NC – It’s a joyful experience, but introducing a dog into your home requires some careful planning and preparation to make the transition as smooth as possible.
“Dogs give us companionship and joy and can help to teach children responsibility and compassion,” says Peter Hoffman, a broker with Royal LePage Triland Realty in London, Ontario. “Mishaps do occur however, so to protect both your new puppy and your home, it is worth giving some considerable thought to the move-in date.”
1. First, decide which areas of the home your dog will have access to. Purchase a crate, a portable exercise pen, baby gates and any other equipment you need to make sure your puppy will be in a safe place for forming good habits.
2. Purchase some quality chew toys, along with a safe bittering agent such as Bitter Apple that you can use as a training aid against destructive chewing.
3. Ensure that chemicals, cleaning products, toxic plants and medicines are locked up or out of reach from your curious pet. Some other common items that should be kept out of reach include shoes, plastic bags, electrical cords, books and children’s toys.
4. If you plan to give your dog free range of the backyard, make sure that the area is completely enclosed to reduce the risk of escape and exposure to danger. Repair any damaged fencing.
5. On the day you bring your new puppy home, introduce him first to the room where his water and food will be kept. Slowly introduce your puppy to other rooms in the home where he is allowed, emphasizing the boundaries through positive reinforcement.
6. Arrange the little one’s introduction at the beginning of some time off for you so it settles better. Work out a schedule deciding which household members will do which tasks.
7. Bring the family together to review or learn about house training, crate training, collar and leash training, attention training, jumping-up training and training puppies not to put teeth on people.
With proper preparation for your new family member, you can ensure a safe introduction and much joy to come.
More information is available at www.royallepage.ca.