German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
482 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Some of you may have seen the trials and tribulations I have been going through in order to get home Diesel from a high kill shelter in Columbus GA 700 miles away from me. It should be noted that my determination to get this dog and what I have already gone through to this point I am preparing for the worst.

I am going to do the 2 week shutdown. This dog will need it... No doubt. He has gone through the kill shelter for 7 days, spent 13 days in a kennel at the vets after being neutered and becoming ill, went to a foster home that immediately took him back (fosters issue I am sure not dogs), now resting for a week at a pet resort until transport can be made to me on 5/3.

Here are my questions about this, as I want to as effectively as possible complete this as closely as possible as recommended.

1. What is the best way to effectively not have interactions with my dogs? They roam freely about the house. They are both pretty laid back and submissive but I know they are still going to be curious about this new dog.

2. When I have him out of his crate and on hand with me, should I have my other dogs outside? Or should I just drag him along and let my dogs go about their routine?

3. I work from home so I am home all day but sometimes really busy at work. Should I just leave him in his crate all day and then on lunch break take him out? Or would it be better to get him out a couple times through the day and bring him into my office with me? He wont be getting much attention while I am working but at least he would be here with me.

4. The cats, well if anyone has them you know they have a mind of their own and my soul purpose in their life is to feed, clean their litter box, and pet them when they want it. They also have free range of the home, Should I keep them locked up and away from him or let them do their normal routine?

These are just the things I want to be prepared with before he gets here, I will have 6,000 other questions once he arrives I am sure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,459 Posts
As long as he s not freaking out at the others from the crate, you can let them wonder around and interact with each other through the crate first. Do you have someone to help with introductions? Taking them for a nice tiring walk together is a good thing.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
7,904 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,459 Posts
Some people chose to misinterpret the two-week shutdown as complete isolation. It is not. It allows the dog to observe the happenings in the home from the sidelines rather than as an active participant. It is simply about gradually integrating the new dog into a home and allowing it to de-stress.
Some dogs don't need it and do well immediately. Others don't handle it well, as the example of the OPs dog has shown. People who integrate dogs into homes on a regular basis ( as opposed to those who adopt a dog every couple of years ) support the two week gradual integration based on personal experience of fostering numerous dogs and integrating many dogs into their own home as well as picking up the pieces after integration has gone wrong. Better safe than sorry. Gradual integration will not hurt the dogs. Adopting a dog is a marathon and not a sprint. Adopters that have problems with their new dogs are usually those that disregard recommendations of previous caretakers thinking that they know it all better since they owned dogs before. Most failed adoptions are by people who consider crating to be cruel (in their mind dumping the dog when a problem arises is not cruel - a problem that 2-3 weeks of crating could easily solve.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
482 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
I know a lot of people here advocate the two week shut down. I am not one of them.

Please read this blog by an experienced trainer.

I just got a rescued dog – what do I do? | stickydogblog
Nice, this is kind of what I wanted to do but thought maybe it was in his best interest to do the two week shut down. This is similar but without the isolation. Great info! Thanks to everyone who continues to help me. I dont think there is a right or wrong way to do things each person and dog are different. I just want to do what is best for him!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,270 Posts
Nice, this is kind of what I wanted to do but thought maybe it was in his best interest to do the two week shut down. This is similar but without the isolation. Great info! Thanks to everyone who continues to help me. I dont think there is a right or wrong way to do things each person and dog are different. I just want to do what is best for him!
Thank you for rescuing him. Good luck and keep us updated on how it goes. I've found for us introducing them on a leash on a walk seems to work best for us. :)

We always have a crates set up so they can retreat if they wish but the doors are not closed. When we brought Tasha home she ignored the crate and watched her new world from under our dinning room table. After a while she choose to come join us in the living room.

