Our puppy arrives tomorrow. What do you wish you'd known on day 1?

Discussion in 'Labrador Puppies' started by SeaChelle, Jun 9, 2019.

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  1. SeaChelle

    SeaChelle Registered Users

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    We are picking up our much-longed-for and eagerly-awaited puppy tomorrow. A black lab that we are calling Willow - she will be 9 weeks on Tuesday.

    I've read soooooo many books - probably too many if I'm honest. I do like to prepare, but am also expecting it to be nothing like the books!! Hoping to start on house and crate training and socialisation tomorrow, but will see how she copes.

    What do you wish you'd known or done differently from the first day you had your puppy?

    Michelle (and Willow)
     
  2. SianMJ

    SianMJ Registered Users

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    That the crate in the bedroom was the best thing we did. Yes we had to get up around 3 times a night for toilet time for a few weeks but it also meant she was safe and we could sleep. Never had one before but have really learnt the benefits! The other positive would be to teach sit immediately, Gwenni got this very quickly and it’s soooo important! In fact she loooooves all training sessions and is extremely quick. Those are the things we did right, we made some mistakes but those were the positives from day 1 . Good luck
     
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  3. Juliet MacArthur

    Juliet MacArthur Registered Users

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    We picked up our black lab puppy - Dennis - 9 days ago when he was 10 weeks old. The best advice we took from all the reading was to have him in the footwell of the front passenger for the journey home, with a small kong and reassurance but no fuss. He was great. Also having the crate in the bedroom for the first couple of nights, transition to its permanent home (sitting room) with me sleeping in there for a couple of nights and then he has been solo. He has slept all night every night! Good luck!
     
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  4. leighxxxx

    leighxxxx Registered Users

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    I wish I'd known that socialising him with other dogs didn't mean letting him meet &/or play with every dog & now I wouldn't have an extremely strong 11month old, who's over excited by dogs
     
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  5. LoopyLuna

    LoopyLuna Registered Users

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    I wish I'd known that the chaos is actually them learning, not them being naughty. Laugh at the ridiculousness of their antics, don't get frustrated. Also, I wish I'd known that the "hard work" I'd expected and read about in the books wasn't the same as "effort" and "putting in the hours" it was about patience, perseverance and accepting a loss of control.

    I wish I could do the puppy year again with what I know now, and learn to relax a bit. Enjoy it, take lots of photos, give lots of cuddles and keep Willow happy. You'll do great :)
     
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  6. Ski-Patroller

    Ski-Patroller Cooper, Terminally Cute Forum Supporter

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    It varies from dog to dog. We have always let our dogs meet any other dog that was friendly, especially during socialization. . None of ours have been terribly excited about other dogs though they may play if the other dog wants to.
     
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  7. SeaChelle

    SeaChelle Registered Users

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    Thanks - we're using a crate too, and hoping the night time garden trips don't take too long to phase out!
     
  8. SeaChelle

    SeaChelle Registered Users

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    Thanks Juliet and congratulations on your new puppy- great name!
    I've just taken Willow out in the car and found that a beef bully chew and her blanket in the foot well worked brilliantly. She hasn't taken to her Kong, even when stuffed with her food and topped with peanut butter. I bought half a dozen of them, hoping they would be a great attraction and she couldn't care less!
     
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  9. SeaChelle

    SeaChelle Registered Users

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    Thanks- that is reassuring. Already feeling worry and self-doubt creeping in when she has accidents or I'm not sure what to do, so I am trying to be more zen about it! ☺️
     
  10. Eileen_Wilson

    Eileen_Wilson Registered Users

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    Ahh this kind of scares me now! We've been trying to introduce our 12 week old puppy to lots of (well behaved) adults and thought we were doing the right thing! He doesn't seem to get overly excited and is usually okay coming with me when I say we're done playing.
     
