What to do for a new puppy? Whether it’s your first time with a new puppy or not, figuring out exactly what you need to be prepared is the key to success. Getting a new puppy is a very exciting time. Pretty much the most exciting day of your life. You are adding a new family member to your family, so it is a time when you really want need to get it right.
What I mean by that is, I hope you are ready to have your life turned upside down. Adding a puppy to the family is exciting, but also can be a very stressful time if you aren’t ready.
First things first, you need to make a list of all the key things that you will need to buy for your puppy. What are the essentials? Well here are just a few of the most important ones:
- bowl x2 (water, food)
- dog bed
- ID license tag
- toys (chew and interactive)
- floor cleaner (carpet cleaner)
- dog stuffy toy
- dog blanket
Now that you have identified the most important things you need to have ready for your puppy. You better start getting those items rounded up.
While getting the physical things ready for your puppy are important there are other things that you need, that aren’t just something you need to purchase.
For example a puppy is very much like a toddler. Getting your house ready is also very important. When, you have a puppy running around your house you really need to make sure that you have the house puppy proofed.
To start with, you need to pick up anything around your house that a puppy may want to chew on. Pick up all shoes, socks, clothing, nick naks, and anything expensive you may not what to get wrecked.
Electrical cords, game controllers, your kids toys, anything electronic can also be an easy target for a puppy to get into.
Puppies have a real sneaky way of finding things to get into that you never even thought they would touch. Go around your house and put anything you are worried about up high enough that makes it out of reach for your puppy.
Shutting some doors inside your home to block off access for the puppy is a great idea. Your puppy does not need to run around the entire house to start with. A small room or two is all the access they need. Let’s remember that they have no control over there bladder or anything. Keeping them secluded to a certain area also keeps accidents in a more contained area.
You will need to arrange a vet for your puppy. Not long after you get your puppy, they will need to go for there shots. They may come with there first set of shots done, but they will need more before to long. These shots are important to build the dogs immune system and make sure that they are protected from things like rabies and distemper.
A new puppy can quickly get themselves into trouble and need to be watched constantly. It only takes a second for your dog to get into a dangerous situation like something as easy as falling down the stairs. Maybe getting a baby gate that blocks off the stairs is a good idea.
You also need to be careful of things like plastic bags, cupboards that open easily, dangerous cleaning chemicals and anything potentially dangerous to your puppy.
The reason I am so vigilante about making things safe is a friend of mine sadly lost her dog in a tragic accident with a plastic bag and a cereal box. Her dogs head got stuck in the bag and her dog suffocated.
Something so simple as a cereal box in a cupboard that was easy for her dog to access and it ended in tragedy. I am not trying to scare you, I just want you to know that you really need to be serious about protecting your puppy.
I recently read an article of a puppy that was chewing on a dog toy that had a rope attached. The rope was ingested by the puppy and resulted in him having unsuccessful surgery to remove it.
This is just another example of something so simple that turns horribly wrong. Be cautious and really stop and think about what your dog is doing especially when your back is turned.
When I was younger I had a German Shepard dog named Rumour who would destroy everything in her path. She loved shoes, socks, the inside of my ball hats and even chewed the coffee table legs. You literally couldn’t turn your back for one minute.
Being aware of where she was at all times was the key to keeping her from making a path of destruction. Of course as we know you can’t watch them 24/7 but I sure tried.
With smaller dogs like BOO, you would think that you should be able to be less vigilante simply because they are a smaller dog. Well let me tell you, that isn’t true. BOO was not destructive in the same Rumour was, but if you leave any food, candy anything that smells like food, he is all over it before you even notice.
Normally that is OK, but as we know from my previous post “What’s Toxic To Dogs,” many foods are dangerous for our dogs to eat. So food becomes one more thing with your puppy around that you want to be careful about.
The number 1 most important item you need to do for your puppy is to start them on a schedule. Putting your puppy on a schedule from day one will just make everything easier. Making sure you stick to the schedule is also critical.
A regular feeding schedule will help make sure that your dog also goes outside to do there business on a regular schedule. With a defined schedule they are also more quickly able to adapt to getting there internal clock set. Getting up roughly about the same time and having planned meal time can also settle your dog into your lifestyle and the schedule of the house.
All the dogs, I have ever had successfully been potty trained and had fewer accidents in the house strictly due to the routine I had set with them right away.
Now obviously the odd day here and there, like the weekends, your dog may still want to get up and go outside to pee at the same time. This means your idea of sleeping in on the weekends, may be gone. At least for a while anyway. As your dog gets older, it is easier to expect them to adjust and adapt on a day when you want to sleep in.
When I said your life as you know it is completely changed, I meant it. The days of lying around and having a lazy day with a puppy is very difficult. You need to realize that they need exercise and someone to play with.
For this reason, I have always felt that having 2 dogs, just makes it easier. Especially the playing part. Yes you can play fetch or play with your dog using a toy, but it is easier for the 2 dogs to play with each other. I believe they get more tired out by playing with another dog.
If having 2 dogs is not an option for you, then make sure that you set your puppy up with daily exercise and getting them engaged with an interactive toy or mental exercise.
Puppies are honestly one of the best things in the world. They smell so good and they are so awesome to pick up and cuddle with. Everyone wants a puppy! That is until they realize just how much work a puppy really is.
But let’s be honest, we all have known someone that got a puppy and after a month or two decided to get rid of the dog and give it away.
That is the worst thing for that puppy that you could ever do. That puppy is now scarred by you giving them away and having to start all over again with a new family and a new environment. This is such a horrible thing to do to a puppy.
I can not stress enough, to make sure that when you decided to get a puppy, you are really able to commit to that dog for the rest of that dogs life.
Yes of course that isn’t always possible, I realize life does have other plans for us. But please try to do your best by that puppy.
One of the other things, that I wanted to mention was, we all know that everyone wants to stop by and see the new puppy. You need to try to limit too many visitors to the house right away. Your dog will need some time to settle in and it can be overwhelming for the first few weeks just getting them settled in at there new home.
Try not to bombard them with visitors. When someone comes over, your dog will get over excited and may pee right there, just because they are so excited. Once they get more comfortable and are in there routine, then slowly bring people by to meet the new addition.
Just like starting your dog with meeting new people, make sure to introduce your dog to other dogs, once all there shots have been given. Socializing your puppy is also a key to a happy healthy and well-behaved dog.
Dogs also really need to know there boundaries and be consistently disciplined in the proper way to make sure that they understand what NO means.
Yes that means you need to be the bad guy. It is hard to discipline that cute and cuddly puppy, but remember if you don’t get a handle on the bad puppy behavior, you are going to end up with a big dog with bad behavior. There is no quick answer to success with your puppy, but being consistent with them will show them you mean business and are serious.
Make sure that you do your best to be a Rock star dog parent and make your puppy pride. Best of luck to you all and enjoy that puppy stage, as it doesn’t last long. They grow up super fast and before you know it they will be a year old.
WELCOME THE NEW BABY!