When you bring a new puppy or dog home and you plan on keeping it inside most of the time you are going to have to puppy proof your home. Otherwise you may return to a disaster after being gone for work or a night out. Here are some tips to help.
Before you bring your dog home remove anything at ground level you want to keep. This can include shoes, game controllers, lamp cords or anything that is below a 4 foot level. The reason for this is because your dog will think that anything in its reach is a toy, worth eating or chewing up into shreds. Any paper, magazines, clothes or other normal objects that people have in their home should be put up on a shelf or placed inside a closed closet. There is no getting around this because if you leave your dog unattended inside your home it will surely get separation anxiety and start to chew, tear or shred anything in its reach.
Make sure that lower level cabinets have child-proof latches on them and never leave cabinets that contain cleaning solutions or furniture wax open after each use. Even if you plan on leaving your dog outside when you leave you will still have to keep an eye on it when you are home. Make sure that you reward good behavior with a treat or lots of loving attention and bad behavior with a stern “NO”. You shouldn’t beat or injure your pet but a medium swat on the rump or nose with a loosely rolled paper will help in getting the dogs attention.
If you find yourself in a situation where the dog has destroyed something then it is time to think about things. Is this your fault for leaving your $100.00 shoes in reach of your pet? You shouldn’t punish your pet if it is obviously your fault but you can hold the destroyed item in front of them while repeating “NO, BAD DOG” a few times. This will make your dog understand that certain items are off limits and you won’t have to spend up to a year or more in jail for animal abuse. Yes, it does happen if someone reports you for abuse.
Make sure your dog knows where its food and water is and make sure that there is plenty of food and water available for your pet at all times. When you feed your pet make sure to tell them that they are good and it is OK to eat and drink from their bowls. Positive reinforcement goes a long way with a pet and over time your pet will learn what is acceptable and what USN not around your household. Make sure your pet also understands that bathroom time is for outside and not on the carpet or wood/tile floors. If your pet does go to the bathroom in the house make sure there is a designated area for the pet and scold them mildly if they go elsewhere in the house.
Play with your pet. Show them attention and that you love them. Pets are not disposable creatures merely for your entertainment. They are living, feeling beings that need to know that they are accepted and in a dogs case that they are “part of the pack. If an animal feels neglected or abused it will surely act out its aggressions on anything available or it will always be scared and lethargic. Emotionally animals are no different than people. They feel sad and alone at times and need to know that things are OK. If you work during the day make sure you keep a regular schedule so that over time your pet can expect to see you at certain times. This will help them adjust to how things are at your home and they too will develop a schedule of playing and sleeping to pass the time.
If you do not plan on being a responsible pet owner then you should not have a pet. Make sure you set enough money aside for the pets needs such as food, treats and medical visits. The pet has the same needs as a human when it comes to health. Pets will get infections, parasites and bug bites and may need medical attention from a professional. In these cases it is best to take care of the problem immediately before it gets worse or the pet dies from a serious condition. Neglect is also a crime and people that care about animals will report other people that don’t. If you have too many pets this can also cause problems.
If you know of someone that abuses animals you should report them immediately. Animal abuse is a crime and so is neglect. People who abuse and neglect animals are not responsible pet owners and deserve to be punished and the animals deserve a better life and home. Always report pet abuse to the proper authorities.