You have found the newest member of your family and are finally bringing him/her home for the first time. But what do you need to do in order to ensure that this new family member will have a smooth, healthy and safe transition from the kennel/breeder to your house?
When bringing home a new puppy, you need to be prepared for the worst case scenario. Chances are, your puppy will be an angel compared to what you expect of him/her, but at least you would have covered all bases. As with anything else in life, it is always better to be over-prepared than to be under-prepared.
The most obvious supplies are usually at the forefront of any new pet-owner’s mind. These include feeding and water dishes, a leash, a collar or harness, teething toys, a bed, some sort of confinement and sleeping quarters for the puppy, wee wee pads, food and of course treats.
When choosing feeding and water dishes, consideration must be given to the size of the puppy. Dishes too large may prevent a tiny puppy from eating and dishes too small may provide too little food for a large puppy. Pay particular attention to the amount of food the puppy is currently eating and the height of the puppy when choosing dishes.
A leash and a collar are two very important items as a puppy needs to get used to walking on a leash even before he/she is ready to go outside. Speak to your veterinarian before taking your puppy out for walks but in the meantime you can get your little furry addition to warm up to the leash by walking him/her inside the house. When choosing between a harness and a collar, attention must be focused on the size of the dog. If a dog is very tiny and fragile, a harness may be a better option because it will prevent accidental injury to your puppy when restraining him/her with a leash.
Teething toys are a must in any household with a new puppy. Puppies, just like babies, lose their puppy teeth and gain adult teeth as they grow. Because of this, they constantly like to gnaw on anything in sight. If you provide your puppy with quality teething toys that entertain him/her then the puppy will continue to chew on the provided toys. You must be sure to select toys that you know your puppy will be entertained by. If the puppy is not entertained, he/she will look to other “toys” around the house to play with.
Choosing a confinement area for your new puppy also needs a lot of planning and thought. Puppies should be supervised at all times if they are freely running around the house. However, there will be times when no one is able to supervise the puppy (when you are sleeping or out of the house etc). During these times, the puppy needs to be confined to a crate or a safe area of the house. If left alone, puppies can be destructive and they can cause harm to themselves. The easiest and most popular form of confinement is usually a crate or an exercise pen. However, you may also choose to have the puppy confined to a gated off section of the house like the kitchen, hallway or bathroom. Whichever form of confinement you choose, you need to choose the proper bedding and soiling area for that arrangement as well. Housebreaking pads work well as a scented paper that encourages a puppy to go to the bathroom. These pads will help to ensure that a puppy has an area to go to the bathroom when you are not there so that there are not many soiled areas of the puppy’s sleeping quarters. These pads should be placed away from the puppy’s bed so that the puppy can differentiate between the sleeping quarters and the bathroom area as puppies inherently do not like to soil where they sleep.
Feeding your puppy is also another important factor in preparation planning. As far as treats are concerned, they should only be given to a puppy when the puppy has done something to earn a treat. Always follow the guidelines on the packages to ensure that you are not over-treating your puppy. As for feeding your puppy, you need to ensure that you have the same food for your puppy that the puppy has already been eating. Changing your puppy’s food too quickly can cause upset stomach and diarrhea. Keeping your puppy on a constant, healthy formula is the best way to guarantee your puppy a healthy transition to your home.
After all these factors have been considered and decided upon, you need to make an appointment to have your puppy examined by a Veterinarian to keep him/her current on vaccines. If all goes well, then it is up to you when it comes to training and caring for your new puppy. You can always seek the help of a professional trainer (free with purchase) if you are not able to train the puppy properly please speak to one of the consultants at Teacup Pups.
With the proper planning, care and attention, your puppy will be acclimated to your household within a short period of time. Always remember to socialize your puppy with people, kids and other dogs so he/she will be well rounded as an adult. Puppies need lots of sleep, lots of care and most importantly, lots of love.