5 Pet Care Tips You Should Know Before Adopting an Abused Dog


Abused, mistreated or neglected dogs carry the most heartbreaking stories that could be much worse than you might ever imagine. Their anxious gestures and sorrowful eyes will be the ones to speak for them about their painful history.

But one thing’s for sure, the fulfilling experience of changing an abused dog or any dog’s life is second to none. That’s why, if you really see yourself fostering or adopting an abused dog, know that we’re here to help.

To start, here’s the list of pet care tips and crucial things you should know before welcoming an abused, mistreated, or neglected dog into your home. More about it here:

Pet care tip #1: Learn about their past

Before fostering or adopting a new dog that might have been abused, you may want to take time to learn about their past first. From there, you’ll know what lacks – whether it’s attention, love, care, playtime, freedom, and so on. 

Aside from learning what they had been deprived of, you’ll also get to know your boundaries. Most of the abused dogs don’t want to be touched or don’t want anyone coming near them. Things like that are crucial to know to ensure the safety of both the dog and the foster family. 

Always remember that getting to know your adopted pet’s history will make it easier for you to understand their situation. And once you know where to start, what to do, and what not to do, making a difference in your adopted pet’s life will be much more manageable for you.

Pet care tip #2: Prepare the pet essentials

Preparing pet essentials for the newest member of your family is also considered as part of pet care. Having a set of pet essentials will help you ensure that you’re giving your new dog the tender love and proper care they deserve.

The list below shows the most common pet items, which you might already be familiar with.

  • Crate or dog cage: Even if you’ll be letting your new dog stay inside your home, you should have a crate or dog cage on standby. It’s because dogs in puppy mills or kill shelters are mostly kept in cages or dog crates. Having one at your home is recommended as it could also be his safe place when the transition becomes overwhelming for them.
  • Collar: Using a collar is necessary when adopting an abused dog, but keep in mind that a chain collar can be frightening to them. So, we recommend a martingale collar instead. The martingale collar is a type of dog collar that is a good alternative to a chain collar as it provides more control to your pet without choking them.

You may also want to include a tag or your pet’s identification card (ID) with the collar. A tag and ID are a big help when pets accidentally or intentionally escape from home.

  • Harness: Harness is a good alternative to a leash, especially when it comes to abused dogs. Most abused, mistreated, or neglected dogs are not used to leash, which may result in pulling or straining. Whereas with the harness, unwanted situations like injury to the neck and trachea can be prevented.
  • Dog food and treats: Adopting an abused dog will most likely be pictured as having a malnourished and traumatized dog. That’s why you should have enough dog food and treats at home.

Store both dry and wet pet foods that are rich in protein and vitamins to make your dog catch up with the lack of nutrients. Aside from dog food and treat supplies, you should also have a dog food bowl and water bowl for your furry friend.

  • Squeaky toys: Abused dogs are deprived of many things, and a chance to play and enjoy their freedom in a huge backyard is some of those things.

That’s why you might want to buy the best and cutest toys, preferably the squeaky ones, as you welcome your new four-legged friend into your home.

Pet care tip #3: Ease possible stress with CBD treats

The use of hemp and cannabidiol (CBD) is now becoming one of the most useful trends in pet care. Cannabidiol, or mostly known as CBD, might help comfort a dog’s moods and emotions as both humans and mammals like dogs have a cell-signalling endocannabinoid system. 

Aside from potentially appeasing your dog’s stress levels, CBD infused products may also aid in relieving pain and inflammation and treating nausea and vomiting. In addition to choosing the best CBD format for your fluffy friend, you also should consider the advantages/disadvantages of CBD isolate vs full spectrum products.

Pet care tip #4: Give them a safe space

In the first few days of your furry friend in his or her new home, consider giving them a safe space—one of the major pet care tips you shouldn’t shrug off. It’s because the overall transition and the new environment might make them feel very much overwhelmed.

If he’s coming from a puppy mill, it’s better to keep them in a crate. It’s also advisable to avoid making them the “star of the show”. What do we mean? Don’t be too excited to introduce them to every member of the family in the first few days of his/her stay, as it might trigger their fear and make them anxious.

Pet care tip #5: Be patient throughout the process

Like what’s been said earlier, adopting or fostering an abused dog will demand a lot of your patience. The changes won’t show up overnight, and that’s normal. You should just be patient throughout the process, no matter how long and tiring it might turn out to be. If you think you need help in supporting your new furry friend’s development, you may consider dog training, therapy, or rehabilitation sessions with experts.

The Bottom Line

Doing pet care can be a lot more complicated when it comes to adopting or fostering an abused dog. That’s why adopting a dog with trauma and trust issues isn’t for beginners. You need a lot of dedication, patience, time, effort, and sometimes, a big pocket. But rescuing and adopting an abused dog will forever be a remarkable accomplishment.