Without a doubt, a new pet will bring an extreme sense of joy into your life. There are very few things as cute as a puppy. However, along with unconditional love and companionship, there is a good chance there will be some damage and destruction as well – at least in the beginning.
Whether you’re adopting a pocket-sized Pug or a galloping Great Dane, you need to make sure your home is ready. Puppies are a force of nature, and they don’t stay small for long! Don’t learn the hard way how essential puppy-proofing your space is.
Use this guide for some simple ways to prepare a puppy-safe apartment before the new addition to the family arrives.
Your puppy needs a space to relax and feel safe. Dedicate a corner of one specific room all for them. If possible, choose an area that has vinyl or tile flooring so it’s easier to clean up messes. Then add toys and a soft, warm bed. Toys are important for keeping your puppy entertained all day. They will especially have fun with anything that squeaks or bounces. Let them get used to your place one room at a time. Trying to take in the entire apartment all at once can be stressful for them. There are too many new sights and smells. Consider keeping your puppy in one room at first, and then slowly expanding and adding one room at a time. This can help keep their stress levels low and even make the training process easier.
Thoroughly inspect your apartment for food and any small items that would be easy for a puppy to ingest. Vacuum the carpets, mop the hardwood floors, and remove all trash. Put away items you don’t want your dog to damage or chew on, like shoes, decorative baskets, remotes, etc. Get in the habit of regularly cleaning so your puppy doesn’t accidentally eat something they shouldn’t.
When you rent an apartment from Blueground, they come fully-furnished and equipped. They make sure to always offer an elevated client experience. That includes not having to worry about filling your new home with furniture. Blueground’s pet-friendly apartments are the perfect place to grow with your puppy. The apartments are furnished clutter-free with the essentials.
With a conventional apartment, there is the hassle of checking with the landlord and neighbors about the existing pet policy. Before even stepping inside with your puppy, there are rules and regulations to figure out. Alternatively, with Blueground, you never have to worry. All of the pet-friendly rentals have already been pre-approved by the apartment building. They are move-in ready from day one.
Puppies are prone to chewing on electrical wires and cords, especially when teething. They all start teething within the first 3-8 weeks. During this time they’ll want to chew anything and everything that they can get their paws on. Keep phone chargers and other small cords off the ground and out of your pup’s reach. Cover wires you can’t hide or remove such as the television, computer, or lamp cords with PVC or another type of chew-proof tube.
Puppies love to hunt for snacks, so swap your open trash can for a tall, covered bin that your dog can’t dig through. Avoid keeping food out on tables or counters, and store items like fruit, bread or cookies in tightly-sealed containers. It might be helpful to keep a list of food that is bad for dogs somewhere handy just in case you aren’t sure and need to double-check before snack time.
A slightly out-of-the-box suggestion is to actually crouch down and try to and see how the space would look from your pet’s perspective. Then, you’ll be able to notice right away if there is anything dangerous in their line of vision.
Unfortunately, there are several popular houseplants that can be toxic to pets if ingested. So keep your plants away from curious pets. Consider putting them up on a very high shelf, or just replacing them with something less harmful.
Plants that are toxic to dogs include azaleas, daffodils, fern palms, and tomato plants. Instead, opt for plants like reed palms, red lilies, bamboo, spice orchids, and cacti. The esteemed American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) has created a printable list of all the toxic and non-toxic plants for dogs, cats, and horses. It’s best that you keep a copy in an easily-accessible spot.
Puppies are extremely curious. That certainly includes getting into rooms and spaces they shouldn’t. Add child-safe latches and locks to doors so your puppy can’t access the pantry or cabinets. For instance, the areas where you keep medicine or cleaning products should absolutely not be accessible. Some dogs can learn to open doors with lever handles, so you may want to replace them with knobs if your landlord allows it. It could be a disaster if your puppy helps himself to a harmful snack while home alone.
Baby gates are every puppy owner’s saving grace. Invest in a few to use around the house when you don’t want your puppy to access a doorless room or area. They can also be ideal for placing near stairs or railings. If you’ve done everything on this list, and are still having dog-proofing problems, don’t worry. Keep in mind your little pet is getting used to a new family and a new environment. It’s an overwhelming time for both of you. Of course, there will be a bit of a natural adjustment period.
Get outside and take a walk with your furry friend. The more exercise and new stimulants they have outdoors the less energy they will have to wreak havoc on your furniture when they get back home. Also, exploring the neighborhood will make them become more confident about their new surroundings. With a little training and a lot of love, you and your adorable new roommate will soon be thriving.