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Thread: What do I need to learn to help a resuced doglet?

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Logan, Brisbane QLD


    My mum adopted a 5 year old Bichon X Poodle last year which we suspect was from a puppy farm. At the time i knew nothing of puppy farms, pet shops etc until i came onto this forum and got onto Oscars Law. All the warning signs of a 'puppy farm' dog pointed to our poor boy Benji.

    This guy said he was a breeder and had multiple dogs for us to look at AND we were not allowed to visit his property - we & others had to visit the dogs at a park down the road. They were all crosses - some poodle crosses, some maltese crosses & Bichon crosses. All dogs were very fearful, teeth were not good (he told us all he feeds are watered dog biscuits and advised us to do the same) and none of them were desexed. I wish at the time we had known a little more information on puppy farms because if we had no way in hell would i have went. I didn't like any of the dogs but my mum fell head of heels for Benji and she just had to have him.

    Some of his weird phobia's that i contribute to perhaps his life as a puppy farm dog:

    1 - Very fearful. Took him 4 days until he would eat and none of us could touch him until about after a week.
    2 - Doesn't move much. He would sit in the corner in Mums room, on the floor staring at the wall. He did this for about a month.
    3 - Health issues. His teeth were severely rotted and we had to get several removed. His eye's are quite cloudy looking and we suspect he maybe going blind. He sometimes mistakes us for other people. (He does not like my OH & sometimes when i come home from work at night he runs up barking thinking i am him, until i talk to him).
    4 - Fear of Men. He hates all men, my OH & my mum's OH for no reason. If we come across a male on our walks, he pins his ears back, his eyes widen and he keeps eye contact on him at all times until he's happy enough that there is enough distance.
    5 - Hates grass. He will not touch it unless he really has to. All his waste is done in gardens, as he prefers them to grass. If i walk across a field, he will go right around on the concrete and meet me on the other side.

    I think a puppy farm dog should be treated as any rescue - you just don't know what problems your going to end up with. With us, Benji took by far the longest to adjust, but i also put alot of that down to his breed - Bichon's are known for their stubborness. I second what Newf has to say about giving them time, cause that's all you can really do. You need to them trust you and commit to you before you can address any other problems - for some it may take longer than others. Molly and Rex were both a breeze, they were happy as soon as they set foot into the house, were fed, warm and content. Benji was much different from the other two - still is. He adores my mum, he dances for her when she gets home and livens up. When she isn't around it's like he goes back to his weary self - he still doesn't trust the rest of us.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2010


    Thanks everyone for your input. I had suspected that trust would probably be the No1 thing I would have to work on... manners are learnt over time, so long as there is trust.

    Newfsie, thanks so much for that info - I had sort of guessed waht your were doing it for, but it's still great to have my assumptions confirmed. I will definitely get me skates on with the books so I can get to reading them asap - it sounds like I have a lot to consider, even if a lot of it is the basics, when it's a grown up doglet, the rules change somewhat I would imagine.

    This makes me more detirmed now to help out a doglet in need - as much as I would love a baby puppy, I think my damaged heart needs another damaged heart to bond with.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Southern NSW


    I love getting dogs from puppy....But to have been loved by a Rescue with such devotion that they give is incredible.

    I have two of each..two from pup, Katy and Tessa, they expect to be loved and are confident and outgoing, they know we love them...

    And we have Annabelle and Lukey, who have this complete devotion to us.
    Pets are forever

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Sunshine Coast


    Oskar is a bit fearful of men. I suspect he was slapped around a bit by the boyfriend of the chick we got him from even though he was only 11 weeks old when we got him.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Rural Victoria


    I couldn't agree more with newfsie and kuri.

    I am a Jan Connell fan too, I have her first two books and love them, sometimes I don't agree with her reasoning but her methods work to produce a happy, cooperative dog, so what more can you ask really? I do mix and match methods a little, you need to find what suits you and it may not be exactly the same for everyone. I prefer to use Steve's TOT using food drive focus rather than Jan O'Connell's method of food drive focus (I find that TOT is faster and more solid as my breed has been a lap dog for several thousand years and are very, very good at manipulating humans!)

    The book I recommended I have found fantastic for inexperienced owners taking on a rescue or pound dog. There are a lot of books that I have read and the methods described just don't gel with with my own observations, but this one is a winner and not too technical.

    Rehabiliting a dog as extremely unsocialised and institutionalised as Benji was (that Kuri has described) is a very long haul and huge undertaking but so immensely satisfying when done!

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