Introducing the new dog to your home is an exciting time of change and new beginnings. It’s also a time that warrants care and reflection. Your new canine companion is likely feeling pretty stressed under all the recent life changes they’ve experienced, so you want to get this initial step just right. Take a look at these eight tips to ensure both you and your new pup have a positive homecoming experience.
1. Focus on giving off calm, positive energy.
It’s tempting to show how excited you are when you first get your new dog. After all, you’re bringing a new member into your family! However, be respectful of the fact that your new pooch is being taken from a somewhat familiar environment to completely new surroundings. Too much squealing, jumping or affection can cause more anxiety than excitement for your little one.
2. Be assertive!
Dogs are pack animals by instinct, and will challenge your dominance to hash out where in the “pack” they belong. You need to show a certain amount of assertiveness if you want them to learn right from wrong. If she’s already beginning to nip at your hands or gnaw on your car’s seatbelts on the ride home, try starting with simple finger snaps or a stern “No.” Again, you want to exude positive energy to show you’re her friend, but you also need to start off letting her know that certain things are not okay.
3. Go for a stroll around the neighborhood.
When you get home, take your pup for a walk around your neighborhood or apartment complex. This allows her to sniff out her new turf, let out any of her extra energy and relieve herself before she goes into the house.
4. Welcome your new pup into your home.
Finally, the moment you’ve all been waiting for — time for introducing the new dog to your home, and her home now as well. The first step into her new home is crucial in terms of how she may respond to training later on. Make your pooch wait just outside the door as you enter the home first. This demonstrates that this is your space, and you are allowing her to enter. If you allow her to run in immediately without waiting for you, she might think that this is her turf where anything goes, from chewing on the blinds to scratching up the carpet.
5. Give her the grand tour.
Once you’ve entered your home, keep her on the leash as you guide her from room to room. Again, make her wait at the threshold of each room so that you can enter first.
6. Keep stimulation to a minimum.
While you’re giving her a tour of her new abode, continue to remain calm and positive without overstimulating her. She’s overwhelmed as it is, so keep the chatter to a minimum. Again, if she starts misbehaving, sternly chastise her with a firm snap or sound.
7. Show her the dining area.
When you come to the section of the house with her food and water dishes, let her know they belong to her by allowing her to have some water and a few kibbles of food. Keep it to a minimum though since she’s still on her leash.
8. Introduce your little one to her new living quarters.
When you’re bringing a new pet into your home, it’s always wise to set aside a special place that’s just for them. This can be a sizeable crate, an area sectioned off with a baby gate or even a whole room. This provides them with a sense of comfort and security, and it provides you with a place to keep them if you need to keep them away from the rest of the house for a time. Show her this is her space by letting her off her leash to sniff around and hang out. Lay out a few treats and a few toys, and gently reward her when she is behaving well.
Lastly, congratulations on your newfound best friend! We hope these tips help make introducing the new dog to your home a smoother and more enjoyable endeavor. If you ever need to take your pet on a move or a trip with you, contact our expert pet movers here at Pet Van Lines.