Common Mistakes to Avoid Raising Your Puppy During COVID-19

Millions of people in Australia and around the world are confined to their homes due to lockdown or stay-at-home or quarantine orders levied due to current COVID-19 pandemic. With the new normal – “Work From Home” concept, most people except the frontliners, are trying to find ways to adjust and go along with the existing unprecedented times.
Staying at home whole day and having enough time, many are taking this opportunity to adopt a new puppy and welcome a fur member to the family.
However, people are making some mistakes in raising and training the puppy giving up to the current pandemic. So, let’s find here the common mistakes new pet owners make and how you can avoid them.

Ignoring Crate Training

Staying whole day at home you might be thinking why would I crate my puppy when I am there all the time? One of the common mistakes pet parents staying at home due to COVID-19 make.
Normally, puppies get trained faster than the older dogs that have never been trained for crate. And, if you ignore this option when your dog is still a puppy, it will be much tougher to train them or get them accustomed to spending time in a crate.

Follow the below steps to start with your puppy for crate training

  • Arrange Big Cozy and Comfy Crate
Provide a big crate to your dog such that your puppy has enough space while he/she is growing up. Make it cozy, inviting your puppy by prepping up it with a bed inside adorned with the soft blankets and keeping the top covered like a den.
  • Take It Slow
Your dog is still a puppy and it will take time, therefore, take it slow and don’t rush into getting all training done at once. Start with small, supervised sessions in the crate, and reward your puppy with tasty treats or toys for staying in and being calm.
Also, give a treat to your puppy inside the crate which can develop a positive experience associating the time inside the crate.
  • Crate is Not for Punishment
Most pet parents make a common mistake of using crate as a punishment for any filthy behaviour, which is absolutely incorrect. Seeking crate as a tool for punishment will cause your dog to feel stressed and anxious.
No doubt, crate training is one of the most crucial elements of training a puppy, and because you are at home due to current pandemic does not mean that you should totally ignore its importance and forget about it.

Not Giving Them Enough Space & ‘ME’ Time

As most of the work is shifted to the new normal of work from home, pet parents are likely to spend time at home than they do on the usual days. And, thus they are lucky to have enough time to spend with their new puppy at home, which can be helpful to train and socialize the pet.
Additionally, if your puppy is in company of some people all the time, it would be easy peasy for them to be a centre piece of attraction seeking constant attention, which won’t be possible in the coming days as the lockdown gets over and the life starts buzzing again.
Thus, if your puppy has never spend time his/her “ME” time all alone, they are at risk to develop separation anxiety, while giving out the signals as whining, excessive barking, marking the house, and not even sparing the furniture by chewing it out while you are away from home.
Thus, if you don’t want such scenario to happen, it is paramount that you spend some time away from puppy every day leaving them alone for a short time.
This is an additional advantage to crate training discussed above, and you can even do this by arranging a separate room in the house for your puppy, so that he/she has the quality time each day and thus, they don’t get attached to you. 

Not Socializing Your Puppy!

The COVID-19 pandemic has paved in a new lifestyle norm of social distancing. But that does not mean that your new puppy doesn’t need to socialize.
Socializing puppy means slowly and safely introducing the small fur kid to new environment, new things, and other dogs and people so that they learn to be comfortable in different situations.
Also expose your pup to a variety of textures and surfaces on your outdoor walks like grass, pavement, sand, gravel, dirt and concrete. Also introduce them to varied sounds such as phone rings, buzzers, doorbells, dishwashers, and outdoor sounds like hones, large trucks, thunder and others.
Socializing your dog with other dogs and people during current pandemic is quite challenging. However, you can arrange a play date for your puppy with your neighbour or friend’s dog, so that the dogs can have their interactions while you keep a safe distance wearing your masks for safety.
Also, it is confirmed by World Health Organization that dogs cannot get sick from or spread the Coronavirus. However, it is on a safer side not to interact your dog to humans. You can just stand at a corner on a pavement and let your puppy watch the passers-by to get acquainted with other people.

In A Nutshell,

Dogs are great stress busters during this COVID-19 pandemic where mostly people need to spend time in the confines of four walls. And, if during this time if you have decided to add a four-legged companion to your family then it is a great advantage. But, ensure that you crate, provide some alone time and socialize your pup to ensure a happy life for you and your puppy with changing times.