Advice for New Dog Owners: Essential Tips for Easing the Transition

new petFor Christmas this year, my sister surprised her children with a new puppy. Her son, who is getting older, still believes in the magic of Christmas and did not have a lot on his wish list. However, he did ask Santa for a puppy, which surprised my sister and her husband, since he had never mentioned wanting a pet. However, they decided to make his wish come true, and they brought home a golden retriever puppy. The little girl is just seven weeks old, and she is so cute. However, she’s also prone to 2:00 a.m. wake up calls and likes to go potty in the house. Luckily, my sister did her research before bringing the puppy home, but all new dog owners should take the following advice into consideration to ease the transition.

Be prepared

Before you bring home your pet, make sure you pick up the necessary supplies so he/she can be comfortable when they arrive at your home. You will need a collar with an ID tag, as well as a leash. Also, be sure to pick up the crate. Place a few toys inside; this will be a safe place for your pet, but make sure never to put them in the crate for longer than five hours at a time. To that end, also, consider getting a puppy pen. This comes in handy when you need to make sure your pet is secure, but you do not want to put him or her in the crate.

Other important items are food and water bowls, brush, and food.

Set up a schedule

From the first day you bring your new pet home, you should have a program in place. Take your dog out at certain times and to the same spot in the yard to go to the bathroom. Feed him or her at certain times of the day; if you can, try to match your meal times as closely as you can to when your pet was eating with the breeder or adoption agency. Also, do not forget to schedule a time to play and to rest! Your dog will get overwhelmed in the new environment fairly quickly, so it is important to stay calm and allow him some time to himself if necessary.

Give it time

Try not to get frustrated if your new dog is not displaying the personality or type of behaviors that you expect. Often, it takes a while for the dog to settle in; therefore, it may be weeks before you see their personality come out and shine. Stick to the schedule that you have set up and wait for your pet to come around and start to feel comfortable with you. However, remember that it is important for your pet to have a schedule throughout their life; this is the best way to ensure both the pet’s happiness and your own.

Find a good veterinarian

As soon as you take your dog home, you should set up an appointment with a doctor. Not only will they ensure that your pet is healthy and has the necessary shots, but they will also give you invaluable advice. It is best to select a vet that is close to your home, if possible. Also, locate a pet hospital that is open 24 hours a day, in the case of an emergency. You do not want to scramble to find something if your new dog needs assistance in the middle of the night.

Enjoy being a new dog owner!