After you’ve prepared the basics (collars, leashes, food, bedding, toys, etc.) here are some tips to help your new dog adjust to his new family and unfamiliar surroundings.
When you first bring him home, don’t treat him as though he’s always lived there. In other words, don’t give him too much freedom or too much physical affection. Start him on a routine right away, including crate time while you’re at home, overnight, and when you leave the house. Place his crate in the room of your house where you spend the most time. Give him time to decompress. Some rescue dogs need quiet time to just hang out and observe, without the pressure of interacting directly – crate time is good for this.
Don’t take him for rides, or to someone else’s home, until he’s really settled in. Don’t have more than 1-2 visitors the first couple of weeks. He may be a bit subdued at first, and only begin showing you his real personality after a couple of weeks. (He may need more time, but 2 weeks seems to be the turning point for most dogs.) He could be one of those dogs who comes home and shows you who he really is right off the bat. It’s nice when that happens, but most dogs need the adjustment time.
Start training right away. Just 2-3 short sessions a day (5 minutes), with treats. Don’t give him treats for free, he should earn them with Sits, Downs, and coming when called. Even if your yard is fenced, take him out on leash for the first few days, while you work on recall inside. Rescue dogs released in your yard may either refuse to come back in or even jump a fence. Keep your dog on leash outside until he’s bonded with you.
The 3-3-3 Rule is a general guideline. Every dog is unique and will adjust differently. Give your dog space and allow him to go at his own pace.