So you and your family have made the decision to bring home a puppy! Congratulations to you! I am sure that you have done the majority of your pre-puppy planning, however, let’s go over a few key things to remember to prepare for your new puppy.
Once everyone in your family has decided on the pup, whether it is from a shelter or reputable breeder, the hard work is just beginning. Now the entire family needs to meet and discuss a few important items:
- How will your potty breaks for the pup work and who will ensure they are covered?
- Who will be in charge of feedings? They will need to eat at least three to four times a day.
- Who will be responsible for veterinary appointments?
Prepare a shopping list of required supplies for your new puppy, such as
- Food and water bowls
- Grooming supplies
- Cleaning supplies
- A bed
- Collar and leash
- ID tag
- Doggie gates
Feeding Your New Puppy
Have you decided on what you will feed your puppy? Proper nutrition is crucial for a good foundation and a solid start in life for your puppy. It is a good idea to research the different types of diets available and to decide which one would be best suited for your pup. There are several to choose from:
- Traditional kibble – for more information on different kibble and canned food you can visit Dog Food Advisor.
- Raw food diet – many pets (both dogs and cats) do very well on this diet
- A combination of cooked and raw food – I personally love Dr. Khalsa’s daily nutrition approach contained in her book Dr. Khalsa’s Natural Dog. It is an excellent resource on both feeding and natural and hollistic care for your dog.
Puppy Proofing Your Home
Also, you’ll need to ensure you puppy-proof the area where the baby will spend most of his or her time the first few months. Look into
- taping loose electrical cords to baseboards to avoid chewing
- storing chemicals on high shelves
- removing rugs and breakables
- setting up your puppy gates
It is a good idea to lie on the floor and look around to get a puppy’s-eye view. Make sure there is nothing you may have overlooked that the little one can get into.
Bringing Your New Puppy Home
Even though you will be very excited for the new addition to your family, it is very important not to overwhelm your puppy, especially on the first day. Take it slowly and quietly the first few days to give your puppy the chance to settle in. This is a stressful time of transition for your new fur baby as it has possibly left its mom and siblings and is having to get used to entirely new routines.
Line Up Your Service Providers
Talk to your pet care providers before bringing the new puppy home so that you can avoid last-minute stress.
Some important services to line up are
- dog trainer
- dog walking and pet sitting service
All of these providers can give you insight and can help in caring for your new puppy.
A dog walking service can also help you with the crucial time of potty training your puppy. Remember, puppies should be walked every couple hours in their first months of potty training.
What things do you consider to be most important when preparing for a new puppy?