Dog Forum banner

1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I adopted a rescue dog a little over two months ago. He was found at 8 weeks old ferrel outside in the Everglades. He then boarded at a nice facility for a year. He is extremely skiddish and shy. He's made tons and tons of progress since I've gotten him but sometimes it feels like I'm putting so much love and attention into him and he isn't reciprocating. He chooses to sleep next to me over sleeping in his bed and will randomly play with me only when it's late at night and were laying in bed after I've shut the tv off. Does anyone have any suggestions of how I can connect with him more and for him to see im his mom and he can trust me?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,712 Posts
Of course, positive training and nothing else, but mostly time. At 2 months, my dog was like a pillow I had to feed. It was a year before he really opened up, and he's never going to be super expressive Velcro dog. That's just not Kabota.

So be patient, kind and full your pockets with treats.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for your feedback. It makes me feel better hearing from someone whose been in my position before. This dog was deemed " not adoptable " and I hated knowing he and so many others were just sleeping in a cage every night. Thank god he was able to play with a group of dogs during the day but it isn't the same as human contact. I'm being patient with him, sometimes it just gets discouraging when he ducks when I go to pet him or try's to get away from me when all I want to do is love him. Time time time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,829 Posts
You are very lucky to have adopted a younger dog...they tend to adjust to things a little easier than an older dog who has experienced abuse or not being around people in their lifetime.

I adopted a 5 year dog who was severely abused at times. She was kept isolated in a back yard, mostly on a tie down, but she sometimes would escape her collar and her owner, who rarely did much with her other than toss her food and water...couldn't catch her. So...he would chase her around the yard with a board, or whip a tie-down chain at her...and when he did catch her she was beaten with whatever it was he had in his hand...the board, or chain.

So, for 5 years all my dog Jaya knew was that 1 person, no other dogs, and she learned pain and to fear. The man went to move one day and couldn't catch her when she got away from him so he left her and 3 days later, once out of the state, he called animal control to get her. Then a rescue group took her from the shelter as they were going to put her to sleep as being a dog that would take too much work to make adoptable.

The rescue group went back to her old neighborhood and found out all that stuff about how the dog lived. The neighbors knew but did nothing as they thought the guy would be vindictive if he thought they turned in him for animal abuse.

They had Jaya for 3 months before putting her up for adoption and made it very clear this dog wasn't going to just anyone, and that she might always be feral and not able to connect/make a bond with the new owner. Even after 3 months with them, she was pretty shut down as far as showing any personality other than fear.

You've only had your dog for 2 months and it sounds like you are making wonderful progress. It might be your dog will never be the totally playful at any time you want it to be - but I think it's awesome that he's willing to play with you already, even if it is at night.

And, I think there's still a chance that later on he will come around and be playful at other times and play is certainly a bonding activity. It sounds like right now he feels very safe at night and thus willing to drop his guard and play and he's trusting you enough that he's not just playing but playing with you.

I had Jaya for almost a year before I caught her outside playing one day. I almost cried in seeing how joyful she looked...something I never saw in her before that...and maybe it was the first time since she was a puppy that she knew that kind of emotion too.

I can't stress enough how important it is to give your dog time for his personality to change. He might always be a little on the skittish side, but it sounds like you two are bonding. And, I think you will be amazed at what you have for a dog in another 10 months, especially if he keeps progressing with his play and his willingness to trust you.

It took me about 2 months before I could talk to Jaya, look at her, or even move in my chair without her going into a panic, and bolting away from me. I still can't just reach out and pet her if I'm standing up. But she will come up to me now and take food from my hand as long as I don't lean forward to much or talk to her as I offer the food. And she will upon occasion, if I'm sitting in my computer chair let me reach down and scratch her head and neck...although about 90 percent of the time she still moves out of my reach. It's progress, so I'm happy with that 10 percent chance I get now...maybe by the end of next year, we will be up to 20 percent of the time. : )

I think we have bonded. It's not yet and may never be a complete thing with her trusting me, but when I look back on the dog I adopted and see what I have now I'm very happy with what I see. Most of the time Jaya is relaxed around me now, I can walk past her and she just stands there! She doesn't bolt or cringe.

It took over a year but she has changed. So if she can do it given her age and what she went through I have no doubt your younger dog will be able to bond with you even more than what Jaya's been able to do with me.

Congrats in taking in a dog that most people wouldn't want to deal with, I know it's nice to have a dog that totally bonds with you....but there's also a very very special feeling that comes in knowing a dog who's never trusted anyone has bonded with you a little bit...because that dog had to push past a lot of fear in order to do that...so for me, it means that much more, compared to a dog who doesn't know the real cost of trust and just gives his away to anyone. I hope your dog makes you feel as special as Jaya has made me feel, even though her bond with me is still a bit shaky at times.

It sounds like you are doing good - I'm not sure there's much I could add other than treats are a great way to reward behavior like him coming to you on his own, or when called. I use to drop Jaya a treat when I noticed she would take a step towards me... I couldn't look at her or she would run, but out of the corner of my eye I could see her move towards me, so I would drop a treat and move away from it. She learned coming near me was a good thing. Coming to me when called was a good thing because she was rewarded with treats for that.

Stormy
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top