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6 Important Guidelines For New Dog Owners

At A Glance

Being a new dog owner is an exciting experience, but it can also be a little intimidating, especially if you've never had a dog before.

  • Ensure you do your research and pick the right breed. Register with a vet and dog-proof your home.
  • Once your dog is home, expect teething problems, be prepared to toilet train them, and learn about your dog's needs. Once your dog has settled in to their new surroundings, you can start training them.

Last Updated on: May 29, 2023

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So, you have decided to take that big step and bring home a four-footed companion to fill your days with love, licks, and furry snuggles!

Becoming a new dog owner is an exciting experience, but it can also be a little daunting, particularly if you’ve never had a dog before. But worry not; we have listed some top tips for new dog owners here.

If you’ve decided to purchase a puppy, you should also be prepared for some hurdles ahead, especially when it comes to toilet training.

The good news is that, with some careful planning, patience, and a flexible attitude, you could soon be enjoying one of the most rewarding experiences of your life as the owner of a dog.

But first, to help you and your new pooch get off on the right foot, here are 6 top tips for new dog owners.

custom oil-painted dog portraits by Poshtraits

Pick The Right Breed

One of the most important steps you should take before you bring home a canine companion is to research and pick the right dog for you.

With so many different breeds to choose from, there will be some types of dogs that are more suitable for your unique circumstances and some types that definitely won’t.

For instance, if you live in an apartment or a house with a small backyard, a larger and more active breed like a border collie or a husky probably won’t be a good fit.

In fact, if they don’t get enough exercise and stimulation, they might end up engaging in problematic behaviors caused by boredom, which would be unpleasant for both you and the dog.

Similarly, if you’re looking for a docile family pet, you will want to focus on breeds renowned for this kind of character, like Labradors, Golden Retrievers, and Bulldogs.

dog in vet

Register With A Vet

Either before or immediately after you bring home your new pooch, it’s a good idea to register with a vet that can provide all the treatment and support your pet will need.

For instance, a care provider like Furdunkin Veterinary Clinic provides affordable veterinary services that include emergency support whenever your pet experiences an unexpected illness or injury. They even offer a mobile service in Lancaster County that brings high-quality veterinary care directly to your door.

Getting registered with an experienced and reputable vet is vital to ensuring the long-term health and wellbeing of your new furry companion.

If you’re buying a puppy, in particular, it’s a good idea to make an appointment for them in the days following their arrival at your home, to give them a check-up and possibly fit them with a microchip.

Dog-Proof Your Home

Before you bring your new dog home, you may want to double-check that your abode-and your yard, if you have one-is ‘doggy proof’.

After all, you don’t want your new pooch to be able to escape, and you also want to make sure there are no health hazards that could cause an injury.

You should also stock up on everything you will need for his care beforehand, like food and water bowls, a collar and leash, dry and wet food, and a comfy dog bed for it to sleep on.

Be Prepared For Teething Problems

When you bring a new dog home, especially if it’s a puppy, it’s best to take as relaxed and flexible an approach as you can-and to expect a few hiccups along the way.

It may take some time for your new furry buddy to acclimatize to their new surroundings-and, if they’re young, they will probably have a few ‘accidents’ until they learn the ropes of toilet training.

Do your best to be firm but patient, and you will hopefully win your dog’s trust in no time.

Learn Your Dog’s Needs

Like people, every dog has a set of needs that must be met beyond basic food and shelter.

Dogs get bored and frustrated, just like we do, so it’s vital to assess your dog’s requirements and see what you can do to make its life as happy and fulfilled as possible.

Provide your dog with boredom-busting toys to keep it amused when you have to leave the house.

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Be Consistent With Your Training Routine

Once your dog has settled into their new surroundings, you can start training them.

Depending on the dog’s age and personality, it may take them a while to get the hang of what you want them to do-whether you’re toilet training a puppy, or doing basic obedience work.

To give your training routine the best chance of success, you should focus on maintaining consistency and patience and using positive reinforcement to build your animal’s confidence.

Keep your stress levels to a minimum, and your furry pupil will also be less anxious.

With time, your patience and persistent approach will pay off, and your dog will understand what you want it to do.

By following these top tips for new dog owners-and doing your research beforehand-you may hope that you and your new dog will quickly settle into a happy, healthy life together.



I am a full-time mum of two kids and a beautiful golden retriever. Writing is my passion: from food journalism to pets, parenting tips, etc. I can write on just about everything under the sun. I have been writing for the past 7 years and during that time, I have been a regular contributor to several blogs and pet magazines. I have also written feature articles, POV pieces, and dabbled in a few different formats of writing over the years.