and here is where she now lay's. :D



Yes that is my lap under 90# Buddy and 80# Tasha. LOL at least they keep me warm in the winter time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,803 Posts
I would not let my dogs investigate the crated new comer. That can be threatening to him and make him crate aggressive which is not a good start.
Maybe have him in another room, door open, protected by a tall gate so they can see and smell each other while the new dog has room to retreat if need be.
I introduced a new foster to the most dominant dog in the group in a new area and once he approved the rest of the dogs just followed his cues. Then we all spend a good part of the day away from home to get them acquainted and more bonded. Once home it always worked out but the first few days I had the new one tethered to me.
Good luck and thanks for helping and sticking with this dog. Keep us updated, very interesting story.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,532 Posts
Some people chose to misinterpret the two-week shutdown as complete isolation. It is not. It allows the dog to observe the happenings in the home from the sidelines rather than as an active participant. It is simply about gradually integrating the new dog into a home and allowing it to de-stress.
Which seems to be exactly what that article advocates, although it suggests allowing "at least 3 weeks" for the dog to settle in. :)

Nice, this is kind of what I wanted to do but thought maybe it was in his best interest to do the two week shut down. This is similar but without the isolation.
Nope, no isolation in the 2 week shutdown: http://www.bigdogsbighearts.com/2_week_shutdown0001.pdf

It does say to "crate the dog in a room by itself if possible", but that doesn't mean the dog stays in the crate in that room by themselves all the time, it just means that when the dog is crated, it shouldn't be in a busy, active part of the house being bombarded with overwhelming stimuli. The link specifically mentions the dog seeing you and hearing you, and also leashing the dog to you or a piece of furniture near you, which wouldn't be possible if it were completely isolated in a crate in another room all the time.

The shut down means no:

Leash walks
Obedience training
Corrections
Car rides
Other dogs
Excessive petting or handling
Overwhelming the dog with too much new stuff

What it does allow for:

Exercise and ball play in your yard ("Do fun toss the ball games in your yard or on a lunge line if no fence. Remember to just have fun, let the dog run and explore.")

Gentle praise, touch, and soft petting (Dog is sitting nicely next to you, touch or softly pet the dog "good boy/girl" let then know you appreciate GOOD behavior. This makes naughty behavior not so fun if you ignore THAT but praise the good!")

I've never had a rescue so I've never needed to do the shut down, but it seems like basic common sense to me - you're bringing a dog into your home who has possibly had their entire world turned upside down, and they need some time, and a quiet place of their own, to help them settle in, feel comfortable, and learn to trust you. What could be wrong with that? :thinking:

If you don't think it's necessary or would be beneficial for your dog, don't do it. But to take one small part of the program out of context and blow it all out of proportion, and then slam the entire program because of that misrepresentation, well that just doesn't make sense to me at all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
482 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Which seems to be exactly what that article advocates, although it suggests allowing "at least 3 weeks" for the dog to settle in. :)



Nope, no isolation in the 2 week shutdown: http://www.bigdogsbighearts.com/2_week_shutdown0001.pdf

If you don't think it's necessary or would be beneficial for your dog, don't do it. But to take one small part of the program out of context and blow it all out of proportion, and then slam the entire program because of that misrepresentation, well that just doesn't make sense to me at all.
I am actually going to set up two crates for him. One in the living / dining room and one in our bedroom. (They are just too big to carry up and down the stairs between the rooms) That way if he is struggling in the living room around everyone he can be alone in the bedroom or visa versa. I want him to be close to us when we sleep so if he does ok with the one in the living / dining room then he will only use the one in our bedroom at night when its time to sleep. I am not slamming the program at all, I am looking to everyone who has experience with this. Both of my others are rescues but it has been 8 years since I did this and she was a puppy not an adult.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
32,532 Posts
I am not slamming the program at all, I am looking to everyone who has experience with this.
That comment was not directed at you, I should have made that more clear. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,270 Posts
I am not slamming the program at all, I am looking to everyone who has experience with this. Both of my others are rescues but it has been 8 years since I did this and she was a puppy not an adult.
Her comment was directed at me. Although I have not slammed it in this thread I do think that the two week shut down as written is dangerous and have said so loudly in the past.

The way it is written people do not know that isolation is not isolation and there is a huge chance for it to be used incorrectly and when that happens the dog is the one who pays, so I always try to make sure to get the discussion going on it so that it gets fully clarified whenever I happen to see it brought up.

