Your new whippet pup: tips for a good start.
For the first days at home with your whippet pup, a little preparation will smooth things out.
Probably the puppy is leaving his mother and the rest of the litter for the first time and this can be confusing and scaring. The pup will need your help to get acquainted with his new home and life.
Your best ally in this transition will be a crate of the proper size.
Any puppy, if properly educated by his mother will do his best to avoid soiling his sleeping area. The crate will become a great training tool and a safe haven for your whippet pup.
If possible pick up the puppy from the breeder in the morning so he will have a full day to get acquainted with his new home before settling for the night.
When you drive the pup home, you’ll need a helper to hold and reassure the dog in the back seat.
In the unfortunate event you can’t find any volunteer for this task, place the whippet pup in the crate either in the car booth or in the back seat secured by the safety belt and be prepared to put up with protests and whining.
Be firm, ignore the complains and concentrate on the driving. Rest assured there isn’t a safer or better way to do this and refrain from the temptation to place the pup on your lap. It would be dangerous and a very bad start in your role of firm and fair puppy trainer.
In his first trip in a car, the pup might be sick, so be prepared with rags, puppy pads and paper towels.
Unless you love cleaning and redecorating, don’t leave to the puppy the run of the house.With a baby gate or even better a puppy pen confine the whippet pup to a part of the house where he won't be able to do much damage but can still keep eye contact with his new family.
Generally the kitchen is the favorite room for this purpose because is an easy to clean, high traffic area.
Puppy proof the area removing electric wires, small objects that can be ingested, sponges and anything that can be bitten into pieces.
Place the crate in the kitchen. Make the inside of the crate inviting with soft bedding, a rag that retains the smell of the litter, a dog toy and leave the crate door open at all times, allowing the puppy to get in and out at will.
Probably the breeder has given you some food for the first days.
If you plan to change the puppy’s diet, do it gradually to avoid diarrhea and any digestive truble during this critical transition period.
Puppies need to eat small quantities of food more often than adult dogs.
Generally the daily ration of food is divided into four or five portions served at intervals during the day.
Leave fresh water available at all times.
Start immediately the potty training for your puppy dog.
After play, a nap, a meal and about every hour, take the dog to the designated toilet spot.
Use an attractive spray (available from supermarkets and pet shops) to mark the area and make clear to the puppy what is the purpose of the trip to that specific spot.
If by any chance the dog does what he is required to do, praise verbally, with food or a cuddle. Give yourself a little reward too, you deserve it: you're on your way to a well trained dog.
Place the crate close to your bed, if possible on a chair so the dog can see you and be reassured by your presence.
If the pup whines during the night, carry him to the designated toilet spot, if he complies with his duty, praise, place back in the crate and hope the rest of the night will be peaceful.
If it was a false alarm place the pup back in the crate without comments. In the unfortunate event the puppy keeps whining, tap gently on the top of the crate. This will distract the puppy for a while.
If the dog starts whining again, repeat the procedure: take the dog to the toilet spot and then place him back in the crate. The discomfort of being taken outside will soon teach the puppy not to call without reason.
You must at all cost avoid the puppy soiling the crate, if this becomes a habit you will have lost the crate as your most helpful training tool.
Probably the first nights will be rather restless: be patient, don't despair, under your guidance your whippet pup will soon learn his job as house pet and companion.
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