Before bringing your puppy home, you'll need to "puppyproof"
your house. Puppies are like babies: they want to explore every corner
of your house, and they want to put everything into their mouths.
Here's a simple checklist to make sure your home is safe before letting
your new puppy run free:
Make sure all poisonous household items are securely stored out of
the puppy's reach
Did you put the household cleaners, laundry detergents, bleach,
disinfectants, insecticides, cleaning fluid, fertilizers, mothballs,
antifreeze, insect poisons, rat poisons and other items in cabinets or
on high shelves? These items can be deadly to your puppy. As your new
puppy grows, he will be able to explore higher places and be tempted to
jump up on shelves.
Check your plants
Many plants in and around your house can be threatening to your pup. Did
you know that the pits of apricots and peaches, as well as spinach and
tomato vines, can make your puppy sick and, in large dosages, can even
be fatal? Click here
to learn about more plants that you should keep away from your pup. For
a more complete list of dangerous doggie plants, consult your vet.
Look at your house from your puppy's point of view
Get down on all fours and look around. Are there any dangling electric
cords, loose nails, plastic bags or other tempting objects that will be
in puppy's reach? If there are, be sure to put them away immediately.
SOME ADDITIONAL TIPS
Never leave your puppy unsupervised inside or outside, and keep him
off balconies, upper porches and high decks
Puppies, no matter what breed, are so little that they can slip through
openings and fall. Puppies may also get tangled in ropes or the plastic
from six-pack beverage holders. Cut these items apart to prevent
Keep your toilet lid down
Puppies are often tempted to play in toilet bowl water. This habit can
be awful to break. Not only is it embarrassing when friends or family
are visiting, but toilet cleanser may be harmful if swallowed.
Unplug, remove or cover any electrical cords in your puppy's
Chewing on these cords can cause severe mouth burns, electrocution and
fires. It is also a good idea to cover electrical outlets, when they are
not in use.
Keep buttons, string, sewing needles, pins and other sharp objects
out of your puppy's reach
If your puppy swallows any of these objects, he can damage his mouth and
Do not tie ribbons around your puppy's neck
Rufus may be tempted to chew the ribbon, which can cause digestive
problems. He could also choke himself if he catches the ribbon on
All puppies need toys to help them exercise and to provide them with a
safe way to satisfy their chewing cravings. Be sure to choose toys that
are made for puppies and cannot be splintered, torn apart or swallowed.
Large rawhide chips, nylon chews and hard rubber balls are fun and safe.
As a general rule, if the toy can fit comfortably in a puppy's mouth,
it's too small.
Your puppy's Toy Chest should be free from the following items
toys or items with hard, sharp points or attachments, such as
squeakers, which can break off and be dangerous if swallowed.
or other personal clothing. Giving your puppy these items will
only teach him that it's okay to chew your shoes and rip holes
in your shirts.
of string, yarn, cellophane, twist ties, plastic baggies and
other household goods that could get lodged in your puppy's
throat causing him to choke or suffocate.
toys made of soft rubber, fur, wool, sponge or plastic. If your
puppy swallows a small particle of any of these materials, it
could cause digestive problems.
Stain and scent remover
Special formulated stain and scent remover takes the odor away from a
puppy's nose, as well as yours. Conventional household products not
found in the pet aisle or a pet supply store mask the odor to humans,
but not puppies. If you use a conventional household product to clean up
after your puppy, don't be alarmed if he keeps repeating himself at the
same spot. He's merely trying to mark his territory.