Another thing I like to point out is that it should never ever be used on a puppy because I have seen some people recommend it not realizing that it was a puppy rescue not an adult dog that was being discussed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,034 Posts
People who integrate dogs into homes on a regular basis ( as opposed to those who adopt a dog every couple of years ) support the two week gradual integration based on personal experience of fostering numerous dogs and integrating many dogs into their own home as well as picking up the pieces after integration has gone wrong. Better safe than sorry.
I think you should say SOME people.

I have fostered MANY dogs over the years. From 8 week old puppies to seniors. From happy, outgoing to terrified and withdrawn. From healthy to very sick.

I have never down any type of 'shut down'. All these dogs were integrated right into our house. If they were afraid - they were given space and time to join in on their own. If they were too wild - they were given crate time to calm down.

The dogs ALL were put right into the middle of the pack from Day 1.

With my pack, who were very used to dogs coming and going and never really cared one way or another, this worked.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
482 Posts
Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Here are some things that may help direct the comments and what this specific situation is:

1. They think he is just shy of 2 yrs old, neutered on 4/12.
2. He is very "bouncy" and over-excited (I am sure it is environment + stress)
3. He was sick for 6 days, during that time they had him locked up in a small vet kennel where his activity was limited, once he turned the corner and started acting healthy, passed all the health screening tests etc they suggested I find him a foster until Transport was arranged. (Transport was to happen before he became ill and transport was cancelled)
4. He went to a fosters (4/24). She had 3 other Female dogs St. Bernard, Husky, and Great Dane. She did not do proper introductions she literally brought him into the house and let him off leash. (didnt even just put him out in her fenced back yard to blow some steam off and smell the other dogs) The Great Dane is a dominant female and they got into a tiff. Foster took him back to rescues vet clinic immediately. (Now I fear dog aggression although he was fine with the others and this was clearly not his fault, he was probably scared or overwhelmed)
5. Since the foster no longer had him his transport was cancelled AGAIN, I made the decision to send him to a Pet Resort where he has his own doggie condo and an outside run to decompress a little and stretch his legs (he is there now)
6. Doggie Resort called me yesterday and they had to give him a sedative as they had storms approaching and he was freaking out. He is fine this morning and back to happy and perky.
7. I had him pulled from death row, he was only at the rescue who pulled him on my behalf getting vetted. They did no analysis on him, the only behavioral analysis that was done was when he was at the Kill Shelter and I talked the shelter manager into walking him through the cat room and up and down the aisle to see how he reacted to other animals. The only thing they said was he was extremely hyper and paid no mind to these other dogs. A cat lashed out at him from its cage and he was terrified. He was also said to be terrified upon coming into the shelter walking past the other dogs in their runs.

My Current pack of critters includes:

1. Very submissive Spayed Female Samoyed 8yrs old
2. Aloof neutered 19yr old Shiba Inu pretty much if everyone leaves him alone he doesnt care what goes on as long as he has his bed and is fed at 7am sharp and 5pm sharp.
3. 13 yr old DLH Spayed cat likes everyone except the other cat (go figure)
4. 2 yr old DLH Neutered cat. Someone forgot to tell him he is a cat, he sleeps with dogs, plays with dog toys, and acts like a dog.
5. Two horses which he will not have access to or be introduced to for a VERY long time.

You could say I am starting Noah's ark over here... Except everyone is fixed

I know I am taking a risk without knowing his background and having all the assessments that normal Rescues do. He was going to be put to sleep because no one wanted him. I see dogs that need help every single day however something about him called out to me. It has been an uphill battle daily getting him to me but I have not given up. I will deal with the issues he has I am not going to abandon him. I will be enlisting a professional trainer and anything necessary to get his behaviors under control. I really appreciate all the advice I have received and the kind words of encouragement I have received with all these battles! Thank you to everyone who has or will respond :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,735 Posts
I am happy you are giving him a chance and can't wait to hear more after you get him =)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,034 Posts
I will be enlisting a professional trainer and anything necessary to get his behaviors under control.
Personally, I don't see any 'behaviors' that need to be brought under control.

"He is bouncy and over-excited."

Lots of exercise, good mind challenging games and basic obedience.

"The Great Dane is a dominant female and they got into a tiff."

