It’s very exciting now that you have decided to become a dog owner!
There are so many options and while not every option is right for every person, there are some guidelines you should follow when you’re bringing a new puppy or dog home. First consider your lifestyle. Do you like to run for 5 miles every morning? Do you enjoy hiking? Do you travel or vacation frequently? Are you a couch potato? Would you prefer to stay at home and watch a great movie with a snuggle bug beside you?
Next, consider the size of the dog. Perhaps you’re living at home with your parents with a big fenced in yard in the suburbs or you’re in a one bedroom apartment. Remember that life can change very quickly and sometimes unexpectedly. Will your dog be able to adjust to a new home or lifestyle? If you have always wanted a particular breed of dog, do some research. If you’d like to purchase from a breeder go to a trusted website and look for legitimate show breeders of merit or breeders with many champions in their lines. It should not be an easy task to purchase a dog from one of these show breeders, but rather you will probably be on a waiting list. These breeders who have dedicated their lives and finances to improving the quality of the breed they love are the only breeders you should consider. They will breed healthy dogs and will be the exact opposite of a “hobby breeder” who is only interested in earning a few thousand dollars quickly from a puppy buyer.
We want to emphasize here that we are specifically referencing purebred puppies rather than “designer breeds”. Purebred puppies are much more easy to predict size, conformations and longevity because there are often hundreds and even thousands of years of dedicated breeders seeking perfection. In purebred showline puppies, there is also a healthy competition and camaraderie among breeders, dog show handlers and dog owners. This is partly responsible for the constant improvements in conditions such as hip dysplasia, thyroid issues and other common health problems being eradicated from breeds that once suffered. A show dog line typically signifies that not only the form and function of the dog is excellent, but also the temperament and disposition remains stellar as well. These dogs will tend to be more stable and predictable in situations around small children and chaos. Remember, temperament and physical attributes do matter. Make sure that the breeder has a minimum of 10 to 15 years of experience.
Remember the “honeymoon period” lasts for 60 days, so that first two months is truly a time for the whole family to bond with the dog and for the dog to learn that the family, including all children, are the heads of household. Problems can arise easily when a dog believes he is in charge of humans, particularly younger family members. Much as we are kinder, gentler and nicer to someone we just met and are potentially dating, so will your dog or puppy tend to be sweeter and more compliant for the first two months after he finds his new home.
When you bring a toy home for your new dog, do not just hand it over to him. Make sure to expose it to as many smells and scents from members of the family and then hold onto the toy while letting him chew on and enjoy the toy for at least a few minutes... continue reading.
Do not place your dog’s bed near a doorway or in the hallway leading to the bedrooms. Placing a dog bed right near a doorway or in the hallway leading to the bedroom is teaching him that you want him to protect that area. Imagine putting a marine on duty and telling him to stand... continue reading.
So let’s think about this for a moment – how exactly do dogs find food in nature? Does Denny’s open a breakfast buffet for all the little forest animals every morning and night? Do they eat at a big buffet table together? Of course not! When dogs eat in nature they hunt for their prey,... continue reading.
Have each member of the family rub his or her hands on a dry paper towel, which will enable you to gather all the smells of whatever and whomever you touched and your own smells. These will then transfer to items the dog might consider his own. Then place it, along with those of others... continue reading.
Check each room, the garage and the backyard for anything dangerous your dog may get into such as: roach bait mouse or rat poison mouse or rat traps bug spray antifreeze fertilizers weed killer insecticides motor oil mold or murky water (which can cause mold or attract mosquitos) coco-bark mulch stones and rocks (which can... continue reading.