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New Puppy Owners: 12 Tips to Raising a Happy and Healthy Puppy

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Bringing home a new puppy is an exciting experience. Whether it’s your first time as a pet parent or you’re tenth, there is a lot to consider when it comes to properly caring for your new furry friend. From potty training to obedience training, socialization to exercise and nutrition, it can be a bit overwhelming to think about all that is involved in raising a happy and healthy pup.

At The Dog Kennel Collection in Lancaster, PA, we understand that new puppy ownership can be a challenge, which is why we’re here to help. We offer a wide range of services and products designed to make the transition from pet parent-to-be to experienced pet parent as seamless as possible.

In this comprehensive guide for new puppy owners, we’ll cover everything you need to know about caring for your new pup, from preparing for their arrival to dealing with common behavior issues. Whether you’re just starting your research or already have a new puppy at home, this guide will help you ensure that your new friend gets the best possible start in life.

Preparing for a New Puppy

preparing for a puppy

Before your new pup arrives, it’s important to prepare your home for its arrival. Puppy-proofing your home is essential to ensuring your pup stays safe while they explore and learn about their new environment. This includes securing loose wires and cords, removing any hazardous items within reach, and ensuring that all doors and windows are secure.

Once your home is puppy-proofed, it’s time to gather all the necessary supplies. This includes a comfortable and supportive bed, food and water bowls, a leash and collar, and plenty of toys. Don’t forget to consider a crate, which can be a valuable tool in potty training and help your pup feel safe and secure while they are home alone.

One of the most important decisions new puppy owners have to make when it comes to their new pups is deciding on a feeding schedule. Puppies need to eat more frequently than adult dogs, so it’s important to choose a feeding schedule that works for both you and your pup. It’s also important to research and choose a reputable veterinarian in your area so that you can get your new pup started on a preventive healthcare plan as soon as possible.

Potty Training A New Puppy

training a new puppy

Potty training is one of the most important aspects of caring for a new puppy. The good news is that most puppies are eager to please their owners and are quick to learn with the right approach. The key to successful potty training is consistency and patience.

One of the most common mistakes that new puppy owners make is not taking their pup outside frequently enough. Puppies have small bladders and need to be eliminated frequently, so it’s important to take them outside every hour or so during the day. Praise and treats can be used to reinforce good behavior, while accidents should be cleaned up thoroughly to avoid leaving any scent that could attract your pup back to the same spot. For more tips on potty training, click here.

Where should a puppy sleep the first night?

puppy sleeping

The first night with a new puppy can be a bit intimidating, but it’s important to set the right sleeping arrangements from the start. It’s recommended to have a designated sleeping area for your puppy, such as a crate or a dog bed, in a quiet room near your sleeping area. This not only provides a comfortable and safe space for your pup to rest but also helps to establish a consistent sleeping routine.

Having your puppy close by allows you to monitor and respond to any nighttime needs, such as potty breaks or comfort. However, it’s important to remember to never use the crate as a form of punishment and always associate it with positive experiences. With patience, consistency, and a little bit of preparation, your puppy will quickly settle into a comfortable sleeping routine.

When do puppies know their owner?

getting to know your puppy

Puppies start to recognize and differentiate their owners from other people at around 8 to 10 weeks of age. This is also around the time when they start to bond with their owners and form strong attachments. It’s important to spend quality time with your puppy during this critical socialization period, as it helps to strengthen the bond between you and your pup. Consistent positive experiences with their owner, such as playtime, training sessions, and cuddles, help to reinforce the bond and solidify your pup’s recognition of you as their owner. The bond between a puppy and its owner can continue to strengthen and deepen as the pup grows and matures.

Should I ignore my puppy crying at night?

New Puppy

Ignoring your new puppy’s cries at night can be tempting, especially when you’re tired, but it’s not the recommended approach. Crying is a common behavior in puppies as they adjust to their new surroundings, and it can be a sign of discomfort, fear, or separation anxiety. Ignoring the cries can reinforce the behavior and make it harder to resolve in the long run. Instead, it’s recommended to provide a comforting and consistent response, such as taking the puppy outside for a potty break or offering a toy or treat.

Your puppy will soon learn that crying does not result in attention and will instead begin to settle down and rest quietly. However, if the crying persists and appears to be a sign of distress, it may be helpful to speak with a veterinarian or a professional dog trainer for guidance. Remember to always be patient and consistent with your new puppy, and provide plenty of positive reinforcement and comfort to help them adjust to their new home.

