Forming a strong bond with your new dog will take time, but you want to start the process on a positive paw, so to speak. A little preparation before bringing your dog home will go far in helping your pup makes the adjustment smoothly.
Timing is Everything
Consider adopting when you have time to spend a few days with your new pet, which can ease the adjustment period. Be prepared for jealousy if you have other pets at home already. Meet with your family beforehand to designate doggie duties – who will walk, feed, and care for him? This is an opportune time to establish house rules pertaining to discipline and training of the dog, too.
Welcome Home Wagon
No wagon is necessary, but the right supplies certainly are. Beyond toys, a leash, and a collar, you’ll need food and water, which you should introduce your pet to right away – they’ll likely be thirsty after the stressful ride home! If you’re not sure what food the dog prefers, then get a couple of small bags to try out before investing too much. If you’re planning to crate your dog let him know where it is, and don’t be surprised if a shy dog primarily stays there for the first few days.
The Potty Works
Now, it’s possible that your new friend relieved himself before you came inside, but take time to introduce them to their official ‘potty zone.’ It’s not unusual for house trained dogs to have accidents when moving to a new home, so be patient with him and establish a set a routine for walks.
The First Few Days After Bringing Fido Home
Try to keep things around the house as quiet and calm as possible, especially if your dog seems intimidated or outright scared. Some dogs take to their new surroundings right away while others may take as long as two months to get comfortable. If your dog seems ready, introduce him to the art of playtime!
Get to the Vet
Do take time to make an appointment with a veterinarian fairly quickly after bringing your dog home so you can have a checkup, get any necessary vaccinations, and purchase heartworm and flea treatments if you haven’t already.
Most importantly, make your new dog feel loved by spending as many hours together as possible having fun and bonding.