Bringing up a Puppy

Getting a new puppy is a wonderful experience, but it is also one to be thought about carefully to make sure your routine can be adapted to fit around the new family member. As the saying goes, 'a dog is for life, not just for Christmas', and bringing up a puppy will certainly change your life completely.

Puppy proofing your home

As a responsible pet owner it is important you provide a safe environment for your puppy. Your puppy will want to investigate every part of your home and things such as electrical cords will be very appealing to them. It is worth enclosing these in a safe PVC tube or simply tucking them out of reach to avoid a nasty accident. 

It is also important that you check the garden for any dangers such as rodent poison, antifreeze or paint, as your puppy will be spending a lot of time exploring outside. Remember, it's better to be safe than sorry.

Get your puppy microchipped

It is now compulsory for owners in the UK to ensure their dog is microchipped. This is a safe and quick procedure which inputs a tiny chip the size of a grain of rice into the animal, making it possible to trace the owners through a nationwide database. This can be carried out by a vet or trained microchip implanter in a pet store and will last a lifetime. It is important to remember that if you change address you should contact your microchipping company to update this information. 

Training your puppy

Bringing up a puppy to be obedient and to listen to your commands is necessary if you want to have control over them. Of course, house training is a process which many people are concerned about but with positive reinforcement it can be very straightforward and a couple of accidents here and there should not taint the joy of your new dog.

When house training it is important that you are consistent and set a clear routine as early on as possible. This will help your puppy to understand what is expected of them. Whenever they start sniffing at the door you should let them outside and reward them when they successfully go outside. 

With obedience training it is important that you remain positive and assertive. Start with basic commands such as 'sit,' 'stay,' 'come,' and 'heel' and make sure that everyone in the family is using the same commands and gestures to avoid confusion. You may consider taking your puppy to training classes which can be very useful, particularly if this is the first time you are bringing up a puppy. 

Socialisation

Dogs are naturally very sociable animals and this is a hugely important part of your puppy's development. Your breeder should have started this process when your puppy was about 3-4 weeks old and you should carry this on once you have collected your dog.

It is important to establish a bond between both humans and animals so once your puppy has received all its vaccinations you should try to take them to as many places as possible. This will give your puppy plenty of opportunities to meet friendly people and well-socialised dogs, helping build up confidence and learn lots of new tricks.

Take out dog insurance

As soon as your puppy is old enough to be eligible (usually at about six weeks) you should look to get it insured against injury, illness, theft and loss. As well as protecting your puppy, it means that it is very unlikely to have any pre-existing conditions that would be excluded from your insurance and therefore not eligible for financial cover in respect to vet bills.

Insurance is important whatever breed of dog you have chosen. Insurance for older dogs and pedigree dogs is often more expensive, because they are more likely to require medical attention; or, in the case of pedigrees, be stolen. Larger dogs, meanwhile, are more likely to suffer from joint problems, while bulldogs can develop respiratory difficulties.

The experience of bringing up a puppy

In the first few months your puppy will need lots of care and attention, and it will be a fun and exciting time for both of you. At times it may feel overwhelming but with assertiveness, energy and consistency you will soon have a friend for life.

Cover your dog with Towergate

To give you peace of mind, we can offer pet insurance for your dog or puppy. Contact our partners Healthy Pets today for a quote on 01730 230 564 or online.

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