Bringing a puppy home is such an exciting time! The more prepared you are, the smoother the transition will be. And the smoother the transition goes, the easier it will be for your puppy to adapt to his or her new home, and the more fun you’ll all have. Getting into good habits right away will set you up for long-term ease and joy with your fluffy new addition.
The car ride: A car ride has the potential to be a scary experience for your new pup, but it doesn’t have to be. The sounds, vibrations, and stimulation are often the parts of the ride that can make a puppy uncomfortable, so the more soothing you can be the better. First, make sure your puppy goes potty before getting in the car. Then, have a blanket or a soft article of your clothing to put on your lap. For this first ride home, it’s ok to hold your new addition on your lap. Gently pet your pup and speak softly and reassuringly to her so she feels calm and safe. One toy is fine to bring along to give her something to chew on. When you get home, have her go potty outside before going in.
Introduce your new puppy to your home slowly. It may be helpful to keep your puppy on a leash at first so that they don’t get overwhelmed. It’s good in the first few days to keep close to your puppy most of the time, except when they are eating or going potty. If you’re going to have your puppy go in a crate at night, start the first night. Have some treats inside and even something that smells like his mother or siblings if possible. He might cry, but if you can get through the first few nights without giving in, he should adjust quickly and even learn to like the comforts of his own safe crate space. It can be helpful to play some music to help calm the puppy and can help them feel less alone.
Get in the habit right away of feeding your dog twice a day, at regular times. It’s generally best to start with the food the breeder was using. You can mix in new food slowly if you want to change brands. It’s also important to resist feeding your puppy from the table. If they get in the habit of begging and being rewarded early, it will be much harder to break it later on!
Within the first 48 hours, you’ll want to get to a veterinarian. While it’s likely the breeders or shelter have set you up for success, it’s very important to make sure your puppy has all necessary vaccinations and is in good health, along with being de-flead and de-wormed. It’s also a good idea to get pet insurance set up soon. Hopefully, everything will be fine, but getting it right away will save you a headache in the future. Your veterinarian will also be able to give you advice for safety, health, and precautionary measures for your new addition.
Other Important Things to Remember
The more consistent you can be with your new addition, the better. Regular bathroom breaks, meals, and play time will help it adjust, feel safe, and learn discipline.
It is important to establish your set rules right away, and not to allow the puppy to receive mixed signals with rules. Once your puppy has had their complete vaccinations, having them outside socializing with other dogs can be very beneficial for their social development. Praising your new puppy will establish bonding and to let them feel your love.
At AMC, we want you and your new puppy to have an easy transition in your home, and to be set up for a great life together. As a new puppy owner, you may have questions on nutritional guidance, vaccinations, and other puppy discussions. Contact us today to schedule your appointment with AMC.