Did you know that 67% of U.S. households own a pet, with 63.4 million households owning a dog?
If you’re thinking about getting a puppy, or are in the process of getting one, then you’ll be excited but also anxious about how you and your new furry friend will get along.
Not to worry! We have the low down on how to bond with your puppy. Follow these seven ways to build a strong friendship with your new cute companion.
How to Make Friends With Your Dog
If you’re still on the fence about getting a dog, then you might want to consider these health benefits first and then decide. For example, owning a dog can help to lower your stress levels, decrease the risk of asthma in children, and lower your blood pressure. Dogs can also help to boost your mood and help combat feelings of depression.
Furry friends can make everything better, but how do you ensure that the two of you get along? There are several things you need to do when you first get your dog to develop a strong bond and friendship.
1. Be Patient
Having a new dog in the house can be very exciting, but you need to remember that your dog will need some time to adjust to his or her new home. This environment is completely new and your dog will appreciate your understanding and patience when it comes to settling in.
Some dogs will be able to settle in and want to bond with you straight away, while others may be a little scared and take longer to settle. But as long as you are patient with your furry friend, then they will soon want to start bonding with you.
2. Keep the Rules Consistent
Make it clear to your family and your puppy what the rules are. Ensure that these are followed at all times, so your pooch understands what is and isn’t allowed.
For example, if you don’t want your dog to go on the furniture because you fear it could risk your health and is unhygienic, then have the whole family follow the same practice to prevent your dog from sitting on the furniture. To avoid confusion and help your puppy learn quicker, everyone in the house should also reward the dog in the same way.
3. Create a Routine
One of the most important puppy bonding tips is to create a routine for your puppy and stick to it. Dogs find comfort in routine and it will also help your puppy understand what is expected from them and when.
Make sure you feed your dog at the same time every day, take him/her on a walk at the same time, take him/her outside for toilet breaks at the same time, and go to bed at the same time each night. These routines will help your dog adjust to his/her new home quicker.
4. Engage With Play
A great way to bond with a dog is by engaging them with play. Dogs love to play and exercise with humans. If you want to get your dog playing, try to find out what games they like most. Test the waters by playing different games to see which one your puppy is most responsive to.
There are many activities with dogs that are fun for both you and your dog. For example, fetch, tug of war, frisbee, and a treasure hunt with treats. You can also buy your puppy some toys to play with, as it is important they learn how to play with you and also how to entertain themselves.
5. Exercise Together
Another great way to bond with your puppy is by exercising together. Giving your puppy plenty of exercise is good for their general well-being and can also help relieve any stress they might have.
You might choose to go for walks in the countryside with your puppy, or you might decide to take him/her on your jogs, or you might like to go to a nearby lake and go swimming together. Whatever exercise you choose to do with your dog, it will definitely help the two of you bond.
6. Let Them Have Space
When you first get your new puppy, it is important to give him/her some space. The first few days might be overwhelming and so by giving your dog his or her own special place and personal space is important.
Create a quiet space where your dog can go if they want to be alone and have a break. You might choose to give him/her a comfy bed to put in the space and some toys. Your dog’s space should be out of the way where your dog can just relax, so think about placing the dog bed under the stairs or in a quiet part of the house.
7. Teach Them Tricks
Once you feel like your new dog has bonded with you and trusts you, it is a good idea to start teaching them tricks. You can try teaching your puppy how to come back to you and improve their recall.
You might also choose to try and build your friendship by teaching your dog how to sit, stay, lie down, and even shake paws.
Follow Our Tips on How to Bond With Your Puppy
Implement these wonderful tips on how to bond with your puppy. Remember that every dog is different and they all have different personalities, but with some patience, consistency, and time to adjust, you’ll soon be best friends.
If you enjoyed reading this article, then be sure to have a look at some of our other blogs about health, fitness, and well-being. Start with this article on must-have accessories for every dog owner!