Are you wondering if your house is properly puppy-proofed? or how to prepare for a puppy? Do you have all the supplies that your new puppy can’t live without? Does everyone in your home understand the rules and routines of welcoming a new dog? Don’t worry; you are not alone. This guide will help you create a safe and comforting environment for the your new puppy from Labradoodles by Cucciolini in Ontario and help you find the right products and tools to care for your new Furry friend.
Tips to help you slowly introduce your new puppy to your other pets.
1) Provide each pet separate spaces in the house, like a room, where they can go to feel safe from the other animals. Even if both pets are tense, a space that is secure and separate from the other can help them relax and self-soothe.
2) Provide a Neutral Territory A common area that can be neutral ground is ideal for trial interactions to reduce common territorial behaviors. You can let the pets explore neutral territory separately and in short sessions before they meet, but avoid leaving toys or belongings from either animal in this space. You want both parties to regard this space as neutral.
3) Animals feel most vulnerable during feeding times, as they would in the wild. If there is any tension between the pets, they may fear the other will take the opportunity and either attack or steal their food. You are more likely to see aggression when food is involved.
4) Look at Body Language. Body language in pets can help you recognize anxiety and fear. This can help you prevent negative interactions. Dogs that cower or cry may be telling you that they are too afraid to interact. This will help you determine the speed at which you should introduce your pets.
5) Like any other type of training, pets can be motivated by a tasty6 or fun reward. If your pets are calm and confident during their interactions with each other, then rewarding them with a healthy but tasty snack can help them associate their new friend with positive feelings.
6) When your pets feel confident and relaxed, you should monitor but encourage interaction. Puppies tend to be more confident because they are blissfully ignorant to many potential dangers around them, but your older pets may decide to make the first move.
7) Look for activities that both animals can engage in. Finding common ground is a great way to lower tension and help pets feel more comfortable around each other. Walking is a great option when introducing two dogs, but you may have to get creative with other species.
8) Your anxieties and worries can affect your pets. Of course, you should stay close and monitor all interactions between both pets, but you need to have a little faith. Overreacting to normal pet behavior can trigger negative reactions in your pets.
9) With other dogs and cats, it’s worth putting in some extra time and effort to encourage a relationship with your new pup, but it’s not guaranteed that they will ever be besties. Some species just aren’t compatible, like ferrets, rodents, birds, and reptiles. If they have to stay separate, then you’ll need to make accommodations in your home for both animals.
10) There is nothing cuter than when you find your pets snuggled up taking a nap together, but that dream may never come true. In some cases, simply tolerating each other and sharing space is the most you can get, and that’s OK! As long as they respect each other’s space and presence, then that is a win!
Puppies needs exercise and interaction. Sustained, strenuous exercise (long runs, jumping) is not good for puppies, but playing, mental stimulation, and running around in the yard are good. Some experts recommend waiting until a dog is about one year old before starting with serious exercise and this can vary by breed. Different dog breeds have different energy levels and rates of growth; the growth plates in their joints close at different ages. But do schedule play and exercise time into your puppy’s day: a walk around the neighborhood, playing with toys, and time spent bonding go a long way toward expending energy. Several shorter sessions are better for a puppy than one long one.
Naps and Bedtime
Has your new puppy been waking you up at night? Are you wondering why your puppy won’t sleep?
While your new puppy’s sleep schedule might not (yet) be in sync with yours, there are quite a few recommended tricks and tips you can try to help both of you get as much sleep as possible.
Puppies require a lot of attention and management while they grow. Thank goodness that puppy-hood doesn’t last long!”
Young puppies sleep a great deal of the time; in fact, some will sleep as much as 16-to-18 hours a day. Plan on quiet nap times for him several times during the day. Family members, especially young children, should learn not to disturb him when he’s sleeping. He needs his rest! You may need to put a crate in a quiet part of the house so he won’t be distracted by the hustle and bustle that may be going on during naptime.
