Puppy Love

The decision on whether to buy a puppy or not is not something which should be entered into lightly. It is easy to get carried away when thinking of this cute little bundle of fun but the practicalities need to be considered at length before any decision is made.

Will a puppy fit in with your lifestyle; can you commit to the time it will take to train your puppy into a well behaved, well adjusted adult dog? Not researching and addressing these questions up front is the reason dogs are abandoned or sold on as new owners can’t commit to the time required. It is hard work. A new pup can’t be left alone in a room – unless of course you are prepared for the damage which will inevitably ensue.

I have recently embarked on the puppy journey. We thought long and hard about introducing a puppy into the home. He has settled in very quickly and is comfortable around all of the family but routine is outnod the window as the puppy has become the centre of everything. No more weekends sleeping late as the pup needs to be allowed to go to the toilet early – he is doing well to hold it all night from this young age so it’s not fair to make him wait too long in the morning before being allowed out. A new pup won’t recognise that it’s Saturday morning, you’ve worked hard all week and need some rest. Equally, having slept all night, he’s not just up for the toilet and back to sleep – it’s playtime for him. The good news is he will play for a bit and then need some more rest, young puppies might behave like the Duracell Bunny at times but they do need their sleep, even if they don’t recognise that.

Having pointed out some pitfalls thought, all of the hard work is absolutely worth the effort. I wouldn’t change my decision. He is one of the family.

It’s an exciting time of firsts to enjoy. His first night at home was better than anticipated. Having heard stories of their first night away from their mothers, we were prepared for a sleepless night. A few whines for a couple of minutes was all we heard from him and from the second night he has known his bed is for sleeping and he sleeps from about 10.00 pm to 6.00 am. The next first we enjoyed was him meeting the extended family, he loved all the attention that night and again took it all in his stride. A first to celebrate is when your little pooch goes to the toilet in the right place for the first time. Don’t get too carried away though, that is a process which takes time and perseverance as even if he goes to the right place most of the time there will still be accidents.

In the short time we have had our pup at home, he has experienced his first Bonfire night. My concerns of how he would react were laid to rest quickly when he slept through most of it. This weekend he will receive his final injections which means we can look forward to his first walk soon.

As he has grown these last couple of weeks, he has become more playful everyday. Play is a great part of puppy development but it is a natural instinct for them to “mouth” during play. They would do this with other pups in the litter but when they start this with humans it can feel like a sharp bite as they do have razor sharp teeth. This is behaviour to stamp out right away. As much fun as he thinks it is, it’s not fun for the owner so plenty of chew toys on hand is a must, that also stops his urge to chew everyone’s slippers.

It might be a lot of extra work, but I wouldn’t change it now for anything. He’s part of the family already and has won everyone’s heart. There is nothing nicer than coming home to a tiny furball with a waggy tail who is absolutely delighted to see you – that absolutely is Puppy Love.

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