Anyone who has owned a dog before can tell you that it is a big change for any household, especially if you’re a first time owner. There are going to be a variety of necessary changes you’ll need to make in your home to make it dog friendly and help you keep your sanity.
You might think you can just bring your new dog home and figure things out as you go along, which is certainly an option, but taking a few preventative measures before you bring your dog home can help make the transition much smoother.
Puppies can be incredibly destructive. That’s all there is to it. They are cute and wonderful, but when left to their own devices, they’ll tear up pretty much anything they can get their mouth around. Sometimes this has to do with puppies teething, and sometimes it’s just instinctual behavior on the dog’s part. To save yourself some headaches and frustration, here are some tips for puppy-proofing your home:
- Start Crate Training Early: The sooner your puppy recognizes the crate as their personal space and realizes that they can be put there in the event of bad behavior, the better. You don’t want to overuse the crate as punishment, but if your puppy is acting crazy a little crate time can do a lot of good.
- Set Up Routines: When your puppy has a regular rhythm to their day, their behaviors are a lot easier to predict and either encourage or discourage. If you take your puppy out to pee at roughly the same times each day, they can start to learn their schedule and have less indoor accidents.
- Gate Off Certain Areas: Depending on the size of your living space, you may want to gate off certain areas during the day or night. This can help keep messes and shedding to a confined area and keep your puppy out of areas with things that they might destroy.
- Hide Your Shoes: Puppies love to chew up shoes. It’s a cliché, but it happens regularly, so it might be a good idea to have a designated place for your shoes that is out of reach of the new puppy.
Many of these slight routine changes can be adopted before you bring your puppy home, but some of them will have to be established over time. Behavioral issues will have to be figured out and settled over the first several months of having your dog. You may not even have to worry about behavioral issues depending on the temperament of your dog, but if you do there are many available resources for getting help dealing with dog behavioral trouble.
Another aspect of dog ownership that you might not have thought about is home upgrades or amenities you’ll want as a dog owner, and services that you might not have thought about before but will now need to utilize. Here’s a few things you might want to consider for your home now that you have a new dog:
- A Backyard Fence: You may already have a fence in your backyard, but if you don’t, it’s a good idea to have one installed before getting a dog. This will give them some room to run around outside without needing your constant undivided attention. Obviously you should still be aware of where they are, but with a fence you don’t have to worry quite so much.
- Regular Carpet Cleaning: No matter how quickly you are able to housetrain your puppy or new dog, there will be the occasional accidents. It might be a good idea to have a local carpet cleaning professional, like Curtice Chem-Dry, on call to take care of any nasty pet stains or odors. You might think you can get them out yourself, and you might be able to get the stain itself out, but if any of the odor lingers there is a high chance that your dog will resoil the exact same spot in the future.
- A Dog Washing Hose Attachment: This is an easy thing to get quickly and cheaply, and will save you lots of mess. Washing a dog in the bathtub can be a good way to give baths, depending on the size of your dog. It can also create a big mess in your bathroom. Washing your dog outside with the hose (when it’s warm enough obviously) can be a much better alternative when it comes to keep your dog from getting smelly.
A new dog is a huge responsibility, but also a wonderful addition to your family. Taking the time to make sure your home is ready for a new dog can help to smooth the transition that your new dog will feel upon entering his or her new home. I hope these tips will help you prepare your home for a furry friend of your own!