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Hi I am Jolene a hopefully adopted mummy

Jolene Hegarty

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Hi everyone I am in the process of adopting a dog (1 year old) from a shelter he was brought to Scotland from Portugal and has to my knowledge only ever been in shelters. I am hoping to get some help and advice on this. Right now we are unsure of the dogs breeds but most likely a cross breed. The rescue though German shepherd/ malamute however I am unconvinced and unsure.
Whatever breed/cross he is, he's gorgeous! Bear in mind that many street dogs (which if he isn't, his parents might have been) have been intermixing for so long that you might just as well ask what colours of Plasticine went to make the brown lump you have. And it can be better than sit back and observe your dog's behaviour and personality, rather than have certain expectations based on breed. But of course, it's always interesting to conjecture!

We have an article on Romanian rescues and other street dogs. If he's only ever been in shelters then much of this might not apply, but you might still pick up some useful insights: Romanian and other street dogs

When will he be joining you? Have you met him in 'person' yet?
Hi Judy, I have met him twice I took him out a walk with my partner the first time and then with my son (7) the second time. For a 1 year old baby he was rather well behave stopped when I did , didn’t pull and wasn’t bothered by the sheep which was a surprise to me. He was also fine with having his paws back end tail ear etc touched even let us have a look in his mouth. The rescue said he was showing signs of rat trapping and with his light coat they wondered if there was malamute in him. He rolled over to have his belly tickled and was fine with being touch. He was having a good old sniff at my son and seemed more cautious with him but aloud him to pet him, I don’t have extensive knowledge on big dogs so just trying to be fully prepared. We have arranged a vet check on Friday with the hopes of bringing him home on Saturday which is exciting. My old concern is him adapting to being in a home and having a bother (my son)he came to the shelter we are adopting from with 2 siblings 2 males and a female the other male was the most dominant. My partner automatically seemed to be the master and he happily jumped into his van with him when we were seeing how he would be with it. We are going to build a dog bedroom under the stairs as we have a large area and also a dog run in the garden. His breed really doesn’t matter to us as he appears very well natured. Just like to hear people’s suggestions and thoughts it’s interesting to guess. We will have a DNA test done when he comes home to find out more about his heritage.
I'm sure his head reminds me of some breed, but I'm blowed if I can remember which. Though 'something shepherdy and something fluffy' is a good start!

DNA tests can be very inaccurate, particularly with crosses - so again, fine as a bit of fun, but you might be wasting your money. In one piece of research, 4 different companies gave very different results, even though claiming to be 100% accurate: I was always tempted to try a test on my dog as (according to the breeder) he's a mix of 4 breeds, but never did.

Your most important training job is to train your son - he should always be calm round the dog, never force attention on him, and it's best to let the dog ask him to pet him rather than the other way round. Err VERY much on the side of caution till your dog has settled in and you know more of his personality. Teach your son that dogs don't like hands going over their heads and pats/strokes on the head, nor close 'in yer face' eye contact, and teach him about dog body language so he knows when the dog's feeling anxious (we can give you more info on dog body language if you're not familiar with it yourself). I confess I tend to be a bit twitchy about dogs and young children, but only because my dog was... er... slightly deranged!

he was happy enough for my son to hold his lead but absolutely will be keeping
A close eye on the situation to see how he reacts to my son. Prior to taking my son to meet him we sat him down and discussed possible triggers for the dog etc but with kids they can be unpredictable both dog and boy. I am off work for the summer so will be here to monitor and train them both lol. And I am looking into a dog trainer to assist.
Where about (roughly) in Scotland are you? I know a few people who might be able to help if you are close enough. And one or two to avoid ...
Sorry, wrong side of the country for me.

The Dogs Trust training services have a great reputation though, if any of those are near you.
Thanks very much! There is a very reputable dog trainer across the road from me so I’m going to see how we go with him. It’s definitely daunting as he’s 1 year old and we won’t truly know his training needs until he is home. Hopefully all is well at his vet check and we will have him home on Saturday ☺️
Hello and welcome! What a lovely looking dog, and well done on rescuing a needy hound. We have recently taken in Rusty (some details here, if you're interested) who was from Romania. He was, apparently, a street dog brought into a shelter and has known nothing else. With that in mind, he has been remarkably well behaved around people/dogs/cats, although his first couple of days here he had a few wees indoors. Nothing too bad, just marking I think, which was easily cleaned up. He is very affectionate.

Our previous dog was also a rescue dog from Croatia, our beloved Jimmy who passed away recently, and he was the same indoors, but very reactive to dogs and traffic (and cats and birds!) outside and needed a lot of work in this area, both formal training which we didn't find too effective, but more importantly in my opinion, patience from us and trying to understand his state of mind (we knew he'd previously been attacked by dogs). He, too, was very affectionate and loving and God, do I miss him.

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is a rescue dog can be exceptionally rewarding but can also involve hard work in my experience. So, with patience and care, your dog should grow into a loving member of your family. As others have said, keep an eye on him until you can be as happy as possible with how he is with people/kids/other dogs, and bear in mind he may well try to escape at any point!

Obviously all of this is from my own, limited, experience and each dog is different, but please keep us update with things :).
Oh yeah people have been asking to come visit him I’m like absolutely not until he’s settled don’t want to overwhelm him. I’m fortunate that I’ve got the full summer to be with him and get him settled. Had a wee look at your boy rusty hes adorable ☺️
Oh yeah people have been asking to come visit him I’m like absolutely not until he’s settled don’t want to overwhelm him. I’m fortunate that I’ve got the full summer to be with him and get him settled. Had a wee look at your boy rusty hes adorable ☺️
We adopted our rescue whippet in late 2019 and she had so many issues that, for the first two months, I seemed to have my head in my hands wondering what I had done. However, just giving Mabel her own space and time and NOT forcing myself on her has slowly worked. She's a bit of a daddy's girl but still aloof when the muse takes her. If you've watched "The Dog House" on More4 (or 4More - Freeview 18 anyway) you'll see some potential adopters really disappointed because they didn't get instant response from a rescued dog. However, those who respected the dogs' space and time seemed to have more success. In my initial time with Mabel I found this forum invaluable, if not for reassurance alone. You'll have fun. Hope it all goes well. Blimey, I've just seen the date of your post. Hope it's STILL going well.

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