Whether you’re a new pet owner or a seasoned veteran, the below tips by Heidi Ganahl, the founder and CEO of Camp Bow Wow and Home Buddies by Camp Bow Wow can offer insight into preparations for bringing a puppy into your family. It is important to recognize that a puppy is a living animal and not a toy. Remember that owning a new pet is like caring for a newborn baby – it will take a lot of time and dedication.
· Prep for the Pup: Begin preparing to for the new addition to your household weeks in advance. Allocate a space in your house for your puppy as well as an area outside where he can play. Consider purchasing the necessary items like a security gate, to keep your puppy away from dangerous areas like stairs. Also, remember to purchase essential products like a dog bed, crate, water and food bowls, a collar, leash, appropriate chew toys, and puppy food.
· A Strong Introduction: When a puppy leaves his mother or littermates, he can experience great anxiety. Alleviate this by giving the puppy as much attention as possible during this first week home. For the first three to four days, make sure that there will be someone at home to take care of the puppy. If you have a hectic work schedule, hire a Home Buddies professional to help take care of Fido during this important time. Home Buddies offers dog walking, pet sitting, in-home boarding and pooper scooper services.
· Get the Pet to the Vet: During his first week home, take your puppy to the veterinarian for his initial puppy examination. It is essential to make sure your puppy is healthy and is free of medical or congenital disorders. Remember to ask the shelter or breeder if the puppy has received his initial vaccinations.
· Hungry Puppy: Ask the shelter or breeder what your puppy has been eating. Feed your puppy that same brand and type of food for several days. Afterwards, you can slowly begin to transition your pup’s food. Most breeders begin to feed commercial brand food when the puppy is 21-days-old.
· Puppy Crying at Night: Puppies have small bladders and will cry at night if they need to use the restroom. Most puppies will have to go to the bathroom twice during the evening, so keep newspaper handy to avoid any messy situations.
· Be Consistent and Have Patience: When training your pup, make sure dog rules are followed by the entire household. If your puppy does something disagreeable, scold him with a disapproving tone. Be patient with your new family member and remember to show your puppy affection. If your puppy is having behavior issues, consider hiring a Certified Bow Wow Behavior Buddies trainer to design a specialized program for your dog.