Peaceful Pups

Dog Behaviorist Maya Rodríguez, who works with dog owners and their families to help them make their dog calm and happy, while improving and changing unwanted behaviors, offers some advice on reassuring a new dog.
Words // Sandy Lindsey | February 23, 2024 | People

When bringing a new adopted dog home, it’s important to expect an adjustment period and be prepared. “Create a calm environment, introduce them to one room at a time, establish a routine, provide a safe space, and give them time to adjust to their new surroundings,” says Dog Behaviorist Maya Rodríguez. “Gradual introductions to family members, positive reinforcement, and patience are key.” The dog may feel anxious, confused, or excited. They might explore cautiously or exhibit nervous behaviors. “It’s common for dogs to take time to adapt, so be understanding and supportive during this transition,” she says. “When reassuring a dog, expect them to respond positively to a calm and soothing tone. Use gentle petting or stroking, maintain a relaxed posture, and offer treats or praise. Watch for signs of comfort, such as relaxed body language and wagging tails.” Consistency in your actions will help build trust and strengthen the bond with your dog over time; @MayaDogBehaviorist.