Millennium Post

A new cycle of lack of trust

A new cycle of lack of trust
Q. Will old dogs bond with new owners?
A. I have always found that adult dogs will bond with a new family, take a new name and adopt new habits quite easily. It just takes a few weeks. Of course, a dog that has always been kindly treated and has never been neglected or hurt by people will be more amenable to bonding with a new family.

One of the greatest challenges for the new dog owner can be establishing a bond with an adult dog that was abandoned and rescued. Dogs that are re-homed will sometimes fall into a vicious circle of being slow to trust people and bond with them, leading to their new owners feeling that the dog is not a good fit for the family after a few weeks and returning them. This sets up an ongoing cycle of lack of trust, abandonment and reinforcement of the lack of trust, so if you are considering taking on a rescued dog, understand that it might take some time.

Regardless of the age or personality of your new dog or puppy, there are a lot of different ways in which you can promote bonding with them and reinforce their positive experiences with you. Spend plenty of time with your dog, feed them treats by hand, and talk to them as much as possible so that they begin to associate your voice with kindness and positively. Walk them regularly, give them toys, and provide for all of their needs.

Never speak harshly to your dog or punish them negatively; work on a principle of positive reinforcement only. Also, it is important to allow your dog their space, and not push yourself into their territory or force them to spend all of their time close to you. Let them come to you in their own time, and make sure that a warm welcome awaits them when they do.

Q. Can dogs be relocated on RWAs requests?
A. Under stray dog management rules 2001, it's illegal for an individual, RWA or estate management to remove or relocate dogs. The dogs have to be sterilized and vaccinated and returned to the same area. Vaccinated and sterilized dogs cannot be removed by the municipality too. The only case where one can remove the dog is if the dog has rabies.

A) Under the Govt. of India, Animal Birth Control Rules 2001, no sterilized dogs can be relocated from their area. As per five different High Court orders, sterilized dogs have to remain in their original areas. If the dog is not sterilized, the Society can simply ask an animal welfare organization to sterilize and vaccinate the dog. They cannot relocate them. Relocation is not permissible, as it would cause more problems such as an increase in dog bites as new dogs will move into the area that are unfamiliar with residents and therefore more likely to be hostile.

B) The Government of India has issued a circular Dy No 1237 dated 30/9/2006, specifically directing all RWAs and any other recognized citizens associations as follows:
• As per Section 11 of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960, beating, kicking, over-riding, overloading, over-driving, torturing or otherwise treating any animals so as to subject it to unnecessary pain amounts to cruelty on animals. And whoever indulges in an act of cruelty to animals makes himself liable for action under Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act.

• There are designated agencies in Governmentt/local self-government Organizations that are authorized to deal with stray animals. Such Organizations regularly undertake inoculations, sterilization of animals and other programmes.

• Recognized Associations may approach such institution for redressal of their grievances if any, with regard to stray animals. Un-recognized associations may also approach such bodies with their grievances, but they should not pretend to represent the residents in general.

• All problems of stray animals have to be handled within the institutional framework available. No association, recognized or unrecognized, shall take recourse to any action regarding stray animals on their own, either themselves or through any person employed by them like security guards.

• Where there is no recognized association, residents may take up grievances through the AWO/Office of the CWO.

• While residents and Associations are free to address institutional agencies for redressal of grievances in this matter, no resident/association will interfere with the freedom of other residents in caring and attending animals. Intimidating in any manner, those who feed and care for animals is a criminal offence. Apart from action under appropriate criminal law, such persons will render themselves liable for action .
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