When it comes to bedtime, some owners set a specific time to settle their puppy down for the night. Others just want him to sleep when they sleep. It may be easier to set a puppy bedtime and help him get used to the routine.
There are a few reasons why your puppy may not sleep peacefully after you bring them home:
They aren’t used to sleeping without their littermates and mother. This can cause isolation distress.
They can feel uncertain about their new surroundings. Everything smells and looks different, and they may hear sounds they’ve never heard before throughout the night. This change may be exciting for them, making it hard to settle down and sleep, or it may be overwhelming and make them nervous.
Young puppies have small bladders. Most cannot hold it throughout an entire night, and many puppies instinctively don’t want to soil where they sleep, they’ll whine or cry in their crate if they feel the urge to go.
A Sample Puppy Schedule
First thing in the morning: Take the puppy out to relieve himself. Make time to play and interact with him after he’s taken care of business.
Breakfast time: Feed the puppy. Leave the food down for no longer than 15 minutes. After that, pick up the bowl and give no more food until the next meal (except for small treats used for training). Wash the water bowl and provide clean water.
After puppy’s breakfast: Puppies usually need to relieve themselves again, within a few minutes of eating, so give another potty opportunity. After this, spend some time playing and/or doing a little training with your puppy. And though everyone is busy in the morning getting ready for work or school, make time for a quick walk to give him a chance to do his business one more time.
Mid-morning: The rest of the morning might be devoted to nap time, ideally in a dog crate or pen. Even if you’re home during the day, your puppy should spend time in a crate or pen; this will help him learn how to be alone when necessary. It’s also impossible to know what a puppy will get into when you turn away for a moment and there needs to be a place to put him when you can’t supervise directly. If he will be home alone for more hours than he can control his bladder or bowels, you need to set up a pen with an area for him to relieve himself – or consider having a pet sitter come to take him out.
Noon: A repeat of the early morning routine – as soon as he wakes up, a trip outside. Then lunch, and another trip outside should follow the meal. Spend some time playing with and training him, so he can burn some energy. And don’t forget one more potty break before the afternoon nap!
Mid-afternoon: When he wakes up, it’s time to go out — again. And time to play and train, again. Then a chance to potty. If you’re home, he can hang out with you for a while before dinner.
Dinner: If you arrange his mealtimes around yours, it will become natural to feed him either while you’re preparing dinner or while the household is eating. But pay attention so you can take him outside as soon as he’s finished. Before the family sits down to dinner, it’s a good idea to give the puppy a chew toy to enjoy in his crate. This way he won’t get underfoot, and nobody will be tempted to give him tidbits from the table.
Evening: Another potty break! The early evening is a good time for lots of interaction. For many puppies this is the “witching hour,” and if you anticipate it by initiating play, he may settle down. If he doesn’t, even after plenty of exercise, give him a treat and let him settle in the crate for a while. Later, an evening stroll gives him exercise and a chance to take a potty break. And make sure he potties right before bed.
Bedtime: A set bedtime makes his adjustment and house training easier for everyone. It doesn’t matter if it’s 8 p.m. or midnight, as long as it becomes a routine. Take him to his crate and help him settle down for the night.
Night: If your puppy is not yet able to make it through the night, set an alarm so you can get up and take him out for a quick, boring potty break. It’s better to wake up a little before you think he will, so that you are not responding to whining and barking. Then back to bed so you’ll be ready for the next wonderful day with your puppy!
By establishing the routine from the very beginning, you’ll be on your way to a happy, well-adjusted dog.
Feeding: Should be done twice daily
Fresh water: Check water daily for cleanliness and sufficiency
Clean Crates: Should be done daily. This helps with maintenance of pet hygiene.
Coat maintenance: Twice weekly is best with a slicker brush. This also serves as bonding activity for both the handler and pet.
Dental care: Teeth must be brushed twice weekly, preferably before or after coat brushings.
