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Welcoming a new puppy to the family is an exciting time, but with it comes lots of learning for both you and your furry friend. Raising a puppy is a big commitment, and it’s important to start out as you mean to go on. Particularly when they’re still very young, it’s a good idea to get them used to everyday objects and activities to prevent them from developing anxiety in the future.

Taking Car Journeys / Trips in the Pet Carrier

It’s essential that your puppy gets used to being in the car. If they seem anxious at first, try just spending some time with them inside, without moving the car at all. It’s all about taking baby steps, so next time you can try switching on the engine whilst they’re in there to familiarize them with the new sounds, then after that, you can start doing short journeys.

Your furry friend is more likely to tolerate being in the car if they’re comfortable. This means investing in the proper equipment to ensure they’ll be safe and happy on the road, such as specialized harnesses or crates. You may need to purchase several sizes as your puppy grows, but it will be worth it knowing that they’re safe.

If you don’t familiarize your puppy with car journeys at a young age, they could develop anxiety as they grow up. This takes a toll on you and your pet, as you’ll be forced to subject them to scenarios they’re uncomfortable with. It’s almost inevitable that your puppy will need to travel with you at some point, whether it’s for a vet appointment or a vacation, so introduce them to the car early on.

Socializing with People and Other Animals

Socializing at an early age can do wonders for your puppy’s mental development. In fact, it’s recommended that your furry friend meets one hundred different people before they are three months old. It might be tricky to reach such a high target, but the idea is to get them accustomed to all different kinds of people (who may all interact with them slightly differently) to prevent your puppy from reacting to unfamiliar faces in the future.

Learning from other dogs is an integral part of your puppy’s growth. They need to have the freedom to socialize with all kinds of dogs, ranging from other puppies to older ones. This means, where it’s safe to do so, letting them off of their leash so they’re not under your protection. Make sure to supervise them to prevent anything from getting unsafe, but it’s important for your dog to learn boundaries and not to be scared.

The reason they need to meet dogs of all ages is that the way they play will vary hugely. Puppies are obviously more energetic and may play fight, whereas older dogs are less likely to tolerate any biting or aggression and will gently correct your puppy’s behavior, helping them to learn that dogs aren’t chew toys. Older aggressive dogs can learn to be social too, and they too are on the streets learning so be sure to always ask if the other dog is friendly or not before allowing your dog to go interact with a potential other dog.

The same goes for other animals, such as cats, hamsters or rabbits. It’s important for your puppy to be exposed to all kinds of pets to learn how to properly behave around them, as it will be very different from how they interact with other dogs. They will need to learn to be gentle, respectful and patient, especially if they’ll grow up to be a particularly large breed. This can also help when they see small animals out in the wild, as they will be less curious and therefore less likely to run off after them.

Spending Time Alone

Separation anxiety can be a huge issue in dogs of all ages, particularly those that were raised during the recent pandemic as they were attached to their owner at the hip. Obviously your puppy will need to be closely supervised initially, but as they grow up, it’s important to gradually leave them on their own for short periods of time.

You don’t want to end up with a dog that you can’t leave on their own, as it can be extremely stressful for your pet and also disruptive to your life. That’s why no matter how hard it is to leave your furry friend alone, it’s the best thing for everyone involved.

Beginning Your Journey

Raising a puppy is hard work, but as long as you do your research and dedicate enough time, it will all be worth it. The key is introducing your puppy to as much of everyday life as you can while they’re still young, so get out there and start socializing.

Author Bio

Martin Webber is a retired dog trainer. After spending fifteen years working with all kinds of canines, he now enjoys spending his free time with his grandchildren and volunteering at animal shelters. He also has two beloved dogs of his own, Casper and Benny.

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Love this dog content? Share it with a friend or link it to social media. Enjoy short clips of cute household pets? Training tips? Follow us on instagram @nydognanny or on YouTube at nydognanny.  Have some news you needs to get to dog and cat parents stat?  Email with your article pitch.

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