5 Things New Dog Parents Should Know

Bringing home a new dog is exciting and the beginning of a great friendship. If you are new to being a dog parent, there are a few things you should know beforehand, so you are not scrambling at the last minute or taken by surprise. 

Preparing for your new dog will make the transition easier and help set a solid foundation for years to come. 

Finding a veterinarian as soon as possible

You may want to consider finding a veterinarian before you even get a dog. It is always a good idea to take a new pet to the vet for an examination. 

Calling around to different veterinarian clinics to compare prices and ask about their recommendations for your specific breed of dog will give you a feel for them. Finding a clinic you can trust is crucial, which may take some time. 

Thankfully, you can read reviews online about vet clinics to help decide if one might be better suited for your needs than others. This isn’t something you want to take lightly. If you have an emergency with your dog, you want to know that you can count on your veterinarian for the best possible care. 

A healthy diet and feeding are essential

Learning what a healthy diet looks like for your specific dog is essential for a long and happy life for your furry friend. Most commercial foods contain by-products, potatoes, and grains rather than ingredients promoting good health. 

Your dog’s diet should be tailored to your dog’s breed, age, and activity level. If you are unsure what to feed your dog, you can always talk to your veterinarian. 

Some things you want to consider when purchasing dog food are what ingredients are used, where they come from, where the food was made, and what a serving size looks like for your dog. If your dog eats too quickly, he may suffer from vomiting, bloating, or digestive issues. In order for your dog to find food hidden in the feeder, you should use a snuffle mat to stimulate irritated noses, gums, and tongues. It slows down his eating speed, as well as improving his instinctive sense of animal instinct.

Working out a feeding schedule is also important for your new dog. You don’t want to use the free feed method; this can lead to weight problems. Feeding your dog at the same time every day also helps to keep an eye on their appetite, regulate bathroom times, and is an excellent time to incorporate some training into their day.

Making your home pet-proof is essential

Keeping your dog safe is essential, and one of the easiest ways to do that is to pet-proof your home. This is important for dogs of any age, especially if you are bringing a puppy home. You want to protect them and your possessions.

Before you bring your dog into your home, some things to consider are buying baby gates to block off rooms from the dog, covering electrical outlets and putting electrical cords up or having them blocked off so your dog doesn’t risk being electrocuted, especially if they chew. 

You may also want to consider getting baby locks for bathroom, and kitchen cabinets, purchasing a garbage can lock, getting rid of clutter, and closing doors to rooms you don’t want them in. 

A crate might be a good idea, especially if the dog is left alone for a few hours. Puppies can destroy your home and possibly injure themselves in the process. If you have a female dog in heat, being in a crate will contain their bloody discharge to one area. Crate training may seem tedious, but eventually, your dog will come around. Image

Knowing the stages of a dog’s life can prevent problems

As your dog ages, it’s important to adjust how you take care of them so you can help to prevent age-related diseases. Knowing what to expect can help to take the guesswork out of what to expect with your dog. Different breeds of dogs may reach a stage in their life earlier or later than other breeds, but this is a general guideline. 

Puppy- from the time it is born until it can reproduce, your dog is considered a puppy, and this time frame can vary depending on the breed of the dog. 

Junior- Your dog is similar to a teenager here. They may be able to reproduce, but they haven’t finished growing yet. This age is usually from 6 months to a year. But how long do dogs stay in heat? It’s important that you know that, since female dogs can produce bloody discharge during heat. 

Adult- When your dog has finished growing and is behaving like an adult dog, they have reached this stage. Again, it varies with breeds, but the adult stage can happen around the 1-year mark. 

Mature- A mature dog is like a middle-aged person; this happens after they have turned 7. You will notice your dog is much more relaxed and not as high energy as it was in its previous stages. 

Senior- This stage depends on the life expectancy of your dog’s breed, but it is the last few years of your dog’s life. Your pooch will slow down quite a bit, and you may notice they will start having many more health concerns. 

Planning different daily activities benefit pet parents as well as pets

Finding activities that benefit your dog and you are part of the fun of being a dog owner. Going for daily walks is a great way to get out and exercise your dog and get your steps in. Even better if you can hit some trails to spend some time in nature.
You can find your local dog park if you are a social person. This will give you a chance to connect with other dog owners, as well as socialize your dog. You may even get invited to a dog party. 

Training your dog on a daily basis is a terrific way to bond with them. This is excellent for building trust and ensuring you have a well-behaved dog. 

You can even book a vacation to take your dog on. We all need to get away from time to time, so why not take your pup with you instead of leaving them behind in a kennel.