You’ve researched the different dog breeds to find the best one for you and your family, you’ve taken the time to find out whether the breeder you chose is ethical, and now you’re finally bringing that precious new bundle of joy home. The hard part is over, right? Actually, there are several mistakes that many new puppy owners make that can really turn this joyful time into a frustrating and worrying experience. Avoid these new dog owner mistakes to be sure you and your puppy are off to a great start:
1. Potty training your puppy indoors and then expecting him to automatically go outdoors when he is older. Those nifty potty training pads look an awful lot like nice, plushy rugs to your puppy and he may opt to use your rugs as a toilet spot after you do away with the pads.
2. Giving in to his sad whimpers and tucking him in your bed for the first few nights and then expecting him to sleep on his own in a few days without crying. He’ll just cry louder and longer once he knows what he is missing.
3. Letting your guilty feelings overwhelm you so that you don’t crate train him. Crate training helps keep your puppy safe, since he can’t get into dangerous things when you aren’t watching him if he’s crated. Also, he actually feels more secure when he is crated while no one else is home.
4. Taking your puppy with you when you go out, especially if you are going to a park or pet store. Puppies should be finished with immunizations before they go on outings. Their immune systems are often not fully developed when they are young and they are more susceptible to some of the deadliest dog diseases.
5. Letting your puppy do things that are cute in puppies and not at all cute in full size dogs, such as jumping up on guests. It is easier to curb these behaviors right away than it is to break your adult dog of bad habits.