Welcoming a new puppy to your family
With the coronavirus taking the country by storm, most of us are forced to stay home. We’ve heard many of our Boss Dog® customers have adopted new puppies or are fostering them for their local animal shelters. We think that’s awesome.
Knowing that, we thought it would be great to offer some tips to make a smooth transition for you and your new pup. (Many of these tips are great for older dogs too.)
Tips for introducing a new dog to your home
- Ease the puppy into the family. The pup will be facing a lot of uncertainty and that could make them fearful. If they were taken from its mother and other siblings, they probably will be lonely. Adopting a puppy from a shelter may also mean the animal may not be used to a lot of attention, being in a quiet house or having the freedom to roam freely. (Also, don’t forget to puppy proof the house before you bring them home.)
- Your new dog should be given a clean bill of health by your veterinarian before you bring him home. You want to be certain the puppy is healthy and isn’t bringing home any illness or fleas.
- During non-coronavirus times, bring your puppy home on a weekend. When you do this, you’ll be able to be home with Fido rather than just throwing him into the family and leaving for work for the day. (Some companies offer leave for new puppy parents – ask if yours offers this perk.)
- Don’t invite all your friends and family to meet your new animal right away. We know you want to show your puppy to loved ones, but give your dog time to get accustomed to you and their new home.
Tips for introducing your new puppy to other animals
- The best, and safest way to introduce your new puppy to the other pets in your household is to do so in a neutral space. This space could be your backyard or a porch, but it shouldn’t be done in or around your other pet’s beds, food dishes or toys. Your current animals may feel territorial when the new little interloper comes into the house.
- Separate the puppy from the other dogs. Put up a baby gate to keep them separated. Let the new pup and your current pets sniff and see one another through the safety of the gate. And, never let the new puppy jump all over your older dog – your veteran pet might be tolerant, but don’t force them to accept the behavior of the newbie. Teach the puppy how to interact with the older animals in appropriate ways. If you’re introducing your puppy to cats, make sure the felines have an escape route.
- Feed everyone separately. You may want to put the bowls close to the gate so everyone can see one another while they eat. Don’t let your puppy have free rein and try to take the older dog’s food. That’s just asking for trouble.
Start puppy training as soon as you bring them home
- House training should be done immediately. Take your puppy to the designated area in your yard and let them relieve themselves. Reward them with a treat and praise them for a job well done. Take pup out when they wake up, before meals, after meals and every hour. Accidents will happen so be prepared.
- If you’re crate training, you may want to feed your puppy in their kennel to get them accustomed to it. This will show them the crate is a happy place. Even if you don’t plan to have your puppy in the crate a lot, it makes sense for the first week weeks to introduce the pet to the crate, so they have a safe place to stay out of trouble when you can’t watch them.
- Teach your puppy basic obedience commands like: come, sit, stay, drop it and heel. Teaching their name should be one of the first things you do and reward them with a treat, praising each time they respond.
Finally, every puppy needs optimal nutrition. Our Boss Dog® products, from our Greek Style Frozen Yogurt, to our Boss Pro Puffs, to our Raw Goat’s Milk, all helps ensure your little canine grows into a healthy adult dog.
Remember to give your puppy toys lots of, love and most importantly patience, as they get accustomed to their new lifestyle. Never fear, with time and patience, your dog’s transition will work out just fine. If you’re welcoming a new puppy home – or have recently welcomed a new pet – please share a photo with us on our Facebook page!