Pamper your puppy. Before you bring your new puppy home, make sure you have prepared a comfortable puppy home. A cardboard box, a cage, a shallow tub, a basket, that is big enough for a puppy to stretch in makes a fine bed. Line the box or cage with soft cushions or blankets. Beware that a puppy may nibble or chew on the blanket, so use only blankets that you’re not so fond of. Put newspapers around and under the bed until the puppy is house-trained. Place toys, dishes for food and water nearby.
A puppy may cry at night the first week home. Try tucking a hot water bottle under a pillow and placing a ticking clock wrapped in a towel in the pup’s bed. The warmth and gentle ticking of the clock will comfort the puppy by reminding it of snuggling with it’s mother.
Pay attention to your puppy’s feelings. Puppies have ways of showing you what they like and don’t like. Talk to your puppy often, but try not to shout. Don’t cuddle your puppy too tightly that it squirms uncomfortably and never, never poke or tease it. Puppies may need small meals everyday. Puppies also need a diet high in protein, a substance that helps it grow. Most puppy food that you can buy in the store provide this extra protein. You may also add healthy table scraps, such as egg, cottage cheese or lean meat.
Take your puppy to see the veterinarian within a week after you have brought it home. The vet will check the puppy’s general health and give it vaccinations, which are shots that help protect your puppy from serious diseases. Also, be sure to ask the vet for bathing and brushing instructions.
You’ll need to teach your puppy to behave well indoors and to get along with other people. It must learn to tell you when it needs to go to the bathroom. Note that a puppy will never do his business (his toilet needs) in his living area. Isn’t that neat!?
Puppies do not need treats to learn tricks. The more you work with your pup the more it will learn. Patiently show it what to do over and over again and say ‘Good Dog’ when it catches on. When your puppy makes a mistake, a firm “NO!” is all it needs. Never punish it by handling it roughly, shouting or spanking it.
Dogs like to follow a regular schedule. So try and feed and walk your dog at about the same time everyday. A grown up dog needs one, or better, two meals and a fast paced walk everyday.
Many dogs, especially long haired dogs, need daily combing or brushing called grooming. If you learn to comb and brush your dog gently, it will soon begin to love the attention. And it will look and feel great! Grooming sessions are also the perfect time to look for ticks, dandruff or nails that have grown too long. (If your dog is having tick problems and you happen to live in Malaysia, contact us and I’ll give you a vet’s number. He has a great medicine that really works.) Don’t forget to take your dog for his yearly booster shots.