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HomeUncategorisedFirst-Time Dog Parents: 10 Top Tips

First-Time Dog Parents: 10 Top Tips


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Getting a dog for the first time is an exciting experience. You could’ve been dreaming about it for years, and can’t wait to bring your furry family member home. It’s easy to see why. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t come with a lot of responsibilities, though. First-time dog parents have a lot to learn, after all.

It’s not complicated or overwhelming to do this, but it’s something you’ll have to put time and effort into. You’ll be taking care of a living being, and you’ll need to keep them healthy and active while looking after their needs.

A bit of knowledge and a lot of patience is needed for this, and it’s worth using a few tips for first-time dog owners.

First-Time Dog Parents: 10 Top Tips

1. Have Patience With Them

Patience was already mentioned, but the value of this can’t be understated. From the adoption process to training them, you’ll need more patience than you could’ve thought. It’s possible your dog mightn’t pick up on certain things too quickly.

If you get frustrated with them because of it, it won’t help them learn it any faster. It could even be detrimental to their training. The more patient you are, the better they’ll end up learning anything.

Should it be too frustrating, consider asking a professional trainer or vet for some assistance, and you shouldn’t have a problem.

2. Give Them The Right Diet

Speaking of talking to a vet, it’s also worth asking them about your dog’s diet. You can’t just give them a bit of meat or the first doggie food you came across. Find out what your dog can and can’t eat. Consider asking your vet a few questions. Can dogs eat sorghum is a great example of this.

Once you know exactly what kind of diet your dog should have, you’ll have no problem keeping them healthy. You could even prevent different diseases with this, so you’ve no reason not to put the effort into it.

3. Encourage Them To Go Potty Outside

When you’re training your dog, you’ll focus on multiple areas. One of the more notable is house training them so they don’t go potty everywhere. It’s much better they do this outdoors, as it’ll be much healthier for you, your family, and your dog. While you’ll still need to clean up after them, it’s still worth training them to do this.

One key area to focus on with this is celebrating them when they do it. It works as positive reinforcement, and they’ll seek this out quite a bit. They’ll learn to go potty outside to get this reinforcement, helping with their potty training.

4. Make A First Aid Kit

Your dog could have countless accidents when they’re with you. Thankfully, most of these will be harmless, but that doesn’t mean all of them will be. They could hurt themselves in various ways. While a vet’s needed for anything major, you mightn’t have to take them there for any small cuts or scratches.

That doesn’t mean just letting them be, though. You’ll need a pet first aid kit to help look after them. You might already have one of these for your family, but you’ll need a dog-specific one to look after your furry family member. Even a DIY option can be great.

5. Be Consistent With Training

Training was mentioned above, and it can be one of the more complicated areas for first-time dog owners. One of the key factors in whether you’re successful with their training is whether you’re consistent with it or not. If you’re not, you might teach your dog there aren’t any repercussions for their behavior.

At the same time, they might believe they won’t be rewarded for positive behavior. The more consistent you are with their training, the more consistently you’ll see the results. Know the house rules and how you want them to behave when starting, and actually stick to them.

6. Give Them A Safe Space

Everyone deserves to have a safe space. You’ll already have yours, and you’ve no reason not to give your dog one. You wouldn’t even need to put much effort into putting this together for them. All you’d really need are a doggie bed, blanket, and bowl for them. Add in a few toys, and they’ll be quite happy.

Don’t overlook the temperature when you’re putting this together. The more comfortable everything is, the safer they’ll feel when they’re there. It can even serve as their sleeping area, where they can fall asleep quickly and easily.

7. Mentally Challenge Them

Everyone needs some mental stimulation every once in a while, and that’s just as true for your dog. Without it, they could get bored quickly and easily. With a few mental challenges, though, you can avoid that quickly and easily. You don’t have to put much time and work into achieving this.

Puzzle toys are one of the easiest ways of doing this, but you can also try playing new games with them. With a little effort, you’ll both be mentally challenged and having fun before you know it.

8. Wash Their Things

Your dog will have a few belongings. A bed, toys, and bowl are the most obvious of these, and you’ll pick them up before even getting your dog. As important as these are to your dog’s safe space, you shouldn’t just put the belongings there and let them be. You’ll need to give them a wash every once in a while.

If you don’t, dirt and bacteria can build up and eventually make your dog or your family sick. It’ll only take a few minutes to do and doesn’t need much effort. You can even put their cushion and bed in the washing machine to make it easier.

9. Give Playtime A Purpose

You’ll play with your dog quite a bit, which is always a good thing. Don’t do it without having a purpose, though. With a purpose, you can use playtime to help train them and get them used to different things, especially with puppies. By touching their feet and toys, for example, you get them used to these being touched.

That’ll make cutting their nails much easier whenever you need to do it. By thinking of a purpose with all your playtime activities, you and your pet will have fun while still helping to train them. It’s a win/win.

10. Add Variety To Exercise

You’ll naturally have a routine with your dog, especially when it comes to exercise. Walking them at the same time every day is recommended, but that doesn’t mean they can’t get bored if it’s the same thing all the time. Adding some variety to what you do with them is recommended.

It keeps them more interested and mentally engaged in what they’re doing. It’ll also make them happier in the long-term while fighting boredom. Mentally challenging them is great for this, but it’s always worth adding different exercises and walking routes to their walks. Variety is the spice of life, after all, so make sure to have some.

First-Time Dog Parents: Wrapping Up

First-time dog parents have a lot to worry about. They’ll have to get their home ready for their furry family member while knowing how to look after them. Don’t be overwhelmed or stressed by it, though. With the right tips for first-time dog owners, it’ll be easier than you’d think.

Add in some patience, and you wouldn’t have a problem taking proper care of your furry family member.

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