These Tips will Help you to Bring Home your Very First Rescue Dog

There are thousands of dogs out there who require a forever home. If you’re looking to bring home a puppy then why not think about adopting instead? Find out everything you need to know, right here.

What to Expect
There really are so many reasons why pets end up in animal shelters. Usually it comes down to the personal circumstances of the owners, as opposed to it being the dog’s fault. It may be that you end up moving house, changing jobs, undergo a divorce or even have a new baby. Dog-ownership can be challenging to say the least and this is why so many people end up taking their dog to a rescue centre. Sometimes when you go to a shelter, you will soon find that they have so many family-friendly breeds as well as puppies. They also have adult dogs too. It’s vital that you research as many breeds as you can in advance, as this could help you to highlight some of the characteristics that your dog might have.

Choosing the Right Dog
It’s highly recommended that you try and choose a dog with your head as opposed to your heart. It’s very easy for you to fall in love with an animal right away but at the end of the day, you’ll want to stay somewhat detached if you can so that you can keep in mind what you’re in store for. If you want to save yourself some heartache, then don’t choose a dog that does not suit your lifestyle. The staff who work at an animal shelter, or a rescue centre will have so much experience in helping you to choose the right dog, but at the same time it helps to have an open mind. You might have a shortlist of all of the potential dogs you want, but at the same time, you need to make sure that you are open to bringing a dog home that wasn’t what you had in mind to begin with, but is right for your home. Your dog should have no health issues when they come to you, but sometimes they can develop conditions soon after leaving the shelter. Read more here about diseases such as kennel cough, as this can be very common in dogs that are young.

Behavioural Issues
Some rescue dogs will have behavioural issues that you need to address with patience and consistent training. It may be that your dog has aggression towards other dogs or even people. You will need to make sure that you are tough in your training because it is more than possible for you to curb these issues in no time. At the end of the day, most dogs will have a backstory. It may be that your dog was taken away from the mother too soon and that they like to snuggle. On the flip side, it may be that they have not been socialised enough at that crucial age.

Getting your Home Ready
Before you even think about rehoming a dog, you need to have a check done by the staff who work at the animal charity. They will have so much practical advice which will help you to ensure a smooth transition from start to finish. You have to remember that some dogs are happy to sleep in a crate too, so you need to make sure that you are comfortable having something like this in your home if you want to try and keep your rescue as comfortable as possible at all times. It’s also helpful to have everything you need before you pick up your dog, such as grooming tools or puppy toys.

4 Crucial Signs Your Dog May Have Declining Health

Dogs of all ages and sizes are vulnerable to a range of health problems, especially infection. The hardest part is that we can’t entirely avoid bacteria infection. They can quickly spread through the air and stay on surfaces where there is a dense concentration, such as your dog’s kennel, beddings, grooming equipment, bowls, and bodies.

The best way to determine any signs of illnesses is to warrant a check-in with your vet as soon as possible. It’s equally important, nonetheless, to know the common indicators that your dog is sick. Be wary if your dog is showing any of these symptoms as they can have major underlying causes.

Vomiting

There are two reasons why your dog throws up. First, it’s trying to get rid of undigested food, which usually stays in its oesophagus or stomach. This action is called regurgitating, not vomiting. Your dog usually regurgitates almost fairly shortly after its meal, especially when they gobble their food too fast. It’s very normal.

However, if your dog is forcefully throwing up its partly digested food from its stomach, it’s called vomiting. It could be a sign that your dog is suffering from clinical diseases, ranging from mild to severe conditions, which can either be the following:

  • Motion sickness
  • Side effects of medication
  • Dietary indiscretion
  • Food intolerance
  • Intestinal parasites
  • Ingestion of foreign bodies
  • Ingestion of toxic substance
  • Heatstroke
  • Viral infection
  • Bacterial infection
  • Kidney or Liver failure
  • Pancreatitis
  • Gastrointestinal disease

Moreover, a dog vomiting virus is currently spreading throughout the U.K. Affected dogs would usually vomit for up to five days, more frequently than is commonly seen with canine gastroenteritis. They tend to throw up profusely with five or more bouts within 12 hours while showing symptoms of lethargy, loss of appetite, and diarrhoea.

Worse is there’s a spike in cases of prolific vomiting in dogs recently. It’s very worrisome, but you have to stay calm and prudent. You’ll know your dog is about to vomit when it shows symptoms like retching, drooling, or experiencing contraction on its abdomen. Should you suspect your dog is suffering from prolific vomiting, contact your local vet right away.

Decreased Appetite and Thirst

It’s no cause for alarm if there’s a slight decrease in your dog’s water and food consumption. It usually happens when your dog gets less exercise, especially during cold weather. When they’re inactive, they feel less thirsty and hungry.

However, if your dog persistently shows disinterest in water and food, it can be caused by a disease. Health issues, such as kidney disease, diabetes, and some cancers in dogs, can cause your dog’s thirst to fluctuate.

Decreased thirst could even be one of the signs of a dying dog. It usually happens when a dog is infected with a bacterial or viral infection, like the Parvovirus. This virus attacks the cells of dogs’ intestines, particularly those of young puppies and unvaccinated dogs.

When your dog’s gut can’t absorb vital nutrients, your dog will suffer from fever, diarrhoea, vomiting, dehydration, depression, loss of appetite, and, worse, death. Parvovirus easily spreads through body fluids, so it’s highly contagious. And with no up to date cure, dog owners can only rely on vaccination. Make sure to protect your pup against this fatal infection by vaccinating them.

Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence happens when your housetrained dog loses its bladder control due to some abnormal health conditions, which generally vary depending on your dog’s age and gender. Check WebMD Veterinary Reference from the ASPCA for more in-depth information.

For the most common causes of urinary incontinence in dogs, here’s a rundown categorized into age and gender.

Adult Female Dogs
Urethral sphincter mechanism incompetence (USMI)

Adult Male Dogs
Prostate problems
Perineal hernia

Young dogs
Ectopic ureter
Congenital USMI

Any age
Spinal problems
Urine Infection
Urine Blockage
Urinary Tract Injuries
Urinary Tract Tumors

Urinary incontinence can cause your dog to change its appetite, drink more, and pee more than usual. In the worst scenarios, your dog might be in pain while peeing, suffer from pain in its back legs or lower spine, or bleed while peeing.

While it doesn’t directly cause your dog’s demise, medical research shows that it’s a reliable predictor of death caused by another medical disorder. Hence, urinary incontinence in dogs is entirely abnormal and shouldn’t be ignored.

Changes in Gum Color

This is a very common indicator of a dog’s health condition. Your dog is very healthy if it has nice moisty bubblegum-pink gums. It means that there’s oxygen-rich blood circulating throughout your dog’s body.

On the other hand, dogs with dry, whitish or bluish gums are usually terminally ill and dying. Sad to say, there’s nothing much that we can do to reverse the gum colour to normal. A vet may advise emergency transfusion or euthanasia, depending on the dog’s condition.

Takeaway

Reduced mobility, disinterest in food, declining hygiene, social detachment and other signs of illness shouldn’t also be overlooked. For the most part, any changes in your dog’s behaviour are among the first signs of their sufferings. If these changes occur, don’t wait and consult a vet immediately.