This is Chase.
I've rescued a shelter dog. How do I make him more adoptable?
Hi, I currently pull foster and re-home urgent dogs from conencticut. I have a 9 month old male who was hit by a car. He is the sweetest thing ever. Has no aggression issues at all. He needs work though before I can adopt him out.
He is a leash LUNGER. He will walk fine on a leash alone, just me and him, but when he sees something he wants then he goes. He was a habitual humper. Humping anything soft. We have curbed that mostly. When we say no he stops.
Now he needs help with listening and house training. He will not ask to go out. I crate him and take him out right when he gets out of the crate. I am trying to teach him sit, wait, off and lay down, but it seems like he isnt grasping it.
He also nips like a puppy would. Not an older puppy but like an 8 week old puppy. I do want to use positive reinforcement with him, but its hard. I cannot whole heartedly adopt him out to any family until I can fix these things.
Also, I have another pit/lab that is only a few months older who is fantastic but also has issues with asking to go out. Both of these dogs are from the same place and are great dogs but need work.
When they play they play HARD. I would love to learn how to tell them when enough is enough without having to physically get into the middle of them. Like I said still no aggression to person or dog. Not even kittens.
I know obedience classes but they won't start for another 6 weeks. What can I do in the mean time?Gale's Reply
Bless you for
being an angel to shelter dogs--especially pit bulls. I wish you every success and satisfaction that fostering homeless dogs can bring.
While I admire your ambition, I wonder if you are trying to do too much at one time. Chase doesn't need to be perfect to be adoptable. After all, you saw something special in him. Chances are others will also.
The idea of adopting a fully trained dog may appeal to some people. But, obedience classes are more about training the owner than training the dog. Consequently, the work you do with Chase in obedience class won't necessarily transfer to a new owner unless he or she also take him through obedience.
If I were you, I would concentrate on the behaviors that might prevent someone from wanting to adopt him--nipping for one. Mounting for another--but you say you've pretty well curbed that problem.
Housebreaking is another thing that doesn't always transfer from one setting to another. But, a dog that has been successfully house trained once will usually have a shorter learning curve in a new environment. So, it's worth doing what you can in this area.
Here are some additional articles related to your concerns:Puppy BitingHouse Breaking a DogPotty Training a DogHow to Train a One Year Old Male Pitbull
To my mind, anyone who is thinking of making a commitment to a pitbull for the rest of its natural life should know that they are dealing with a high energy breed and that obedience training is a must. If I were you, I wouldn't want to adopt Chase to anyone who didn't fully intend to take him to obedience class themselves.
My suggestion to you as his foster mom is to concentrate on curbing the most negative of his behaviors. And otherwise, letting his natural charm and personality work its magic on prospective adopters.