Puppies Don't Come With A Set Of Instructions
This article is kindly sponsored by our Canine & Co partner - Hill's Pet Nutrition.
A new puppy in the house is fun and exciting, but just like a new baby, he doesn't come with an instruction manual. So we've put together a few basic essentials you'll need to know to help you in the early days and weeks.
Love and affection
Your puppy will find the move from his litter to your home exciting, but it can also be quite overwhelming. He'll need lots of attention, reassurance and tender loving care to help him settle in. He'll crave attention, and you must give him as much as possible at this stage. Praise him all the time and call him by his name. Show him you love him, but at the same time, if he does anything unacceptable, stop him with a firm 'NO'.
Sounds and Scents
Some puppies miss the familiar smells and sounds of their litter, and if your puppy seems unsettled it may help to use a special pheromone spray called DAP (Dog Appeasing Pheromone) which gives a sense of familiar well-being to your puppy. But always use sparingly and in moderation because it's important for your puppy to get used to his new environment. It may also be useful to play a radio on low volume near his bed throughout the night.
Just like babies, puppies need their sleep, so it's important to provide a warm, quiet place for him to rest in during the day as well as at night. Family life can seem overwhelming for a small puppy and he'll need some time on his own. Put his bed somewhere he will feel safe and secure. Puppies often like an enclosed space to sleep in, so you might opt for a puppy crate. You can put a soft bed inside it and it'll double up as a safe haven when he wants some peace and quiet.
Food for thought
When you first bring your puppy home, it's best to carry on feeding him the food he's been used to. But not all puppy foods are the same; some provide higher quality ingredients than others, so you might want to gradually change your puppy over to a food that your vet recommends. You'll need to do this over five to seven days, and your vet will advise you on this, but essentially all you do is mix the new food into her current food in gradually increasing amounts until only the new food is fed (read more about transitioning to a new food).
Hill's puppy food
Hill's puppy food is specially formulated to make sure your pet gets the right balance of nutrients. It contains the correct balance of all the vitamins and minerals to help puppies reach their full potential. It also contains natural DHA for better brain and visual development.
Great tasting and available in both dry and tins, your puppy will love every meal.