Bringing your new puppy home

Here's a step-by-step guide on how to bring a new puppy into your household, and make him feel welcome and comfortable.
Bringing a new puppy into the house is an exciting time for you and your family, but your puppy may be a little confused by all the changes in his life.

Here's a step-by-step guide to make sure that the transition is as smooth for you as it is for the new fur baby.

You need to provide him with a suitable bed. A crate is suggested as is a doggie bed. This will make it so much easier on you, just be sure to get a large crate so he can grow and you won't need to buy another one later on. Click here for detailed information on create training.

The bed should be somewhere that is relatively quiet so that he can sleep undisturbed whenever he is tired. Many people find that a quiet corner of the kitchen or family room is ideal. You may want to partition off an area around his bed for a few days to create a little "den" where he can feel secure and be out of harm's way.

He should have his own food and water bowls. They should be of a design that allows him to eat and drink comfortably but without submerging his nose. Have a supply of food ready for his arrival. Find out from the breeder what he is used to eating. It is best to maintain the same diet for at least few days or even better the puppies life.

All puppies like to chew. This is normal behavior, and it helps with the teething process. Give your puppy some toys of his own to chew to deter him from selecting other contents of your home. Toys don't need to be elaborate, but make sure they are nontoxic, large enough that they cannot be swallowed, and relatively indestructible. Objects that are swallowed may become stuck in the throat, stomach or intestines and can be a serious threat to your puppy's life.

Although you will not be able to take your new puppy for walks until he has completed his course of vaccinations, you will need a suitable collar and leash for him. The collar should be soft and well-fitting. For the first few days he need only wear it for short periods when you are there to supervise. It must not be too tight, since this is uncomfortable for the puppy, but neither should it be too loose, as it may catch on a protruding object. You may want to consider a collar with a quick-release feature. Check his collar daily and loosen it as his neck increases in size. Don't buy a choke chain for a young puppy. If used incorrectly, it could cause irreparable damage to his neck.

You also need to buy a brush. Ask the breeder to show you how to groom your puppy properly and to recommend some suitable grooming equipment.
Finally, make sure that you have the name and address of your veterinarian. If you don't have a veterinarian, your breeder or friends will be able to recommend a local clinic.
While he is small, keep out of reach everything in your home that might be dangerous to your puppy. He may tug or chew anything he finds, including plants and electrical cords.

Check your yard to see that the fencing is secure and that there are no small holes through which your puppy could disappear. Make sure that your gate shuts securely and that your puppy won't be able to squeeze through or under it. Pools and ponds should be covered.


When your puppy arrives


It is best to acquire your new puppy at a time when you can offer him your company and undivided attention for a few days as he settles in. If you bring him home in the morning, he will have had time to settle in, feed, play and tire himself out before bedtime.
When your puppy first arrives, let him sniff around and make himself familiar with his surroundings; then introduce him to his bed.
Introducing the puppy into the household must be done with care. This is a difficult and confusing time for your puppy. Your home is a profusion of strange sights, sounds and smells that he may find exciting but a little overwhelming. He will be missing his mother, brothers and sisters and will look to you and your family to replace the company, comfort and security that he has left behind.

Choose a name for him as soon as possible. Be consistent and use it repeatedly as you talk to him - he will soon learn to respond. Young children in the family should be taught that puppies are not toys. You will find that your puppy plays vigorously for short spells and then may retire to his bed for an hour or so. Sleep is as important for your puppy as it is for a baby, so don't disturb him when he is resting.

Don't deprive established pets of your attention or they may become jealous of the new arrival. Introductions should be made gradually, on neutral territory and under constant supervision. Never leave a new puppy alone with an older cat or dog. Always feed them separately.

For the first few nights your puppy will probably be restless and whimper when he is left alone. Wrapping a water bottle  in a blanket and placing it in his bed can be very reassuring for a new pup and leaving the radio on for him so he feels he has company.

Above all, be kind, gentle and patient with your puppy during his introduction to your home. Don't scold or speak harshly to him in the first few days, even if he is destructive or makes a mess - in his confused state he may only learn to fear you. This initiation period should be an enjoyable time in which you and your puppy can get to know each other and he learns to trust you, thus forming the basis for a happy life together.