Author Topic: S/O how to win over a dog?  (Read 1620 times)

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Dr. F.

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S/O how to win over a dog?
« on: August 06, 2012, 09:25:27 PM »
So, I picked up my new foster pup today. I'm an experienced dog foster-mommy - I've rehomed 18 before this one with my breed rescue.

However, this is the first one that's "toy" size. I have 3 standards - all around 30-40 pounds. New little foster dog is about 8 lbs. My guys have been trying to welcome her - my boy, in particular, seems to think she's a puppy (she's 2), and keeps trying to give her a bath. She's being very shy and disliking all of the attention from dogs and humans in the house.

At the moment, I've got her snoozing in the bedroom upstairs, with food and water dishes available. She won't eat or drink, even in the room by herself. She hasn't even moved from where I put her on the bed.

This is the most challenging introduction I've done. My dogs aren't remotely aggressive, but she's being very shy and not wanting to interact with me or the other dogs at all.

I'm sure it'll work out just fine. I'm perfectly willing to be patient and let the little one decide to interact on her own timetable. However, if my fellow eHellions have any awesome suggestions for how to integrate everyone easily, I'd love to hear them!

sevenday

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2012, 09:30:19 PM »
Food. :P  Even more so than cats, dogs are often highly food motivated.  She is likely very overwhelmed by all the things that are bigger than she is, especially if she's only been with her mother and/or littermates.  Go in there, sit on the bed, read a book, watch a movie. Just be there.  Dogs are curious; she will come to you to find out what you're up to.  You by yourself = less scary than you + another person, you + BIG DOGS CRUD MONKEYS!.  And food. Did I mention food?  Not the regular stuff that you have down for her, but "ooo, how naughty, I shouldn't be eating this but I AM!" food - hot dog bits are a big draw, as is a little peanut butter.  Never too early to start her on basic obedience stuff, and it makes both of you feel good about stuffing her with treats.  It also helps establish confidence, which you can gradually extend to low-key, one-at-a-time introductions to each of your standard dogs before letting her loose with all 3 at once.

JoW

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2012, 10:06:40 PM »
Hot dogs are a good idea, but the one food a dog simply cannot resist is catfood.  According to my vet cat food is too rich for dogs, but a little as a treat is fine.  A spoon or two of canned catfood will get her eating. 

Dr. F.

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2012, 10:10:58 PM »
She has, thus far, actually refused to eat CHEESE. Seriously! I mean, that's hard-core! In my experience, cheese will get a dog to do damned near anything.

I'm now going to go through a peculiar exercise to put my dogs in the bedroom and take her outside to go potty before going to bed. I'm going to try to put her in her crate in the bedroom with my dogs in the bed. If they harass her too much, I'll put her elsewhere, so that we can all relax and regroup overnight.

Ms_Cellany

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2012, 10:44:28 PM »
Vienna sausages. I had a straight-off-the-street stray once who I literally couldn't even touch, but she would betray Earth to the Martians for Vienna sausages.
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Pippen

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2012, 01:33:04 AM »
Just try and keep things as calm as possible and don't overdo the interaction with the humans or other dogs. Food is great but it can get messy if you are feeding them things they aren't used to and it upsets their tum. I got my dog when she was 2.5 and she did not like me at all for the first 3-4 days. It was all just so foreign coming from the irresponsible parents of the human variety with her little dog friends around to my place where it was just her. It was awful as I thought she hated me and I had made a terrible mistake.

My flatmate brought me a coffee one morning and she gave him the fright of his life as she went nuts at him as she had snuck into my room in the middle of the night and settled in at the foot of my bed. That was the moment I knew she would be fine. Now I can't do anything without my furry stalker.

Daffydilly

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2012, 02:07:09 AM »
Give her a shirt with your scent on it to sleep on. Keep the other big dogs away until she's comfortable with you one on one. That's all I can think of.

Phoebelion

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2012, 06:26:09 AM »
It's just heart breaking isn't it?  Sam sat in the corner of the kitchen for 3 days when we adopted her.  NOTHING (cheese, hot dogs, chicken, apples, carrots, liver, peanut better, etc) would make her move from that corner.  We leashed her and did the butt towel trick to get her in and out of the house.  I slept on the couch in the living room (was able to hear her tags jingle) and that's the only way that we knew she was drinking the water. 

