Puppies are some of the cutest creatures on earth. They are totally adorable and beloved by animal lovers, as they are playful, affectionate tiny beings you can carry around everywhere. And when you get to be with them, they are hard to resist. This is the reason why many people end up getting a puppy before they are actually ready or before they know how to prepare for one.
There are many factors to consider and decisions to make before adopting new pip to bring home. Don’t just give in to impulse because they’re cute – they are living things that need a lot of care and attention. Here are some helpful tips to help you when deciding to adopt a puppy:
1.Make sure you’re ready to be a parent for a furry baby.
Puppies might be irresistible, but they are also time-consuming. If you’ve never had a puppy or a dog at home, then you may not realize what you’re about to get into. Getting an adult dog may mean responsibility, but raising a puppy needs an even higher level of commitment. Here are some things you need to do to take care of and raise a puppy properly:
- Feed them three to four times a day.
- Take them outside immediately after eating or drinking to house train them, teaching them the right place to eliminate.
- Clean up their mess in your house – they will surely have accidents while they are still being house-trained.
- Give them regular sponge baths. Once the puppy reaches 12 weeks of age, you can bathe them with soap and water.
- Don’t leave them alone for more than a few hours. When left alone, a puppy must stay in the crate. But after a few hours, a puppy must be brought outside because it can’t hold its bladder for that long.
- Train them on how to socialize and give them a lot of exercise. Little puppies can be unruly, hyperactive, destructive, and they may chew, lick, or eat things in your environment. Teaching them these things may take a lot of time.
- Keep them entertained so that they will tire out in the night. A puppy might wake you up many times during the night because they want to go outside or just because they’re bored.
- Keep them vaccinated. Consult a veterinarian to get the right kind of shots for your new puppy.
- Provide them with their basic needs – food and food containers, crate, beddings, toys, etc.
The question is, are you ready for all these? Are you prepared to come home to care for your puppy? Can you handle being wakened up in the middle of the night? Will you be able to juggle work, family, kids, and the home? Will the puppy be too disruptive for your schedule and your home? Raising a puppy is a bit like raising a human baby – you have to spend more time with it, especially for the first few months. If it sounds like too much, you can consider adopting an adult dog.
2.Know what type of puppy is right for you and your household.
If you think you’re ready to adopt a puppy, there’s another thing to consider: the kind of puppy that is right for you. For you and the puppy’s benefit, don’t just get a random dog without knowing its breed, features, and temperament. Make a list of traits and features that you want for a dog and those that you definitely do not want.
How small or big do you want your dog to be? Small dogs are best in smaller spaces, which is appropriate if you live in an apartment or a small home. And if you want to save more money, remember that food, supplies, and medications are pricier for large and giant dogs.
Consider the coat type. Dogs with long fur might be cute, but are you willing to deal with their fur shedding? Or do you prefer dogs that shed very little hair? You will also have to consider pet grooming and if you can afford regular trips to the salon.
Decide if you want an active or a passive dog. Usually, it’s predictable by the breed. Knowing how much exercise you can provide for the dog can help you decide if you want to have a puppy that will calm down in a year or one that will stay energetic and playful even in adulthood.
3.Look for puppies on a local animal shelter or pet rescue society.
Ideally, you may adopt a new puppy from a dog-loving friend or family whose dog just gave birth. Knowing the background of the mother dog will be easy since it’s taken care of by a friend or a family member. But if there’s none, your local animal shelters and pet rescue groups are the best places to look for puppies. Mixed breed dogs are absolutely wonderful, and they are abundant there.
But if you want a purebred dog, then you need to look for an experienced dog breeder. Avoid backyard breeders – those who breed dogs without taking the time to know if the dogs make good genetic matches. You must also avoid pet stores, as their dogs often come from puppy mills.
4.Prepare your home for a new puppy.
Before you take home a new puppy, it’s important to prepare your home. It’s common for puppies to have destructive behavior to avoid frustration and damage to your valuable things and make sure that your home is puppy-proofed. These are some things to do:
- Hide all electrical cords.
- Lock your cabinets, especially those that contain toxic chemicals, food, or medications. Better yet, store these things on higher-level storage where a puppy can’t reach.
- Keep your houseplants high to prevent puppies from munching on their leaves.
- Get a trash can with a lockable lid.
- Keep your books, shoes, laundry, and other small items out of reach from them. Puppies love to chew on these things.
5.Gather your puppy’s supplies.
Get everything you will need to make your puppy safe and comfortable. Ready your space for the new stuff and you can even add a custom dog portrait to make him or her feel even more special. Ensure that your pet gets its own area to rest and feel safe while adjusting to your home. You can use a crate where the puppy can grow, but if you prefer not to use one, you can use a pet gate to block off a room just for the puppy. Besides a crate, here are some of the things your puppy will need:
- A four- to six-foot leash
- Adjustable collar with ID tags
- Puppy food
- Dog bed with some room to grow
- Ceramic or metal pet bowls for food and water
- Dog toys (ex.: a plush toy, a chew toy, and a squeaky toy)
- A grooming mitt, brush, and comb for your puppy’s coat
6.Schedule a visit to the veterinarian.
Within a few days of coming home with you, your new puppy must visit your veterinarian. It’s essential to have them physically examined, even if no vaccines are due. It’s a chance to make sure that there are no health problems that went undetected by the shelter, breeder, or rescue group.
Choose a veterinary office with a good reputation in a location that’s convenient for you. Ideally, it’s good to find a vet that your trusted friend has recommended, but if you don’t have a one, it’s good to ask around and research.
7.Start training right away.
The moment your puppy comes home, begin house training right away. This may take some weeks to months, so be patient. Obedience training starts at home, but start small. Be patient and consistent with it, but avoid being too strict – let your puppy live its young life. If you plan to crate train your dog, do it right away and practice leaving him in it with a toy. Take your puppy to the feeding area and offer a reward with some water and some food bits while the puppy is on a leash.
If you have a special place made specifically for your pup, let her off-leash to let the puppy know “this is your space.” Don’t be surprised if she decides to settle down and ignore you for a while – this means she is being accustomed to her new place.
If you have the budget and the time for it, sign up your puppy for training classes with a good trainer. Not only will this help your puppy learn, but it can also provide her chances to socialize.
8.Orient your family or roommates.
If there is more than one person in the home to interact with the puppy, set up the plan. Determine who is responsible for feeding and walking the puppy. Set up the time of the day when these things are needed to be done. Work together to make sure that the puppy training is consistent.
If there are kids in the house, make sure you teach them how to behave around dogs. If there are other pets, properly introduce them to the new puppy and keep them supervised at all times. Also, keep their vaccines updated for their safety.