Those who have brought their new furry member home are aware of the excitement it contains. However, for them, you are a stranger. They have arrived at a new home, with a bunch of new faces they have to live with for a long time. And sometimes, this can cause anxiety in them. Therefore, you must try to provide them with the most comfortable atmosphere.
The puppy needs to feel that it’s in a safe place and that nobody is going to cause it any harm. As owners, you can leave it on its own for the first few days so that it can settle down. Later, you must start dealing with some of the major things that are important for them.
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Dealing with the puppy after its arrival: Tips to take care of after adopting a puppy
- Holding a puppy for the first time can be really tempting. But, it is better to introduce it to the home in a normal way. Try not make it the centre of attraction for most part of the day.
- Take it out for a walk or a pee-break. Avoid areas that have been previously visited by other dogs till your puppy is vaccinated. Followed by this, you can introduce it to its new playpen and other members of the family. Give a chew bone or play toy to keep him engaged and have his own puppy time.
- Develop a routine that is to be followed from the next day. Take some time off from your daily schedule and turn it into your cuddle session with the pup. During this time, the dog shall remain out of its playpen. Once done, you may place him back in his playpen.
- The puppy will take time to settle into the new environment. Its first night at home can be troublesome but eventually, it should relax and will learn to go to sleep. Some may whine before bedtime (which is normal behaviour) but will slowly outgrow it in the upcoming days.
- Crate training is a must for new puppies. Buying crates for them can be expensive but the outcome makes it worth investing. However, owners should realise that the pup is not going to adjust itself by simply staying in the crate. As owners, you should make the crate comfortable enough so that the puppy loves spending time in it.
- Sometimes, puppies tend to make mistakes. In case you find your pup making a mistake, try to interrupt it. You must not be very harsh with the puppy. Interrupting the puppy’s mistake is much more important than punishing it. If it is scared of you, it might not want to go outside and hide behind closets. In the future, this can also be a problem while socializing the dog.
- It’s easy for pets to get lost. Therefore, owners must put a collar around their pet’s neck and microchip them if they are not. Having a collar with the owner’s name on it helps recover lost pets in one’s locality. In case the pet is lost in an unknown area, the chip implanted in them will provide all the information about the owner, once scanned.
- A first-time owner may not be fully aware of all the requirements of the puppy. Thus, taking the help of a veterinarian is important. If you do not want to breed your puppy, you should spay or neuter them.
A puppy should be taken to a vet, at least twice a year till it reaches nine years of age. It is necessary to properly groom the pup, like brushing its teeth frequently and clipping its nails before they grow too long. To avoid nasty matting and increased circulation in the skin, owners can groom their fur on a regular basis.
House Training of the puppy
House training is necessary for a newly adopted pup. This training teaches the puppy when to go to the bathroom and when to hold it. Martha Young, a professional Dog Trainer believes that
“The best way to teach any dog NOT to do something is to teach him to do something else”.Martha Young, a professional Dog Trainer
Through proper supervision and management, owners can successfully carry out the house training of a puppy. Things like crates, leashes, exercise pens and tethers can be used to simplify the process. However, you must also establish certain ground rules for house training.
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- Make sure your puppy doesn’t leave the house till it is completely house-trained.
- Help it find a suitable place to relieve itself. You may also carry a poop bag with you if you want. While giving the pup toilet pieces of training, you can start on newspapers.
- Buy a big crate (especially the ones with movable walls) so that there is adequate room for the puppy to play around, lie down, the soil at one corner and sleep on the other.
- Owners must clean their pup’s crate regularly after their soil. Later, you can resize the crate. The smaller the crate, the more the pup will be able to control its elimination.
- Take your pup outdoors or bathroom immediately if you find it sniffing and circling the house. This can be an indication that it wants to relive itself.
- Puppies don’t have fully developed intestinal tracts like us. As a result, they eliminate quite often. It is suggested you take it (up to 8 months old puppy) out on a walk, almost every hour, for a toilet break! You can also reward him with a treat after he goes outside. In a few weeks, you can switch to just praising.
- Puppies are very social animals. Therefore, they need to be placed in locations where all the family members gather most. Avoid keeping them in dark isolated areas. Rather, try to make them feel that they are a part of your family.
