Everyone dreams of owning a new puppy! We all love puppies but they come with a lot of maintenance. Here’s some advice on caring for your little puppers.
30 million people adopt a pet every year, and a large chunk of those adoptions are dogs.
There’s a reason why dogs are man’s best friend. They’re local, affectionate, and make the perfect companion. And we have to admit it — puppies are way too cute!
Adopting a puppy is a rewarding experience. However, puppies are a lot of maintenance. They’re hyper, they need to be trained, and they require constant supervision. If you’re about to adopt your first puppy, you shouldn’t go in blind.
Before you bring your new puppy home, read this guide and know how to care for your little puppers!
Microchip Your New Puppy
First things first, microchip your dog while they’re young. After 30 days, it’s required you microchip your dog. This will help find the dog if it runs away or if you lose the dog.
Some dogs may already have a microchip.
For example, breeders need to microchip their dogs by law before they sell them to owners. If you adopt a dog, the shelter may have already microchipped the dog. If they haven’t, most can implant a microchip for a small fee.
Taking Your Puppy Home
When it’s time to take home your puppy, there are essential supplies you’ll need to take with you. They include:
- Dog carrier
Some shelters provide a leash and collar/harness. But for a puppy, it’s best they’re in a carrier. They’re not trained yet and are unpredictable on the leash.
You should also bring a blanket because they could get uncomfortable or cold in the carrier.
If you’re traveling a long way home, it’s also best to bring food and water for the trip.
There are a few other tips to keep in mind on the day you bring your puppy home. Your puppy will become your best friend, but you’re still a new person.
They may be scared and won’t listen to commands. They will also be uncomfortable in your home. Be patient and gentle with your puppy. Try and minimize loud noises.
If lots of people live in your home, keep your puppy in one room and introduce your family members slowly.
This is key if you have children; kids will want to touch and play with your puppy and it’s best to instruct them on how to make the puppy feel relaxed and comfortable around them.
Always comfort your puppy if it shows signs of distress. Pet it gently. It may lose control over its pee — make sure there are old newspapers and/or paper towels on the floor.
Create Eating and Sleeping Arrangements
It’s best to create an eating and sleeping schedule early. This helps organize your dog’s day and they become more familiar with your home and your lifestyle.
The golden rule of dog feeding is to feed them twice a day. But puppies need more food. Feed your puppy four times a day unless specified otherwise from your vet.
You can give your puppy treats, too. But always ensure you also create a treat schedule. For example, many puppy owners save treat time for training and rewards.
You should always leave fresh water out for them.
The best your dog eats and drinks is also important. An obvious option is the kitchen. But you can also set your dog’s food out in the living or dining rooms. This ensures your dog has plenty of room if your kitchen is cramped.
You’ll also want to create a sleeping schedule for your dog. The best time for a puppy to sleep is when you sleep. Keep in mind, they may take naps throughout the day.
But it’s best they get most of their sleep in at night to ensure they won’t keep you awake throughout the night.
It’s also best you think about where your dog will sleep. Your puppy should sleep near you to feel safe. However, your puppy should have its own bed and to not sleep with you in your bed.
Many puppy owners buy a dog bed for their puppy. You can also utilize your existing materials, such as a dog crate (but keep the crate door open so your puppy doesn’t feel like it’s being punished).
Socializing Your Puppy
After a few weeks, your puppy will become more comfortable and social with you and your family. But you should also take more strides to socialize your puppy.
Dogs are social animals. They require love and attention, not just from you but from other humans.
Take your puppy out as much as possible. Take your puppy to the park or even the dog park to become comfortable with other dogs. There are also many dog-friendly places such as restaurants, bars, and beaches.
Do you work a full-time job? Don’t leave your puppy at home alone. Ask your superiors if you can bring your dog to the office. Your puppy can socialize with your co-workers and still be near its human.
Teach Your Puppy Commands
Training your puppy is an essential part of raising your dog. Teach common commands while they’re young and they will remember them when they’re older.
Common commands to start out with are “sit” and “lie down.” From here, teach them to “roll over” and “jump.” Some owners enjoy teaching their dog fun tricks such as “high five.”
You’ll also have to teach your puppy behavioral commands. Examples include “no” and “stop” if your puppy gets into something they shouldn’t.
If you still struggle to train your dog, there are many helpful dog training videos online. This will also assist if you struggle with other training issues, such as teaching your dog to pee and poop outside and not in the house.
If all else fails, a professional dog trainer will benefit you greatly.
Care for Your New Puppy
Buying a new puppy is rewarding. From the day you bring your puppy home, they’re a member of your family. But lots of care and maintenance goes into raising a puppy.
Keep this advice in mind so your puppy grows into a healthy adult!