there are many things to consider when you decide to get a dog, including how to make your house feel like a home to him, without him taking over said house. it isn’t as easy as tossing down bowls for food and water and calling it a day. if you really want to peacefully coexist in your beautiful home with your pup, here’s what we recommend:
create space: dogs need space of their own. whether it’s a crate, a bed, a chair or a blanket, designating a quiet space for your dog to rest is healthy for both of you. by having his own spot, he will know where to go to get away from the bustle of the family, where to head to feel safe and where he is supposed to sleep. if it happens to smell like you…all the better.
set boundaries: we recommend you decide ahead of time what the rules are in the house including where your pup is allowed to be. is he allowed on the couch for cuddles and naps or do you want him off the furniture and bonding time will take place on the floor? is he allowed in all rooms, or are there some that are off limits? by thinking this through ahead of time, you’ll avoid sending confusing messages or having to correct an already-established bad habit.
give him his: if there is nothing in the house for him to play with or chew on that’s his, then …we promise…he’ll choose yours. dogs must have an outlet for their chewing, biting, sniffing, snorting, and digging instincts. exercise outdoors is one way to help engage these behaviors, but your dog will still need a variety of toys and chews available – ideally on rotation so he doesn’t get bored with any of them. this will better protect your beloved shoes, socks and couch cushions.
set him up for success: training is a huge part of teaching a dog how to be a member of your household, but there are other ways to set him up for success as well. create a schedule for him so he knows what to expect from his routine throughout the day. groom him regularly so he doesn’t shed as much and smells as good as the rest of your house. and, when possible, buy fabrics and flooring that can stand up to the usual wear and tear of daily dog use.
your dog is part of your family and your house is his home. be sure to create a loving and nurturing environment where being a dog is okay because, well, that’s why you got a dog!