Schedule and Routine

09/02/2022

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SCHEDULE & ROUTINE

Implementing a good schedule and routine is important from the moment you arrive home with your puppy.

There are 5 key aspects to routine – toilet trips, mental activity, physical exercise, supervision and alone time.

You will need to ensure your puppy has each of these throughout the day in order to fulfil their daily needs. Aim to repeat these activities approximately 3-4 times each day, with the exception of toilet trips which need to be offered every time your puppy wakes up from a nap, has a meal or drink or does physical or mental exercise. You’ll need to take young puppies out to toilet every 30 minutes to start with.

After toileting the first part of your day should be a combination of physical exercise and mental activity. The order you do these in is up to you, but do be mindful if you have a breed susceptible to bloating that you should avoid exercising after food.

Mental activities include enrichment puzzle feeders, playing training games, and exploring new things in a fun and safe way.

Physical exercise can be human play, playing with toys, going on a walk or playing with other dogs. It’s important not to overdo physical exercise whilst your puppy is still growing as this can cause damage to their joints. Typically 5 minutes per month of age, twice a day is recommended until your puppy is fully grown.

After this take your puppy out to the toilet before settling them down for some alone time.

Alone time should be incorporated throughout the day to ensure that your puppy is happy to be left at home when you need to go out. Start off with a short absence whilst your puppy has something fun to do. Gradually you can extend the duration as long as your puppy remains relaxed. Always ensure your puppy has already had physical and mental exercise and a chance to go to the toilet before you leave them.

Any time that your puppy is not sleeping or in their crate/pen, you need to actively supervise them. Block off any areas you don’t want them to have access to, provide them with appropriate things to do and consider using a house line or tether to keep your puppy close by where you can observe them and prevent unwanted behaviour.

To succeed in raising a well mannered, happy and contented puppy, a well planned routine is essential.

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