New Rescue Dog Won't Go to the Bathroom

We brought home a new shelter dog earlier today, and he's been very good for us. He hasn't barked or bitten or scratched anyone and he is very affectionate and loving. He seems tired so we tried our best to let him sleep throughout the day. He hasn't drank any water, eaten any food, or eliminated at all since he got to our house.


It is now 8 pm and he refuses to even leave his closed off area to go outside. He is very stubborn on the leash and sits there until we go the direction he wants, (in this case, back to his bed). He seems afraid to go anywhere, how can I help him? I have already tried luring him with treats, but he doesn't seem very food motivated, (as I said he refuses to eat or drink. He seemed okay eating some treats earlier, but he doesn't see it as a reward?) or toy motivated, or anything motivated.

He is a 1-2 year old mixed breed, but we think he is mostly Rat Terrier.

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April 1, 20190 found this helpful

This is a very short period of time. Give him a few days to adjust.

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April 1, 20190 found this helpful

Sounds like you got a good dog. It is very common for adopted dogs to not eat or drink for a couple days. I would keep it up with tempting food. Maybe some low sodium chicken broth so he gets some hydration, or extra water added to his food.. Good foods wont seem like a treat to him just now.


His whole world has been turned upside down. He wont be himself for a few days. Just keep doing what you are doing. If you get to day 3 with no drinking I would go see my Vet. Dogs can get dehydrated quicker than we realize. Rat terriers are sensitive dogs so I am not really surprised by his behavior.

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April 1, 20190 found this helpful

Be patient and also schedule a vet check up. If he isn't staying hydrated or peeing see the vet ASAP! Hydration is more important than pooping at least in the first few days. If he doesn't poop after 3-4 days also worthy of an ASAP vet visit

Rescue pups usually come with lots of baggage so to speak. Give him love, offer food, water, toys and let him "unpack" at his in pace.


Work with him slowly on the good behaviors with lots of treats and positive reinforcement. Never tell or punish. Pups don't understand that and it makes them fearful. As a rescue his fear is already high...salve the fear with patience and love.

It worked with our rescue boy! He is awesome. Celebrating our ninth year together this coming May!

Blessings to you and your fur baby! Post back how it goes.

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