How to help your dog settle in

Bringing your new dog home is an exciting and important occasion. Everything is brand new to them, and it can be overwhelming. They’ll be looking to you for guidance, so here’s what you can do help your precious pup settle in their forever home.

When you first arrive home, take your dog to the garden or exercise area and allow them to relieve themselves.  After you’re sure they’ve done this, congratulate your dog so they understand this is an acceptable place to go to the toilet.

You may be tempted to take some time off work to help your dog settle, but think very carefully about this. Dogs can often be confused after a period of full-time attention when their owner goes back to their usual routine.

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Teach them to be independent

Try using a stair gate to get your new dog used to being alone in a room. Gradually build up the time you leave them alone in the room, and ensure they have a toy or chew to play with to keep them occupied. Teaching your dog to be comfortable alone will allow them to relax when you leave the house.

Dealing with challenging behaviour

Be aware that your dog will often be on its best behaviour during the first two weeks at their new home. After this, your dog may demonstrate out of character behaviour in a bid to learn how strict their boundaries are. Your dog will feel happier if you set boundaries and ground rules which the whole family sticks to.

Never use punishment to overcome problems with your dog. This will cause resentment and will break down the good relationship you’re building with him.

Top tips for settling your new dog

  • Stay with your dog when they go to the toilet. This is the only way to ensure they have relieved themselves and to reward them at the same time.
  • Try to keep to boundaries and ground rules, your dog will feel much happier if they know exactly what is expected of them.