Trying to survive your puppy’s first week? So, you got a puppy, or maybe even multiple (can’t leave out pregnant doggos). It’s either you got a puppy or puppies through adopting/buying/receiving or from a pregnant mommy dog that just recently gave birth and you’re wondering: What am I supposed to do now?
Or maybe you’re reading this article as preparation for getting a puppy, which is very good because then that means that by the end of this article you should be sufficiently prepared. Whichever it is, I’m here to help you gain some clarity.
Preparation Before Arrival
Bringing a new puppy home is an exciting venture, but it’s essential to be well-prepared to ensure a smooth transition for both you and the little one. Just as parents baby-proof their homes, future dog owners need to puppy-proof theirs. Here’s how:
Setting Up a Safe Space:
Before your puppy arrives, designate a secure area in your home where they can feel comfortable. This space should include a cozy bed, a crate if you plan on crate training, and some soft toys. The idea is to create a refuge where your puppy can retreat and relax.
Stocking Up on Essentials:
Just like a newborn baby, puppies have specific needs. Make a checklist of essential items like quality puppy food, a collar, a leash, feeding and water bowls, chew toys, grooming supplies, and a few comforting toys.
Puppy-proofing Your Home:
Puppies are notorious for their curiosity, often leading them into situations where they could get hurt. Ensure there are no loose wires they can chew on, secure trash cans to prevent them from rummaging, and remove any toxic plants or chemicals from their reach. Check every nook and cranny at their eye level, because if there’s something to be explored, a puppy will find it!
Being well-prepared before your puppy’s arrival not only reduces potential stress but also sets the stage for a loving and positive introduction to their new forever home.
7 Tips How To Survive Your Puppy’s First Week
A Safe Home
Before you worry about what you should buy, you should concern yourself with the area that your puppy is going to live in. Think of your puppy or puppies as babies. What would you do to make sure that your home is safe for a baby? You make sure that anything toxic or dangerous is not within their reach.
These could be detergents, heavy gym equipment, Lego blocks, small things that they can put in their mouth, etc. Babies are curious and tend to explore the world by putting things in their mouths. Just imagine what a dog would do; they quite literally explore the world by smelling, licking, and eating their entire lives.
It would also be best to leave them at a low altitude. meaning that you don’t put them on the second floor, where they have the chance to fall down the stairs.
And let’s be honest. Besides keeping them safe, you don’t want your puppy to be pooping and peeing just anywhere and everywhere. So, make sure that you put them in a room where they won’t have any chance to roam around too freely, at least until you’re confident that you’ve created a safe home for them to live in.
What Should A (newborn) Puppy Eat?
Let’s start with their food. Puppies are low-maintenance when it comes to feeding, but they do like to have small meals spread throughout the day. If you’re wondering how much dog food you should be giving what I would recommend is looking at your puppy. Do they completely ignore the food you give them? If that’s the case, then you should try out different dog food brands and alternate between dry and moist food. If they decide to skip a meal sometimes, then it’s not always a good cause for alarm. Sometimes they’re just not in the mood for eating. .
Make sure to observe your puppy, especially if all the food in the bowl has been eaten. This is because all dogs are different. My French bulldog, Tulip, for example, will absolutely refuse to eat dog food that tastes like beef. He only likes dog food that tastes like chicken. So, don’t be afraid to experiment.
Now, what if your puppy literally just came out of its mother’s womb? These newborn puppies should be fed puppy milk for the first few weeks. The milk’s temperature should be the same as your newborn puppy’s. Your newborn puppies should be able to eat after 4 weeks.
Pooping and Peeing
The third tip in our 7 tips to survive your puppy’s first week is to create a routine for your puppy. This is the most fun part because this is where you can actually start raising your dog to be a trained and happy dog!
Like all dogs, puppies want to pee, poop, and play. Okay, let’s get pooping and peeing out of the way first and foremost, am I right?
What I’ve found is that the best way to train your puppy to poop and pee where you want them to is to watch them like hawks, catch them just when they’re about to pee, and then carry them to the spot you want them to pee.
Accompany this with sounds like “Pee, Daisy!” They will associate these sounds with you wanting them to pee.
I’ll admit it, watching them like hawks to interrupt them just before they want to pee is unpleasant. It might take an hour or more before they want to pee, and watching them the whole time can be a very time-consuming process.
It would be best to get some help from someone who’s willing to help you with watching the dog so you won’t be occupied the whole day.
It’s important to be patient and persistent with this; it might take a few days to two weeks for them to get used to it.
No, you don’t have to play with your puppies for hours on end if that’s what you’re thinking. It only takes 20 to 30 minutes a day for your puppies to be satisfied.
It is important to note, however, that you should always play with them with toys instead of with your bare hands. This is to keep them safe, because even though they might like to play rough, they are still puppies, and there’s a higher chance of them getting injured if you try to play rough with them with your bare hands.
Show Them The World
You don’t necessarily have to fly them around the world on a magic flying carpet, but it is important to introduce them to all kinds of things before they grow up.
My dogs, for example, were adopted during the quarantine. So, we weren’t allowed to take them outside when they were just puppies. What ended up happening is that the first few times we took them outside, they were too anxious to even walk. Something that could’ve been avoided was it not for the quarantine.
Reward Good Behavior
If they pee and poop in the right place, make sure to reward them with a treat! If they are way too excited and you want them to calm down, ignore them. Wait for them to calm down, then when they do, reward them!
Training puppies is very easy, especially since they’re still very impressionable. And with the power of treats, you can conquer any puppy-related challenge.
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Have Fun With It
Don’t just focus on how difficult it will be to take care of a puppy. Make sure you have plenty of fun as well! Take as many pictures as you want to and have the most fun you can with them while they’re still young.
You can even compile all the pictures from when they were still puppies up until they were adults. They will make great memories.
In the whirlwind of excitement and joy that accompanies the arrival of a new puppy, it’s essential to remember that the first week can be both thrilling and challenging. Preparing adequately and setting a foundation of trust, understanding, and love will make all the difference. With patience, love, and the right tools, you’ll not only survive your puppy’s first week but also set the stage for a lifelong bond. Embrace every moment, for these first experiences will shape your journey together. After all, learning “How To Survive Your Puppy’s First Week” is just the beginning of many happy years to come.