So we ignored her for the most part - making certain she had food and water, talking softly to her whenever we were in her sight and gentle touching (which she always ducked like we were going to beat her).    Took her approximately a month and an operation before she willingly started to come out of "her corner".  To this day (9 years later), if a strange adult pets her she ducks.  She never goes beyond the living room.  She is much more comfortable outside where she can run from the "boogies" but will readily come in the house for DH, DS, DDIL or I.   The only toy she will play with is a tug rope - no balls, stuffies, bones.  Granddogs have a mother load of dogs toys because I keep trying.   Everyone and everthing else is suspect.   

She sounds like Sam - more flight than fight.   While it is less nerve wracking, it's just as frustrating.

Hopefully she's just stressed with the situation and will come around quickly.

Sorry - that's all I have.

Shopaholic

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2012, 08:23:40 AM »
I don't have any advice beyond food, but can we have some pictures, please? Pretty please :)

rashea

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2012, 09:22:16 AM »
I think I'd avoid having her crated while the other dogs are loose in the room. If they try to get at her, that might be much harder. And you want to keep the crate feeling "safe". I might crate the other dogs or leash them when you start introducing them. That way if they get to be too much, she can move away.

Hopefully within a week she'll be thinking she's a big dog.
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demarco

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2012, 09:36:07 AM »
I won over my little rescue by sitting on the floor across the room from her.  I just sat there quietly for a while, glancing at her but not staring.   The pup ambled around the floor, trying not to look at me, for a few minutes and then slowly walked over to me and gave me a kiss.  I think the trick is to let them come to you.  I also think it helps with little dogs to get down on their level without getting in their faces and let them take the lead. 

In my experience, the smallest female rules.  Before you know it, she'll be the boss of everyone. 

Dogs can go a while without eating but you mentioned she's not drinking and that would worry me if it went on all day. 

Dr. F.

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #11 on: August 07, 2012, 01:49:50 PM »
UPDATE:

She did eventually eat and drink last night, thank goodness! I was getting pretty concerned. She slept in her crate in the bedroom, along with everyone else. There was a moment at 6:30 when the other dogs realized she was in there and some woofing/growling occurred, but otherwise it was quiet. I left her in the bedroom with her crate, a couple blankies, and some food and water. Hopefully, she'll be able to relax a little bit. I may move her into my office and put a cat gate in the door, so that she can go in and out but the big dogs can't. That way she always has a safe place to return to, but can join in when she feels up to it.

The poor little girl has had a hard time of it. She was an owner surrender to the Rescue, and spent a few months in foster care at that point, and was then adopted. The new owner then decided she couldn't keep her, so returned her to the Rescue. So, my place is her 4th home in about 6 months. I expect she'll be adopted again quickly, so that'll be another adjustment.

If people promise not to say "EEEEEW" or "Aren't those the ugliest dogs in the world???," I'll post photos in the cuteliness folder.

Ms_Cellany

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #12 on: August 07, 2012, 02:19:47 PM »
I grew up with Boston terriers. I love 'em ugly AND stupid!
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AreaWoman

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #13 on: August 07, 2012, 05:38:08 PM »
I just wanted to add to the food suggestions.  My dog is a rescue mutt with severe fear aggression issues.  The one thing that has worked the best is turkey baby food, and the bonus is that it is very easy to digest, so no issues there.  It is kind of funny to watch, as her eyes bug out like she's on doggie crack.  (Note:  this is for getting her comfortable with new or fill-in dog walkers, who will feed it to her.)

squeakers

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Re: S/O how to win over a dog?
« Reply #14 on: August 07, 2012, 11:27:23 PM »
Carrots: "baby" carrots (regular carrots that have been tumbled down to cute size).  She can chew on them like a bone and they are healthy as well.

Maybe try sitting on the floor reading out loud to her?  So she gets used to your voice w/o any expectations from you (vs talking to her).

Some small dogs prefer to be held because that is what they are used to. Loosely on your lap (hindquarters loose) held up against your chest (from the chest up on dog held to your heartbeat).  Kind of the same principle as the Thunder Shirt. http://www.thundershirt.com/
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