Helping Your Shelter Dog Adjust

October is Adopt A Shelter Dog Month! While there’s never a bad time to adopt a shelter dog, this is a great chance to cheer on those who are making a difference by adopting a cute pup from a shelter. Adoption Day is a big deal for Fido! However, going to a new home is a huge deal for dogs, so you’ll want to take steps to help your furry pal adjust. An Aurora, CO vet offers some advice on this below.

Be Ready In Advance

Before the big day, make sure you have everything your new pet will need. Your list should include food, toys, treats, bedding, dishes, a tie-out line, and grooming supplies. Fido will also need a leash and a collar or harness. Be sure to pick a sturdy leash! You want to have a good grip on your pooch, in case he gets spooked by something and tries to bolt.


In order to make your home safe for Fido, you’ll need to do some petproofing. Some of the things you’ll want to address are toxic plants; chemicals, such as cleaning agents, automotive products, paints, and lawn/garden products; and medicine. Plastic bags and ties are also unsafe, as is anything small or sharp. Also, make sure that your fence is secure.

Doggy Schedule

Dogs tend to do best when they’re on a steady schedule for walks, meals, and, of course, playtime. Get your canine companion started out on his new routine immediately. Also, set down any household rules, such as staying off the couch, from Day One.

Meet The Doctor

One of the first things you’ll want to do is take Fido to meet his new doctor. Most shelter dogs have already been fixed, but your pooch will need a thorough exam. You’ll also want to make sure that he’s microchipped and current on vaccinations and parasite control. While you’re there, ask for tips on your pup’s diet and care needs.

Getting Settled

Some dogs immediately realize that they’ve been adopted, and will literally be jumping for joy. Others are more timid, and need time to feel safe. Let Fido settle in at his own pace. Offer lots of toys, treats, and affection, but don’t force attention on him. Love takes time!

Please contact us, your Aurora, CO vet clinic, for all your pup’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!

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