It’s so important to puppy-proof your home to provide a safe environment for your puppy to eat, play, and learn. Bringing home a new puppy means your life will soon be filled with joy, laughter, and excitement. Caring for a puppy isn’t only fun; it’s also a ton of work!
Experienced puppy parents know, as first-time owners will soon find out, that puppies make it their mission to get into everything and anything! It’s a major pain to constantly chase after them to keep them from soiling or ruining your belongings, but it’s also dangerous if they get into the wrong stuff.
Here are our top 5 tips for puppy-proofing your home.
Start small when puppy-proofing
Your new bundle of fur will want to explore everywhere, but it’s too early to let them wander freely. Not only would it be a significant hassle to puppy-proof everything all at once, but it can also be overwhelming for a young pup who is adjusting to their new environment.
Start in a small, manageable space that provides them plenty of room to romp, frolic, play, and do what they need. Make sure you put down pee pads for the inevitable early accidents while they’re still figuring out potty training and strengthening the muscles required to hold their bladder.
If the room you’ve selected has a door, you should have no issue keeping them contained. Otherwise, a playpen or baby gate works well to keep them sequestered.
Focus on the floor level
So, what does the world look like to your puppy? They often stand only a few inches off the floor, so anything at that height is fair game for chewing, swallowing, and soiling.
Don’t give them the chance to get themselves into trouble! Pick up or secure anything on the floor, kept on low shelves, and hanging objects, including shoes, window treatments, coins, and other curiosities your pup may mistake for a toy or tasty treat.
Electric wires, outlets, and cables are often at this level too. Move them to a higher location, sheath them with something chew-proof (fish tank tubing works in a pinch!), or barricade your dog using furniture, gates, or a playpen to ensure they can’t grab hold of wires and start gnawing.
Secure heavy furniture in your home
Some puppies will respect boundaries, even at a young age, and you’ll be able to direct them away from problem areas. Others will try again and again and again and again to find their way onto tabletops, high shelves, and other areas that should be off-limits.
Using a barricade to keep them away works in some situations, but sometimes it’s unrealistic. For that reason, tall, heavy furniture that poses a risk of tipping, falling, and crushing your precious pooch should be fastened securely to the wall.
Other standing fixtures like lamps should be tucked away so your pup is less likely to crash into it and send it flying.
Remove breakable items
Some furniture can’t be easily secured to the wall, so it will still be possible for your dog to shake it, knock it over, or send the stuff on top of it flying. So, if you have a fragile lamp or decorative bowl, you’ll want to put that somewhere high out of reach. You may consider removing these kinds of things from the room altogether while the pup is little.
Down the line, your dog will be less likely to have bursts of energy, so it will be safe to put things back. But, while they’re little, keeping breakables out of their path is the best way to ensure your stuff is safe, and so is your pooch!
Supervise your puppy!
At its core, puppy-proofing is all about identifying problems before they become problems and taking action to reduce risk. But, even with the best intentions and an eagle eye, you still may not notice everything that could pose an issue.
So, while your pup is loose, you’ll want to keep an eye on them to ensure they’re not chewing something inappropriately, swallowing small items, peeing in random corners, or finding creative ways to escape their designated area.
When they do try to get into something they shouldn’t, you’ll see it firsthand and be able to issue a correction and provide further puppy-proofing so they don’t try the same thing again.
Your friends here at Pawsitive K9 Solutions have plenty of tips on how to issue an appropriate correction while following up with plenty of positive encouragement in order to build a strong, lifelong foundation in obedience training. We also offer an awesome Puppy Day School program to reinforce those good training habits! Enroll your puppy today!
Don’t go it alone; contact us today and find out how we can help you and your pup enjoy your best and happiest lives together!