Bringing a new puppy home can be an exciting time in your life, but when you get home with your new best friend you might be asking yourself, “Well, now what do I do?”
Don’t worry, we’re here to tell you everything you need to know before you go and picking up new roommate:
- Puppy-proof your home before bringing her back. Yes, just like baby-proofing your home, you must make sure your home is a safe environment for your puppy. That means putting things that she can chew or choke on in a place that cannot be reached. You’ll also want to hide loose wiring that is accessible to your puppy. During the teething process, your puppy will chew anything it can get its mouth on.
- Get a towel or shirt that has a familiar scent to your puppy before you take her home. A towel or shirt that has the scent of her mother and litter mates could go a long way. This will make her more comfortable to their new surroundings and it will also be useful for crate training.
- After bringing your puppy home, you’ll want to get them to a veterinarian within the first 48 hours. This is to make sure your puppy is in good health. This could be a simple weigh-in and checkup. This is also a great way for your puppy to meet their vet for the first time. This is someone you’ll want your puppy to be comfortable with, so make your vet one of the first people your puppy meets.
- Keep feeding your puppy the same food that the shelter or breeder was feeding them. If you have a specific food you want your puppy to be eating, gradually mix the new food in with the breeder or shelter food until their stomach is ready for the change.
- During your puppy’s training, it is important that your puppy meets as many people as possible. You want your puppy to be comfortable around all types of people. Certain uniforms and articles of clothing can be startling – to not just puppies – but full grown dogs. If you can get your puppy comfortable at an early age with seeing uniforms and other types of clothing it will help them in future to stay calm when seeing it again.
- During the teething process your puppy will want to chew on everything, even people. Although it may not hurt, it may even look cute, do not let your puppy do this. It creates a very bad habit that can be carried over into their adult life.
- Reward your puppy’s good behavior by giving her treats or with positive reinforcement. The training process for your puppy will be telling her what they’re not allowed to do. When you see your puppy doing something good, it is important to let them know. It doesn’t always have to be a treat. A rub on the head or any type of affection should be enough to let your puppy know they are doing well.
These tips are meant to help guide you through the puppy training process but are not meant to replace advice from your veterinarian. If you notice a change in your pet’s behavior, take them to the doctor right away.