Gimme Shelter

Photography by: Catherine Ledner
Gimme Shelter

Before you pick out a pricey doggie in the window, read on: A pup from a pet rescue can be just as easy to handle as a store-bought hound with this advice from trainers Alex Allred, author of Teaching Basic Obedience: Train the Owner, Train the Dog (TFH Publications), and Robin Vitullo, a dog therapy specialist:

Instill confidence A dog with an abuse or neglect history can be timid and easily spooked, but basic obedience training—such as playing hideand- seek with a newly adopted pup—can help him become more confident. “Run off and hide while repeating the ‘stay’ command to your dog while he sits in your living room,” suggests Allred. When you return, lavish him with praise for staying put and not following you; he’ll learn that just because you’re out of sight doesn’t mean you’ve abandoned him.

Give him something to chew on No matter where your puppy came from, he’s going to chew things. Puppies’ adult teeth ache when they come in, and gnawing helps ease the discomfort. So save your couch and shoes from destruction by keeping a variety of safe chew toys on hand.

Master the elimination process The best way to train a dog to do his business outside is to not give him access to food and water all day long; set times for when he can eat and drink, and provide lots of potty breaks.