Heather Ridge Pet Hospital

5901 S. Remington Place Suite 100
Sioux Falls, SD 57108

(605)371-1600

heatherridgepet.com

therapeutic services for pets

The kids have been asking for awhile; the mom has been keeping an eye out; the dad has been considering it; and now the time has arrived: a puppy will be added to the family! Getting a puppy is such a great experience in so many ways. Their unconditional love and affection will be great to come home to and the children will learn how to care for something. Approximately 46.3 million households have dogs for pets, all of whom absolutely love it. From paying for therapeutic services for pets to getting frustrated to experiencing the thrill of success, here are a few realistic things you can anticipate when bringing home a puppy:

Accidents and Mistakes
The fact of the matter is that puppies will make mistakes and have accidents. If you want an obedient and well trained dog then you have to be the one to train him to understand the house rules. However, this will take time and patience on your behalf.

Ways to minimize accidents:
  1. Allow for frequent potty intervals - potty mats and frequent visits to the outdoors can help a puppy avoid accidents.
  2. Teach the puppy the appropriate items to bite on - use positive and negative reinforcement to show him what to bite on.
  3. Restrict access to places where you cannot supervise - baby gates can double as puppy gates.
  4. Be consistent with daily activities - be careful not to overwork or over exercise your puppy. Five minutes of exercise for each month of his age, twice a day, is plenty.
  5. Reinforce positive behaviors - treats and praise work great for this.
  6. Discourage poor behaviors - puppies are very social and isolation or timeout can help them understand when they have made a wrong decision.
Frustration
You can definitely expect to encounter this emotion when attempting to train a puppy. It may seem like you are doing your best and working your hardest and nothing is working. However, keep in mind that as long as you are doing your best and giving it your all, eventually you will begin to see small changes taking place as your puppy begins to respond correctly. Try not to get overwhelmed by the frustration because it will hinder your ability to train and help your new, furry family member.

Frequent Visits to the Veterinary Practice
You will have to take your puppy in for vaccinations every three or four weeks until he or she is about 16 weeks old, so you'll want to find a vet that is close by. After that, you should take your pet for check ups twice a year. Other than pet health care, many veterinary technicians offer pet grooming and other therapeutic services for pets.

Unwanted Attention
While walking your puppy is one of the best therapeutic services for pets that they can receive, you will find that as you were out and about with your puppy, people will probably want to stop to pet your dog and talk to you. Instead of getting annoyed by these encounters, use them as opportunities to reinforce good behavior, such as not jumping to great strangers. If your puppy is having a hard time with such attention, politely explain to strangers that the dog is in training and you would prefer him not to be engaged at this point in time.

Training Classes
These will be a lifesaver to you. You can only teach your dog so much by yourself. A good class will help reinforce what you were doing at home and give you new techniques and methods to try. Therapeutic services for pets are often included in dog training classes, because they understand that a dog needs to feel relaxed and secure in its environment.

Once your puppy begins to respond and understand, the pride and satisfaction that you will feel at the site of your success is like no other. Therapeutic services for pets can allow your pet the time to calm down and be refreshed to begin training again, but it would also allow you the time to replenish your own strength. Although it will be difficult at first, the outcome is worth the work.