Bringing a new dog home to your house or apartment is an exciting time for humans, but it can be stressful for your new furry friend. It’s important to carefully acclimate the dog to its new surroundings so the transition is easier for everyone.
Here are a few new dog adjustment tips for McDonough, GA pet owners to help the process go as smoothly as possible:
- Make sure you’re prepared before the dog comes home: Do everything you need to do to be ready for the dog before it arrives. This means having all necessary supplies already on hand, completely dog-proofing your house by removing valuable or hazardous items within your dog’s reach, setting up the house with the dog’s eating and sleeping areas already established and making sure you’ve discussed what the dog’s daily schedule will look like. You should also plan where the dog will ride on the way home. It can be a good idea to have two people get the dog: one to drive, and one to sit in the back and pay attention to the dog.
- Bring the new dog straight home: Don’t try to run any errands or make any other pit stops along the way, unless you have a long drive and need to take the dog out to go to the bathroom.
- Limit visitors: Try to limit visitors for the first two days when you’re at home. Having too many people around could stress the dog out and make it more difficult for it to adjust to its new family and surroundings.
- Make proper introductions: When introducing the dog to its new family members, do so one at a time, ideally outside. It should be calm and a low-key meet-and-greet—do not let your family members rile up the dog. Instead, let the dog be the one to approach the family members, to sniff them and to end the interaction on their terms. It can be a good idea to have family members give the dog a treat, but avoid hugging, picking up or patting the dog during that initial interaction. Take it slow.
- Give your dog plenty of quiet time: This will help your dog acclimate to its new surroundings. Take the dog outside often, because not only does this provide built-in quiet time, but it also gets the dog used to the new spot in which it will relieve itself.
- Deal with other animals: If you have another dog, have the first meeting outside, one dog at a time. Don’t rush the interaction, and keep each dog on a loose leash. Do not leave them alone together until you’re entirely certain it’s safe. If you have a cat, keep the cat secure and allow the animals to meet through a door or gate. Do not let the cat loose until you know how each animal is likely to react.
- Establish routines: It’s good to establish daily routines like sleeping, feeding, walks, toy time and outside time. Dogs thrive with structure.
For more information about the steps you should take when welcoming home a new dog in McDonough, GA, contact The Paw Pad today.