It is always an exciting time when you are preparing for the arrival of your new dog or puppy. Different preparations are needed according to the type and size of the house you live in. Special care is needed specially if there are children and other pets. The size and breed of your dog will determinate as well some of the settings around the house and needed accessories. You want to ensure safety and security of your family and your new dog.
We live in a apartment of 79m2, with three rooms and a glassed balcony. Besides the two of us, we have three cats. You can see in the post How to prepare a home with cats for a dog preparations related to the cats. Below I will share with you the different changes made around the house.
We bought a baby gate from IKEA for the room where Lukas would be in the beginning. Since Lukas is a middle size dog (height 45 cm), a normal baby gate worked just fine.
Why a baby gate? We needed to place our new dog in a confined area where we could control his peeing area for the first two days, until we would get to know him better. In the case of puppies this normally takes longer, until your puppy is used to pee in a small area. Since we have cats, the baby gate was very helpful for the first moments of introduction. The cats and the dog got to see each other through the gate and approach the gate without being worried of possible chases.
How about the room/area (e.g. a dog pen) where the dog or puppy will be? How can you ensure safety of your new puppy by minimizing all possible hazards? A simple non specific list can be seen below:
- take away all possible small objects which the puppy can chew, this includes electrical cords. Instead, offer plenty of chewing toys keeping your puppy busy, for gum improvement and stress relieve.
- if you have book shelves, you can place protective doors or boxes.
- spray any chair legs and lower furniture with proper taste deterrent spray to avoid chewing.
- remove all breakable objects from benches and tables, this include food that your puppy could be interested in and your Tv remote control!
- remove any indoor plants for the time being until you learn which ones are safe and non toxic.
- remove indoor blind or curtains as the puppy will love to play with these.
All the setting placed have worked for the type of apartment and furniture we have. If you have a house with indoors stairs further care needs to be thought of to prevent your puppy from falling down the stairs. This can as well be achieved with a baby gate, until you have trained your puppy to go up and down the stairs.
As regards to rescued dogs extra care might be needed, specially if your dog is afraid of noises and movement around the house. During the first weeks in the new home, a quiet and peaceful place in the house is recommended until you gradually expose your rescued dog to new sounds and movements.