There are few things more exciting than bringing home your adorable new dog. Tempting as it is to shower him with affection and cuddles, keep in mind that how you treat your pooch the first week will set the foundation for your relationship. Help your canine friend become a well-mannered companion by investing time, effort, and consistent dog training near Leesburg, VA from day one.
Set the Stage for Success
It is critical to have management measures in place prior to your new dog’s arrival. This will help you avoid reinforcing unwanted behaviors from the get-go. Here are some basics to prepare before your pooch sets paws in your home:
Once you have secured these supplies, set aside time for these canine preparation steps:
1. Dog-proof your home.
Unless you adopted a fearful or anxious dog, expect that your canine will start roaming around his new home immediately, sniffing and getting into everything within his reach. Puppies, in particular, are exceptionally curious and persistent during their survey. They will explore and try everything with their teeth, which can land them (and your valuables) in trouble.
Protect your new furry family member and your home by dog-proofing your place. Lock your cupboards with baby latches, put away all electrical cords, and hide slippers, shoes, and other valuables where he can’t find them.
2. Establish firm house rules.
Everyone in your family should be on the same page when it comes to engaging in dog training near Leesburg, VA . Avoid confusing your new canine with contradicting behavior by establishing firm rules everyone has to follow. For instance, if you want to let the dog on the couch, ensure that all family members are okay with it too. This will help prevent conflict and give your dog a solid start.
3. Research your service providers.
Choosing professional pet care providers should not be a last-minute activity. Your groomer, veterinarian, professional, and pet sitters will have a significant impact on your dog’s upbringing. Do not settle for the first one you find; take time with your research to get the best for your pet.
Training Tips for Your New Dog’s First Week
Once you are done with your preparations, it is now time to welcome your new dog to his new home! Follow these tips to help him adjust and set the stage for the years to follow:
✔ Start slowly.
Let your pooch explore your home and meet everyone at his own pace. It is the best way to avoid overwhelming him with stimuli during the first couple of days.
✔ Give him his own space.
Provide a safe spot that your dog can retreat to whenever he wants to take a break from the excitement of his new environment. Reserve a quiet space for his crate and bed away from the rest of the bustle of your home.
✔ Establish a routine ASAP.
Dogs thrive on a set schedule, so figure out a routine that works for you as early as you can. Begin by:
Going outside for potty breaks without fail
Scheduling walks at the same time every day
Feeding at the same time every day
Going to bed at a consistent hour each night
The sooner your dog knows what is expected of him, the faster he will settle into your home.
✔ Supervise your canine at all times.
Keep a vigilant watch over your dog so you can correct misbehaviors as soon as they occur. One way to do this is by tethering or leashing your dog while at home so you can see everything he does. Another is to familiarize him with his crate. That way, you can leave your dog inside when you are not at home without stressing him out.
✔ Begin training as soon as possible.
Pups soak up information during their early weeks, so take advantage of this by enrolling your pooch in Leesburg dog training classes near the end of his first week. Not only will it help him learn essential commands, but it also jumpstarts his socialization process.
Do the same if you adopted an adult dog. The learning process may take longer since his personality and world perception are already established, but the results are always worth it. Most importantly, you will learn how to better communicate and connect with your new furry family member.
Give Your Dog the Best Start with Hearts in Harmony’s Hamilton Dog Training Classes
The time and effort you pour into your dog’s first week at home will pay in dividends for years to come as he becomes a well-behaved member of the family.
At Hearts in Harmony, we use positive reinforcement training techniques to teach dogs of all ages and backgrounds. Check out our Puppy Group Classes or join one of our Dog Group Classes. We also offer private sessions, behavior modification classes, and other courses for you and your dog. Call us at 1-540-454-4098 for inquiries or to register for classes!