Welcoming a new dog into your home can be a truly rewarding experience. However, it can be a challenge to acclimate them to a new atmosphere with new people. It’s important to go slowly so your dog doesn’t feel overwhelmed. Here are five simple steps to help your new furry friend feel comfortable in their new home.
1. Keep Introductions Short and Sweet
Allow your pup to meet new family members outside before entering your home. Avoid overwhelming them and let them decide how much (or how little!) they want to interact with everyone. Limit new visitors in the first few days so they can become familiar with those living in the home first.
2. Slowly Explore the New Home
Be sure not to rush your pup into the new home. Keep them on their leash when they first arrive and walk in with them. Lead them throughout the home and into each room so they can see and smell everything. This will give your dog a chance to understand his or her new surroundings and become familiar with the home’s scents.
3. Stay Close
Stay by your dog’s side as they explore their new space. Talk gently to them and offer comfort as they need it. Even when you let them off of their leash, be sure not to stray too far. This will help your furry friend feel safe, while also building your bond. Don’t leave for extended periods of time, and when you do leave the home, make sure they are safe and can’t get into anything that’s potentially dangerous.
4. Create a Routine Together
As your new best friend gets settled in, work with them to create a daily routine. Give them many bathroom breaks throughout the day, especially in the beginning. Even previously trained dogs may regress when they are placed in a new environment. Determine when and where you are going to feed them, show them where they will sleep, and take regular walks. This will help the dog understand what to expect each day and provide them with a sense of security.
5. Find Lots of Time to Play
Offer your puppy ample playtime. Provide them with safe, enriching toys. Consider food puzzles or other interactive activities that will challenge them and exercise their minds. Choose tough toys and bones that will hold up against your breed’s level of chewing. Play with your friend, too. Tug of war, fetch, and other collaborative games can help them exercise and release energy.
Transitioning your new pup into your home can be a smooth process, as long as you exercise patience and care. Understand that it’s a big change coming into a new home with new people. Look for queues to see how your dog is adjusting and offer support where you can. Be patient with your new puppy and remember that it’ll take time for them to open up to you and accept their new home.