The day is finally here! You and your family have been planning and preparing for this day for what seems like forever. You have found a reputable breeder or rescue group. You have lined up a veterinarian, as well as potential dog sitters. You have picked out names, puppy proofed the home, researched all necessary supplies, invested in a crate and a high-quality puppy food. You are ready to bring home your new puppy. What could possibly go wrong?  Hahaha!  Murphys Law – whatever can go wrong, will go wrong!!

Puppies are babies. They don’t know right from wrong. All they have known prior to you, is their mom and their litter mates. It is up to you to teach them. Patience and consistency are key ingredients in helping these new family members learn and acclimate to their new home. But no matter how much planning or preparing you do, that puppy is going to get into mischief. Puppies are never intentionally bad or destructive. They are curious and energetic and learning takes time, and sometimes a little maturity as well. Like infants, puppies don’t have any planning or thought to their actions. They see something that looks fun to grab and chew, so that is what they do. They also don’t have great bladder and bowel control. As they grow, and you develop a consistent schedule, with lots of positive reinforcement, they usually figure out the whole house-training thing.

Other things to consider are having a good ID tag on your dog in case they get lost. I recommend the Apple Air Tag and pet collar which allows you to track your dog. You can track your dog’s exact location with your iPhone. Also consider an emergency plan. Living on the coast can sometimes lead to necessary evacuations. Have a place to go that allows you to bring your pup so that they don’t get separated from you and your family during this stressful time. Have a pet first aid kit handy and know the location of the nearest 24-hour veterinary clinic. Make sure the fence in your yard is secure and high enough that your puppy can’t leap over it. Make sure that you never leave young children unattended with your pup for their safety as well as the puppy’s safety. Give your puppy plenty of exercise and provide them with opportunities to play and burn off energy. Give them plenty of mental stimulation as well. Remember, a tired puppy is a good puppy.

Puppies require a lot of time, attention, and love. Be prepared to spend a lot of time playing, training and bonding with your new little bundle of energy. In my opinion, time spent with an adorable puppy, is the most enjoyable time there is. So, cherish this time, because it is so fleeting. They just don’t stay puppies very long.

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