How do I get my new German Shepherd Dog or Adopted German Shepherd to acclimate to its' new home?
#1 NEVER let your new shepherd or adopted German Shepherd off leash anytime soon after adoption or acquisition. So many bad things happen in the first few days to first few weeks like the dog escaping over a fence, digging under a fence and taking off. Sadly many times this ends with the dog never making it home.
Outside when pottying and in the yard make sure you keep your new German Shepherd on a long line. It does not matter whether you have a fenced in yard or not. Fences do not keep a determined German Shepherd confined, not to mention he or she may not come to you yet!
Inside your home, your new German Shepherd should have a drag line
on. During the acclimation and bonding phase it's often very helpful to tether your German Shepherd to you so it goes everywhere you go so he/she doesn't cause mischief also doing this gives the dog direction so it's not confused as to what its' supposed to be doing.
The number one bonding exercise to do with your new German Shepherd is to take it for long quiet
walks (On leash for now!) 2 - 3 times a day. On a trail or places that aren't heavily traveled, this way your new German shepherd learns to build trust in you. If your new German Shepherd appears fearful and trying to get away from you it might be best to start slow by sitting in one spot and allowing your shepherd to come to you when it's ready. Do not pull a dog that's fearful towards you on the leash, ALWAYS let the dog come to you! Use treats or try a fun squeaky toy, something the dog might be familiar with and have a positive association.
Have your German Shepherd's crate centrally located in your home so he/she can observe the family doing what they normally do, it's important to pay no attention to the dog just let it take everything in. Stop by every now and again and give it a treat when it's calm.
If these simple steps don't help your dog acclimate, if you don't feel confident or if the dog is showing EXTREME fear or aggression a professional dog trainer in your area should be reached. If you purchased your adult German Shepherd from a breeder contact them, they will usually lend a helping hand. If you adopted your German shepherd sadly you're usually on your own and now it's time to find a local trainer to learn and grow with you're new German Shepherd. Remember no dog is perfect but it's always rewarding to train and learn with your Shepherd and to grow together. There's nothing wrong with being perfectly imperfect;)