The weeks of anticipation and excitement will soon come to an end: You can pick up your puppy and he will move into his new home. In order for the coexistence to work well from the start and for the little four-legged friend to settle in quickly, some preparations are necessary.
If your dog comes from a breeder, you should ask whether your puppy will receive various items of equipment. Many breeders give, for example, a collar, leash, blanket or basket. Usually, you will also receive a small amount of the previous food so that your puppy does not have to cope with a change in food immediately.
Basket / Box / Blanket / Pillow
There is a large selection of sleeping and resting places and the decision is often difficult. Ask about the previous sleeping place of the dog child, maybe he will also prefer this in the new home. Otherwise, you may have to try out a few things before you find the right one for your four-legged friend.
If your dog is to sleep or rest permanently in a box, it must first be slowly accustomed to it. Under no circumstances should you just put it in the box and close the door. First he should be lured in with treats and thus stay longer and longer in the box.
Think in advance where the dog’s resting place should be. Many people do not want the dog in the bedroom, but the baby dogs often feel very abandoned when they are supposed to sleep separately from their new pack for the first few nights. A good alternative is to put a cardboard box, a high-walled basket or a box that can be opened from above next to your own bed. The dog can sense your proximity and you will quickly notice when it has to go out during the night.
Maybe your puppy already has a favorite toy in his previous home, then you can get one for home too. Chew toys such as chew ropes are very popular with puppies. But balls or cuddly toys are also welcome. It is very important that nothing can come off the toy that the dog could swallow.
Collar, Leash and Harness
Maybe you will get the first collar, leash or harness from the breeder or animal welfare association. If not, you should get advice on the right size from a specialist retailer. Make sure that the initial equipment is not too heavy. A suitable material is, for example, nylon. Do not invest too much money in this initial equipment, because on the one hand the dog will probably outgrow it and on the other hand some puppies like to chew through a leash.
In any case, continue to use the food that the little four-legged friend has received for the first few days. If you want to change, this should be done slowly and carefully by replacing more and more of the old lining with the new one.
Treats should be small and compact. They don’t have to be made specifically for puppies, however. Make sure it doesn’t contain sugar or other harmful ingredients.
Puppies can also be given balls or kongs that can be filled with food to keep them busy. The natural need to chew can be satisfied with natural products such as dried cowhide or chewing roots.
The first days in the new home
A decisive turning point in life has just occurred for the dog child. From one moment to the next, it lost its home, its mother and siblings. While young dogs are usually very flexible and adaptable, it takes some time for a puppy to get used to its new pack and its surroundings.
Therefore, do not plan any major activities in the first week. Friends and relatives should also be able to restrain their curiosity for a few days. The first time should mainly be spent at home, interrupted by frequent but short walks outside so that the dog can loosen up. There should also be a calm, relaxed atmosphere in the house or apartment. Under no circumstances should the dog be kept busy all the time. Like a human baby, a puppy should sleep a lot and the rest of the time it is busy exploring its new surroundings.
Only in the second week can you slowly begin to take short walks. The puppy should walk for 5 minutes at a time per month of life. A 12 week old puppy can therefore take a fifteen minute walk. This rule is especially important for puppies of large and heavy breeds in order to protect the joints. No stairs should be climbed in the first few weeks; your baby dog should then always be carried.
House training: raising the puppy
House training is the most important educational goal in these first few days. As a rule of thumb one can say that a puppy should always be brought out after eating and sleeping. However, after two hours at the latest. At night you can possibly extend the period to three to four hours, but this depends on the puppy.
Even if you regularly go out with the little one, there will be a little puddle or two. Then just do it away without comment, scolding does not bring anything at first, because the dog child cannot yet link it to this action.
There are little dog prodigies who are house trained after just a week. The majority, however, need four to eight weeks, but there is still four months left to learn house training.
Stay The Puppy Alone
Dogs are pack animals. A puppy that is separated from the pack in the wild is likely to be in mortal danger. This primal fear is still anchored in our dogs today. You should therefore take into account that a puppy can only stay alone for two to three hours when it is around six months. Even so, you can start exercising from day one. When moving through the apartment, you should also close a door behind you every now and then. Be it showering or using the toilet. Then you just come back to the room without a fuss. After a week or two, you can go to the front door for a minute or two. Some puppies respond by howling and whining. Always give the little dog a short respite to get in, during which time it is quiet.
Getting used to the collar and leash
Ideally, your new roommate already knows the collar and leash. If not, he has to get used to it slowly and sensitively. First show him the collar, let him sniff it, and at the same time he will receive a treat. Then the collar is first placed over the neck and a treat is given again. And so you slowly get used to it until the puppy has the collar put on and does not want to get rid of it. You can then put the leash on at home and let the dog run around freely with it. Here, too, treats can make getting used to it easier. Targeted training to walk well on a leash takes place later.