When you get a new puppy, it often means that you will make it a part of the family. There are dogs that require more care than others, so it’s important that you do a little research on the breed of puppy that you have and the best ways to provide care so that it thrives. A veterinarian can help you get started by giving information on when your puppy will need necessary vaccinations, such as Rabies and Parvo. The doctor can also examine your puppy to make sure there are no worms present and to see that the weight and size are as they should be for the age of your puppy.

puppy

Image Courtesy of Lisa L Wiedmeier (Flickr.com)

Getting Settled

Before you get your puppy, try to stock up on some of the items that you know it will need. Get a food and water bowl that are the right size for the dog. Choose a food that has the right nutrients for the puppy to grow. Try to find a food that has natural ingredients instead of a lot of the processed foods. Create a space in your home where your puppy can feel safe. This could be a dog bed in a bedroom or in the living room, but make sure the noise level is kept low so that your puppy doesn’t get startled. If you plan on being gone during the day, then a puppy playpen might be an option. This is a way to keep your dog confined to one area of the home so that it knows where it can go during the day and where it isn’t allowed to play. This idea can help in preventing items in the home from getting destroyed as your dog gets bigger.¬†You also need to have a few toys that your dog can chew on instead of your dog chewing on shoes and furniture.

Socialize

You don’t want to keep your puppy away from people, but you want to make sure your puppy knows who you don’t want it to socialize with. If you are training your puppy for security for the family, then you need to teach your dog who is allowed to enter the home and who isn’t allowed. One idea is to take your puppy around others who have puppies of the same age. This will give your puppy a chance to socialize with other animals and understand what can be done with other animals, such as playing compared to biting.

Food

When you choose a food for your puppy, don’t change it unless you see that it is upsetting your puppy’s stomach. If your puppy doesn’t eat the food for about 24 hours, try mixing it with a little bit of wet food so that it’s soft. If your puppy still doesn’t want to eat the food, then try looking for another food that has the same nutrients but that might have a better smell or flavor for your dog. Ideally, your puppy should have about three to four small meals each day instead of large meals so that its stomach doesn’t get upset.

Training

Once your puppy is settled in the home, you can begin training it to do simple tricks and commands. When teaching your puppy, you want to have some kind of small treat as a reward. When your puppy performs the command, you want to give a reward. As your puppy begins performing the command on a regular basis, decrease the amount of treats that are given until your dog does the command without a treat. There are obedience classes that will teach your puppy skills that include sitting, shaking with a paw, heeling and staying. It’s best to start training as soon as possible and with only one person who teaches your puppy the command.

Potty Training

Unless you are going to keep your puppy outside through the day, then you want to start teaching potty training as soon as possible. Puppy pads can work, but you have to be on top of putting your puppy on the pad when it’s time to use the bathroom. Begin taking your puppy outside about 30 minutes after eating or drinking so that it can become accustomed to taking this time to use the bathroom. Accidents will happen. Teach your puppy what was done, and show your puppy the door or the pad. If your puppy used the pad or went outside, then give a reward.

Filed under: Puppies

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