Are you bringing home a new puppy? There is no shortage of stories about puppies getting into things they shouldn’t. You’ll want to prevent your pup from gaining access to any unsafe area the same way you wouldn’t let your own child do so.
Even when you confine them to a safe area, they will undoubtedly try to escape and may accidentally get into harmful products or other unsafe situations. So what can you do to protect them? It is important that you “puppy proof” your home before bringing your puppy home, just like you would do for an infant or toddler. The trash and cabinets are two particular things that should be kept secure.
While you may not realize that your dog can be harmed by everyday garbage, there can be many items in the trash, even foods, that are toxic to dogs or cannot be digested by them. The same is true for other spots in your home where you might have a trash can, like the bedroom or the bathroom. (See foods that are toxic to dogs in this article.)
Many times, even tall trash cans with a lid can be accessed by tipping them over. The easiest way to prevent this is to keep all trashcans in closed cabinets where your puppy cannot gain access.
Dogs can get into cabinets and gain access to medications, cleaning supplies, etc. If these items are not locked away in a place your puppy cannot reach them, you could have a potential disaster on your hands. It is best to purchase childproof locks for all cabinets that contain hazardous materials. You can find these inexpensive types of locks at your local hardware store or online.
It is important to be aware of toxic products in other areas of your house as well if your dog has access to them, such as the garage. Gasoline, antifreeze, paint, and other items need to be stored in a locked cabinet. Accidental poisonings from these things can cause serious harm or even death.
You should inspect your home’s outside, front and back, and make sure that nothing that may harm your puppy or adult dog is present. For example, things like broken glass bottles, poisonous plants and even man-made items such as toys with small parts that can be chewed and swallowed, or other hazardous objects can be poisonous to your dog.
Your yard should also be free of any hazardous substances like pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers that may have been sprayed or spilled. Your dog’s paws are sensitive and it only takes a small amount of some hazardous chemicals to poison them.
If you take your puppy to a dog park for exercise and play, consider evaluating the safety of a local dog park before taking your dog there. It is best to leave the dog park if it has aggressive animals and return later. If the park seems unsafe, it’s best to find another more suitable place where your dog can play safely.
Going for Walks
The same is true if you are going for a walk on a sidewalk. It is possible that you will encounter aggressive dogs that can threaten you and your pet, so take precautions wherever you go. If you do encounter an aggressive dog, ensure that your pup does not approach it. You should try to pull them away from the area if they are on a leash and walk away quickly. Using a spray that repels dogs can also help deter such dogs.
Keeping your puppy (and your grown dog) safe is important. Take the time to ensure that nothing in your home or yard can harm them. If you take these steps, you can rest assured knowing that even if they somehow try to get into something you had not expected, they will most likely be okay.