So you’ve decided to get a dog! An exciting time for all the family, there are many things to consider before your pup moves into the house. Once you have decided who will do the walking, the words you use to train it and have sourced a vet nearby, it’s important to dog proof your home. Think of your new dog as almost like a baby. They are so innocent and don’t know what they should and shouldn’t touch at first, so it’s vital that you make your home safe for them.
Firstly, decide where you want your dog going in your house. If you want it to remain downstairs, even if it’s just at first, you should install baby gates on your stairs. This is also a great way of getting them used to being on their own downstairs at night. Another way of controlling where they go in the house is by investing in a puppy/dog crate or a dog pen (you can find these online from websites such as doggie solutions) – these are particularly beneficial if you’re popping out quickly and you don’t want your new dog exploring parts of the house it shouldn’t. Keeping them safe and out of harm’s way when you aren’t around, they are a great training tool.
Then, you should take a walk around your house and move anything that’s edible or fragile. You don’t want your new pup eating anything that’s dangerous to them or knocking over a glass, for example. By getting on the floor and seeing your house from their level, you’ll see what they would and items that they may be tempted to discover. You should move any loose wires that they could chew and other plants out of their reach. Similarly, all shoes should be put into a shoe closet or into your wardrobe – no one wants their shoes being chewed up.
Thirdly, make sure that all your windows and doors are kept shut at all times around the house. You don’t want your new dog to run out of the door onto the road or trying to jump out the window.
In the bathroom, you will want to ensure that any toothpaste, creams, shampoos or medications are put away in a place where dogs can’t reach. Also, that you constantly close the toilet after using it, as many dogs like to drink the water from the bowl – this is not only just a disgusting habit but if there is bleach or another cleaning chemical inside the toilet, it could make them severly ill.
If you have a garden, you also want to make sure that its dog-friendly. Exciting pups may want to jump over low fences or investigate the next garden over by crawling through a hole in the fence. Head out to your garden and see if the perimeter fence is solid and high enough that they won’t escape. Also, avoid using any chemicals on the grass, weeds or plants – you don’t want your dog ingesting these.
Image Credits: Jamie Street