George came into our life just a few months ago (at the age of 7 weeks). He’s a gentle, smart, and endearing silver lab that brings so much joy to our family. On this blog I share my life – whether it be fitness, fashion, travel, or family…I’m pretty transparent with what we having going on, so I felt it was appropriate to share our transition with little George. Welcoming a puppy is not easy, and definitely takes work, but I am now convinced, life is better with a dog. Today I’m sharing 9 tips to raising a healthy and happy puppy, as this milestone may cross your path someday, as well! Or maybe you’re raising one now and need a few pointers! Either way – I hope to leave you feeling excited about the joy of puppyhood!
- Get a crate before you bring puppy home. I also suggest a washable crate pad.
- Use a dog crate cover at night – trust me it makes a world of difference!
- Put the crate next to your bed for the first few nights (I’ll admit we still have him next to ours!). It takes a few nights for them to feel comfortable being away from their mom and litter mates. Reassure them they’re okay. Your voice will soothe them.
- Set a potty routine – take them out right before you go to bed (even if you have to wake them!). And make it a priority as soon as you get up (or they may wake you up!). George typically sleeps from 10pm-6:30am…we promptly take him out as soon as he starts whimpering.
- Utilize treats to encourage potty training and good behavior. We’ve been using Health Extension Bacon Chips and George will do practically anything for one treat! They’re corn, wheat, soy and gluten-free with no additives or preservatives. We also started giving him Health Extension Lifetime Vitamins which have Colostrum, Blue Green Algae and Probiotics!
George also loves the Caru Venison Baked Bites which are Non-GMO and made with real venison, blueberries and cranberries!
- Supervise! This may seem super simple – but it’s kind of like having a newborn baby…that doesn’t wear diapers. Have someone in the family keep their eyes on the puppy at all times, unless they’re in the crate. Until they are potty trained and familiar with the house, always pay attention. With that said – ‘puppy-proof’ your house! Think of them as a toddler wandering around the house wanting to put everything in their mouth. Make sure all small objects are put away, and cleaning products, medicines, etc. behind closed cabinets.
- Give them attention. Again – this seems obvious. But it’s no joke – they require a lot of love. If you’re getting a puppy, expect your schedule to change big time! Make time for walks, playing ball and just talking to them. Show them they’re part of the family.
- Keep them busy! Provide something (besides your shoe!) to chew on. George is a fan of the Bravo Pork Rolls. Their chewy texture also helps scrub and clean their teeth.
Another favorite are the Barkworthies Root Chews which are 100% organic. I’m so fascinated by them – here’s a little more info:
Our Barkworthies Chew Roots are harvested from the Araack tree and are an all natural alternative to rubber or plastic dog chews. They’re 100% organic, and can be used both as a chew and a toothbrush! They help effectively fight plaque and tarter to help keep your dog’s breath fresh. They’re also loaded with potassium and calcium oxides that help to strengthen tooth enamel.
Our Chew Roots also offer a great solution for unwanted behaviour such as dogs that chew on furniture, etc. and are also much safer for dogs that loves to play with sticks because Barkworthies Chew Roots won’t splinter. Perfect for your aggressive chewer, they’re as long-lasting as they are satisfying!
As with all our products, Barkworthies Araack Chews are additive-free, chemical-free and preservative-free. Moreover, most Barkworthies products are all-natural, single-ingredient chews, which means they’re 100% healthy and safe.
- 100% Organic
- Promotes oral health
- Great for teething puppies
- Perfect for aggressive chewers
- A highly-durable and long-lasting dog chew
- Train them! Dogs are eager to learn and respond well to structure and discipline. Our breed, the silver lab also enjoys work (such as hunting and retrieving). At 14 weeks, we were able to train George to sit, shake and fetch on command. For extra incentive, we’ve also been using the Bravo Freeze Dried Training Treats.
I’m sure I’ll have many more tips along the way, these are just a few that have helped us transition George into our family. Most importantly for a healthy and happy puppy – everyone must be involved – even the kiddos!
Please note I am not a certified pet health professional – these are my personal recommendations that we use in our home with our puppy. I’m sharing products that I’ve researched on my own time and feel confident giving them to my pet. Please consult your veterinarian with any specific health concerns.
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Cheers to Puppyhood!
*Photos by Jasmine Klein Photography
Disclosure: I was graciously provided product in exchange for this post. The opinions expressed here represent my own, which I take great pride in providing pure honesty…because I’m OBSESSED with sharing the Good!