The Gift of a Puppy

Did you get a new puppy for the holidays? After the excitement of this wonderful new adorable little face and soft fur, comes the reality of actually taking care of a puppy. Don’t worry it gets easier, just stay patient, stay consistent and find what works best for you. Below are some additional tips to keep in mind:

• Designate the pack leader. This might be you, might be your spouse or partner, but whoever it is will be the disciplinary party if your puppy gets into trouble. There can only be one leader because the puppy will be confused on whom to listen to otherwise.

• Training is essential for your puppy’s behavior success. Whether it’s housebreaking, commands, or tricks make sure that the leader is consistent with the training.

• Don’t overwhelm the new little guy with visitors. Take baby steps, or shall we say puppy steps when introducing new people. Let them get comfortable with you and the people in the house before they have to learn to deal with others of varying age, personalities and boundaries.

• Get it into a routine. Show them where their food bowl and bed is. Also, make sure that you try to feed them at the same time everyday so they know when its time to be fed. Following a routine everyday results in a better-trained dog.

• Set up an appointment with the veterinarian. It’s important to make sure the puppy has all of its vaccinations and is doing well. The vet may suggest flea treatment or specific food for your puppy’s development.

• If this is the second puppy in the house, be sure to introduce your new pet to resident pets in controlled situations. Let them get to know each other on neutral ground where neither will feel the need to defend territory. Also, there should be two separate feeding dishes and distribute attention evenly so the resident dog does not feel jealous or threatened.

There is so much joy when getting a puppy and its important to make sure they are brought into an environment that they can succeed into a well-behaved dog.

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