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Welcome Home, Dog!

By Hundidocom @hundidopuppy
bringing your dog home

Introducing a new pet into your home will be exciting but perhaps a bit nerve-wracking – not least for your dog. Prepare as much as possible beforehand and plan for the first day at home to be quiet and calm.

(Check out Bringing Your Pup Home)

Being Prepared

Make sure your home is “dog-proofed” and that you have bowls and bedding ready for when the dog arrives. Have at least a week’s supply of food and collect any diet sheets and initial supplies from the breeder or animal shelter.

Select a “den area” for the dog during the day – somewhere warm and quiet but where your pet can see and hear people so he will not be lonely. Place your puppy crate in this area if you’re using one. Have newspapers ready to put on the floor in case of accidents. If you’re getting a young puppy, letting the pup sleep in a box or basket in your bedroom can help him to settle him.

You need to have a name ready. Choose a name of one or two syllables as this will be easy for the dog to learn, but avoid any names that could be confused with words you might use to command such as “stay” or “no.”

Arriving Home

As soon as you get home with your dog or puppy, take him into the garden (if you have one) as he may wish to relieve himself. Then let your dog into your house and let him explore. For the first day at least, keep your pet in his den area so he can get used to the home slowly. A puppy will probably tire quite quickly so allow him to sleep whenever he wants.

Meeting Family Members

Welcome Home, Dog!

Family Dog *

Introduce your dog to everyone in the family. If you have children, supervise them for the first few days as they and the dog get used to each other. Explain to the children in advance that your new dog may be feeling a bit nervous so they need to be quiet around him. To meet the dog, have the kids come into the room with him and sit down quietly and give them treats to offer him. Say that they need to let the dog come to them of his own accord. Explain that the dog will enjoy playing with them but they have to keep play sessions short for the first few days so he doesn’t get tired or over-excited. They must not grab the dog or pick him up suddenly as he could get frightened and bite them.

Meeting Other Pets

Let your dog meet other pets one at a time after the first day of so, once he has settled in. Introduce resident dogs to the new one in neutral territory such as the garden so there is room to escape if one of them gets nervous. Make a fuss of your resident dog before paying attention to the new one to reduce any risk of jealousy.

To introduce a cat, choose a large room or the garden and hold on to the dog while the cat comes to meet him. Make sure the cat has an easy escape route in case the dog gets too boisterous. Never feed cats and dogs together as the dog may try to steal the cat’s food. If you have rabbits or other small animals, keep them in a hutch and supervise the dog whenever he is around them.

Key-Notes in Bringing Your Dog Home

  • Introduce your dog to your home slowly so that he can get used to his new environment.
  • For the first few nights, your pup may feel more secure if he is sleeping a box in the bedroom. Speak to him gently if he whimpers but don’t make a fuss of him.
  • Your dog might like to sniff scents and look around the garden. Allow him to do so as it will help him relax and habituate better to your home and the new surroundings.
  • Let your dog meet your kids once he has settled in. Show the children how to stroke the dog gently.
  • Introduce a new dog to a resident dog in a toy-free area, then buy new toys that he dog can share once you know that they are getting well together.

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