When a family decides to adopt a puppy, there’s typically nobody happier than the kids. They’ll likely spend summers playing into the evening and school breaks ruining leaf piles.
Before your kids can start making memories, however, preparing for a new puppy and understanding your kids role in it should be discussed.
They need to be prepared for the challenges and responsibilities that come with raising a pet. Help them understand that it’s important to take ownership of these responsibilities all throughout the dog’s life. You can help prepare kids for a puppy ahead of time to ensure a smooth transition once they’re introduced.
Tips on Preparing For a New Puppy
Once you have decided that you are ready for a new pup, the first step is to get them a pet insurance to help cover veterinary visits throughout your puppy’s life. Then the next important step is to prepare your home. Make it puppy proof by securing things in cabinets, removing toxic plants from places that your puppy can access, and keeping away wires within their reach.
This includes setting up a space for the puppy to sleep, as well as preparing food and water bowls and a place for potty training. You will also need to purchase some supplies, such as a collar, leash, dog bed, puppy food and baby gates (if you have a small child). Additionally, if you got teething puppies, you may also want to prepare toys and training treats.
When all this is done, talk to your family members particularly your kids to prepare them for the new pup. Explain the responsibilities that come with owning a pet. Make sure they understand what’s expected of them before you bring the puppy home.
Let your kids choose a name for the new puppy. This can be a fun way to get them excited about bringing the puppy home.
Once you’ve chosen a name, teach your kids how to call the puppy by its name so it knows who they are.
Teach Them the Dos and Don’ts
Puppies can be balls of energy, and, like children, this can be a destructive force. You’re wise to set boundaries on where and when your kids can play with a puppy, and even how they play.
Too much roughhousing may undo the progress you make trying to train your dog and could make him rambunctious.
It’s important that they know how to be gentle with the new pup. Show them how to pet it under the chin or on the back, and explain that they should never pull its tail or ears.
When preparing for a new dog, set out clear rules before it comes to your home. These might include avoiding the bed as a playing area, staying off the furniture and keeping certain rugs free of dog hair or dirt.
Assign Chores Ahead of Time
Having a pet isn’t all fun and games, this is why preparing for a new puppy is not as easy as it may sound like.
Cleaning up poo, taking the puppy for a walk, feeding it, giving it baths and grooming it are all intrinsic parts of pet ownership that everyone, including kids, must take part in.
Setting aside how valuable this might be for bonding, it also helps to take the load off of tired and burned-out parents.
One of the important steps in preparing for a new puppy is to assign chores based on your child’s age.
Younger children might be able to help pick up after the dog and groom it, while older children can take it for walks and to the vet for checkups.
Consider creating a schedule and dividing the chores up for every family member. Kids should know when it’s time to feed the dog, walk it, and give it water. Every couple of days a different person can handle the basic tasks, and everyone can help out with larger chores, like bathing.
Have Hands-On Training Sessions
Training your new puppy can be a challenging but rewarding experience. But you don’t need to do it alone! Preparing for a new puppy with the help of professionals can lessen your burden. If you plan to bring your puppy to a training class or hire a trainer, have your entire family participate.
After all, your kids will need to control your puppy’s unruly behavior and it will need to learn to be obedient.
Get them involved and ask the trainer to teach them as you learn.
Follow through at home with exercises and practice. If your kids are disinterested or inconsistent, create a rewards system that motivates them to train the puppy and keep attending puppy training sessions.
Adopting a puppy is a rewarding venture for the whole family. While parents are likely excited and happy to have such an energetic addition to the family, children are often the most thrilled at the adoption of a new pet.
Of course, preparing for a new puppy is an important step in the process, and getting kids ready can make the process much less stressful.
You can avoid even more stress by adopting your new puppy from a reputable source. At Pride and Prejudoodles, we connect you with the best puppies, hand-picked by our team. For more information on adopting a furry friend, contact us!