A new fluffy canine addition to the family can be an exciting thing for every member! And who doesn't love dogs, right? But that can quickly turn into a stressful string of events as you realise that you're stuck with an extra list of chores or an unruly little mutt!
Though making the decision to own a puppy is a pretty big one, the real fun begins when it's little paws enter into your home. But it's also at that moment that your heart oozes love and you know that you got a best friend for life. The primary reason for adopting a dog - relentless companionship.
Research conducted by ASPCA has revealed that as many as 3.2 million pets are adopted every year in the country - with 1.6 million being dogs alone. There are more than 50 million households in the United States that own at least one puppy or fully-grown dog. These include dogs that have Down Syndrome and have found a loving home with supportive and patient parents.
The constant companionship and unwavering loyalty that a dog brings might have spurred you into contacting your nearest shelter and spending a day choosing your new pet. And once all the paperwork is complete, the next step is quite simple - bringing your furry friend home!
It is important to remember, however, that as new as this transition may be for you, it is exciting and possibly frightening for the puppy as well. Allowing a new dog to get accustomed to a completely new environment can be daunting for the pet. Remember the pup has probably just been separated from the mother and a familiar environment. Away from its place of birth, it's now in a completely foreign situation. That's scary for any baby!
We understand that your first instinct might be to just bring the puppy in and leave it loose, but that’s where you might just end up making your first mistake in puppy training. And that is why we are here to help!
Follow the below 8 tips to the T, with patience and confidence. We promise your new member will adjust to your home and family just fine.
Take Things Slow
This is the first step in the list because it is arguably the most important one. It is extremely necessary for you and all members of your family to take things as slowly, calmly, and patiently as possible when your dog enters the house.
It is understandable, the excitement that could come with bringing a dog home, but loud noises and excessive activity might just leave the puppy feeling nervous and unsettled. If you have children in the house, make sure you sit them down and explain how important it is for them to keep their cool before the dog is walked in.
Make the Rules
Before the puppy is introduced to your house, do ensure that there are certain ground rules established - for the puppy as well as the human beings. For instance, if you have a family, delegate responsibilities - for feeding, walking, and bath time for the new puppy. It is necessary to have all members involved in the dog’s activities as this can help in individual bonding.
Also decide what the off-limit rooms for the dog are, what is the furniture that it is allowed on, and where it will be sleeping. Having these spaces mentally organized can help you train and get your puppy adjusted comfortably.
Introduce Them Slowly
It is a commonly made mistake to leave a puppy loose once it has been brought home. This can cause a sensory overload - what with the number of people, smells, and sights that the puppy will be experiencing. The result could be an anxious and uncomfortable dog.
Introduce the pup to a small, designated, puppy-proofed area in the house with a crate. Ensure that food and water are readily available in this space and leave it to do their own thing and get acquainted.
Take Them on a Tour
Once your puppy is showing signs of comfort in it's puppy-proofed space, do a tour of the house and start introducing it slowly and patiently to all the rooms in the house - excluding the rooms that you have demarcated as the “No-Puppy Zone.”
Ensure that it is on a leash and stay with the pup patiently as it sniffs around the rooms and gets familiar with the house. Remember to give as much time as is needed.
Minimize Touch, Talk, and Eye-Contact
Your puppy is going to be stimulated in all senses - this is a fact that needs to be established before bringing them home. As you allow your new pet to explore the house with you, try to not touch, speak or look directly at it. Use subtle noises or a snapping of fingers to correct and communicate what you wish to say.
Establish the Feeding Area
Once the tour is complete, bring the dog to it's feeding area and reward it with a treat and some water. This will settle it down. It will also allow it to recognize where the feeding station is, an important place to note!
Buy What You Need Beforehand
While we know that buying the adorable Pettsie Matching Friendship Bracelets was not on your list, ensure that you have everything that your puppy might need. From Pettsie Natural Hemp leashes to chew toys, grooming supplies, and litter boxes - make sure you have everything that your puppy might need set up and ready for them.
The Key? Consistency.
Start small and steady and build up from there. Enforce rules from day 1 that you would expect your puppy to adhere to for the rest of their amazing lives with you. For instance, you might be tempted to allow it to sleep in your bed but if you train the dog to sleep on it's own, it will develop the habit early on.
Remember that your new furry friend requires love, attention, structure, and routine. In addition to the above tips, create a structure that can be followed regularly. This will allow the puppy to get accustomed to how things are done in your household and adjust perfectly.
Your new member is going to be a constant companion through all the ups and downs in your life. Keep it comfortable, safe, and taken care of, and experience the absolute joys that come with owning a pet.