Positivity has been linked to healthier and happier lives. So, if you’re looking to bring some positive energy into your life, you can’t do much better than a puppy! They make everything better! Perhaps you’ve got a puppy adorably bumbling around your home right now. Or maybe you’re looking at that puppy-shaped hole in your life and thinking “It is time.” Either way, you need to read up on our puppy care facts so you’re ready when you find a tiny pair of eyes staring up at you.
Your puppy is scheming; scheming to get into some trouble that hasn’t even crossed your mind! It’s important to be a step ahead of puppy mischief to keep your puppy safe. Make sure your home is secure and that your puppy won’t escape. Make sure all doors and puppy gates close securely and more importantly that everyone in the home knows it’s their responsibility to make sure that they’re closed! Double check that there is nothing unattended puppies can get at that would be unhealthy or dangerous for them to chew on. This includes electrical cables, sharp objects, and a variety of plants that are poisonous to dogs.
Cleaning supplies that are often stored under sinks should be moved out of reach or those cabinets should be locked with childproof locks. The kitchen trash can be a wonderland of scents to a dog’s nose. Be certain to have a sturdy trash can that either has a lid that locks or is placed out of reach (such as behind a cabinet door). Be aware of which foods are poisonous to pups and always make sure all medications are kept secure and out of reach.
Your puppy is going to require regular feedings of healthy food to grow and develop. It takes puppies about a year to reach their full size (a bit longer for larger breeds of dogs). Once weaned, puppies should get three meals a day until about six months and after that twice a day. Make sure your puppy has a space to eat that is both out of the way of the daily traffic of your home and also one that is easy to clean!
Having chew toys available helps puppies with the teething process. There are many chew toys available for puppies. Chew toys also provide a safe alternative to other, possibly dangerous, items that a puppy without chew toys might decide to chew on. Reminder: although many of us are familiar with the cartoon image of a dog chewing on a bone, this is a big no-no for dogs and especially puppies!
Playing with your puppy is one of the many joys of dog ownership. Exercise helps puppies with their physical development and play engages their minds. Dogs who exercise are less likely to get into trouble or divert their energies into inappropriate chewing and destruction around the home. Don’t overdo it though. Puppies are still growing and are susceptible to injuries that grown dogs are not, so over-exertion is best avoided. Don’t worry too much though, your puppy will likely make it very clear when they need a break.
In addition to teaching your dog useful and amusing tricks, dog training serves the vital purpose of stimulating your dog’s mind. Whether it is housebreaking your puppy or more elaborate tricks, training will keep your puppy engaged and is a great way to spend time together. Be certain other members of your household are aware of your training efforts so that they don’t confuse your puppy with conflicting commands and undo you and your puppy’s hard work!
Dogs, like people, are social creatures and your puppy’s early encounters shape the dog they will become. Puppies who are socialized are more likely to be happier and find fewer things stress-inducing. Meeting new people and animals and experiencing new sights and sounds will help your puppy to feel more comfortable. Be sure to keep an eye on your puppy whenever they are experiencing something new. You want to ensure that they can process new experiences while feeling supported and not overwhelmed. Be prepared to remove your puppy to a crate or other quiet space if they appear stressed. Puppies, like people, need their downtime.
Puppies improve our lives so it’s important to take the time to make sure we’re doing what we can to produce healthy and happy puppies that can become healthy and happy dogs for years to come!