Perfect Puppy Planning

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If you have decided, like us, to welcome a puppy into your home, you’ll understand it’s a wildly exciting feeling. Saying that, along with that excitement comes the nerves. If you have never had a puppy before or even if it’s been a while, you can’t help but think (and probably OVER THINK) about every little thing.

Picture – Flickr

deally a pup should leave his mother at seven to ten weeks old, so he has had time to learn about other dogs but is still young enough for positive early experiences with humans to really count. The first few days are vital.

  • Before you bring your puppy home — Remember your pup is likely to feel he has been snatched away from his home. Help make the transition easier for him by leaving an old T-shirt you have worn with the breeder on your last visit before collection if possible. With this placed in the litter’s bed it will make your scent familiar to him as well as absorbing the scent of his family. When you bring your pup home, collect the T-shirt and put it in his travel basket and then his den. It will comfort him as he adapts to his new environment.

Picture – Pixabay

  • Collecting my puppy — Try to collect your pup early so he has the whole day to get used to his surroundings before settling for the night. Take time off work or employ the services of a dog walking or pet sitting company if necessary so your pup is not left alone for at least a few days. Control when any children play with him and give him time to explore alone but supervised.
  • Bringing home a puppy –  As soon as you arrive home, take the puppy into the garden and reward him as soon as he’s been to the toilet. This will set the tone of positive reinforcement and let your puppy see how they should behave. Allow the puppy freedom to explore his new surroundings, but pay close attention to where he goes. It’s a good idea to follow them with some treats to keep their attention focused when you need it to be.

Picture – Flickr

Your puppy’s first night

Some puppies settle straight to sleep but many cry during their first night in a strange place, in which case it may be kinder to allow them to sleep near you to begin with. Try to make the process of teaching your puppy to sleep alone a gradual one.

  • Let him sleep in a puppy crate near your bed; if he wakes, speak reassuringly but don’t touch him.
  • Unless you intend to have your dog sleep in your bedroom, gradually move the crate from your bed to the room you want him to sleep in. Do this in stages: say to the bedroom door, the landing, down the stairs and so on. The patterns set in the first few weeks of a new routine can set the tone for good, or at least become very hard to break.

Picture -Pixabay

A puppy’s first week

  • Give your puppy every chance to become a happy member of the household.
  • Take your puppy to the vet for a checkup and to discuss his vaccination and worming programme. Also ask whether the surgery runs puppy parties so he can begin socialisation.
  • Don’t make any changes to his diet until he has settled in; then do so gradually.
  • Encourage your puppy to chew the right things by providing him with his own toys. Don’t let children leave their toys lying around as he may not be able to tell the difference at first.

Enrol in reward-based training classes. Ask your vet or other owners for recommendations.
Picture – Pixabay

This will start you and your little guy off on the best foot and leave you more time to enjoy your new addition – we can’t wait!

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