FIRST WEEK WITH YOUR PUPPY!
Congratulations! Now what? Take it one hour, one day at a time. This week will be hard, and it is pivotal you spend the first week getting acquainted with your new pup and setting strong foundations for the wonderful lives you’ll have together!
CRYING IN THE NIGHT
It is perfectly normal for your pup to cry the first few nights in their crate. They will feel alone and confused as they are separated from their mama and siblings for the first time. As a new parent, it was so hard for me to watch my babe cry, but let me reassure you that it will pass. Time will heal. Some tricks I found that helped was getting up for a five minute break to let him out of the bed, holding him, and talking to him in a soothing voice until he fell back asleep.
No matter how far along your pup is in potty training, they will need time to get acquainted with the new space and figure out where they can go. They need to feel comfortable, and because they are absorbing a completely new environment, you may find your pup having accidents in corners of your house where he can be alone and feel safe. Do not discipline them or punish them for this. This is completely normal, and again, the priority is giving them a safe space and teaching them where to go.
Also, a personal preference and choice was for me NOT to use puppy training pads. This is because dogs use touch and smell, and guess what feels like a puppy pad? Your cotton t-shirts or your soft blanket! What we found much more helpful was using fake grass pads, since the color and texture emulated grass. The grass pad was much easier to clean too, just hosing off with water and reusing (so it is more eco-friendly than a disposable pad). That being said, it would be best to discuss with your vet and see what they recommend about training pads for your pup.
Trust and safety are the utmost priorities right now. You need to build a strong relationship with your pup right now and let him know that you will feed him, provide for him, and give him a great life. Give him attention, love, and be patient above all. The first week will be a rollercoaster and you need to be prepared emotionally and physically for this.
PUPPY 101 CLASS
My husband and I have raised six dogs throughout our lives. Every dog is different, but there are some tried and true tips and tricks that are timeliness. You need to do your research and understand dog psychology. We signed up for a 101 class at our local Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) and were blown away – we thought we were experts given our previous experience, and boy were we in for a pleasant surprise! The tricks we were taught expedited training for our dog and was the best $150 we ever spent on our pup.
I am a worry worm. I worried too much that I hardly remember what I was doing the first week we had our pup. Of course you need to watch your pup like a hawk and make sure he isn’t chewing anything or eating a chicken bone somewhere. But, stay calm and be responsible. If you are stressed out, your pup will sense it and feel the tension. Play with your pup A LOT. Find out what types of toys he likes… chewies? Tugs? Squeaky toys? Present a variety of toys to him and let him pick and choose. And don’t forget to have fun yourself Relish these baby days… because they will be adults before you know it!