Just Labradors banner

1 - 20 of 29 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I just adopted my first black lab yesterday! She's a real sweetie, about four years old and 63 lbs. She's the calmest lab I've ever seen, which was one of the things the drew me to her. But ever since she got here to her new home, all she wants to do is sleep, lying on her bed, acting more like a 12 year old dog than a 4 year old dog. I can coax her up to go on walks, and she'll stand up begrudgingly for food, but otherwise, she's kinda mopey and I'm worried. Do you think she's depressed? Scared? Bored? Or just sad to miss her foster mom who she was with before coming to me? She just went to the vet, and everything checked out, so I don't think she's sick. On a related note, she also acts very submissively, head bowing down when I reach out to pet her, tail half tucked between legs whenever we go outside. (Until she pees her territory, then it raises a little.) She's a country dog, in the city for the first time I think. Perhaps it's all the traffic and people stressing her out? I'd love for her to be comfortable enough to let loose, to play be a dog. What can I do to help? (By the way, she has NO clue what fetch is all about. She looks at me like an idiot when I toss her toys. Just sits, looking up at me expectantly. Any tips on that front?)

Sorry for the jumbled mess of questions! I've got so many! I'd appreciate any advice folks have to offer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,693 Posts
It might be just time needed for her to get comfortable in her new life...don't ask me about fetch - but I'd probably spend a bit of time getting her used to new things and pet pet pet her!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
618 Posts
Any background info on her at all? You said she was a country dog that now is with you in the city? That could make a difference. Are you feeding her the same food? If not, changing diets could be a reason.

I know when we brought our Maggie home it took her a few weeks to adjust. She was a rescue and not a puppy. She had to get used to all the new smells (and cats). She came from the city to the country and she was afraid of all the room I think.

She didn't like any of the toys we gave her except the tennis ball and kong. She had probably 25 toys - I think you should narrow it down. You might try this. My husband will sit on the floor with Maggie and play with just one toy at a time. He would just take the tennis ball and roll it across the floor or toss it to her while he was sitting on the floor with her. He did this every night for the first few weeks and now she waits for him to drive in the driveway with the ball in her mouth and runs to his side of the car. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
It might be just time needed for her to get comfortable in her new life...don't ask me about fetch - but I'd probably spend a bit of time getting her used to new things and pet pet pet her!
I've been reading lots of books on being a good dog owner, and the ones that stress the importance of being a pack leader advise me NOT to pet her all the time. To definitely give her affection, but not spend more than 15 minutes every hour making a big deal over her. I don't want to spoil her, but I also don't want to neglect her. Should I forget the books and follow my instincts to lie down next to her all day?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,485 Posts
Definitely NORMAL for a rescue on her first day; even her first week or so. If she is not eating after a few days; get her checked. Did she come from a rescue group or a shelter? If a rescue group, get as much info as possible on her background.
I have a LOT of rescues and have fostered a LOT and this is seen A LOT....keep us posted and THANK you for rescuing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
She did come from a rescue. She was with a foster family in the suburbs for about three weeks before adoption, after spending an unknown amount of time in a shelter in rural Ohio.

She doesn't show ANY interest in the toys I have offered her (tennis ball, rope with two tennis balls on the ends, frisbee, and a rawhide chew). I've heard that kongs stuffed with food can be good for keeping dogs busy, but I've also heard that the synthetic material can be toxic for dogs. Are kongs really safe enough to use?

Just for more background, she was also spayed just two weeks ago. Could this be affecting her mood? (New hormone levels and all that?)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,913 Posts
It sounds perfectly normal to me, given that you got her yesterday. Give her a few weeks to come out of her shell and don't push her too much with toys, etc. Wait until she is comfortable and settled in your home before you start introducing those.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,695 Posts
She's acting normally. Think about it. She has been pulled from the life she knew and thrown into a totally new environment. About limiting your attention to her. I would not worry about that. I would love onher as much as you and she want. I'm now living with my 3rd rescue and you can't give too much attention. You and she need to bond.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,485 Posts
Yep, still absolutely normal. I had one foster dog that had never been inside. He had never seen a squeaky toy...scared him to death. Never been on stairs; it took months for him to go up them. Just sit with her, pet her, reassure her. Offer her treats while sitting with her and maybe keep a toy close with you while petting her. She will come around but it could take a while. I would check also with the foster family and get some feedback as if she was this way when she arrived there and how she was with their family.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,657 Posts
That poor dog has been through an awful lot in the past few weeks. She is probably trying to just take it all in and be a good dog and not bother you. I would through away all that "dominence stuff" and do what you feel instinctively, as long as you are a somewhat sensible person. It certainly doesn't sound like you have a dominent dog on your hands, and unfortunately, most people don't really understand the dominence thing well enough to carry it off. I wouldn't limit affection, but try to judge how comfortable she is with it. Emilu isn't comfortable with lots of hugging, and even looks away when I pet her, and I've had her since she was 8 weeks old. I'm sure your girl will come around once she is more comfortable and secure in her surroundings. And as for toys and fetching -my dog Skippy has NEVER played with toys - just isnt' interested in them - he does however , LOVE hugs and kisses.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,832 Posts
Thank you for rescuing her. Now....I think she may just need to get comfortable in her new surrouindings. She has been through alot the past few weeks. Do you know anything more bout her background? What type of life she had before she was in the shelter? It may just take some time for her to feel comfortable with you & her home. I would just love & pet her & I know she will come around. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,990 Posts
I've been reading lots of books on being a good dog owner, and the ones that stress the importance of being a pack leader advise me NOT to pet her all the time. To definitely give her affection, but not spend more than 15 minutes every hour making a big deal over her. I don't want to spoil her, but I also don't want to neglect her. Should I forget the books and follow my instincts to lie down next to her all day?
Please disregard that sort of advice. Any book that advocates establishing a leader relationship by being aloof should be burned. Please also ignore anything that talks about alpha, advocates doing any sort of dominance exercise on your dog (like the alpha roll) and emphasizes negative reinforcement as a training technique.

There is room for you to bond with your dog and spend as much time as you wish petting and hanging with her without you becoming the servant of your pet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,914 Posts
Forget the books, go with your instincts. Give her lots of positive attention, affection and eventually she'll come around. She needs time to get used to her new surroundings and you. Don't get discouraged! Thanks for rescuing. Make sure you post some pics!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,483 Posts
Ah, she sounds scared. I would love her a lot! I would also just leave her toys near her so she can get them if and when she wants. How wonderful you got her....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,420 Posts
I agree with what everyone said. She just needs time to settle in and realize that this is her forever home. Kongs are wonderful and just about everyone uses them but I'd give her time to settle in before introducing a bunch of new things to her. Let yourself love on her, pet her etc all you want. She needs to know that she is wanted and loved. Once she gets things figured out, she'll open up and you'll see a different dog. Thanks for rescuing her!!! You both won on that one!!!:D:D
 
1 - 20 of 29 Posts
Top