Things To Know About Dog Adoption

Remember, you are taking your puppy or dog home to a new environment. Depending on the animal's individual personality, it may "waltz right in" and feel right at home, or it may be nervous and somewhat fearful of its new environment. Be patient. Offer it all the support and comfort you can to aid in its adjustment to its new home. It may take no time, or it may take days or even weeks to complete the adjustment and for everyone to feel comfortable.

A puppy is an immature dog and requires a higher level of nourishment than an adult dog in order to develop properly. Therefore, it is highly recommended and preferable that a puppy be fed a food specifically formulated for their age and level of maturity (at least from 6 weeks to 1 year). There are many name-brand pet food manufacturers that produce puppy food, such as Purina and Pedigree, as well as several premium producers, such as Hill's, Eukanuba, Iam's and others. Feeding your puppy the highest quality food will give it the nourishment it needs to grow into a healthy adult dog.

Puppies, and several adult dog breeds, are very playful and can be destructive. It is imperative that you provide appropriate toys and diversions to avoid the disaster of damage to your valuable possessions. Most important are "chew toys"....some dogs prefer hard toys, such as sterilized bones, baseballs or rawhide, and some prefer soft toys, as simple as a knotted sock or rubber bone. You'll avoid many potential pitfalls and disappointments if you make sure your new friend is provided with appropriate forms of entertainment, particularly if he is left alone for any period of time and thereby forced to "entertain himself."

Although dogs are not declawed like some cats, their claws do grow and require an occasional "pedicure." This can be done at home with a good quality trimmer (available at pet stores or by mail order), or if the dog is less that cooperative, you may need to take it to a professional groomer or to your veterinarian for this procedure. It is important to the comfort and skeletal health of your canine friend that the length of his claws be kept under control.

Canines benefit from living a scheduled and disciplined lifestyle. They need the security of knowing that they will be let out morning and night, fed at the same time of day, every day, a consistent diet (table scraps are not recommended, as they promote a "beggar" and a fat, unhealthy dog), have a supply of fresh water always available, and an area in the home that they can call their own. A special rug or blanket will often suffice, although if you prefer to give them a place on the bed or sofa, they probably won't turn it down.

Discipline is important. Believe it or not, dogs are much happier when they understand what is expected of them. Whether trained in a professional atmosphere or by you at home (The Koehler Method is highly recommended: book available at Barnes & Noble), both your canine companion and you will be happier in your relationship.

The most important thing to give your new puppy or dog is love. Show your new friend patience, understanding and love, and you will receive a lifetime of pleasure, devotion and unconditional love in return.


 
   

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