  11. Eileen_Wilson

    Eileen_Wilson Registered Users

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    Don't be discouraged by that. Everyone swore by frozen peanut butter Kongs so I bought like 5 thinking they'd be a lifesaver. Until about 10 weeks old our little guy didn't care about them at all. Now I have 4 frozen and ready to go at all times because they're the only thing that will keep the little monster occupied for a while! I make a kind of gross mixture of kibble soaked in water, peanut butter, a bit of pumpkin and then I top it with a few blueberries or a slice or two of banana. He goes absolutely nuts for them! Just give it a few weeks, she's too young to know what she likes or doesnt like yet :)
     
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  12. leighxxxx

    leighxxxx Registered Users

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    I wouldn't be overly worried, if he's meeting other calm dogs this will rub off & to be fair Kyko is naturally exuberant anyway. But we have a lot of dogs come into our garden (shared) so thought we were doing well. In reality we should have been carefully choosing the dogs & sometimes not all the time. Also wish I'd taken him to puppy classes when he was young
     
  13. Ryakki

    Ryakki Registered Users

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    goodluck, it's gonna be a lot of fun.
     
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  14. Juliet MacArthur

    Juliet MacArthur Registered Users

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    I've only given Dennis a 'proper' kong today (day 13!) peanut butter, banana and yoghurt - frozen overnight - he loved it - I'm trying to get him used to being in his crate to sleep during the day. Doing well!
     
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  15. SeaChelle

    SeaChelle Registered Users

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    Thanks for the encouragement- I will keep them in reserve then
     
  16. LoopyLuna

    LoopyLuna Registered Users

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    @SeaChelle the accidents are going to happen - they just will - a lot - so lower your expectations and make sure that you just try your best. She'll get there in her own time. I was a total stress head about every accident and it really wasn't worth the mental energy I used up! Hope you're enjoying it though - how's she getting on?
     
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  17. SeaChelle

    SeaChelle Registered Users

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    Thanks for the advice - you are dead right - it's not worth stressing as things do improve, and in her case quite quickly. She is getting the hang of house training, which is fab as we've just had the worst weather, so it's been miserable for her and me hanging out on a soggy lawn in the rain all week - now she is going almost as soon as we put her outside.

    I had been recommended a local vet nurse / dog behaviouralist by a friend who has a puppy, so I booked a home visit from her on day 4, and it was so useful. I'd been struggling with crate training and night times, as Willow was howling every time i shut her in, even though I put lots of nice treats in there. What I hadn't worked out was that I needed to pre-load the crate and then step back and disengage, so it wasn't me giving the treats, but the crate. Practiced this half a dozen times through the day, and by night time she was settling down within 5-10 mins of going in.

    Now we are just fine-tuning the nightime toileting times, and reinforcing settling for blocks of time during the day, and it's getting much more manageable, which is great as i'm back to work tomorrow (working from home, but I need some blocks of time when i can concentrate).

    Today I managed to settle her in the lounge on her bed (tethered) and hand fed her breakfast to reinforce sitting nicely and not pulling on the lead. After that she settled and slept for half an hour so i was able to relax and watch a bit of tv for the first time. Another great tip that the trainer taught me - now I will try tethering her on her bed in other locations.

    Other things we've been working on - walking to heel round the kitchen - me feeding her kibble to reinforce walking next to me. Also been trying one of the challenges that Pippa posted on this forum - getting her to sit and wait to be fed without pawing or grabbing at kibble in hands or a bowl on our laps.

    It is fab how quickly she is learning - love it, and can't wait to start puppy training classes next week.
     
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  18. SeaChelle

    SeaChelle Registered Users

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    For other new puppy owners I would like to pass on my own piece of advice to save you from this rookie error:- If your pup treads in her own poo, and walks it round the kitchen, be VERY careful how you pick her up - she WILL put her paws on your face!!! :puke: :facepalm: :rofl:
     
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  19. LoopyLuna

    LoopyLuna Registered Users

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    @SeaChelle sounds like you're doing a brilliant job - well done you!! And well done Willow too. :)
     

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