Question for anyone who has adopted a rescue ~ trust issues - Maltese Dogs Forum : Spoiled Maltese Forums


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Old 11-08-2012, 09:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Question for anyone who has adopted a rescue ~ trust issues

Hello fellow maltese lovers!

As you know, I adopted a maltese two weeks ago that was used as a breeding dog at a puppy mill.
I don't know everything this little fluffball went through prior to us adopting her. But I know she was neglected ~ when she was found, she (as well as all of the dogs that were dumped) had matts so bad that they all had to be shaved/cut very short. It is also extremely likely that she spent her entire life in a crate

I don't know what her interactions with people were like for her, but if I had to guess, probably not very pleasant.

She is eating well & she goes potty outside, but still has some accidents in the house, which I understand. She plays with my other malt & they get along great. My schnauzer doesn't really play much these days, but their interactions are friendly. She enjoys when we pet her, but here's the issue ~ whenever we try to pick her up, she runs away from us. It doesn't matter if we've been on the floor petting her for several minutes, playing with her, etc...she runs away. and she also pees when we try to pick her up. Sometimes it's just a few sprinkles, but sometimes it's a puddle. But once we get her up on our lap, she will be very calm & loves it.

I know it's only been two weeks but I don't know if I just need to be patient or if there is something I can do so that she won't flip out when we want to pick her up. how likely is it that she'll never trust us? I want her to trust us.

Also, should I put something on her so she won't pee all over the floor (and my bed today)? I know there's things they make, but I can't remember what they are called & I also don't know if it would upset her more?

Any advice is appreciated!
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Old 11-08-2012, 09:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm glad Cupcake is enjoying Daisy

I think if I were her (puppy mill background), I'd run and cower when someone was going to pick me up, too. If you think about it, she probably was only picked up to put back in her cage Or to have not so nice things done to her

I'd suggest maybe doing clicker training with her and teach her to jump onto your lap (you can start sitting on the floor) herself. This way she can jump into your lap and then you can hold her and stand from there.

I think this will be the best way to give her confidence and trust.... It gives her a little more control over the situation, rather than having a giant person swooping down and scooping her up..... (even if done gently - think about how HUGE we must seem to our little fluffs LOL)....

For the potty stuff.... I'd discourage using a diaper right now, if that is what you meant. I'd put some table cloths (the vinyl ones) under some towels on your bed if you are worried about accidents.... I'd worry it would set her potty training back if you put something on her....

Hugs and kisses for Cupcake
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Old 11-08-2012, 09:54 PM   #3 (permalink)
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What a cute gang you have! I have three dogs too.
Thank you for giving your little girl (Cupcake?) a home and a family to love her!
It sounds like she is having fun which is a great sign.
Hopefully someone who has lots of experience with rescues will reply.
We adopted our dog Buddy a year ago, and he was very scared at first. Instead of picking him up, I would just sit on the floor with him. It took a month or so of just sitting with him before I think he really felt safe and would sit close. He eventually started to be comfortable sitting close or on my lap while I was on the floor with him. I think it just took time and patience.
I read that dogs who have been kept in cages sometimes are very frightened when picked up because whenever they were picked up and taken out of their cage something not pleasant would happen to them, so they have that negative association with being picked up.
Maybe the rescue group you got her through can give you some advice?
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Old 11-08-2012, 09:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Adopting a rescue takes patience. Especially one that has been neglected and mistreated. She will trust you but it will take time, it can take a year, all depends how traumatized she was. Her peeing when you pick her up is a submissive peeing, she is scared. I don't know what they did to her when they picked her up, but something happened that she is so scared. Your other dogs will help her to adjust. Try to get her close to you when sitting on the floor. Instead of picking her up, pulling her close to you and holding her and then stand up. Also maybe by watching you picking up one of your other dogs she will realize that nothing bad happens. It will take time but slowly but surely she will start to trust you.
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Old 11-08-2012, 09:56 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Sorry, I should have been more clear about why I was considering putting a diaper type thing on her...not because of the potty accidents, but because she pees when we try to pick her up. But I guess either way it could confuse her. And I totally understand what you mean about how huge we seem to be to them.

I'm not familiar with clicker training. What is it? How does it work? Thanks!
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Old 11-08-2012, 10:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Just saw the other posts after I finished posting my last reply! I feel a lot better just knowing that others have been through this & their babies eventually grew to trust them. Thank you so much! It really gives me hope! I love this little fluff so much already & I just want her to feel safe with us.
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Old 11-08-2012, 10:06 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Oh how I wish someone would post a magic treatment that would work with these puppy mill babies. I have a little girl I've been fostering since April. There has definitely been progress, but it's like a drop of water in a lake. When she makes another tiny step forward, I just want to cry with joy. I don't feel like there's much I can do for the house training - she isn't treat motivated - too fearful. Good luck with your baby.
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Old 11-08-2012, 10:15 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I adopted my beloved Lady when she was 4.5 years old. My best advice to to be very, very patient and celebrate the little baby steps. It takes a good year with a rescue to really understand one another and work things out. Some issues you may never really work through, but I promise you that the ones you do will feel like you won the lottery! No better feeling on earth!

This book was a great help to me with Lady:

Second-Hand Dog: How to Turn Yours into a First-Rate Pet (Howell Reference Books): Carol Lea Benjamin: 0021898057358: Amazon.com: Books Second-Hand Dog: How to Turn Yours into a First-Rate Pet (Howell Reference Books): Carol Lea Benjamin: 0021898057358: Amazon.com: Books

The peeing you are describing is submissive peeing. Poor little girl is scared. Hopefully as she becomes more confident, it will get better. Since she was used as a breeding dog, it is important to have your vet check her to make sure there is no physical reason for her incontinence.

Get a waterproof crib pad for your bed to protect your mattress.

With love and patience, I promise you that she will blossom. You will never be loved the way a rescue will love you.
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Old 11-08-2012, 10:19 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angel's mom View Post
Oh how I wish someone would post a magic treatment that would work with these puppy mill babies. I have a little girl I've been fostering since April. There has definitely been progress, but it's like a drop of water in a lake. When she makes another tiny step forward, I just want to cry with joy. I don't feel like there's much I can do for the house training - she isn't treat motivated - too fearful. Good luck with your baby.
My friend adopted a King Charles Cav in March who had been a breeder in a puppy mill for about five years. This poor sweet thing has huge trust issues and, like Lynne, every tiny step forward makes us cry tears of joy. This baby is so precious and so very scared - patience is the only way to handle them.
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Old 11-08-2012, 10:24 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thank you for adopting Cupcake. As everyone has already said this is truly a trust issue. The peeing is a nervous reaction to what she thinks is going to happen to her. It's so sad some of these poor babies endure evil in their short lives. We can only with time reverse the damage. I think its a great help and will be in her quick recovery to being a normal pup that you have two others in the house for Cupcake to learn from and help her trust you. It will take some time but she will come around. As far as clicker training I don't know anything about it but I am sure others do and will let you know. Please keep us posted on how Cupcake it doing. All of your fluffs are so cute!!
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