While puppies are home alone
After bringing your pup home, an owner should take some time off work so as to help his new member adjust to the surroundings. Try playing games and spending more time with the pup so that it no longer considers you as a stranger. “If the animals begin to show signs of feeling uncomfortable you should end your session and try again later”, says Kelly Dicicco, manager for adoption promotions at the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) Adoption Center. When you have achieved its trust, you can let it stay alone.
- Do this in the beginning only if you are at home.
- Keep the pup within the crate, along with a few other things like chew toys, bone or treat balls to keep it engaged.
- Do not keep it alone and unsupervised for long hours on the first day. Instead, you can increase the time gradually.
- When the dog has learnt to stay alone, you can start giving it visits in between. If possible, meet your pup during lunchtime and leave it with another activity for the afternoon.
Nutritional needs of my puppy
What are the nutritional needs of my puppy? The occurrence of such a question is quite expected from a new dog owner. Nutrients like amino acids, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and water are a must for a proper nutritional diet of a dog. For puppies, the average energy need is 990lbs.
- The calories required by a growing puppy should be twice the weight of its body, per pound.
- They should be fed at least thrice a day.
- Certain human foods like onions, grapes, chocolate, etc. must not be fed to the pup. These items are very toxic for any dog or puppy breed.
- The easiest way to feed them, according to Sue Delia, Former Dog Trainer and Code of Ethics Breeder at Delmar Kennels is “put the dry food into a food processor, and grind it into almost a powder. Then add warm water and create a “mush” type of food, and they will love it”.
Common Puppy Problem
Problems regarding the behaviour of puppies are quite normal. Whatever they do is either because they want your attention or they’re trying to play and have fun with you. If trained with patience and consistency, most of these problems can be resolved.
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- Mouthing: Puppies usually mouth objects during their playtime. This also helps to strengthen their jaws and reduce their bite intensity. But, sometimes it can turn into a bad habit. Owners must train them to soften their bite by yelping loudly at medium-hard bites. Later, their attack should be redirected from the owner’s belongings to the dog’s toys.
- Chewing: Dogs, especially puppies, like to chew things because it makes them feel nice. Sometimes they also do it because they are hungry or are trying to seek the attention of their owners. But, when this turns into a nasty habit, try to prevent it. Teach your pup what he can chew and make him aware of the ones he is not allowed to. You must never leave your pup unsupervised till it leaves its crate period.
- Barking: Feeling excited, anxious or going through boredom often makes the puppy bark. But sometimes, they bark at strangers or other dogs. This can be due to a lack of socialization. Seek the help of a socialization programme to remove this problem.
- Jumping: On meeting their favourite person, every dog breed follows the same behaviour; jumping right onto him or her. Sometimes they can even do this for attention. But initially, they develop behavioural issues regarding it.
- They might jump onto the kitchen counter to get the leftover dinner. This is known as ‘counter surfing’ which is not good for the puppy. The only way to resolve this problem is to prevent the dog from doing it. You can install doors for the kitchen so that the puppy stays out of it.
Eager owners can learn about their puppy’s temperament by following 5 simple steps.
Step 1: To understand your puppy’s confidence and social attraction, look for human involvement. Try calling it towards you by clapping hands and kneeling. Those with good temperaments will come readily, wagging their tail.
Step 2: Walk in front of your pup and see if it is following you or not.
Step 3: Check how your pup handles restrain by rolling him gently on his back and keeping it that way for 30 seconds, with a firm touch. A well-tempered pup should subside after some time by making eye contact.
Step 4: Crouch next to your pup and stroke him from head to back. Those with medium to good temperaments should start licking your face.
Step 5: Hold your puppy to a higher position by interlacing your fingers on his belly. See if the puppy is struggling to get free. If not, congratulations! you own a pup with a wonderful temperament.
Q. Is harsh training necessary for larger breeds?
Try to be firm and consistent, yet gentle while dealing with a large breed. Using dog-friendly methods creates a beautiful human-canine relationship.
Q. Which is the most crucial period while socializing a puppy?
The time when a puppy is 8-10 weeks old is very important. In this period, it gets scared of minor things. Thus, the interaction received by the puppy during this time should be gentle and friendly.
Q. How can I groom my puppy?
You may start grooming your puppy at a very young age so that it gets accustomed to the feeling. Use a soft brush to comb its fur. If the puppy is too rambunctious, keep it away and try later while it is resting.