. McConnell and Karen B. London. Black Earth, Wisconsin, McConnell Publishing, 2011. 95 pp.

Sparkling and succinct, this ninety-five page guide is a refreshing overview of the most important topics that adopters need to consider as they are about to welcome their new dog. Patricia B. McConnell and Karen B. London, experts in canine behavior and adopters themselves, focus on what it takes for this new relationship to get off to a great start.

The book is divided into six chapters, each of which is further divided into short sections. A seventh chapter provides an introduction to some of the common “problems” that dog owners may encounter. A list of helpful resources is included at the end. Readers will find here everything from a list of supplies needed to insights into understanding what their dog may be feeling in various situations. In short, the authors aim to tell you “what you most need to know during the first month after you adopt a new dog.”

This book will be beneficial for inexperienced dog owners as well as those who have had dogs, perhaps even many dogs, in the past. First-time owners will appreciate the friendly, caring advice and tips. Those who have done this before will be grateful for the reminders. It is so easy to forget, once a dog has settled in, what life was like during those first crucial weeks.

Dalmatian Rescue of Illinois will be giving a copy of Love Has No Age Limit to all our adopters. For prospective adopters, here are our own Top Ten Tips, all suggestions that are included in McConnell and London’s book, and that we have given, in one form or another, to all our adopters in the past.

  1. Plan as much as possible in advance. Buy supplies, arrange the house, and schedule lots of time to spend with your new companion.
  2. Stay calm, cool, and relaxed, no matter what. Give your dog every reason to want to get to know you better.
  3. Place the dog’s crate in a safe and quiet place, but at the same time in a spot that is not entirely isolated from family activity.
  4. Reward your new friend with small, tasty treats for behavior that you want him to repeat: getting into his crate, pottying outside, sitting quietly next to you. Be generous.
  5. Do not overwhelm the newcomer with too many people, toys, activities, or other animals during her first days with you.
  6. No hugs or kisses! Most dogs do not like them, especially from strangers.
  7. If you have other pets, seek professional advice on how and where to introduce them to each other.
  8. Arrange for your buddy to sleep at night in a place where he can see and hear you.
  9. Do everything you can to prevent problems and if any should arise, do NOT punish your new playmate.
  10. Remember that it will take many months for your pooch to settle into her new home.

Love Has No Age Limit will help you avoid many of the most common mistakes that humans make, as well as improve your dog-handling skills. A must-read for anyone thinking about adopting a rescue dog!


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Diane Mullins February 23, 2012 at 9:21 am

This is a wonderful book. Even for those who have already adopted dogs. If you take away one thing from this book it is that all dogs need TIME to adjust.


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