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A Guide to Welcoming a Rescue Dog into Your Home


Welcoming a rescue dog into your home is an incredibly rewarding journey, enriching both your lives. At Jordan Dog Training, we are committed to guiding you through every step, ensuring your new furry family member transitions smoothly into their forever home.

Before Adoption

  • Research: Adopting a dog is a lifelong commitment. Assess your lifestyle to choose a dog that complements your home in terms of size, energy level, and temperament.
  • Prepare Your Home: Ensure your house is safe and welcoming. Gather essential supplies such as food, water bowls, a bed, toys, and grooming tools.

The Adoption Process

  • Working with Shelters and Rescues: Engage with potential dogs at shelters to understand their personality and needs, with shelter staff offering valuable insights.
  • Application Process: The thorough application process may include providing references, undergoing home checks, and discussing your dog care philosophy.

Bringing Your Dog Home

  • The First Day: Maintain calm to prevent overwhelming your dog, allowing them to explore at their own pace.
  • Introductions: Carefully introduce your dog to other pets, ensuring smooth interactions.

Settling In and Understanding Decompression

Decompression is critical for rescue dogs to adjust to their new environment. This period allows them to recover from the stress of change and adapt at their own pace. Decompression generally encompasses three stages:

  1. The Honeymoon Phase: Initially, your rescue dog might seem unusually calm. This is a period of observation, where your dog is getting to know their new home. Offering them space to explore safely is key.
  2. The Testing Phase: As your dog grows more comfortable, they may test boundaries to understand their new limits. Consistency in training and behaviour reinforcement is essential during this phase to establish routines and expectations.
  3. The Settlement Phase: After a few weeks, your dog will start settling into their routine, and their true personality will emerge. This phase solidifies the bond between you and your dog, setting the foundation for a lifelong friendship.

Supporting Your Rescue Dog Through Transition

Supporting your dog through the transition includes maintaining routine, creating a safe space, being patient and present, and introducing new experiences gradually. Professional guidance may be sought for behavioural issues.

Health and Wellness

  • Veterinary Care: Schedule early vet visits for health assessments, vaccinations, microchipping, and spay/neuter discussions.
  • Nutrition: Ensure a balanced diet, tailored to their specific needs, with guidance from your vet.

Ongoing Support

Jordan Dog Training offers continuous support for any post-adoption challenges, providing a go-to resource for help. We encourage engaging activities, community resources, emergency preparedness, celebrating milestones, and feedback loops to enhance the bond between you and your rescue dog.


Adopting a rescue dog is a journey of love, patience, and understanding that significantly benefits both the dog and their new family. By preparing thoroughly and providing a stable, loving environment, you’re setting the foundation for a happy, healthy life together. Jordan Dog Training is here to support you and your new companion at every step, embodying our commitment to enriching the lives of rescue dogs and their adopters.

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Justin Jordan Trainer

Justin Jordan

Master Trainer

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