If you have been traveling around many cities or across boundaries of your country, you must have found thousands of unloved, unhealthy, improperly-fed street dogs everywhere around you. If you don’t travel much, the shelter homes house a significant crowd of street dogs that are up for adoption. Remember the times when a dog followed you for long, how difficult it was to ignore a cute little puppy that asks for your time and attention.

So, if you have fallen in love with one of those street dogs or you are deciding to provide a home and a family to a street dog, there’re certain things you need to know before getting the legal things done for adoption.

  1. Aggressive Behavior:

A Common myth about stray/street dogs reveals that they have behavior issues besides a range of health issues. However, research has shown that adopting a street dog can lead to behavior changes in street dogs as they get food, care, love, and protection. The unloved dog spent months or years on streets, so it develops an instinctive protective as well as aggressive behavior. Once, they learn that their owners are there to protect them; they often shed their behaviors along with some training.

It’s advisable to adopt a puppy as its behavior can be easily molded despite the genetically inherited instinctive behavior. However, giving a home to an adult might make a difference in your life as well as the pet’s.

  1. Hyper-attachment:

A Turkish research survey, Integration Ability of Urban Free-Ranging Dogs into Adoptive Families’ Environment by Yasemin Salgiri Demirbas (Ankara University) et al, identified a commonly observed behavior in street dogs after adoption: hyper-attachment1. Hyper-attachment should not be mixed with separation anxiety as street dogs are used to living on their own during owner’s absence.

Hyper-attachment is an excessive attachment to the owner who rescued the dog and provided food and shelter to the dog. Moreover, the love and care are taken as priceless emotions by dogs without a replacement. They love to always be around the owner to gain most of their love, attention and appreciation. In return, they are more obedient, more loving and more friendly with everyone.

Consider the amount of time and attention you can give to your new pet-dog so that they do not get aggressive or escape the house later on.

  1. Freedom-Lover:

Street dogs are accustomed to roaming around freely without being chained. As a new pet-parent, you need to understand the dog’s habits before you want it to understand your needs. They know how to protect themselves in critical solutions so let them move around freely as long as they are not creating trouble for anyone.

Bring them home often to make them adapt to your environment. If the dog adapts to your family and friends, that’s a huge plus. Commonly, street dogs are more adaptive than purely-bred dogs.

  1. Shyness or Cowardice:

Puppies often display shy behavior as they have to leave behind their families or pack of dogs and live among humans. They take time to understand the new environment and new parents to move around freely and to explore the spaces.

Grown-up dogs displaying a cowardly behavior are associated with previous owners who abused or mistreated the dogs. They may show unwanted aggressive behaviors like nipping, biting and barking at smaller scale and are trainable. Some dogs initially freak out due to the noise of vacuum cleaner, hair dryer or blender machines as they had bad experiences in the past.

  1. Adaptability with Children:

Before adopting a street dog, be sure that the dog has adapted well to your children and other pets around the house. Street dogs had faced competitive environment and aggressive fights in past which has made them over-protective. The over-protective behavior of street dogs often leads them to a display of over-possessive behavior towards their owner and their belongings. Care needs to be taken at this step!

  1. Food Sharing With Other Dogs/Cats:

Due to competition and fights with other animals over scraps of food, street dogs often hate to share their food. Such attitude may trouble your other pets. However, there are exceptions when street dogs act more responsibly towards fellow pets and share their food and toys.

  1. Training Needs:

Street dogs are not difficult to train as long as they are the center of attention and get the most appreciation. They are obedient as they understand the fact that you are a source of changing their life conditions. Initially, you only need to train them without leashes and collars so they may not think of you as chaining them. Go slow in the process of training and keep it as much fun as possible so the dog may not fear you or escape at once.

  1. Health Issues:

Health issues are found commonly in street dogs. So, you need to take them to a vet for a complete analysis of fleas, ticks or heartworm presence and treatment. Vaccinations are essential for street dogs and puppies. Consult your vet and get a detailed checkup of street dog you are thinking to adopt.

But, the great news is that street dogs have a stronger immune system than purely-bred dogs. They are more prone to common diseases.

Hopefully, after taking into consideration these things, you will be left with nothing else to worry about! Less struggle, more peace, and more fun are what comes with a street dog commonly. The best part of all is that you can bring a change in someone’s life and provide a family to a homeless and unloved street dog.

References:

1https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1558787814000604

 

 

Fiona Appleton is a Labrador owner. She is the manager of https://ultimatehomelife.com/ that has been developed to help people solve the troubles of pet ownership. She is an active advocate of animal protection campaigns. She wants people to understand that dog-behavior is reflective of our behavior.

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