New Puppy First Week – Keep It Low Key
Please keep stimulation and excitement to a minimum when your puppy goes home with you for the first week. They are BABIES and must have naps and need to eat and drink frequently. When they are sleeping they are growing.
It’s hard for puppies to process all the changes in their life. Dehydration and overstimulation during this transition can sicken your puppy and cause a trip to the vets.
It’s hard for humans not to get excited over the new puppy. But for that first week try not to disturb them if at all possible.
New Puppy First Week – Physical and Environmental Concerns
New puppies are susceptible to germs and accidents. That means no dog parks, no rest areas on the highway, no neighbor’s yard that has dogs.
Always take your puppy in the carrier to the vet’s office. Do not set the carrier on the floor, do not let other animals in the office to contact your puppy. Do not allow humans in the office to touch your puppy. You never know if they are bringing in a sick animal to the office. Make sure the vet tech cleans the surface you put your puppy on. This includes the weigh scale. And make sure they sanitize their hands. This is not a hard thing to ask of the vet’s office.
New Puppy First Week – Sanitize At Home
Keep sanitizer in several areas of your home. For your hands and forearms. Lysol spray is a must for shoes and feet for yourself and visitors. You and your visitors should be sanitized before having contact with your new puppy. You would do the same for a newborn human child. Shoes can be removed and placed out of reach of the puppy, most communicable diseases with be carried on the bottom of shoes. Parvo and Distemper can be present in the environment for months to years. Once exposed the incubation period can range from 3 to 14 days.
New Puppy First Week – Physical Activities
Please DO NOT leave your puppy unattended on any surface higher than the top of their head (even if they are sleeping and you don’t want to wake them). It may not be a tremendous distance but, Chihuahuas for example, have delicate limbs and a MOLERA (soft spot) and can injury themselves severely. Frenchies and Bulldogs are very spontaneous and can leap from your arms in split seconds. REPEATED jarring and shocks to their front legs will more than likely cause them to develop arthritic conditions as an adult!
So, please do not allow them to jump down from any surface if they do not have the muscle to jump up! As a baby without muscle, their joints bear the load of impact.
New Puppy First Week – Small Collar Bell
Attach a small bell to your new puppy’s collar. The bell will keep you and visitors to your home from stepping on them and shutting them in doors. Keeping them from escaping outside, also it makes it easier to find them when you can’t see them!
The bell is also a great aid in potty training so you know when they are roaming away from you when they need to eliminate.
New Puppy First Week – Make a Safe Place
Make a safe place for your new puppy. A crate is a good idea when you are not able to supervise your puppy 100% – or a small penned in area.
New Puppy First Week – First Night
A puppy’s first night can be a rough one. The puppy has been with siblings and other dogs up until now. They are used to company and warmth. And you have probably been playing and cuddling with the puppy all day. Life is wonderful. At some point during the evening the family will put the pup to bed. The house becomes quiet. The puppy feels alone and there is no warm body of a brother or sister next to it. It is a natural reaction for the puppy to cry and whine to register a protest and the usual result is that one of the human family will stagger out of bed to console it for a few minutes and go back to bed.
The pup will continue to cry, often louder, and again someone will get out of bed to console the pup or even to chastise it. The pup has learned its first lesson – cry and you are rewarded with company, if only momentarily. Dogs learn fastest by rewarding them for certain actions and continuing to go to the crying puppy will reinforce the lesson that crying brings company.
Hearts must be hardened for pup’s first night home. The decision must be made as to where the pup is going to sleep and the area made ready for it. The area must not be too large, remember that the pup is used to having other bodies close to it. The area must be warm and cozy (in the cooler climates) and bedding must be provided. A radio may be left playing out of the pup’s reach to provide some comforting noises during the silence of the household. An old soft toy serves as a soft body to snuggle but remember to remove any parts such as plastic eyes
and nose which the pup may chew.
Supper should be given and the pup taken outside to relieve itself and then it should be put to bed with a kind word. The crying will commence softly at first but may build up to a crescendo as the pup calls louder. With a bit of luck it may cease after a short time but some pups will continue for the first night.
New Puppy First Week – Be Consistent
Remember that if at any time you go to the pup, you have rewarded the behavior, and you will have to start all over again. Naturally you must be sure that the puppy is not crying because it is stuck or hurt but you will recognize the difference in the crying.
It is natural that the pup will wake early in the morning and you should be ready to be greeted with exuberance and to respond with love and cuddles. Put your puppy out to relieve itself, lavish it with praise for “performing” and then serve puppy breakfast, then outside again for toilet opportunities, Now you are ready to spend the second day with your best friend.