Is your home puppy-proof? New puppy owners need to carefully consider this before bringing their new canine companion home. By making sure your home is fully prepared for your new puppy, you can help make the transition easier for the puppy and every member of your family.
Stock Up on Good Pet Food
Choose healthy pet food that’s formulated to meet the nutritional needs of puppies. Talk to your veterinarian about the pet food that may be best for your new puppy. Don’t stress too much about this part, though, because you may find the best puppy food through trial and error. Just make sure your puppy has high-quality food that meets all their nutritional needs.
Puppy food can come in a variety of flavors, find one your puppy likes and stick with that flavor. Switching foods and flavors frequently can cause your new puppy to have an upset belly. Get enough dog food to last for a couple of weeks. That way, you don’t have to worry about rushing out to get pet food in the first couple of weeks with the puppy. Also, you may want to get some special treats for your puppy as well.
Purchase Necessary Supplies
Most people think of getting a water bowl and food bowl for a new pet, but other supplies may not be considered. This can lead to multiple trips to the pet shop as needs present themselves. Save yourself some time and potential frustration by stocking up on all the supplies you’ll likely need for your new puppy.
Also, consider what you will need in your home to keep your dog safe. For example, you may not be able to ensure that all rooms are safe for your puppy. However, you can get pet barriers, or baby gates, for rooms that puppies shouldn’t enter.
Consider getting the following items for your puppy:
- Crate for transportation to the veterinarian
- Chew toys
- Dog brush
- Dog shampoo
- Pet barriers
- Puppy pads
- Poop bags
- Food bowl
- Water bowl
Evaluate the needs your new puppy is likely to have, then make a shopping list. Doing so will help ensure you don’t forget anything your pet may need.
Put Prized Possessions Out of Reach
Keep in mind, puppies are likely to have seemingly endless energy, and they may chew on things as they explore their new world. This is normal puppy behavior that should be expected, and a puppy should never be punished for this natural act. However, it’s also natural for you to want to protect your stuff.
Before adopting your puppy, carefully evaluate every room the puppy will have access to, and remove all the items that are important to you or at least make sure they’re out of reach of your puppy. You may spray surfaces where you want to discourage chewing with a safe, non-toxic bitter spray.
Prepare a Room Just for Your Puppy
If you already have dogs or other pets, don’t rush introductions as soon as you adopt your puppy. Ensure that a new puppy has been vaccinated, treated for fleas, and dewormed before introducing them to your other pets. Also, if you take things slow, you may help all your pets get along better in the long run.
Instead of early introductions, prepare a room just for the puppy to be in that the other animals can’t access. The room should have comfortable bedding and toys. Your puppy’s entire world is changing, and your home will be new and potentially scary. Help a puppy get used to you and the sights and sounds of your home before introducing other animals.
Prepare Family Members for the New Puppy
Preparing your family members for a new puppy goes hand in hand with preparing the house itself. Place a phone number for your veterinarian and a 24-hour emergency vet service in the same place as all your other emergency information. Talk to every member of the family about what should be done if the puppy has a medical emergency when you’re not there.
Also, don’t underestimate the importance of setting ground rules for play with the new puppy. Make sure young children know that boisterous play is not okay with a new puppy. Tell young children about how a puppy has certain needs and special care. Talk about how to prevent dog bites. When it comes to behavior, be clear on what isn’t allowed.
Since a puppy is a living creature with its own wants, needs, and faults, it can be impossible to predict how a puppy will behave all the time. So, talk to your kids about the importance of empathy for the dog. If children break any of the rules with the puppy, they could put themselves in danger, so be consistent in enforcing the rules.
Finally, having your puppy checked out by a veterinarian is another thing you should do to prepare them for a new life with you. Bring your puppy to their first veterinarian’s appointment as soon as possible after the adoption. Contact 1st Pet Veterinary Centers for more information or an appointment today. Having a primary care veterinarian can help get your puppy off to a healthy start.