You have wanted a new puppy for so long and now that you finally have one, you realize it isn’t going to be as easy as you thought it would be. That soft, furry little creature is lovable and loads of fun, but there are those moments when you almost wish you’d thought twice before bringing home anything but a full-grown, housebroken pet! If you are overwhelmed with the enormity of the tasks ahead of you, don’t worry.
Although your new puppy didn’t come with an owner’s manual, you can get some tips from breeders and dog lovers around the world. Here is some advice to make your life (and that of your new puppy!) a whole lot easier.
The Biggest Challenge of All – Potty Training
If you’ve ever had to train a human toddler, you know the challenge you are going to be up against. Fortunately, however, puppies can be a whole lot easier to train. Just like when potty training a toddler, you need to watch first to observe their behavior. When does your puppy seem to have the most accidents? Typically, you will notice that most dogs need to do their business within 30 to 60 minutes after eating. That’s when you want to schedule puppy potty breaks. Even so, just like humans, all dogs are different, so it helps to keep a chart.
All Puppies Chew – It’s NOT Their Fault!
Again, just like we provide teething rings for babies, you need to provide chew toys for puppies – and lots of them. Depending on the breed, your new puppy can go through several a week, so get sturdy and safe puppy chew toys. Not recommended are rawhide and rope, as these can get entangled in their intestines requiring expensive surgery to correct insides which have literally been tied in knots or clogged up with indigestible hide.
Many dog owners buy chew toys like Kongs which can be chewed indefinitely and are almost indestructible. You’ll find that isn’t quite true with bulldog puppies, however. But, never fear. Kongs are made from safe materials which will not harm your new puppy. There are sprays available to keep your puppy from chewing furniture, shoes and other items which you don’t want him destroying on you.
Can You Sleep with Your New Puppy?
According to the Mayo Clinic, it can be therapeutic to sleep with your dog. Of course, with a puppy, you might want to be careful because they will have accidents until fully trained, just like babies. However, until you are reasonably comfortable that they know when and where to do their business, you can crate them by your bed so they are not frightened or lonely during the night.
It is suggested that you get a crate only large enough for them to stand and turn in. If they have too much room, they are likely to get in the habit of going potty in it because they have room to move away from the mess to comfortably go back to sleep.
No, you didn’t get a manual with your new puppy, but one thing is certain. Like kids, they won’t be puppies forever so the quality time you spend with them now makes a difference in their adult years. Good luck raising up your new puppy, your new BFF and family member. You’ll have many years of joy if you do it right now.