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Last Updated:
1/25/2020 7:24 PM

 

 

I adopted a Border Collie -- now what do I do?

Good for you!  You have just finished adopting your new BC. You have taken in a loving, life companion who is going to spend years and years living in your home and loving you. Now, what is next?
 
CBBCR has a few recommendations that we strongly hope you will follow, both for the safety of your new companion and for yourself and the humans in your life.
 
We recommend strongly that you take your new best friend to obedience class, and the sooner the better. Obedience class will help you learn about your new friend and help him/her learn about you. It teaches the two of you to work together, helps you learn how to solve any behavior problems that might arise (such as who REALLY owns the queen size bed) and will help you communicate on the same level. It will help you get to know your new friend and how he/she communicates with you. This is why obedience is part of the CBBCR contract you signed to adopt your new best friend. It is so important to the well being of you and your dog, that we put it in the contract so it would not be forgotten.  
 
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We ask that you take it easy for the first few weeks. Introduce your new friend slowly so as not to overwhelm him/her. Going to a new home is a lot of stress on a dog all by itself, but going to a new home and then instantly being expected to meet everyone and do everything all at once could be more than just overwhelming, it could cause your new friend to react badly or become fearful. A fearful dog will sometimes bite, not out of meanness but out of fear, and no one, especially us, wants that to happen.  
 
We recommend you give your new dog and your family time to get used to each other. After starting obedience class you should be able to start taking your new friend out to meet and greet people. Just do so with care and common sense. Remember your first day of school when you were a kid? How scary to have to meet all those people at once - well, your dog may feel the same way, so take it easy and give him some time to adjust. 
 
Take the introductions at a slow pace and allow your new dog to get used to one or two before overwhelming him with 15 or 20 new people at once. Do not make your first stop at PetsMart on your way home from the adoption. Wait a few weeks, and then take your new friend out.
 
Always approach a new situation with care. Your dog may take it in stride and may love it, but make sure first. Go slowly and do not be afraid to back up or leave if your dog is behaving a little unsure or nervous.   Your new friend cannot talk so it is up to you to pay attention to his body language and speak for him. Do not let people pet your new dog without asking permission -- owners with decades of experience always ask permission before they pet someone's dog.
 
If you find yourself wanting or needing to take your dog to work with you then please, for both your sakes, make sure you have a crate or a room where your dog can go rest away from all the people. Even the best dog gets tired of having people making over him and needs a place to call his safe zone where he can go and be left alone for a bit. Be sure to allow your dog this and you will have a happier dog. 
       
Our objectives are not to keep you from showing off your new best friend but rather to allow you to show him off safely. Rescued dogs have pasts we often know nothing about and we do not want someone to get bitten by accident. We want the best possible face to show the public about Border Collies.
 

We want you and your new best friend to have a long happy and safe life together and we make these recommendations to provide you the best start possible in your new life.

 

Thank you!

 

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