Puppies are so cute and cuddly!
You just want to kiss their faces off (well, I do any way)!
Puppies haven't learned to know how to tell the difference between fun and danger and will trust and rely heavily on you and your guidance.
Here are 10 safety tips for preparing your home and your family for this wonderful new family member so everyone can make a smooth transition!
1.) Where will your new puppy be using the potty?
If you have a fenced in yard, be sure to check the fencing for any holes/gaps or overlooked damage that could present itself access for either your puppy to escape or other animals or people to intrude.
If you do not have a fenced in yard and plan to walk the puppy on a leash, some sort of baby gait on your door/front porch area is a good idea to help with those potential spare of the moment accidents where the front door gets opened suddenly and puppy bolts out and quickly finds a busy street.
2.) This goes hand in hand with number 1.
Now that you have checked and secured your perimeter, let's look at securing the home your puppy will be in immediate contact with.
Are there any plants in your yard that are considered poisonous to dogs? -
Are there any broken flower pots, trash, or debris (especially anything with sharp edges that could be ingested)? Like toddlers, puppies will put ANYTHING in their mouth. Even some sharp sticks or small things in the dirt, such as old nails could be swallowed and you may not even see them do it.
Swimming pools can pose a threat to young puppies, and all bulldogs in general at any age. A dog may not be able to crawl out of it if they were to fall or jump in.
Bulldogs should never be left alone around deep pools. They do not usually make good swimmers due to their flat faces and short legs which means they can drown easily.
Lastly, does your puppy have access to plenty of shade in your yard? All dogs need to be kept cool in warmer weather, but bulldogs are more susceptible to health issues due to their heat intolerance. Without a way to adequately cool off, they are more likely to suffer from heat exhaustion and heat stroke if left in direct sunlight in just minutes during the warmest time of the day.
3.) Hygiene: Keep Their Environment and Their Items Clean
Multi-dog environments should have a strict routine in place for sanitizing and disinfecting. Dogs can transmit diseases to each other when using the same water bowls and sharing the same potty areas.
Puppies are especially susceptible to contracting diseases/viruses from other older dogs if they have not had all of their puppy vaccinations completed.
Yard spaces should be regularly cleaned of any feces. Water and feed bowls should be washed weekly (if not daily) to avoid any build up of bacteria.
4.) Making Sure Your Dog Is Comfortable
Dogs love dog beds and soft things to lay on.Soft dog beds, blankets, or towels will help your dog not to get those hair worn sore spots on their boney prominences.
Bulldogs may need a little sweater during the winter for when he/she goes outside, and a cooling vest or pad for those warm summer days.
5.) Training: Be Prepared With Rules For Your Puppy
Training is best started on Day 1, but remember that you are also dealing with a Bulldog and Bulldogs are notoriously stubborn so you will have your work cut out for you (think 'toddler', remember?).
Use positive reinforcement and discipline, rather than punishment.
Use rewards for good behavior and forgive your puppy when he makes a mistake. Frenchies especially will feed off of your moods and vibes. If you are irritated with them, and holding a grudge, they will sense that and may act out or struggle more with training due to anxiety.
6.) Prepare Your Family For The New Responsibilities
Who will be providing walks, what are the feeding times, and when is play time?
The puppy may go through a period of crying at night, or when alone do to the changes and separation anxiety. This can be difficult for everyone in the home for a time.
As with everything else, be consistent, and know that if handled well, it is only for a time, and will pass as your puppy starts to feel loved and acceptance in his new home and family.
7.) Veterinarians and Transitioning Vaccination Schedules
It's important to have a trusted veterinarian already lined up to care for your puppy prior to bringing them home.
Like a toddler, your puppy will still have a schedule of vaccinations they will need to receive at certain ages as they continue to grow - many of these are given after the age of 8 - 10 weeks which is when most puppies go to their new homes.
The puppy's breeder you adopted them from should provide you a list of any vaccinations your puppy has already been given.
Give this list to your veterinarian so they can work with you to schedule subsequent appointments for your puppy at the necessary ages to continue and complete their vaccination schedule to help ensure a healthy, happy puppy!
8.) Pet Insurance
You can research medical insurance for you puppy and see if there is a plan out there that fits your budget and if that is something you feel would be beneficial to you and your new puppy.
9.) Have a Good Dog Groomer Lined Up
Bulldogs have very strong nails, and they need to be kept short to ensure the feet stay strong and do not deform from walking on long curled up nails.
You may want to enlist the help of a groomer to aid you in regular nail care.
Wrinkle cleaning is also a must that should be done regularly (but can be done by you at your home).
Make sure to also check those tail pockets regularly for any trapped particles that may lead to build up of bacteria and infection.
10.) Transitioning Puppy Food
If you choose to transition your puppy from the puppy food your breeder sent home with you to something more of your choosing, remember that it must be a slow transition that includes:
- Transitioning over a period of 7–10 days
- Mixing an increasing amount of new food with old food each day:
- Start with 75% old food mixed with 25% new food for approximately three days.
- Then mix 50% old with 50% new for approximately three days.
If a puppy is immediately switched to new food, they may experience loose stool, and frequent accidents which is unpleasant for you and your puppy.
There you have it! 10 great tips you can use to prepare your home for your new puppy!