How to Care for a New Puppy
Congratulations on your new puppy! While puppies are a fun addition to families, they are also a big responsibility. Providing the best care for your new furry family member should be a top priority.
Here are some of our expert tips on how to care for the new puppy in your life:
Before you’re ready to adopt a new puppy, we suggest that you research breeds. This is important because you want your new pet to fit in with your family’s lifestyle. Some things to consider in puppy breeds are their energy level and if the breed fits the size of your home. This will help you decide which furry friend you should bring home.
Home Prep for a New Puppy
Before you welcome your new puppy into your home, you need to prepare. Just like children, puppies have a never-ending sense of wonder and curiosity. Be sure to stow away small items that your puppy may be tempted to eat or chew on. We even recommend getting down on your hands and knees to check for any tempting items that they might find under the furniture. When you introduce a new puppy into your home, you should work room by room and block off any rooms that you don’t want your puppy to venture into. As they get more comfortable (and as they become potty trained), you can begin to introduce them to more rooms in the house.
Before you bring your puppy home you will need to stock up on supplies. You will need a leash, collar, name tag, and food and water bowls to start. If you plan on crate training your puppy, be sure to have that set up before you bring them home too. Don’t forget to stock up on toys for them to chew on and play with and treats so you can start obedience training!
Quality Food is Key
Food is important to set your new puppy up for a healthy life! Before you decide on and purchase puppy food, do research and get recommendations from other dog owners and your vet. At Aspen Grove Veterinary Care, we provide our clients with guidelines to ensure their puppies get all the right nutrients. You can read those here.
Establish a Bathroom Routine
While potty training a new puppy can be challenging (accidents will happen), it can also be very rewarding for you and your furry family member. In order to keep accidents from becoming a pattern behavior, start your pup on a bathroom routine. Take potty breaks frequently throughout the day to start to build their understanding of where it is appropriate to do their business.
Here are our suggestions for moments when you should take a potty break:
- As soon as they wake up in the morning or after naps
- Immediately after the puppy eats or drinks anything and again 20-30 minutes after that
- During and after physical activity
- Right before bedtime
- Before and after you leave your home for any period of time
Eventually, your puppy will recognize this routine and learn that they must do their business outside. As they get older, they will let you know when it is time for them to go out.
Teaching your puppy obedience early on will not only impress your friends and family, but it will also ensure their safety in certain situations. Start off with basic commands like come, sit, stay, and down. Remember to make obedience training a good experience for your pet and use positive reinforcement by rewarding your puppy when they do the command you are working toward. There are many reputable puppy trainers in Northern Colorado, we recommend doing your research in order to find the best fit for your family.
In addition to all the supplies and training, you should also take some time to research pet insurance. Pet insurance is similar to human health insurance in that you pay a monthly premium, and should your pet ever become injured or ill, your pet insurance providers will cover some of the veterinary cost. There are a lot of good pet insurance providers out there. At Aspen Grove, we recommend that you consider an illness/injury policy. Be sure to read through any exclusions to ensure that genetic conditions for your breed of puppy are covered.
Find a Veterinarian
Last, but certainly not least, you will need to schedule an appointment with a veterinarian. Vet visits are important for your puppy to stay up-to-date on vaccines and to ensure that they are growing properly with optimal health. Your vet can walk you through any questions that you might have about caring for your puppy. Additionally, if your puppy has not been spayed or neutered yet, you can also use this time to schedule that procedure.
Aspen Grove Veterinary Care is your resource for all of your pet care needs. To read more about puppy care, visit our puppy care page.
If you are welcoming a new puppy to your family, call us or fill out our online form to schedule an appointment!