Tips For New Puppy Parents

blog blogs new puppy pet care tips petland Petland blog Petland blogs Petland Florida Petland puppies puppy parents training

A new puppy means a lifetime of kisses, playtime, and an unbreakable friendship! You’ll love being around your adorable best friend, whether it’s taking them out for long walks or playing hide-and-seek. Along with these unforgettable moments, however, you’ll also come face to face with challenges. In a lot of ways, puppies are like babies. […]

A new puppy means a lifetime of kisses, playtime, and an unbreakable friendship! You’ll love being around your adorable best friend, whether it’s taking them out for long walks or playing hide-and-seek. Along with these unforgettable moments, however, you’ll also come face to face with challenges. In a lot of ways, puppies are like babies.

Literally.

Puppies solely depend on you for their happiness and wellbeing. They need you to feed, play, and bathe with them as often as possible. At some point, you may also face typical puppy behavior like whining, biting, chewing, and jumping. These behaviors can become problematic if your puppy isn’t trained. If you aren’t sure how to handle your new furbaby, don’t panic! 

Here are some useful tips to help you care for your new puppy:

1. Buy a crate.

There are many reasons to get a crate. A crate can become your pup’s official resting spot, especially if you place a soft pillow or blanket inside. It also helps with house and potty training. You may feel that your puppy will feel lonely or scared inside their crate, but that’s never the case! Instead, crates reinforce your pup’s natural instincts. How? Well, canines are den animals so they feel most comfortable within a small, warm spot that they can rest in. You can think of it as a personal space where your furry bestie can be themselves. Of course, when buying a crate, you will need to consider several factors, like the size of your pup and their age. The crate should not be too large nor too small. If you would like more information on choosing a crate, read our blog, Puppy Products for New Puppy Parents.

2. Supervise your pup.

Puppies are curious little creatures. They love to explore their surroundings, especially their new home. Of course, they don’t understand the dangers that lie around while they venture inside rooms. They may get into all sorts of trouble too like sticking their heads in a garbage bag for a snack or chewing on furniture. These activities can cause a mess or a serious tummy ache. Therefore, keep this rule in your mind and heart: If you cannot watch your puppy while they’re off on their little adventures, you must place them in their crate or in a safe area with gates.

3. Take your furbaby to the vet.

Even if your puppy doesn’t look sick, make sure to set up an appointment with your vet. Your veterinarian will be a key professional in the life of your little furry bestie so it’s important to start visits early. This helps your pup get used to seeing their vet on a regular basis. While at the vet, your puppy will likely undergo a physical exam, which will evaluate your pup’s health and appearance. Your vet will also let you know about your puppy’s health and how you can best take care of them. And if you hadn’t guessed it yet, vet visits are scary for new puppies! You can make your pup’s vet visit less stressful by bringing some treats and speaking to your pup in a soft voice.

4. Play fun training games.

Many puppies have a short attention span, making training almost impossible. You might feel like giving or think about training when your puppy gets older. We recommend starting your puppy’s training as early as possible. However, training sessions don’t have to be boring or frustrating. Make it fun! There are many fun games you can play with your furbaby that also helps with training, such as:

  • Hide and seek. Pups love hide and seek! And we have to admit: playing this game with a puppy is so much fun. Just make sure your puppy is watching you as you run and hide. This helps them understand that you want them to find you. While she looks for you, call her name until they find you. Give her a treat and start again. 
  • Tug-of-war. Tug-of-war helps burn off your pup’s energy. It also helps your pup build their focus. Just grab any toy and try to get your furry friend to tug on it. Say “take it” when your fur-baby grabs it. Once they tug on it, say “drop it” and hold out a treat so they release the toy. Of course, you should try to avoid over-aggressive behavior during a tug-of-war game. This can help prevent your puppy from adopting aggressive behavior as an adult dog.
  • Puppy pinball. This game creates trust and social interaction with your puppy. It also teaches your puppy to respond when their name is called. Give your family or friends some treats and have them sit in a circle around your puppy. Tell your loved ones to call the puppy’s name and to give it the treats. Make sure they are gentle and show off their happiness. Your puppy will learn that humans are nice and friendly.

5. Socialize your puppy early.

Socialization is a key part of your furry friends puppyhood. When you socialize your puppy, you teach them how to behave around others. It prevents aggression, fear, and other negative behaviors. Do not throw your puppy into socialization. This will scare them. Instead, introduce new experiences slowly. For example, you can take your furbaby to the dog park. You can also bring a friend over and have them play with your pup. Your puppy should never feel stressed or scared during socialization.

  1. Pick up your pup’s food bowl. Eating is important but only during the right times of the day. Remove your puppy’s bowl once they’ve finished their meal. This teaches your puppy that there’s a feeding routine so they don’t get used to nibbling food all day. You can leave your furbaby’s water bowl near them. 
  2. Provide chewable toys. Toys are a must-have dog supply. Toys are useful for training and playtime with puppies. Before you head to the store, be sure to consider your puppy’s age, size, and activity level. You should also buy all kinds of dog toys to see what kind your puppy likes best. When playing or training, only give your puppy 2 or 3 toys at a time. This keeps your pup interested in what they’re doing.
  3. Feed your pup the right meals. Nutrition is super important, especially with puppies. Puppies must have the right balance in nutrients and minerals so they can grow into healthy adult dogs. Check the label in your pup’s dog food to see what ingredients it has. Dog food should not be high in salt, sugar, or fats. Depending on their age, they will also need different amounts of calories. So you should also check the dog food label to see if it’s the best for your puppy. As your puppy matures, you should only feed them 2 to 3 meals per day. And avoid leaving the food out on the floor.
  4. Teach good leash obedience. Remember to teach your puppy how to properly walk with you outside. Some puppies will try to pull on their leash or refuse to walk at all. It’s better to train your puppy to walk obediently with their leash on. You can try the same methods as with another other training exercise. Use a treat and say the command before your furry friend performs it. We recommend trying leash training inside the house first before moving outdoors.
  5. Expect accidents to happen. Don’t freak out if you mess up. Accidents can happen at any time. As long as your puppy isn’t hurt or scared, you shouldn’t worry too much. Always be patient and understanding with your pup. A puppy is learning and exploring the world around them. It may take a couple of tries before your puppy “gets” what the house rules are, when they’re supposed to eat, or where to use the potty. Take each day with your puppy as another chance to bond with them, even if there’s a few oopsies here and there!

While you spend time with your furry friend, your puppy is also learning and getting to know you. They may take awhile to completely warm up to you—and that’s ok! What’s important is that you continue to play and care for them every step of the way. In time, the two of you will be the best of friends! You can learn more about how to be a great parent to your furry bestie by reading our blog, How to Be A Responsible Pet Owner.