Your Guide to puppies

The arrival of a new puppy is a wonderful time, but we know it can be an anxious one too. When you bring home a new puppy, there inevitably needs to be some time for adjustment. But in this first week you can lay the foundation for a long and happy life together and make the transition as easy as possible for everyone involved. With any luck you’ll have planned ahead, so you’ll have all the supplies, food and toys you’ll need for your new arrival. In addition, your house should be completely puppy-proof. So now all you have to think about in your puppy’s first week are the following handy hints to make the experience as stress-free as possible for up both.

MAKE TIME FOR YOUR PUPPY

The best time to bring your new puppy home is at the beginning of a weekend. If possible, take a few days holiday as well to really give you time to acquaint your puppy with its new home and begin puppy training.

NAME YOUR PUPPY

Agree on a name ahead of time and make sure everyone uses it all the time when talking to your puppy. This will help him recognise his name and avoid confusion

TAKE YOUR PUPPY TO THE VET

Take your new puppy to your vet as soon as you can. Take with you any immunisation or other health information you may have received when you got your dog.

MAKE SURE OTHERS UNDERSTAND YOUR DOG’S NEEDS

Once in his new home, your puppy will take time to adjust to strange new surroundings and people. Children can become especially excited, so explain to them that their new friend needs time out for naps, and show them how to care for your puppy and play nicely.

BE A LEADER

Simple things like always walking through doors ahead of your puppy and eating in his presence before you feed him make you look like a ‘pack leader’. This will make it easier for your puppy to accept that you (and your family) are in charge.

PUPPY FEEDING TIPS

It is a good idea to bring home the pet food that your new puppy had been eating to make the transition to a new home as easy as possible. If you do plan to switch foods, you can minimize digestive upsets by having enough of the old food available to make the change a gradual one. Always put the food in the same spot to establish a routine. If your puppy doesn’t seem to be eating, try moistening the food with water to make it easier to eat.

BE FAIR

Never hit your puppy, and never scold for something he did a while ago. Your puppy will have no idea what the problem is and will think you are angry for no reason. Instead, encouraging the behaviour you do want and discouraging the ones you don’t want is a far more productive approach.

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