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Old 01-23-2014, 12:18 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Adoption Quesitons (moved to General Rescue)

Hello,

This is my first post here so I apologize if this isn't the correct forum.

I'm close to adpoting a GSD from a local GSD rescue and have narrowed it down to one. I've met him and not only is he stunning, but he appears to be very well mannered but that was about a 15 minute meeting. I respect and trust this organization greatly as they look at the adoptions on a case by case basis and don't have many strict rules.

A huge part of my mentality is when you don't know much about something, don't act like you're knowledgeable, be honest and open about your lack of knowledge and don't hesitate to ask stupid questions.

So, here i am asking stupid questions to the people I can learn from.

What sort of quesitons should I ask about this GSD? I've already asked about heartworm and his hips. They both check out ok, but is there anything more specific I should ask?

Thank you all in advance.
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Old 01-23-2014, 12:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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This may sound obvious and you might have already done it, but ask lots of details about WHY he's a rescue. A lot of rescues may require special attention to certain areas of training, and you should know what you're getting yourself into.

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Old 01-23-2014, 01:12 PM   #3 (permalink)
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How old? Ask about reactivity to other dogs, people , cats , or kids. Food aggressions? Resource guarding? Keep in mind that most if not all issues can be worked through. I got my male at an animal shelter, as we were walking out after the papers were signed I found that he was reactive to other dogs. Otherwise perfect dog. I worked with him and he is completely perfect now and I'm happy I got him.
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Old 01-23-2014, 01:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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You may consider taking the trainer you plan on using, if you plan on using one, with you to evaluate the dog. I have done this many times and feel that my opinion on a dog helps the potential adopter make the right decision. Wether from a shelter or rescue, an unbiased opinion of the dog can help avoid the puppy love goggles.

The trainer will know what to ask the fostering home as well.

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Old 01-23-2014, 01:18 PM   #5 (permalink)
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And I will add that the majority of dogs given up and are now in shelters or rescue groups are due to human error. Don't count the dog out if they say he jumps on people, he jumps on people because he wasn't taught any different. My boy was brought in because he was mouthy with the kids, guess what? He has been around kids since day one in my house and has NEVER mouthed them. He follows them everywhere and wants to be with them all the time.
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Old 01-23-2014, 01:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by llombardo View Post
And I will add that the majority of dogs given up and are now in shelters or rescue groups are due to human error. Don't count the dog out if they say he jumps on people, he jumps on people because he wasn't taught any different. My boy was brought in because he was mouthy with the kids, guess what? He has been around kids since day one in my house and has NEVER mouthed them. He follows them everywhere and wants to be with them all the time.
I totally agree.

My CC was an obnoxious, mouthy, jumping, 70 pound pushy jerk when I picked him out. I had to convince the new shelter volunteer to let me take him out. He's perfect for our home now. Behaviors don't worry me at all. It's temperament I'm looking at, and comparable energy levels.

But, you have to understand the dog in front of you to make accurate observations. How many pet owners know what signs of stress and calming signals are, or what avoidance looks like? They really want a dog, and this one is cute.

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Old 01-23-2014, 03:12 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I totally agree.

Behaviors don't worry me at all. It's temperament I'm looking at, and comparable energy levels.


David Winners
Agreed. Midnite's temperament is what got me, I was not fond of his looks at all, that grew on me later. I knew when I met him I had to have him based on his disposition alone.
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Old 01-23-2014, 04:06 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Aside from the topics that have already been brought up, is there a way you can do a few visits with the dog before you make it official? That is what we did when we adopted Rosa. Her foster mom was very accommodating and we did several supervised "play dates" at a park. It was a nice way to see how she reacted to strangers and novel situations and other dogs. And it was a good way to get to know Rosa a little bit so it wasn't such a shock to her world the day she finally came home with us.
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Old 01-23-2014, 04:21 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by llombardo View Post
And I will add that the majority of dogs given up and are now in shelters or rescue groups are due to human error. Don't count the dog out if they say he jumps on people, he jumps on people because he wasn't taught any different. My boy was brought in because he was mouthy with the kids, guess what? He has been around kids since day one in my house and has NEVER mouthed them. He follows them everywhere and wants to be with them all the time.
I agree with your statement. When we adopted our male shepherd, Red, we were told he loves people, very friendly, walks good on a leash, gets along with other dogs and children etc by the rescue. He was found as a stray, so they were uncertain of his history other than what they've seen. He got along GREAT with everyone in our family, no issues, fit right in.
I happened to look at his profile they filled out when we got home several days later. Normally had he been online, I would have used it to base my judgement on whether he'd fit or not. Since we adopted him at DogFest we were able to see him in person, which is why I never looked at it right away. His profile said the following:

*Doesn't like to be touched or handled
*Not good around kids or other animals
*Best if in a home with no kids or other animals

Had I just used this, he wouldn't have been adopted. I have a child and other dogs. I just wonder how many other dogs have had similar profiles that detoured people from adopting them. I think some of these charactistics are put on certain breeds because of liability issues. I am just glad we found him and gave him a chance : ) Two years later, he is still an amazing dog and loves attention!
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Old 01-23-2014, 07:33 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I'm glad you are considering adopting. You're getting a lot of great advice. Its smart that you're asking what questions to ask to ensure this dog is right for you. One question I hope you consider is if you're right for this GSD. Since this is your first post I don't know how much you know about the dynamics of the breed.

One other comment...the people caring for my adopted dog told me he didn't like hugs, he had no house manners and wasn't house broken. Yet, Barty is the most affectionate, loving & well-behaved dog I've ever met. Trust your gut.
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