Living with a

In chapter 2, we discussed where your puppy or new dog should sleep—ideally, in her crate in your bedroom. Not only can you hear her should she need to go outside, you will also be giving her eight hours of closeness to you. It's a great time for bonding even if you are not consciously doing anything. We also talked about where the puppy should eat: either in her crate or in a quiet corner of the kitchen. She needs peace and quiet to eat; she shouldn't be worried about anyone messing with her food or potentially stealing it. She needs water both in the house and outside.

The puppy-proofing you did inside the house and out has created some safe places where your dog can live and play without many dangers. You may find, though, that things you thought were not of interest to a puppy actually are. Puppies can chew on the strangest things! So puppy-proofing will be ongoing as you watch your puppy over the first few weeks.

We also talked about limiting your puppy's freedom in the house, the garage, and the yard. These restrictions should continue for many months as your puppy learns what you expect of her and as she grows up, both mentally and physically. One of the most common mistakes puppy owners make is allowing the puppy too much freedom too soon. The puppy may have been doing well,

Golden Retrievers Getting Into Trouble

Dog ownership is all about companionship. Hillary, a Golden Retriever/Labrador Retriever mix, pictured with owner Buddy Wachtstetter.

listening, and not getting into trouble, and the owner thinks he's got a great dog—a prodigy!— so he allows the puppy to have free access to the house, unsupervised. He comes home one day to find the sofa cushion chewed, the trash cans dumped over, and trash spread throughout the house. Puppies need restrictions and limited freedom until they are mentally mature enough to handle the responsibility of unsu-pervised freedom in the house. And as they are maturing, you will be training them to know what is acceptable behavior and what is not.

But, there is more to living with a dog. A dog is a companion animal. That means she is supposed to spend time with you. She's going to want to be with you, follow you from room to room, and lie at your feet while you read the paper or work at the computer. When you leave the house, your dog is going to want to go with you. Living with a dog means compromises. Let the dog be with you as much as possible to satisfy her needs, yet make enough time for yourself so you don't feel smothered, especially at first. As you get used to dog ownership, though, you may find yourself feeling alone and lonely when your dog isn't with you!

Your daily routine will certainly change once your new dog is home. Young puppies have to go outside often during the day and once or twice each night. Then you'll have to spend time playing with the puppy, grooming and training her, and, of course, feeding her. But even something as simple as going out after work may take more thought. If you go shopping after work, will someone else be able to go straight home to take the puppy outside?

Dog ownership is all about companionship. Hillary, a Golden Retriever/Labrador Retriever mix, pictured with owner Buddy Wachtstetter.

Pit Bulls as Pets

Pit Bulls as Pets

Are You Under The Negative Influence Of Hyped Media Stereotypes When It Comes To Your Knowledge Of Pit Bulls? What is the image that immediately comes into your mind when you think of the words Pit Bull? I can almost guarantee that they would be somewhere close to fierce, ferouscious, vicious, killer, unstoppable, uncontrollable, or locking jawed man-eaters.

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