Outdoors, if you have a pool, make sure the puppy cannot get in it. Yards are full of things puppies like to investigate. Make certain all poisonous substances (fertilizer, antifreeze, etc.) are out of reach. Do you have a trailered boat in your backyard? Move it. If your yard is fenced in, make sure there are no spaces a puppy can squeeze through. Put the gardening tools away. Their handles make wonderful chew toys. Understand that if you have a yard, your new pal may dig holes, bed down in the flowers, chew the corners off of your deck steps, and bark at everything from butterflies to falling leaves. He may eat dirt and rocks and parts of trees. He is, after all, a dog.
- Is a spotless house important to you? Dogs, especially puppies, can be messy creatures.
- Is anyone in the household allergic to dogs? If so, choose your breed carefully from those that don't shed much and produce small amounts of dander.
- Do you already have a dog? Tread carefully when bringing a newcomer into the family. Avoid jealousy by paying special attention to the older dog.
- Do you have small children? Puppy teeth are very sharp. Pups nip and mouth other dogs and in the beginning don't understand the difference between nipping a dog and nipping a child. Consider adopting an adult dog.
When you bring a new dog into your home, know that you have way more than a pet. You have a new family member, one who will love you for life.