We encourage you to read all of this information thoroughly so you’ll be familiar with what your new pup will need and have it on hand BEFORE s/he arrives.
Have a plan on how you will house your pup during the day and the night and where an how you will house train your little one. Your puppy will be crate trained and actually sleeping through the night before you get your puppy.
Things to Have When Your New Pup Arrives
- Prepare yourself and your home for your new puppy. Look around your home checking what’s on the floor and on counters. If they are on the floor, puppies will enjoy chewing shoes, slippers, underwear, toilet paper, kleenex tissue, and if there is an easily accessible trash can that will be great fun. Until they learn that these items are off limits, it’s a good idea to keep them off the floor.
- Food: We will provide you with some food that your puppy is used to eating to help get you started. We recommend you use a high quality food to ensure good health for your dog. I use Orijen Puppy Kibbles. I also use NuVet Plus each day with every puppy and adult dog. It’s great for the Immune System and is a wonderful vitamin supplement. If you are going to transition to a new food, do so over a 7-10 day period of time adding just a tiny bit of the new food to start with and then a little more each day until you have totally transitioned to the new food. This will minimize any intestinal upset. Be aware of what foods are deadly for dogs and puppies i.e. raisins, chocolate, etc. Read the information provided in your Puppy Baby Book.
- Pure spring water, bottles or well water if possible for drinking. Many cities have tap water that is not desirable because of chemicals and chlorine found in the water which your pup has never had.
- Crate: We recommend you purchase a crate and continue the crate training even if you are going to be using a doggy door (see below). Your puppy will be crate trained when you get him/her. I encourage you to continue to use a crate that is large enough that it can be used until your dog is adult size at about one year of age. I recommend a wire crate 23″ wide x 25″ high and 36″ deep with 2 doors (one on the end and one in the middle of the side). Even if your pup is house trained, I encourage you to utilize the crate for times when you are gone. The crate is a safe and comfortable place for your puppy. It is NOT something to ever be used for punishment! I recommend that you have a pen with a gate set up around your crate to create a Play Pen for your puppy. It will provide a safe place for your puppy when you’re not able to keep a close eye on him/her. Put a doggie bed in there with some toys and have some great chew toys available when you put your puppy into the pen so it will be something they look forward to.
- Collar: We have purchased a collar for your puppy so you won’t have to purchase one initially. However, be aware of how tight the collar is. Puppies grow fast and you’ll want to be sure it isn’t too tight. A rolled leather collar may help keep your puppy’s coat from matting but is not necessary.
- Leash: We have also purchased a leash for your puppy. You will need a leash to insure that your puppy does not catch you off guard running off to explore. Leash training is important so you’ll have an obedient dog that walks along side of you.
- Training: I encourage you to enroll in a Puppy Training Class so both you and your puppy can learn proper training techniques after your puppy has had their 2nd set of puppy shots plus Bordatella. A well trained, good mannered dog is a true blessing and requires your commitment to ensure he/she learns proper manners and responds to your commands.
- Toys: We recommend you select a few safe, soft, ones that squeak. They really enjoy them. They love an empty water bottle after you remove the lid, seal and label. They love crunching and chasing them. After they are crunched, you can actually blow in the top and pop it back out for a little more fun. If the top becomes chewed on it can be sharp so just discard and get them another one.
- Chew Toys: It’s important to have a few Chew Toys like Bully Sticks, Half Antlers and Kongs. We do not recommend rawhide! Note that your puppy will also go through a strong chew stage around 1 year old and you’ll want to be sure to have some good Kongs filled with goodies to keep them occupied so they won’t be tempted to chew on wood, cords, etc. that they will easily find in your home.
- Puppy Play Pen and Portable Stair Gate: I suggest that you have a portable fence/pen around the area where you have your crate so you don’t have to watch them every second and they can play in the pen and not have to be in the crate. I typically leave the door to the crate open during the day and they will often put themselves down for a nap in the crate.
- Puppy Bed: Know ahead of time where your puppy will sleep in their crate. I don’t recommend in your bedroom because when they rustle around you might wake up and when you get up to go to the bathroom you will wake the puppy up. A great place for the nighttime crate might be in a spare bedroom. Also great to have another crate with the Play Pen around it in the Family Room or your office. I do not recommend they be allowed to sleep on your bed until they have earned the right to have the freedom of your home and you’re confident that they are fully potty trained, etc. It’s a good idea to have the night time crate in a room where you can turn off the light, say good night and close the door. That is what they are used to. Although they may initially fuss a little, DO NOT go back in. They are used to going to bed at 10 pm and sleep until about 6 am. If they do wake up and fuss in the middle of the night, I would go ahead and take them outside briefly to go potty and then right back to bed.
- Day Stays: Be prepared for where pup will stay during the day if you are not going to be home. I would hope that you will be able to plan it so you can be home most of the time to be with your puppy. Your puppy will need to be fed 3 times a day. At lunch time the puppy will need to go out, have lunch, go back out to go potty and be able to play so hopefully you will be home at lunchtime. Take your pup outside immediately after they have spent time in their crate.
- Holistic Remedies: If you find that your puppy is anxious and is having a tough time settling in, we suggest you consider purchasing a product called “Rescue Remedy” that can be found in the organic section of grocery stores (ask a clerk to help you find it). It will help calm your puppy and help with the transition to his/her new home. Use a few drops in water or give in the eye dropper directly onto their tongue. Vets also recommend this after pups have had shots or other trauma during the day. Just give a little and be sure your pup has fresh water at all times and is drinking!
- Doggy Door: In the past, we Doggy Door trained the pups but I have not done so for many years now. I encourage families to go outdoors with your puppy and do not leave them outside alone. I’d suggest that you purchase Poochie Bells and hang them on your door handle. Train your puppy to ring the bell and then when they jingle the bells, say Outside, open the door and out you go. Maybe initially put a tiny bit of Peanut Butter on the bell and when they go to lick the bell and make it jingle, excitedly say “Outside” and immediately go out with your puppy and walk over to where you’d like them to “Go Potty” and give that command. You will still have to watch your pup when s/he first arrives until the pup knows your new routine, gets comfortable with her/his new location and you get to know your pup’s routine.
- Immune System: Remember that your puppies’ immune system is still getting stronger. Keep her/him from people or doggie parks until s/he has had the full series of puppy shots. Try to minimize stresses as best as you can. Some stress is inevitable, of course, but the more you are aware of, the better home you can provide for your precious little one. Changes can stress the immune system so I’d highly encourage you to purchase Nu-Vet Plus Immune System Support and Vitamin Supplement and have it handy before your puppy arrives. I will provide you with a few wafers when you get your puppy. Here are a few stress examples:
- Moving or big change in environment
- Change in routine
- Sudden change of food or water type
- Family upset (yes, they will “feel” you’re upset)
- New adventures if not introduced with care
- Illness or antibiotics
I hope you find these tips helpful.
Carol A. Stover
Blue Star Labradoodles