Today we're going talk about what to do when you bring home your new
puppy. We'll cover everything from supplies and preparation steps, to the
car ride home, the first few days, how to introduce him or her to your
family, and more.

Before you bring your puppy home, prepare yourself with the following
supplies: premium puppy food to get your new puppy off to a good start,
stainless steel nonstick food and water bowls, identification tags with your
puppy's name and your contact information, a collar, and a leather or nylon
six-foot leash that's one half to three quarter inches wide. Stain remover
for accidents, brushes and combs suited to your puppy's coat, dog shampoo,
toothbrush, and toothpaste.

High quality safe chew toys to ease teething, flea, tick, and parasite controls.
Nail clippers, a room, or at least a place he can all his own, like a cage or a
crate that will fit his adult size. And of course, treats.

Once you have the supplies, it's time to puppy proof your home. Raising a
puppy is a lot like raising small children. They get into everything. Some of
what they get into can be hazardous to their health, so start preparing for
your puppy's arrival long before the actual date. You'll thank yourself later.

A helpful tip: get down on your hands and knees to view the world like your
puppy will. It may help you to find things that you wouldn't have seen
otherwise-- electrical wires, small objects hidden under couches and chairs
that can be swallowed, or hiding spaces where a small pup can get stuck.
There are sprays that can be applied to furniture legs, woodwork, and other
movable items to help deter your puppy from chewing on things you don't
want him to chew on.

Are there rooms your puppy should be restricted from entering until he's
better trained and more reliable? If so, install a baby gate, or keep the
doors to those rooms closed until your puppy matures.

Exercise pens are excellent for you when you're home but busy or unable to
fully dedicate yourself to supervising your young pup. If you're about to
make dinner, for example, rather than crating your dog or locking him in a
puppy proof room alone, set up an exercise pen in the kitchen with you. This
will allow him to get used to being around your family's routines, while also
staying out of the way. It will also allow him to feel like he's part of the
family.

Once your house is ready, it's time to bring your new family member home.
You want to do your best at keeping this from being an overly stressful
experience for your puppy. So it may not be the best idea to bring the whole
family, especially if you have excited young kids.

Also, keep in mind that the vibration sounds and the movements of your car
can be very scary for a young pup, and make them nervous. On the first trip
home, it's OK to have a passenger hold your puppy in a soft blanket or towel
on their lap. After the first trip home, you should begin using a crate to
travel for both the dog and the other passenger's safety in the car. Try
purchasing a dog seat belt that's specifically designed to restrain and
protect your companion in case of an accident.

The ideal time to bring home a new puppy is when the house is quiet. Do your
best to minimize the number of visitors stopping by the first few days, so
you can establish a daily routine by following these steps.

Step one, before bringing him in the house, take him to the area in your yard
that will serve as his potty, and spend a few minutes there. If he goes,
praise him. If not, proceed into the house, but be sure to take him to this
spot each time he needs to go to the bathroom.

Step two, take him to the room which will serve as his new den, and if using
one, set up his crate. Put bedding and chew toys in the room, and let him
investigate. If he chews or urinates on his bedding, permanently remove it.
Understand that a young puppy is not like an adult dog. Treat him with
patience and constant supervision.

The way you interact with your puppy at this age is critical to his
socialization. Use these tips. One, you should spend a little extra time with
your new puppy on his first day home, but you want to acclimate him to your
regular routine quickly. If necessary, hire a dog walker, or ask a neighbor to
come take him out at regular intervals during this training period, and, going
forward, as your pup grows up.

Two, supervise your puppy at all times, and interact with him regularly.
Three, be alert for signs, sniffing, and circling, that he has to go to the
bathroom, then take him out immediately.

Four, establish a routine. A young puppy has no bladder control, and will need
to urinate immediately after eating, drinking, sleeping, or playing. At night,
he'll need to relieve himself at least every three hours.

Five, don't punish an accident. Never push his nose in the waste or scold him.
He won't understand, and they learn to go to the bathroom when you're out
of sight.

Six, praise your puppy every time he goes to the bathroom outside. Seven,
feed your puppy a formula designed for puppies. Like a baby, he needs
nutritious, highly digestible food. Eight, have the contact info of your local
veterinary office readily available in case of an emergency.

For those with children, another extremely important part of bringing home
your new puppy is making sure your kids know how and how not to handle a
young dog. If your children are young, or aren't familiar with how to handle
puppies, you need to spend some time with them during these first few days
explaining common sense rules on how to play with the puppy.

For example, tell them that dogs have sensitive hearing, so it's important not
to shriek or yell. Puppies in particular need a lot of rest, just like a growing
child. Limit puppy-children play sessions to 15 to 30 minute periods, 2-3
times a day.

You need to keep an eye on a puppy. An excited puppy can be strong when he
jumps and play bites, which can be too rough for young children. Always
supervise interaction, and separate them if play is too rough.

If you have other pets, you'll also need to spend some time getting them
used to having each other around. At first, it's best to keep resident pets
separated from your new puppy, but only for a few days. After that time, let
pets smell and touch each other through a slightly open door. Do this several
times over the next few days.

After that, give the resident pet access to the den area with your new puppy.
Supervise their meeting, and go back to through-the-door meetings if
trouble arises. Exercise pens can also help old and new pets get used to each
other's presence in a restricted and safe manner.

Lastly, what you'll need to do is get the puppy into a veterinarian for an
initial puppy examination to make sure he's in perfect health.
Info courtsey of Iams Dog Food