You’ve talked about it for ages, you’ve looked for the best place to shop or adopt, and now you are online looking for as much information as possible. Why? To prepare your home for your brand new dog, of course! We all want our pets to take to our homes and family as well as they possibly can. We’re eager to make our dog fall in love with everyone, but it is important to prepare our homes and our families before the big day arrives. Here are some helpful tips on how you can prepare your home for a new dog.
1. Purchase Waste Cleaning Supplies
Having plenty of waste cleaning supplies on hand is crucial, especially if your dog is a brand new puppy that isn’t quite housebroken yet. Plus, an older dog may still have accidents as they transition to a new home. You’ll need to purchase plastic baggies, potty pads, extra newspapers, and, of course, a pooper scooper. It also won’t hurt to have some stain remover and clean rags on hand for the first couple of weeks, in case your pup has an accident indoors on the carpet. If they will be using your yard most of the time to do their business, you may even want to invest in an upgrade pooper-scooper. Yes, they do exist!
2. Have the Right Dog Crate on Hand
Experts agree that crate training is one of the best ways to train a puppy. In fact, dogs enjoy having an enclosed space to retreat to when they are feeling anxious or scared. Crate training is also a very useful tool while you are potty training your new dog. They also make it easier for you to bring them to and from the vet before they learn to ride untethered in a vehicle. Make sure you have the right size dog crate for your puppy before you bring them home. A dog crate needs to have plenty of room for them to turn around comfortably but not enough room that they can go potty in the corner. You’ll also need proper bedding for the inside of the crate, as well as some toys and blankets. If you are unsure of the size or brand, ask your vet for their recommendation.
3. Purchase a Dog Bed
Your dog needs their very own bed to sleep on, just like everyone else in your home. Choose a bed that is big enough for the size of your dog or for the size he or she will grow up to be. If your dog is older or suffers from physical ailments, you can find beds that offer orthopedic support for their tired muscles. You might also consider a thermal pet bed if your dog needs some extra warmth, especially if you live in a colder climate. These types of dog beds are made with materials that are able to reflect the dog’s body heat right back to them. After you buy the bed, you’ll probably want to consider purchasing a small blanket that your dog can call his own!
4. Have the Right Dog Food Ready to Go
Talk to the previous owner, pet store, or shelter about the dog food they have been feeding your new addition. You’ll want to have it on hand when your pup comes home to avoid any upset stomachs or resistance to meals. However, it’s a good idea to talk to your vet about the type of dog food your dog should be eating. They can recommend the best type of wet or dry food for your dog’s breed and age. You should gradually make the change to a new food to avoid unpleasant side effects for your dog.
Additionally, make sure you have a dog dish and water bowl ready to go. If your dog is a puppy or still very active, consider buying an interactive feeder to keep them busy and engaged. Puzzles will also slow down your dog’s eating, preventing them from suffering from bloating or other stomach issues. Young puppies will love the challenge of working for their food, and it also gives them the chance to burn off some of that crazy energy!
5. Buy the Right Accessories
There are plenty of things you will need to have on hand when you are bringing a dog home, young or old! You’ll want a quality collar and leash, especially if you plan on going for daily walks. Jump online or head to a local pet store to order a tag with your dog’s name, your phone number, and your address engraved onto it. If you will be using a containment system in your yard, such as an electronic fence, research the different options before you bring your dog home. Newer models even offer wireless capability that uses Bluetooth to connect.
Of course, you’ll need plenty of bathing products on hand, such as shampoo, flea and tick products, brushes, and towels. Your dog will also love any new chew toys you can give him, so make sure they are on your list. The more, the better!
6. Prepare Your Family
There will always be supplies you will need to buy when you bring home a new dog. While this is of course very important, it is even more important for your dog to come home to a loving, safe environment. Always make sure you research the breed you are planning to bring back home. Some breeds are better for homes with kids and other animals. Consider how much time you and your family will have to take care of your new pet. While every breed requires plenty of time and care, some will do better being left alone for short periods of time than others.
Talk to your kids about the newest member of the family. It’s important that they understand how to treat their new family member, especially if they are still young. Always keep an eye on the dog when your kids are around to avoid unnecessary problems. With plenty of planning and patience, your dog will be a happy addition to your house in no time!