As a new puppy owner, before you can properly digest the high amounts of information regarding feeding, training, and socializing your pup, let us say one brief word about your new pet’s first night in his new home.
This experience, by its very nature, will be a frightening one for him. Do not shower him with affection and attention during his first few hours. In fact, it is a good idea to have his personal area already set up before he arrives and place the puppy in it and allow him to investigate as soon as you get him home.
His bed, a water dish, and plenty of newspapers are the basic furnishings that will be necessary. In addition to these necessities, a toy or two, and a great deal of peace and quiet will be all he really needs for a while. If you like, sit down quietly nearby to reassure him as he orients himself.
No Food Please
Feeding should be postponed for a few hours until he has become somewhat acclimated to his surroundings. Between his car ride home and the excitement of his new life unfolding before his amazed eyes, chances are he will develop an upset stomach from any food offered immediately. If after a few hours, he seems hungry, offer him a light meal.
Limit The Affection
Don’t try to overload him with affection right away. There will be many long years ahead when he will need and appreciate your love and care. Right now, it will only serve to confuse him more than ever, if that’s possible. Let the family meet the puppy slowly, one at a time perhaps, and after a few gentle pats, leave him be for a while.
Avoid Unnecessary Injuries
Keep play periods short for the first few weeks, making sure the little puppy is not allowed to exhaust himself. He will soon become a full-fledged responsible family member and will be eager to play and roughhouse in due time. But right now, he is an infant and needs plenty of sleep just like his human counterparts, as well as safe play surroundings.
Do Not Be Overwhelmed
While all puppy care instructions and recommendations may seem complex at first, it is important to remember that your puppy will be learning these many things whether or not you are aware of what is happening. It is so much wiser, and easier in the end, to have him learn properly from the very start than to try to undo bad habits that have been established by improper handling or total lack of training.
Taking into account that your new dog will, hopefully, be spending at least the next decade in intimate contact with you, your family, your neighbors and friends, I hope that you will agree that following proper puppy care guidelines will be well worth the effort. Someday, someone observing your dog look at him with admiration and respect because of his radiant good health, his obvious good care, and his delightful manners.