How to prepare for your new puppy
One of the most exciting events for a family or individual is bringing home a new puppy. Unfortunately, many people do not organize themselves or their home for the newcomer. There are several things that can be done to make your pup’s first few hours in his new home pleasant and enjoyable. Most of the activities are very simple and will only require a few minutes of your time and attention to complete.
Have the right supplies
The following items must be purchased and set up prior to the arrival of the pup(s):
* Stainless steel or rigid plastic tipless food and water containers
* Box of the right size
* Soft and washable bedding for the interior of the cage
* Variety of chew toys and play toys.
* Properly sized leash or leash and collar
* Food that is the same as the puppy(s) currently being fed (same brand, flavor, etc.)
Also, depending on the house or area of the pup’s room, you may also need some baby gates to contain the pup in a specific room or to prevent him from going up or down stairs.
Puppies are a lot like small children: they will want to investigate everything. Puppies learn by chewing and mouthing as much as they learn by looking and smelling. By spending a little time puppy-proofing your home, you can be sure that your pup will be safe. The following are puppy proof tips:
* Remove all electrical cords from the reach of the puppies. This means they may need to be unplugged from the wall and the appliance moved. Puppies can chew on the cord, either on the wall or at the end of the appliance, so it’s easier to remove the appliance to protect the cord and keep the pup safe if the cord is plugged in.
* Remove or raise all hanging items, such as tablecloths, floor-length drapes, drapery or blind pulls, hanging plants, or other items that dangle enticingly within puppies’ reach. Pulls on curtains and blinds are especially dangerous as they can easily become entangled around puppies’ necks.
* Remove all indoor plants. Many common houseplants are poisonous to dogs. Unless you are sure the plant is not poisonous, remove it from the room. Most puppies will chew on plants naturally, so if you want the plant to remain intact, removing it is the best idea.
* Remove all shoes, backpacks, leather goods, remote controls, cordless phones, children’s toys, stuffed animals, cushions, or anything else that might be fun to play with.
Remember that while puppies are very energetic, the entire house does not need to be puppy-proofed, just the rooms in which it will be unsupervised. Crate training is a great way to minimize the amount of puppy testing that must occur to keep your newcomer safe and healthy.
Make sure the pup is allowed to settle in the area and given appropriate times to go out and relieve himself. Puppies will generally need to go outside at least every three hours and usually within 20 minutes of eating or drinking. After they nap or play, they will also need to be moved outdoors. By allowing plenty of outdoor travel and positively praising them for eliminating in the right area, you’ll find that housetraining isn’t difficult.
Special care for puppies involves a lot of prevention. Be sure to get down on the floor and look around you to see what might be fun for a pup to chew on or could pose a safety hazard. Have food, water, toys and a crate ready when your puppy comes home and you and your puppy or pups will be off to a great start together.