Kennel Training, a New Puppy

kennel training a new puppy

Kennel training a new puppy is an effective and efficient way to help with house training and provide a safe and secure sleeping environment. A kennel can serve as a cozy and familiar space for your puppy and can help prevent accidents and destructive behavior when you are unable to supervise them. When choosing a kennel, it’s important to select a high-quality, well-designed product that is safe and comfortable for your puppy. This is where The Dog Kennel Collection comes in. With a wide range of kennels designed to meet the unique needs of each breed. For more tips on kennel training, click here.

The Dog Kennel Collection provides a range of kennels made with high-quality materials and innovative designs. Not only are the kennels durable and secure, but they also offer a stylish and functional addition to your home decor. Whether you are looking for a basic kennel or a more advanced model with extra features, The Dog Kennel Collection has the perfect kennel for your new puppy. By choosing a kennel from The Dog Kennel Collection, you can be confident that you are providing your new puppy with the best possible sleeping and training environment.

Be Patient

be patient with new puppy

Kennel training a new puppy is an effective and efficient way to help with house training and provide a safe and secure sleeping environment. A kennel can serve as a cozy and familiar space for your new puppy and help prevent accidents and destructive behavior when you cannot supervise them. When choosing a kennel, selecting a high-quality, well-designed product that is safe and comfortable for your puppy is crucial.

This is where The Dog Kennel Collection comes in. With a wide range of kennels designed to meet the unique needs of each breed, The Dog Kennel Collection provides a range of kennels made with high-quality materials and innovative designs. Not only are the kennels durable and secure, but they also offer a stylish and functional addition to your home decor. Whether you are looking for a basic kennel or a more advanced model with extra features, The Dog Kennel Collection has the perfect kennel for your new puppy. By choosing a kennel from The Dog Kennel Collection, you can be confident that you are providing your puppy with the best possible sleeping and training environment.

Teach Your New Puppy Not To Bite

teach your new puppy not to bite

As a new puppy owner, you probably wonder, “How can I teach my puppy only to bite appropriate things?” as you will quickly discover, puppies love to gnaw and chew on almost anything. If you want to keep them from chewing on your favorite shoes or your baseball glove, you must have chew toys or treats you can redirect them to. It is better to reinforce good behavior with treats or playtime vs. physical punishment. While physical enforcement can be effective, it will, in most cases, cause fear and anxiety, leading to aggressive behavior.

It’s also important to discern between aggressive biting and gentle mouthing. Like humans and most other animals, puppies love to explore the world with their mouths. Just because they have their mouth on something doesn’t always mean they are biting negatively. They should not be punished for behavior that is not intentionally malicious. You must be consistent with punishment for most training techniques, so the puppy will know precisely what behaviors to change. 

Use Treats as Rewards

new puppy treat ideas

Choosing the proper treats for your new puppy is important to their overall health. While treats are an excellent way to reinforce good behavior by your puppy, it’s essential to use them sparingly. Only use treats as a reward; overuse can lead to obesity and health problems, making your puppy less likely to obey your commands. Once your dog has learned the behavior you are reinforcing, it will be time to slowly reduce the use of treats. Start by giving treats every other time, then every 4th time, and before long, you will not need treats.

Choose your treats based on these three things.  

Want to learn how to make your own dog treats? Check out our blog for some delicious and simple dog treat recipes for your canine!

Begin Socialization

puppies playing together

Here are some helpful tips on socializing your new puppy. Learning to interact with humans, other animals, and the environment around them is essential to their growth process. 

Choose a Recall Word

puppy running to owner

A recall word is an important training technique that can easily be overlooked. A recall word is a word that will immediately catch your new puppy’s attention no matter what they are doing. A recall word is crucial in the case of an emergency or an urgent need. Common recalls include “come” or a shrill whistle. You can customize this recall word to something unique to create a special bond with your puppy.

Develop A Routine

contented new puppy

Consistency is something your puppy will appreciate as it matures. Scheduled mealtimes, exercise, and provide your new puppy with expectations. You are constantly investing in your puppy’s future through training and the time you spend with it. You will need to spend more time with a young puppy, and gradually it will become comfortable in your home as you develop a routine together. Here at the Dog Kennel collection love helping create relationships between people and their pets by producing high-quality products and outdoor dog kennels that will help you in your journey together. For more guides on dog care, visit our blog page for tips and insight.