How to Help Your Puppy Feel at Home
So, you’ve got a new puppy. Before choosing your puppy, you’ve likely done a lot of research so that you know what breed of dog is right for you and your family. Domestic dogs have a massive variety of needs and personalities, and some need very specific circumstances to thrive. However, in some respects, puppies have many of the same characteristics and needs. Yes, larger breeds may grow physically faster than smaller breeds and may need more food, exercise, and a different training regime. But while each dog has its needs, there are steps that you can take to make sure that any puppy feels at home with your family.
Ideally, you should start preparing for your puppy before they even arrive at your home. Puppies are curious little creatures, and especially love to explore with their mouths. Unfortunately, they have sharp teeth and can damage your items. Even worse, they might find some things that aren’t good for them.
You should keep cables and wires out of reach of your puppy, along with anything else that’s either breakable or dangerous. Close any low windows and get a trash can that’s too tall for your puppy to easily reach. Puppies do grow, but this should keep them safe to start with.
Baby gates can help you to secure certain rooms in your home, as it’s far easier to keep your puppy relatively confined if you can. You should also consider getting a pen and a crate, so your puppy has their own space. The pen is useful if you can’t supervise them for a while, although puppies are surprisingly inventive when it comes to causing trouble sometimes.
As well as gates, pens, and crates to keep your puppy safe, you should also stock up with supplies. You can get most of your supplies from a pet shop, so look out for:
- Toys to keep them entertained. All puppies like to chew, so give them something.
- Healthy and appropriate puppy food. Find out what they ate before and slowly switch them over to your chosen food so that they can adjust. You may also want dog milk.
- Blankets and soft beds. Ask the previous owner for a blanket or toy that smells of the mother or litter. It’s smelly, but it can be really helpful for the first few days or weeks.
- You may also need puppy pads, at least until your puppy is properly potty trained.
Finally, make sure that your puppy is signed up with the local vet so that you can get them any needed vaccinations and microchips. At your first checkup, don’t be afraid to ask for tips or advice to help you to care for your puppy.
You should start training your puppy right away to help them to grow into a healthy and happy dog. To start with, focus on house training and remember to be patient. Eventually, you can move onto typical training like “sit”, “stay”, and “come”. Your puppy won’t have a great attention span to start with, but the sooner you start, the easier it will be.