Your puppy will be joining you before you know it…how exciting!!! However, the first couple of days in their new home can be stressful for your new puppy. Remember this is the first time they have been away from their mother, littermates and their first human family. This is also a new time for you so we have come up with a list of do’s and don’ts to hopefully make this transition as smooth as possible.
1. Puppy Proof Your Home:
This is VERY important. There are many things that your new puppy can get into that are harmful for them. You will want to puppy proof your home just as you would for a baby. For example, there does not need to be any cords that your puppy can get to…they will chew on them! There are chew repellent sprays that you can use to spray furniture legs to keep your teething puppy from chewing them. The best option is to have a safe environment that your puppy can play in without you having to be right there….there are many different size playpen options that will work.
2. Bringing your puppy to meet their new family:
Remember this is all new to your puppy…make this a calm time. Let them explore and get use to everything. All puppies are different…some may run around exploring and some may just freeze because they are overwhelmed. Either way it is perfectly normal and doesn’t define “what your puppy will always be like”.
If you have another pet put them away at first when your new puppy arrives. Once your puppy is comfortable in the new area you can introduce other pets. Also, if you have small children try to let your puppy get comfortable with their surroundings before bringing them around the puppy….kids excitement can scare your puppy at first. The calmer this initial introduction is the easier it will be for your pup. Also, remember your puppy will need sleep after a long day with a lot of change so allow them to do so.
3. Setting a routine for your new puppy:
Puppies are like children…they need a routine. Set one that fits your lifestyle...but remember at 8 weeks they are still babies and need to go potty frequently. They will need scheduled eating, play, potty and rest times. You will be able to lengthen the time between potty breaks as they get older. When you take your puppy out to the bathroom make sure you take them to a spot you always want them to use. While it may be easier to let them use the bathroom right by the back door in the middle of the night just remember you do not want your full grown dog always going potty right by the back door!
4. The first night:
Oh the joys of the first night! Your puppy WILL cry. You WILL believe this may never end. I promise you it will and they will survive. Remember this is their first night away from the world as they know it. We will send home a blanket with their littermates and mom’s scent…use it! This will bring some comfort to them. We have also found it helps to have a stuffed animal in there for them to cuddle up to (this is how they sleep with their littermates). Even though your puppy is crying do not let them out of the crate or pay them any attention. You do not want your puppy to associate that the more noise they make the more likely they are to get out of the cage! Stick to your routine and only let them out when it’s time for them to go potty. I promise as the days go by if you stick to your routine the puppy crying will end.
I cannot stress enough how important it is to start training your puppy as soon as you get them. There is a book called “The Perfect Puppy” by Gwen Bailey (It can be found on Amazon). It gives a lot of great advice on raising a well-behaved dog!
Do not let your puppy get away with a behavior if it is something you would not want a full grown dog to do. For example it may be cute that your puppy jumps up on your leg for you to pet them but they will quickly be 70 + pounds and it will not be nearly as cute! Same goes for allowing them to play bite…this is a big no no and should be corrected immediately.
Please let us know if you have any questions! We are always happy to help :)
Most importantly- enjoy your time with you little baby...they grow super-fast!