In the part 1 and 2 of our series on bringing home a new puppy, we talked about getting ready for your new puppy’s arrival and general advice to follow when bringing a new addition to the family. Today in the final part of the series, we will discuss how to address specific issues such as chewing, toilet training and interaction with others.
Most toilet training accidents occur because we have given our puppy too much freedom too early in their life. At any given time, if you can’t keep an eye on your puppy inside, it is better to put him somewhere safe and controlled such as in his crate, playpen, or in the yard if safe to do so.
The rest of toilet training is repetition: taking the puppy outside at all the key times (upon waking, after eating or drinking, and after playing), taking the puppy outside every time you see him suddenly stop what he was doing and start to wander around or sniff, and taking the puppy outside as often as you can think about it. The more often you get your puppy to the right spot at the right time, the more puppy will toilet in the right spot, the more you are able to reward your puppy for toileting in the right spot, and the quicker puppy will learn.
Chewing & Teething
Chewing and teething is normal for a puppy: you cannot stop it, and it would be unfair to expect your puppy not to do something that it is naturally driven to do. If you can’t afford to lose something, put it away or keep puppy away from it.
Give puppy lots of fun and tasty chew toys to direct this natural behavior to the right things. If you can provide your puppy with a range of toys of varying textures such as latex toys, rope toys, fluffy toys, rubber toys, he will be less inclined to exercise his jaws on your barbeque furniture.
Puppies need lots of attention and stimulation, including both physical and mental exercise. Loneliness and boredom are two of the key ingredients for a stressed and potentially destructive puppy. A daily walk once appropriately vaccinated and recommended by your Vet will use up excess energy and mellow your puppy out. Some obedience training will help you to strengthen your bond and communication with your puppy. Teaching your puppy some tricks is a fun and educational way to interact with puppy and will get their mind working. Check out our dog training tips section for some helpful videos. Dogs are social animals, and they thrive when they are brought into and are part of the family.
The first week can set the foundations for a long and happy life together. If you think you may need more specific advice, consider contacting your local vet for a referral to a reputable behavioral therapist that will be able to come out to your home and assess the puppy with a puppy set-up home consultation.
Remember that now is the time to book your beautiful puppy into a puppy school before bad habits creep in, the ideal time is between 8 and 18 weeks of age when they are in the all important imprinting stage. Ensure you choose a puppy school that is held in the safe confines of a vet clinic, as your puppy will not be fully vaccinated yet. For more information on puppy school, read our post about the importance of puppy school and 10 things to know about puppy school.
We hope this series of posts has been helpful to you if you are getting a new puppy. Any comments or suggestions are welcome, please contact us today.