Check and Trim Toenails: As needed
Ear Care: Check and clean ears twice weekly with a finger tissue and dog ear cleaner.
Pluck hair from ears with index finger and thumb to prevent ear infection
Grooming: As needed. This is usually done once every month or two (as desired).
Ensure that groomer is aware of your expectations regarding ear and nail care.
Bath Doodle: On an as needed basis. When bathing the dog, ensure that no soap gets in the eyes. If this occurs, rinse immediately with cold water. Take special care to rinse thoroughly after the bath. Soap left on a dog can cause skin and eye irritation. Dry with towel and hair dryer.
Review Training Commands: Review commands with a dog twice weekly by rewarding with treats. This serves to reinforce overall training and is another opportunity for bonding.
Play time with dog: Should be done daily. Labradoodles are a highly active breed and need play opportunities regularly for health and weight management.
Positive reinforcement: Reward desired behaviors with treats. This serves as a means to encourage these activities.
Crate uses: Never crate as a disciplinary action. The crate should serve as a safe haven only. When the pets coat gets wet (rain, snow, etc.), dry with towel and hair dryer while brushing to help prevent matting.
Plan for Travel
Bringing your puppy home is beyond exciting, and it’s easy to forget some essential supplies that you will need for the journey back home. Here are some of the supplies that you should pre-pack:
Crate or carrier
Blanket or bed
Collar and leash
Wipes for possible clean-up
Your puppy will probably be overwhelmed by this move. They may cry, bark, or just sleep the whole way, but having all of these supplies will make sure that you are prepared for any possible scenario.
Your new puppy should be safely positioned on your lap (not the driver’s lap), or secured in a comfortably sized kennel or crate to ensure they are not able to wander around the vehicle if they are feeling adventurous.
From puppy gates to choosing the best puppy food, you’ll want to make sure to have the following:
Water bowls are essential to any new puppy checklist and there are many options out there for you to choose from, including travel options for keeping your puppy hydrated on-the-go.
It might seem obvious but different pups need different water bowls because of their size, eating style or medical needs.
If you’re welcoming a large dog breed into your home, chances are they’ll benefit from having a slightly raised water bowl so they can comfortably drink without having to bend their head too close down to the floor. Consider a non-slip silicone mat to make sure they aren’t sliding all over the floor.
It’s a trial and error process and you may end up with several different bowls before you get the right one for your pup, so take into account how much water your puppy needs, and go from there.
Choosing the best puppy food for your dog is a tricky process and as we said above, can take some trial and error before you land on the right one. Do you shop grain-free, or try them on raw? Dry food or canned?
Whatever route you decide to go down, keep in mind that your puppy needs a balanced diet packed with nutrients they need to develop into a strong, healthy dog.
Depending on their size and energy levels, your puppy may need up to twice the daily amount of nutrition consumed by adult dogs so whatever type of food you get, make sure it’s 100% complete and balanced puppy food. If you’re unsure at any time about the type of food that’s best for your pup, ask your vet for advice.
Puppy treats, including training treats
Any treat you give your pup should be small enough for them to chew, ideally bite-sized for their smaller mouths to handle. The smaller pieces will also be easier to digest in their smaller stomachs.
As they get older small amounts of lean meats like turkey and chicken are good and make tasty training morsels for food-driven pups. Cooked or raw veg like broccoli and carrots are great too.
A new puppy checklist wouldn’t be complete without a new collar. A padded, adjustable one is perfect as it’s nice and soft against your pup’s skin and will grow with them. Bonus points if you pick a brand with a reflective detailing for added visibility on nighttime walks.
Picking the right puppy leash is a must for any new puppy checklist. Some pups chew and pull, while others need to be kept close to avoid mischief.
For training, you can’t go far wrong with a long nylon leash. The 15 feet long leashes are perfect for recall training and walks in the park.
