When introducing a new furry family member into your home, it is easy to get lost in the excitement and forget the importance of preparation and patience to ensure a smooth transition. It is crucial to introduce house rules to your new dog from the second you pick them up so that boundaries and limitations are set. Continue reading for useful tips and tricks to ensure an easy transition, as bringing home a new dog should be planned and calculated.
Before picking up your fluffy friend, sit down with family members and form a list of expectations and rules. If each member agrees, it is more likely that everyone will stick to these rules. Some of the rules you may want to determine could include:
- Walking schedule
- Meal routines
- Sleeping arrangements
- Room & furniture limitations/permissions
- Commands for basic obedience
Once your house rules are established, place them in a visible spot, such as your refrigerator, so that everyone may refer to them when needed. Your relationship with your new dog will be able to flourish by creating these consistent guidelines.
Make the assumption that your new dog is not yet house-trained and continue from there. Again, consistency and routine are key for training. Dogs need order and repetition to know that you are the boss, not them. When you catch them getting into trouble, stay calm but use your assertive, disapproving voice to let them know that they have misbehaved. A great way to introduce the concept of misbehaving is to have a consequence. Installing an electronic fencing system is one way to reinforce your training efforts and resulting consequences for misbehavior, especially when it comes to your dog’s safety. Dog Guard knows that “a well-trained dog is a happy dog” and will make the installation of your fence and training seamless. Electronic fences reinforce to your dog that they need to stay within their containment area by giving them an audible warning and mild correction, when they get too close to the boundary. Check out our National Train Your Dog Month blog to learn more tips on how to properly train your furry friend!
Even before stepping foot into the house, keep your dog on the leash and take them for a stroll around the neighborhood to release their extra energy from being cooped up in the car. This will bring your dog to a calmer state and allow them to adjust to all the new sights and scents. Following the walk, keep their leash on and, if possible, have them sit or lay down before entering the front door. Be sure that you enter through the door first and only have your dog follow once you invite them in. After successfully stepping into your home, keep that leash on for the tour and take your pup from room to room, keeping them right at your side. Each door throughout your home is a chance to indicate your leadership by your invitation to enter and exit. Remember to stay consistent and treat outdoor areas, such as your backyard and patio, in the same manner.
Following your new family member’s tour of the house, go about the rest of your day in a very calming fashion. Life with you is a very new experience for your dog which is why it is important that you give them time to adjust. While it will probably be tough for you and your family members, try your best not to overdo the affection right away and acknowledge them only when they join you.
Be sure to take your new dog to the veterinarian within a week of bringing them home to receive a health check and any necessary vaccinations. Additionally, provide your new furry friend with a crate that they will consider to be a room of their own and will help with housetraining and obedience-training. Be sure to plan plenty of exercise and outdoor time as dogs need a very active life. Dogs radiate unconditional love and loyalty so don’t forget to reward them with cuddles, treats, and playtime and you can expect an unbreakable bond with a new best friend.
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