You can compare first getting a puppy to that of when you are thinking of having a child. People say that is exaggerating, but it is a lot of responsibility that you are going to have to be prepared for to provide a good home for the puppy. You will need a variety of things, ranging from toys and food, all of the way up to cleaning materials. If you want your new puppy to maintain a healthy lifestyle, you need to be the one that is prepared mentally and financially. The last thing you want to happen is find out you are not ready for it when it is already too late and the puppy has become attached to you and your family.

What Equipment Will I Need?

The first thing the new puppy is going to need is an area that they can have to themselves. This can be a crate, which is a great choice for training the new pup as well. Your best bet would be to buy one that is already larger, that way you won’t have to buy another one when the dog gets bigger. Plus, it will give the dog plenty of room at night when they are confined to the crate until they prove they’re obedient. You are also going to need toys, food, bowls for water/food, a leash & collar, and any other kind of training equipment that is necessary. This can mean potty pads and things of that nature if you are going to be housetraining the pup.

Taking Them Home In The Car

Obviously different puppies are going to react differently to that first car ride home. But, there are some things you can do to ease them into it and be prepared yourself. Many people are under the impression that dogs don’t like the motion, when in fact that is usually not the case. They have anxiety about all of the things going on in the car, which causes them to be extremely tentative and cautious. Try your best to ensure that the first trip they take in a car doesn’t end up being a bad one. Take it slow and be alert while you are driving. If this drive home is a bad one, they can end up developing a bad taste for cars for the rest of their lives.

Potty time is something that you should try and take care of before you leave the place where you are getting the puppy. Although it is not recommended to hold a puppy, you can have someone with you that can hold it while you are driving. This person can also try and keep the puppy occupied during the ride and snuggle up with them to keep them calm. The travel distance can play a huge role in the grand scheme of things. If you are going a long distance, you want to stop and let the dog relieve themselves. We always recommend to not use a truck stop or anything like that. They are disease filled. The dog has yet to have protection from these diseases.

After You Make It Home

Next, comes the part where you finally get home. The puppy is going to be nervous and still hold some of that anxiety. After all, this is a new place to them. It would help if you can ensure that you will be there for the first couple of days at least. This may mean that you are taking some time off of work. But, it will work wonders. If you have children, they can be a great way to keep the puppy occupied during this housebreaking process. It can also give the children time to get used to handling the puppy properly. Essentially, you would be teaching your puppy and your children at the same time. It is important to have everyone in the house on the same page as far as the care of the puppy, this includes the younger family members.

What Should I Feed The Puppy?

You will find that when you feed the puppy plays a major role in their health as well as what you feed them. Most of the time, you can figure out what the puppy was eating before they got to your home from the dog breeder or kennel person. Sticking with this kind of food for a short transition of a few days at least will be a great step forward. Then you can slowly start to make the transition over to the food that you had in mind. If you are not sure what to feed your puppy as they get a bit older, you can always ask your local veterinarian for some suggestions.

Usually, the 3 week mark is when puppies are going to make the jump and start eating regular dog food. A lot of breeders will start the puppies on a food regiment that is not their mother’s milk by this age. Although it can take a few days more for toy puppies and smaller breeds. A good idea if you have a puppy around this age would be to soak the dry food in warm water for about half an hour, and then give it to them. Don’t be worried if you find your puppy doesn’t like what you have the first time around. It make take them some getting used to. If your puppy doesn’t eat after a few days and shows no signs of eating anytime soon, it may be time to consult a professional.

The breeders tend to wean the puppies off of the dry soaked food until eventually it is just dry food. Often times the puppies that are fed like this are going to show less problems down the road, and tend to grow faster too. Puppy owners that are beyond this point and have made it to dry food, should stick with a brand that makes sense for puppies. Like suggested before, ask your vet which suggestions they have. You can also read up and do some of the research yourself before buying your puppy food. Just ensure that it is food that is made for puppies, not adult dogs.

Here Comes The Vet Visit

You should be taking your new puppy to the vet as soon as you can. This way you can take the information that you got from the breeder about medical records or any of that, and find out what you have to get done and when. You will also be making sure that your dog is still in good health. This is also a good time to ask any questions that you may have about the puppy or raising it. More often than not, veterinarians are more than happy to talk to you about this kind of stuff.