Heavy chewer? Go for a tightly-webbed nylon option that’s nice and thick to protect against tiny teeth. Alternatively, if your pup is a puller a shock-absorbing bungee cord will help reduce the strain on both the leash and on you when your pup pulls, while still giving you control.
There’s a great selection of puppy toys out there to choose from. Whether it’s an interactive puzzle toy or a delicious chew toy, there’s something for every pup to enjoy.
Puppies love to chew so give them plenty of options with some durable chew toys. It keeps them busy and stops them from attacking your favorite slippers.
For puppies with lots of energy, chase toys like balls and Chuck-it help get all that extra energy out.
For high boredom pups, an interactive toy like a treat puzzle or a snuffle mat will keep their brains stimulated for a while.
What pup doesn’t love a soft toy? Let your new arrival snuggle down with a comforting plush toy at nap time.
Crate and Sleeping Bed
Whether you decide to crate train, are planning to travel with your pup, or just want to use one in the car for vet appointments, a good crate is a must-have. Pick a collapsible crate with a moveable wire divider that can grow with your pup and be stowed away easily when not in use.
Getting the right sleeping arrangements for your new pup is essential for making them feel at home. New puppies can feel a tad lonely in their first few weeks without their birth mom, so a comforting space to retreat to can help bring a sense of comfort as they settle into their new home.
Here’s our top picks for beds:
With their raised edges and cosy textures, doughnut dog beds are perfect for your puppy to cuddle up against. They’re a great option if your pup is a little nervous as the raised edges help give them safety and security.
Memory foam beds are another popular choice for pups. The relaxing memory foam provides excellent levels of comfort for your pooch and you can often buy them custom made to their specific size and shape, which helps make them feel even more relaxed. Memory foam beds are incredibly durable too, perfect for heavy chewers.
Dog grooming products
Even low-shed breeds need to be brushed from time to time and regular grooming is a great way of getting your pup used to being handled early. Pick a brush with gentle rubber bristles to massage and comb your dog’s coat. It goes without saying, if you have a breed that requires regular grooming then it’s important to brush through their fur every day to avoid knots and improve circulation.
Getting them used to water early is essential because it helps minimize fear in the long run. A great way to help them enjoy bath time is with a gentle puppy shampoo. Pick a tear less shampoo in a calming scent with no nasties like parabens for a shiny, clean coat.
Top tip: For long haired pups or those with coarse, wiry fur texture we recommend introducing your pup to the groomer at around 10-12 weeks. Not only does this make sure their coat stays in tip top condition but it gets them used to the experience with minimal stress.
Puppy Toothpaste and Toothbrush
Puppy dental hygiene is important and it’s good to get started as early as possible. Go for a set with meat-floured toothpaste, a dual-sided toothbrush and a finger brush to get your new arrival used to their mouth being touched.
Stain and Scent Remover
Accidents are a guarantee and you’ll need some products to help remove stains and scents from your furniture and carpets. There’s a wide variety of things available to help conquer odors and stains including upholstery shampoos. Don’t forget to pick up a great vacuum too – one with useful pet attachments is a must.
Bitter Apple Spray
Non-toxic bitter apple spray is a deterrent to discourage your pup from chewing. The spray is safe to use on your furniture, fabric and even your dog’s fur to stop them from nagging at their skin.
Poop bags are a necessity for any new pup owner. Opt for an environmentally-friendly option with some composable and biodegradable bags.
Being able to limit your puppy’s access to the rest of your home while you puppy proof everything is essential. They still stay safe and sound nearby.
Accidents are bound to happen as you housebreak your pup. Absorbent and protective, puppy pads are a great option for those in between training times.
ID and Tags
Easily identify your pup in case they escape and make sure they’re registered and up to date of all your details, including your current address. There’s plenty of cute tags to choose from too.
So there you have it, your comprehensive new puppy checklist. Once you’ve checked off everything you need off your list, you’re ready to welcome your new pup to your home. Just sit back and watch chaos ensue.