What are Adoption Blues?
Within the first few days/week’s adopters can feel highly stressed and emotional taking on a rescue dog and during this stage, as emotions are high, knee-jerk decisions of returning a dog can come to the forefront of someone's mind.
These thoughts are perfectly normal. BUT they need working through.
Things will seem that bit harder to begin with because it is all new, you suddenly have a being you are responsible for, that needs attention and care. You will have moments of panic, doubt and points where you want to tear your hair out and trust me, if you are feeling this, YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
Take a step back and remember that if you need a break the dog does not have to be around you 24/7. Give the dog a Kong or long-lasting treat, pop them in another room and go sit away from the dog.
You will NOT do things perfectly. You WILL make mistakes, but adopting a dog is a big learning curve - especially when taking on a Rommie and you WILL get through this. Honestly, you will look back in a month's time and you will see how much easier life has gotten. You will learn more about your dog, and yourself.
Remember that adopting a dog takes commitment and you would not have adopted a dog if you did not believe you could give them that commitment. Dogs are living things; they are not robots and will not do exactly what you want all day every day - you definitely did not when you were a child and causing your parent(s) to pull their hair out with stress!
It is also important to remember that before you, all your dog knew was pain, abuse and cruelty. Even in 1 day, you being nice to them makes so much of a difference and you become that dogs world. If you give up at the first hurdle you tear that world from them, and they go back to a period of uncertainty and again and do not know if a new person is to be trusted.
Hang in there. In 3 months’ time you will have made many memories with your rescue, and 1 year following adoption you will be amazed by their progress. You need to keep a positive mind when adopting a dog as the Adoption Blues WILL go away.
What can you do during the Adoption Blues' period?
- USE THE IDR SUPPORT GROUP!!!! Everyone on here is a shoulder to cry on, this is why it was set up. https://www.facebook.com/groups/407149610014800
- Consult a dog behaviourist to help you work on a bond with your dog.
- Make time for yourself. Remember they do not need to be at your feet 24/7. Just make the time away from you positive with treats.
- Allow yourself time to adjust, do not give in to impulse.
The positives of adopting a dog will outweigh the difficulties you face in the early stages. If you hang on in there you will see.
We are always here to support you, but you need to be willing to work through this period. There is a light at the end of the tunnel - we promise.