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Puppy dog pals lollie and meow. I’m not sure where, but somewhere in the past I started collecting some of our ‘do’s and dont’s’ to keep you safe when playing with and around your ‘baby’. This list is not exhaustive, it’s simply meant to help when you’re about to go ‘Puppy play’ time…
Lets get started shall we!
Make sure you are fully immunised for rabies – this will not only make you a bit safer to play with, it will also make you a safer ‘nest visitor’ to keep in your ‘doggy door’ (more on that soon).
Be sure you get ‘puppy play’ checked out by a local vet – even if it’s just a quick nip and poke.
Be sure to only let a small proportion of your dog’s fur go – you do not want to encourage him to get into the habit of grooming and he will be much happier as a result.
Do not take your dog to a kennel – you might be well out of the way for a day or two, but if he’s going to be left with other dogs for any length of time, he will start to think ‘kennel’ when he thinks ‘home’.
Be sure you have your ‘breast pads’ avlable – if you’re going to be out and about with a new puppy, you may find that it’s better to stay in your house until he is at least 6-8 weeks old, so that he can get used to the ‘nests’ you are going to be using. This will also help you keep to your ‘baby’s’ schedule – and you know he’ll like that.
Remember that you will be trning your dog and he will want to be close to you as much as possible. If you need to move out for a few days, ensure you take your baby along with you.
Also remember that puppies do not sleep well for very long (unless they are sleeping with their parents) and that they will get used to going to sleep at a certn time – be kind to your little pet and avoid putting him to sleep when he needs rest.
So what about ‘nesting’?
Nesting refers to a ‘home’ for your puppy – a safe place where he can retreat to for a little rest, a place where he knows that he can always call home.
You will need to find a place that is big enough for your dog – but not so big that it’s a place that he just spends most of his time in. Dogs are ‘home hunters’ by nature and so will be quick to search for ‘nests’ that they find interesting.
Make sure that the nest you choose is well-hidden so that your puppy can’t get out of it or find it by ‘looking around’.
Once you’ve found a safe, comfy place for your puppy to retire to, make sure you keep it quiet and safe from the other members of your family! Your dog needs to be able to relax and rest in a safe, well-guarded place that is away from everything else, so there should be no distractions for your puppy.
You’ll need to keep the doors shut so your puppy can’t get out – that way he will feel safe.
Some dogs enjoy sitting in their nests – they will feel safe with a blanket or soft towel to curl up on – but make sure that they are kept safe and away from any sharp or dangerous objects that may have been left in the house. Your puppy may also like to sleep in his bed for a while at night. This is a great place for him to ‘couch-up’, and if he is happy, he will get a long, happy sleep!
For most puppies, once they’ve settled down in their new place, they will be fast asleep by the time that you get home. Your puppy will stay in his nest for up to an hour or so before finally falling asleep. Keep this time limit in mind – if you take a short walk during the day, make sure your puppy doesn’t end up getting scared and running off. He’ll soon calm down if you stay long enough, but once he starts to settle down, you’ll be able to leave him safely in his nest while you take a break.
As we have sd earlier, your puppy will feel completely safe and relaxed in his new home – so make sure it is secure and comfortable, but don’t make your puppy unhappy – be fr, don’t treat him any differently than the rest of your family. You don’t want him to feel like he’s living in a prison – so give him time to settle in!
Once you’ve finished trning, be sure to make a mental note of where your puppy has ended up – this will be vital if he has a ‘bad night’ and runs off.
You may like to leave your puppy in his new place for a few hours every day so that he learns to settle down quickly. If you do, make sure you check on him a few times, making sure he hasn’t got out – even if it’s just to get some food or water. It’s also important to avoid playing with your puppy when you’re trning him – make sure you’re not playing with your puppy when he’s getting settled in.
If you leave your puppy in his place for long periods of time every day, don’t be surprised if he starts to spend most of his time there!
The next few weeks will see your puppy getting trned to the collar and a lead. All of your puppy’s trning will help him to understand what to do and what not to do, so make sure you stay focused and don’t lose your way.
Before long, your puppy will be ready for his first outing to the lead – keep in mind that, at this stage, he’s not really ready to be off lead, and you’ll need to use your supervision skills to make sure he doesn’t get into trouble or get into fights.
When your puppy starts to go on his first walks, you should always be at a comfortable distance – no more than 3-4m away. As you get further along with your puppy’s trning, you can build up to being further away – but make sure you supervise your puppy and ensure he has everything he needs.
As your puppy reaches 8-10 weeks, your owner trning should be coming to a close. Your puppy will be beginning to understand the command to ‘come’, and he should be responding very well. When you start your puppy in the house, always give him a chance to run around and explore, and make