You’ve filled out the paperwork. You’ve scouted out your favorite furry friend at the shelter. Now it’s time to take them home. When you’re bringing a puppy into the house, it’s easy for things to get chaotic. They may be small, but they grow fast and can soon wreak havoc on your carefully curated home.
If you want to keep your puppy safe from dangerous household items, as well as keep order in your house, try some of these tips to puppy-proof your home!
1. Prep the puppy pads
One thing that is almost impossible to prevent is that your new puppy will have a few accidents on the carpet. Something you can control is whether or not you use puppy pads. This way, you can avoid having to clean your carpet every day. When the inevitable accident misses the puppy pad though, be sure to load up on plenty of cleaning products or know the number of a local company that can get rid of carpet odor.
2. Cover your cords
Dogs love to chew. An easy target is the many computer and phone cords that tend to litter any home. Gnawing on an electrical wire not only ruins the cable, but it could result in a nasty shock. Before you bring your new puppy home, figure out how you’re going to protect your chargers and cords from becoming a safety hazard. Options include getting extra-thick wires, keeping wires off the ground, or taping them down securely.
3. Fill your busy bag
A bored pup is an anxious pup. If a dog is left home alone without things to chew, play with, or destroy, they’ll turn to your furniture and belongings. Every new dog owner should prep for their tiny new companion by loading up on age-appropriate chew toys, bones, squeaky toys, and more. This may not deter them entirely from gnawing at the rug a little or taking a leak on the floor, but it will certainly keep them busy.
4. Get rid of puppy poison
A new puppy is curious, energetic, and unaware of what could and couldn’t be toxic. This means anything left out for them to chew and eat will get eaten. That’s why it is crucial for all new pet owners to poison-proof their homes before leaving a pet alone in it. The following items can be deadly if consumed by a dog:
- Certain house plants
- Human medications
- Bug baits or rat/mouse baits
- Yard chemicals
- Foods like chocolate (which yes, they often find it in the trash)
Be sure to get rid of, or cover-up, and protect these poisons so that your dog isn’t tempted to try to eat them. The best ways to prevent your new puppy from eating something dangerous are to, when possible, remove these items from your house altogether. This can be easy with unnecessary things like house plants. In cases where an item is necessary like medication or batteries, try to keep them up high in a cabinet, the puppy can’t get to, with a lid on it.
Chocolates and other poisonous foods should not be left out, even in the wrapper. Dogs can easily chew through and destroy the packaging. Keep them in the fridge, a locked pantry, or another room. If you throw something away, take the trash out right away so that your dog can’t get into it later.
5. Protect your trash cans
You may have put a lock on your pantry, but there’s nothing to stop your new puppy from knocking over the trash can and helping themselves to what they find inside. This could include poisonous food and could make a huge mess to clean up. Be sure to securely set the trash where it can’t be knocked over or tampered with. The best bet is always to use a secure lid and a can that is heavy enough to avoid being toppled.