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Things you wish you'd known as a new puppy/dog owner

(28 Posts)
AnotherBun Thu 23-Aug-18 23:18:50

Hello

We are hopefully adding four new legs to our family soon, and while we will be prepared practically in terms of equipment etc, I wondered if you could share your wisdom and experiences of smoothly transitioning a dog in to your home with as little upset for them as possible?

(Cute puppy pics as a thank you to follow all being well!)

OP’s posts: |
TheTimeThief Fri 24-Aug-18 00:13:36

Start as you mean to go on. So if you're not going to let the dog jump on the sofa don't pick it up to sit on the sofa with you. Sit on the floor with pup on your lap. Don't let it jump up. Don't feed it treats from your plate. All mistakes I made the first time and haven't repeated since! Be calm and consistent and it will be fine smile

butcherswife Fri 24-Aug-18 14:41:57

I agree with TimeThief consistency is key and don't let that cute puppy face fool you otherwise (easily done, I know) and just to really invest in training with your dog, preferably at a good puppy class.

missbattenburg Fri 24-Aug-18 15:01:44

Patience, patience, more patience.

And remember "this too will pass" when it feels like they will never stop trying to chew electrical cables or escaping out the front door or digging the garden.

All sorts of behaviours came out in Battendog, lasted for a few days then vanished again with only gentle input from me.

Training should be fun. If you (or the dog) is not having fun - get out of that class, regardless of how much you paid for it. If it's not fun, it's not working.

Get them off lead as soon as possible. When they are young they will not run away and it instills such good habits in them.

Don't think they have to play with every dog to be socialised. I let battendog play far too much and he now thinks every dog he sees is a potential play mate. It's taken such effort to get him to focus back on my when there's another dog about.

Take a ton of photos and videos because they are little for such a very short period of time. They grow before your eyes.

You have time. Yes, the socialisation period is important and it's easier to introduce new things when he is young but it is not the end of the world if you haven't ticked everything off before 16 weeks. The dog is still capable of learning after that point and so it doesn't matter if he's not met every type of farm animal or if he doesn't like bath time. Just take it slow and steady and don't panic about not getting everything done in the first few weeks.

Enjoy their puppyhood. Yes, puppies can be annoying and stressful sometimes but, again, they are not like it forever. I should have laughed more and worried less smile.

AnotherBun Fri 24-Aug-18 20:03:27

Sounds a lot like having a baby MBB!

We are off to see a litter on Sunday so fingers crossed one is suitable for us!

OP’s posts: |
Dorfl Fri 24-Aug-18 20:24:56

Just like having a baby! Be prepared for sleepless nights while the pup adjusts to sleeping without its Mum and litter mates. A hot water bottle warmed and wrapped in a blanket can help. We also used a ticking clock placed close by the pup's bed so it sounds a bit like a heartbeat x

greatandpowerfulozma Fri 24-Aug-18 20:53:40

Be prepared for the “teenage phase” which is from about 6 to 12 months (i think it varies breed to breed but roughly that time frame). They will try to push the boundaries and will seem to forget all the training you did with them as puppies. They run away a lot on walks and generally drive you mad. It does end!! Then they calm down and become the lovely dog you wanted... at least that happened to us. I was so glad our trainer warned us of this phase because it stopped me giving up and I’m so glad I didn’t give up now.

TooManyPuppies Fri 24-Aug-18 22:24:27

That it's best to get an older dog and not do the puppy stage at all. I find puppies and kittens cute from a distance but never again!!!

thegardenfairy Mon 27-Aug-18 17:10:37

Take pup out and introduce it to as many new situations as possible before 14 weeks old

GertrudeCB Mon 27-Aug-18 17:12:55

To just let him sleep upstairs from the get-go.
9 months of disturbed sleep for me and DH 😌😌😴

apostropheuse Mon 27-Aug-18 17:19:22

That Labradors are pups for a VERY long time. Ours is just turned two and is still a complete zoomer. I have to say, though, I've never met a more loving and loveable dog. He's particularly handsome too, obviously. wink

CleverQuacks Mon 27-Aug-18 20:33:13

Remember that the hard puppy days will pass. My puppy is now 5 months and she is already a lot easier than she was (she sleeps through the night, toilets outside, comes back on walks etc) but when she was new and didn’t do any of those things it felt like it would never improve.

alwaysiero Tue 28-Aug-18 09:52:52

Patience and more patience. Training is fun, for both of you. Take advice from a canine nutritionist and feed the best food you can (saves on vet bills in the long run) Find a reliable dog walker/pet sitter that your pup loves so you can still have a life. Puppyhood doesn’t last forever!

Hoppinggreen Tue 28-Aug-18 09:57:29

Puppies are arseholes, they look cute so we don’t hate them.
It’s ok to occasionally hate them and think “ what the fuck have I done?”
as long as you are properly meeting their needs.
Also, they can’t help being arseholes, they don’t do it to annoy you and they really do love you and want to please you ( mostly)
As well as starting as you mean to go on you need to constantly revisit and re enforce training

missbattenburg Tue 28-Aug-18 10:08:05

Forget everything I said. Puppies are arseholes is much more accurate grin

Loubilou09 Tue 28-Aug-18 10:38:15

I wish I had known about antlers with my first dog. Read about them on here and they have been a godsend with the new puppy.

Cath2907 Tue 28-Aug-18 11:12:07

ALWAYS or NEVER - dogs don't cope well with conditional. So if you don't want them on the sofa then never let them on the sofa, ditto with upstairs, on the bed, being fed at the table, etc..

snowone Tue 28-Aug-18 11:31:12

That it's bloody well hard work! That you have to be a team and have the same rules / boundaries! That it's very similar to having a baby that can move! That a raw diet is amazing and is absolutely the best way you can feed your dog! Good luck

lucieloops88 Tue 28-Aug-18 18:53:46

Do not teach your dog to 'say please' - ie bark! Worst idea ever as you wouldn't be able to tell them off for barking everytime they want attention as they're just doing what you've taught them! So many people think it's a cute idea... confused

missyB1 Tue 28-Aug-18 18:57:16

Not to be so anxious about it all! I panicked about recall, I panicked that she was too friendly and annoying people, I panicked that she was stubborn. All of those things resolved themselves as she matured. She’s two now and as easy as pie!
I wish I had been calmer, more confident and just enjoyed it all.

MissShapesMissStakes Wed 29-Aug-18 07:36:55

Great thread and really useful.

We pick up this cutie in a week and I’m so scared now we’ve committed to this! (Also excited)

I will definitely work on being calmer and more confident.

YoureAllABunchOfBastards Wed 29-Aug-18 07:41:14

It's like having a newborn and toddler combined. They will chew ANYTHING. But they give lovely snuggles.

adaline Wed 29-Aug-18 09:47:30

Patience, patience, patience!

All the annoying phases - teething, chewing, toileting indoors, barking at everything - they pass. Ours is seven months now and SO much calmer than he was even 4-5 weeks ago. I think you don't always notice the improvements they make until you look back at how it was!

And invest in classes - and not just for six weeks. Training is something you should be doing for at least a good two years, and even after that, regularly throughout their life. Ours graduated puppy school in July and goes back for his second round of classes in September. I also train him myself at home - we practise sit/stay/lie down, and I teach him tricks too. Regular training tires him out much more than loads of physical exercise (though that's obviously important too).

bpisok Sun 02-Sep-18 18:13:24

@MissShapesMissStakes
Is pup a Westiepoo???

almondsareforevermore Sun 02-Sep-18 20:48:12

Yes to patience. Never lose your temper, my first puppy was so so naughty and being so often mad at her definitely spoiled our relationship.

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