HOUSE TRAININGPerhaps one of the biggest challenges faced with new dog owners is getting your bundle of fluff to realise that your expensive woollen rug is not his toilet! As seasoned dog owners we have found that the best way to achieve this is consistency and firmness. A reputable breeder will have already laid down the basics with your puppy and it is important that you just keep going until the accidents are no more. As with children, it takes different dogs differing amounts of time to get to grasps with this but believe us, it is all worth it in the end!
TRAINING ON WALKSWalking with your dog is one of the most enjoyable elements of dog ownership and therefore it is important to get your dog into good walking habits from a very early age. Puppies should only be walked for small amounts of time whilst they are growing, but even during this time you can start to instil walk ‘rules’ such as walking to heel, not pulling on the lead, being sociable with other dogs and learning to respond to your commands both on and off lead.
HOUSE RULESDogs are definitely part of our families and which parts of your home they call their own is purely down to personal choice. However, to avoid confusion and so your dog knows what is expected from them, consistency from the beginning is essential. If upstairs is out of bounds ensure your dog knows this. If lying on the sofa when you are out of the room is not acceptable – make sure they are under no illusion.
HOLIDAY CAREThere will be times when you can’t be there for your dog due to work and family commitments. And, whilst we recognise that life does get in the way sometimes, it is also worth noting that dogs do need company and can become grumpy, withdrawn and destructive without the interaction of their humans. This is where people like ‘Dog Buddy’ come in – helping out with day and holiday care and giving your dog the warmth, comfort and interaction of a second family.
VETS AND VACCINATIONSRegister your dog with a vet straight away and make sure that you take professional advice on its health care. Flea, worm and vaccinations need to be done on an agreed basis and it is well worth maintaining this throughout your dog’s life to ensure they enjoy good health.
INSURANCEVet’s bills can be incredibly expensive and should your dog have an accident, fall ill or develop a ‘for life’ condition you may find that a monthly premium pales into insignificance in comparison to the potential amount a vet’s bill may incur. Good research into the market is advised as policies can wildly differ in cost and cover.
The Happy Dog Team