We recently adopted a new puppy. As is with most puppies, he’s in the chewing and biting phase. In his little mind, everything in the house is up for grabs. I haven’t had a puppy in a very long time. If you’re looking to add a puppy to your household, here are some helpful tips.

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Just like most children, puppies don’t necessarily do as they’re told. This is especially true if your new puppy has not lived in another home for long and hasn’t yet been trained. Our old dog was 6 months old when we adopted him. He was already potty trained and knew how to use a doggy door. He didn’t listen so great at first, and sometimes still doesn’t, but he has finally grown into listening with his incredibly large ears.

Our household relies heavily on schedules. This is something to consider when getting a new puppy. Puppies need consistent routines to make sure they have time to eat, time to play, potty breaks, and even sleep.

As I said earlier, most puppies like to chew (and bite) a lot. If you have things in your house that you don’t want destroyed, or items that could be dangerous, make sure those items are put away and out of the reach of your new pup. Our new little guy has already demolished several pairs of socks. Luckily, he didn’t eat them and only tore them to smithereens.

If you’re planning on keeping your puppy outdoors, a fenced yard is always best. Larger and more active dogs need plenty of room to run and play.

Not all dogs get along. We were lucky in this case. We wanted a friend for our older dog, and they are, so far, getting along quite well. Sure, they have their moments, but so do our kids.

Make sure you are giving your growing puppy plenty of food and be sure to keep the water bowl filled too. This is especially important when it’s hot and when you have more than one dog playing all day. Ask me how I know.

If you’ve never owned a dog, and are considering adopting a puppy, know that you have to be able to supply your puppy with basic needs. Dogs need to eat, play, and interact with their owner. They need to go outside but can’t be left alone for long periods of time. If these basic needs can’t come first, because you are overly busy, it might be best to wait a little longer to get a puppy.

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