The first five nights with your new dog

Patience, understanding and a few doggy cuddles can help you and your new pooch survive the first few nights...

21 Mar 2016 By Candice Pendergast Comments

Just like humans, dogs can be a bit uneasy or even stressed when introduced to a new home. This isn’t because your dog doesn’t like you or thinks you need an interior decorator stat, this is because dogs are pack animals.

Call of the wild:

For a dog, moving into a new home with a new family feels like they are being separated from the pack. In the wild, dogs typically stick together in a pack to discourage attacks from predators, and puppies will typically whine for their mothers not to leave their sides.

Even when domesticated, dogs can experience separation anxiety and it’s very important to deal with this period as patiently and as gently as possible.

Understanding your dog:

Sadly, you can’t sit down and have a heart-to-heart with your new dog to explain why they are suddenly in an unfamiliar environment with strange people. Well, you could, but it would be very one-sided.

Helping your dog through the first few nights in your home does not mean that you are coddling it; you don’t have to carry it with you everywhere or follow it around the house. All you need to do is to try and assure the dog that it is secure and safe with its new family.

Dogs, especially puppies, will whine, bark and become restless when moving into a new home with unfamiliar people. The best way to deal with this separation anxiety is to not leave the animal alone in a cage or other location. Most people do this to try and deal with the noise, but if left alone in a cage, the dog will only get more anxious and bark louder.

Your dog will feel afraid and vulnerable during its first few days in it’s new home. The dog should be allowed to sleep in an area where the owners are in clear view. This doesn’t mean they have to sleep on your bed, just some where so that they can see you haven’t left them.

Potty training your dog:

Some dogs will pee or poo in the wrong areas of the house for the first few days. Do not scold or hit the dog if it makes this mistake—it is only natural for them to mark the new home as part of their territory.

Dogs thrive on routine, so make sure that you set a regular schedule for feeding, playing, sleeping, and heading outside to go to the bathroom.


Puppies will be a bit harder to console during the first few nights away from their mothers and littermates. Puppies typically sleep together, and if your puppy is alone, you can always give it a stuffed animal to cuddle with. Snuggle Puppies are designed specifically for this purpose, These are stuffed toys that replicate the body heat and heartbeat of a real puppy.

The first few nights of a new dog in your home can be difficult for both you and your new pet, but if you do the steps described above, you can expect years and years of a rewarding relationship with a healthy and happy dog.

21 Mar 2016 By Candice Pendergast Comments

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