Bringing home a new puppy is an exciting experience. You’re welcoming a new family member into your home. Of course, they have lots to learn and many ways to grow, which is why you’ll need to book an adjustment period into your regular schedule. Here’s how to make your new pup comfy and cozy in your home.
Just like humans, dogs need their own space too. Many people opt to crate their dogs—or dedicate a crate to them and put them there while they leave home. This is actually a great idea for puppies since it will keep them out of trouble and stop them from feeling overwhelmed in a new space. However, a crate doesn’t need to be a bad experience. First, choose a crate that will comfortably fit your dog when they are fully grown. Many crates have puppy inserts to make the crate smaller when they are young. Next, put a blanket over the crate. This creates a safe space for your pup, who will want some quiet. Use a few personalized beach towels or even a bath mat as the soft, cozy ground cover.
Encourage your new dog to love the crate by leaving treats in there when they are not around, praising them for being in the crate on their own, and leaving the door open. Food is typically a great motivator for puppies, so always feed your new dog in the crate (door open) and leave a filled water bowl. That way, when you go to leave and decide to crate your pup with the door closed, it has plenty of happy memories associated with the crate. This “house” of theirs is now a happy place where they feel safe and loved, eliminating anxiety when you leave.
Any new doggo needs lots of love and care at first. It isn’t uncommon to spend the first two weeks at home so your dog can get used to you, your smell, and your routine. Start by leaving your pup for just 30-minute increments. Gradually increase this time over the course of the month to suit your normal routine. This helps the puppy transition to be alone without feeling like they have been abandoned. This trick works well in conjunction with a treat when you leave and one when you get back. They will begin to associate you leaving with something fun, making it easier on them.
Your doggo needs plenty of toys to stay occupied, and puppies especially need to be entertained. Get a variety of different toys and see which one your dog responds to best. Some dogs love synthetic chew toys, while others love stuffed toys. See what your dog is into, you can always donate the other toys. This gives puppies something to play with instead of your favorite leather shoes—Book in plenty of playtime and exercise throughout your day.
Just like a new baby, all dogs need to be on a consistent schedule to feel calm and at ease. When it’s time to sleep, bring their personalized dog bed to their favorite part of the house and encourage them to go to sleep. Give walks and meals within a consistent time frame—say within 30 minutes, so your dog can adjust to a reliable schedule. This keeps dogs from building up anxiety or being unhealthy. When they have a set meal time and set exercise time, they can enjoy a better, more balanced life.
All puppies need socialization with other dogs. This teaches them how to get along with their kind. From 12 to 16 weeks is an important age for dog socialization. Consider enrolling in a training class, visiting dog parks, or hanging out with your friend’s dogs. Puppies that socialize tend to be more satisfied and lead happier lives. Don’t forget to travel with a few fleece blankets so that your pup has a place to chill and rest while out with friends.
Training your pup is super important too! You want a dog that’s well behaved, and training also provides mental health benefits to your pet. They are engaged in learning, which helps to improve cognitive abilities and prevent boredom. Consider a class, hiring a personal dog trainer, or trying training yourself. Be sure to provide plenty of treats and reward good behavior. Soon enough, your pup will love being out and about with you.
When it comes to making a new dog comfortable, you want to make sure you provide your pup with the best. From a cozy place to sleep to a fun-filled social life, make sure your dog has a well-rounded schedule that suits their needs. These tips for keeping your new puppy comfortable will help provide a balanced lifestyle for your new pet.