Define 'tiff'. Did the foster have to physically separate the dogs? Was there serious damage? I'd ask the pet resort to try walking him past other dogs rooms to see how he reacts now. If there was no serious damage it sounds like a simple pack scuffle to me. Slower introduction would fix that.

"they had to give him a sedative as they had storms approaching and he was freaking out."

Fear of loud noises and storms is common. First thing I would do is get a Thundershirt for him. I'm working with my boy Mauser to get him over his thunder fears. As it's approaching I take him outside with his favorite toy - a ball - and start playing. I try to get him REALLY jazzed for the ball and wait until the thunder sounds before I throw it.

I did something similar to get him past his fear of gunshots. We used our lure course and the neighbors (who have their own gun range in their back field). He is CRAZZZZZY about lure coursing and it didn't take long for his drive to course to overcome his fear of gunshots.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
482 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Personally, I don't see any 'behaviors' that need to be brought under control.

"He is bouncy and over-excited."

Lots of exercise, good mind challenging games and basic obedience.

"The Great Dane is a dominant female and they got into a tiff."

Define 'tiff'. Did the foster have to physically separate the dogs? Was there serious damage? I'd ask the pet resort to try walking him past other dogs rooms to see how he reacts now. If there was no serious damage it sounds like a simple pack scuffle to me. Slower introduction would fix that.

.
The "tiff" did have to physically be separated no blood was drawn. It was 100% the fosters fault she should of NEVER put him or her own dogs in that situation. He gets daily walks 3x's a day at the Pet Resort and they have nothing but good things to say about him. His run has dogs on either side and he has not even paid them any attention. (Other than the freak out over the approaching storm)

He will have plenty of exercise and activities to do. Obviously when I am working he will have to rest but otherwise once we get his obedience down he has a 5 acre mini-farm he will rule. This may not be for 6weeks or 6months depending on him but we are outside doing things all the time and he will be included. My dogs go everywhere with me. Pretty much other than work the rule is if the dogs cant go, I dont go. Its just my husband and I and we bought a bigger camper so the dogs had room, and the horse trailer has living quarters so the dogs go too. My dogs have more miles on them than a 1975 Honda ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,270 Posts
Here are some things that may help direct the comments and what this specific situation is:
I'm no trainer and I don't have cat's so unfortunately I have no suggestions there. I can tell you what worked for me and what didn't.

What worked, walking them on neutral territory and if they all seem to get along well then I would bring them all inside still leashed and just sit down and have a normal conversation with the person who is helping you. As normal as can be with everyone leashed to someone. When all is calm maybe let go of one or two leashes but let them drag them. Keep new boy leashed to you. If possible maybe have the person helping you be a trainer at very minimum an experienced dog person. Be ready to stop tiffs but make sure new dog feels like part of family.

I can also tell you what didn't work, that was bringing a dog home late and night when everyone was tired and cranky and rather than introducing everyone we put the dog straight into the crate in the other room until the next morning before trying to make introductions. We totally blew it. The dog never calmed down, never liked my husband, never liked my other dog. She would lunge and growl my husband even after 1 month and even with him hand feeding her. We could never let her lose she always had to be crated or leashed when he or my other dog was around. We screwed up and the dog paid. Never again will I send a dog into isolation even for a short time. They will be brought in and made part of the family from the beginning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
482 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
I can also tell you what didn't work, that was bringing a dog home late and night when everyone was tired and cranky and rather than introducing everyone we put the dog straight into the crate in the other room until the next morning before trying to make introductions. We totally blew it. The dog never calmed down, never liked my husband, never liked my other dog. She would lunge and growl my husband even after 1 month and even with him hand feeding her. We could never let her lose she always had to be crated or leashed when he or my other dog was around. We screwed up and the dog paid. Never again will I send a dog into isolation even for a short time. They will be brought in and made part of the family from the beginning.
Thats a really good tip, I have no idea what time he will be through here on the transport and it could be in the middle of the night! So that is something excellent to know
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,270 Posts
Thats a really good tip, I have no idea what time he will be through here on the transport and it could be in the middle of the night! So that is something excellent to know
Please keep us updated and let us know how it goes. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you that everything works out. :)
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top