A Tail Of Two Hearts: Our Rescue Dog’s Honeymoon Period

The honeymoon period is a popular term used for describing a series of good feelings whenever you find yourself in a new relationship. This term can be used to describe almost anything that is new to you personally. When you take home your rescue dog, the honeymoon period will start to shine as you begin to build your brand-new relationship.

Also read:

rescue dog honeymoon period

Sharing Lots Of Firsts

One of the biggest reasons that the honeymoon period exists in the first place is that you are sharing many experiences in a short period of time. Almost everything you do together at the beginning of your relationship is your first time doing it together. The more things you do together, the fewer firsts you will continue to experience. It can be a good idea to “stop and smell the roses”. This new feeling won’t last forever, so take your time and enjoy every second of it.

Notable firsts:

  • Car ride together
  • Walk together
  • First time peeing
  • First time picking up after your dog
  • Feeding
  • Teaching and training
  • First night

It’s important to understand that there will be frustrating moments. This is perfectly normal and okay. You will need to be patient and just believe that it does get easier. Whenever you find yourself becoming impatient, just remind yourself that this is also a huge part of the honeymoon period. Especially with rescue dogs, they may require a little extra patience on your part. Don’t look at this as a negative part of your new relationship. In fact, your bond with your new friend will become that much stronger.

New Relationship Novelty

The reason the honeymoon period comes to an end is because of a fancy little word called “Novelty”. For you to try something new means that it is “novel” to you. As you become more experienced and comfortable with doing something, the novelty of it wears out. Again, this isn’t a bad thing. It just shows that you’ve grown and you are more confident in your abilities.

Since every relationship works in two directions, you can also expect this to come true for your dog as well. At first, your rescue dog may not know how to walk properly on a leash. After you’ve gone on 50 or more walks, you can bet that they’ve gotten comfortable enough with you to know what you want, and how you can both walk in harmony.

Your dog will learn routines and become comfortable with places that you frequent. It will meet all of the people you have in your life and slowly become a new and happy member of your family.

How Long Does The Honeymoon Period Last

There is no real timeframe for how long a honeymoon period will last. This relies on quite a few factors. The largest factor involved is in how many firsts you’ve shared with your rescue dog. It also comes down to how old your rescue dog is, and even what breed he/she is.

For an older rescue dog, you can expect the honeymoon period to be shorter. This is because the number of things you will be doing together will have already been done. Namely, many of your dog’s firsts from when he or she was a puppy.

When you adopt a rescue dog as a puppy, the honeymoon period will last at least one year. This is because your dog is constantly going through changes. They will get bigger, smarter, and even learn from you and your habits. It is a very dynamic relationship that requires a lot of adjustments.

How To Extend Honeymoon Period

extending the honeymoon period

The best advice you could expect is to not worry too much. This is a natural feeling that happens in every relationship, and it will come to an end. That being said, there are a few things you can definitely do to keep things fresh for both of you.

Get out there and keep trying new things

One thing that dogs absolutely love is exploring new areas. The number of new smells and interesting landmarks can be an incredible field trip. You can take your dog somewhere that you’re familiar with to make sure you have some level of control in your environment. When your dog is comfortable and listens to you consistently, try heading somewhere that neither of you has explored. This will surely give you both a feeling of firsts again.

You can incorporate your hobbies and activities into spending time with your dog. A lot of outdoor activities are extremely dog friendly.

  • Running
  • Biking
  • Skateboarding
  • Rollerblading
  • Swimming

Try Different Styles Of Leashes And Collars

There are so many different ways to gear up your dog for an adventure or just a regular walk. They all have their own specific purpose and will drastically change the way you go on walks. Here is a small list just to name a few:

  • Slip lead
  • Harness
  • Gentle leader
  • Saddlebag

Learn A New Trick

Dogs love to play, there is no doubt about it. Did you know that training your dog to learn a new trick is practically the same as playing with them? Teaching your dog a new trick also promotes confidence in your dog. For a rescue dog, building its confidence is one of the best things you can do for it.

For the best results, you’ll want to stick to the schedule. Even ten minutes of training per day(or even every 2 days) is enough to get your dog to learn a new command.

Meet New People Or Dogs (Schedule A Play Date)

Dogs can be very social creatures. Introducing a new dynamic to your relationship can make things fun for the two of you exclusively. You may get to spend time with a friend and your friend gets to spend time with their friend. When the play date is over, you go back to enjoying each other’s company.

What Comes After The Honeymoon Period

Once the honeymoon period is over, your rescue dog may not seem like a rescue dog anymore. The fact is, most rescue dogs turn out just like any other dog once the honeymoon period is over. At this stage, you and your dog will be comfortable and confident in each other’s habits and abilities. Everything will come more naturally.

Your dog will know when it’s time for dinner or if you’re ready to take them for a walk. You will know exactly what your dog needs just by looking at them. One of the greatest benefits of the honeymoon period being over is that you and your dog will have an unspoken bond. You can let your dog know exactly what you want just by making a face at them. This is the goal for the ultimate relationship.

Some Tips For Helping Your Dog Adjust To His Or Her New Home

Give your dog time to explore. Once you’re home, let your dog take some time to sniff around and get familiar with the house. If possible, try to confine your dog to one room at first so he or she doesn’t feel overwhelmed.

Establish a routine. Dogs are creatures of habit, so it’s important to establish a regular routine as soon as possible. This includes things like feeding times, walks, and playtime. Having a set schedule will help your dog feel more comfortable in his or her new home.

Be patient. It may take some time for your dog to warm up to you and the other members of your household. Don’t force affection on your dog, but let him or her come to you when he or she is ready. In the meantime, continue to provide food, water, and shelter.

Make sure your dog has plenty of exercises. A tired dog is a good dog. A dog who is well-exercised is less likely to be anxious or stressed in his or her new surroundings. So make sure to give your dog plenty of opportunities to run, play, and burn off energy.

Provide plenty of love and attention. Dogs are social creatures, so they need plenty of love and attention from their humans. Show your dog that he or she is loved and wanted by spending time with him or her, petting and brushing him or her, and giving treats.

Photo of author

Peter Newman

Peter Newman is the owner and editor for Puppy Leader. He has two dogs and loves to train them daily. Every day, Peter takes his dogs to the park and lets them run around and play together. He also trains them each day with different commands and tricks.