The Benefits of a Puppy Sitter
The challenge of being a puppy in a human world
It is hard being a puppy. Puppies don't know what we want from them. They tend to do everything wrong before they do it right, and often they have an owner, perhaps like yourself, who is learning for the first time what it is like to share your life with a dog.
Often you bring a new puppy home without thinking about how the pup is going to learn to do all of the things you want them to do, when you are not around during the day to show them what you want, and what you don't want.
Who will care for your new pup during the day?
Puppies sleep a lot, but if you confine your puppy to a crate or pen they are going to need supervision and time outside of their confinement. You can't leave a puppy in a small crate for hours, or even in a larger pen, because puppies need regular human interaction.
Some people think the solution is to leave a new puppy in a friend or family member's home where they can be supervised and played with while you are at work. Other people might think to book them into a Doggie Daycare Facility. Wouldn't it be better if your dog could spend time in their own new home though, settling in and getting used to their own new routine, learning the new house rules, and being able to practice their toilet training and other basic training more regularly, and with more chance of success?
Wouldn't it also be better if they get to spend time with a professional puppy carer who understands what a puppy needs at various stages in their development? A professional is someone who can support your basic training and socialisation efforts every day of the week, by practicing and therefore reinforcing the good habits you are working towards. They will also make sure that your puppy is getting all of the sleep it needs to grow into a healthy adult dog.
What does your new puppy need?
Puppies don't become a nuisance or a nightmare when you cater for their needs properly from the very beginning. This is the crucial time when they soak up information like a sponge. They learn incredibly fast, which also means that they quickly pick up the wrong things too.
I am a firm believer in setting a puppy up to succeed, with plenty of positive reinforcement and reward based training. Puppies sleep for the majority of the day because their brains need this amount of rest in order to process everything that they are learning, and so the short time that they are awake is a window of opportunity that can be missed if the right person is not around to direct your puppy's energy towards the right things.
A puppy left playing and exploring by itself for hours will not get the rest it needs. A puppy left playing and interacting with children or adults who are not well informed is also more likely to learn the wrong behaviours - like biting and mouthing, jumping up at people, barking for attention, soiling carpets and chewing on all of the wrong things.
A puppy with a great professional puppy sitter benefits from a day which is more structured. They learn good food manners at meal times. They learn that barking and whining doesn't get them attention, but waiting patiently and being quiet does. They learn that chew toys are for teething and not a person's hand, clothes or belongings. They learn that it is just as rewarding to settle down by themselves for a nap or to enjoy a dog chew as it is to interact with people or other animals. They also learn not to expect to be cuddled and picked up just because there is a human in the room... only a professional puppy sitter can resist constantly playing with, cuddling and petting an adorable, cute little animal, with those big puppy dog eyes and wagging tail!
Seriously, the benefits of employing an informed professional puppy sitter outweighs the convenience of dropping a puppy off at your sister's house because she has three kids to keep it occupied all day (at the expense of your pup's important sleep requirements), or dropping them off at the Doggy Daycare centre where they will learn that dogs are far more interesting and stimulating than most people!
What does Opulent Mutts Puppy Care Service offer?
With Opulent Mutts you will get a free consultation. This is an informal initial meeting in your own home, where we get to meet each other and discuss what you need from me. My Puppy Care Service is a bespoke service, which means that I aim to develop a flexible care plan with you to cater for your personal requirements. Everybody leads a different kind of lifestyle, lives in a different kind of home, and wants different things from and for their pets. You can talk to me about all of this during our meeting. If you have already brought your new puppy home, I also get to meet them, and they get to meet me.
You will soon want to teach your puppy certain behaviours and will probably enrol your puppy onto a basic training course at some point. In my care plan I aim to take into account all of the things you are actively teaching your puppy, so that I can practice and reinforce these things during the day when you are not around.
For example, you may be teaching your pup to sit and wait quietly during meal preparation, perhaps with a release cue integrated. You may be using specific hand signals for commands. You may want me to help teach your puppy to ring a small bell at the back door to notify people when they want to be let out, instead of scratching and damaging a beautiful door. You may also be teaching your puppy about invisible boundaries, like asking your dog to wait and not pass through a doorway just because a door has been opened and you are going through it - This can be useful eventually if you are living on a main road and don't want your dog bolting out into the street every time you get a visitor.
Some of these things are more advanced of course, and you may be working on them with a professional dog trainer, but if they are things you are practicing with your dog I am more than happy to continue to reinforce your work whilst they are in my care.
The point is that if everyone is one the same page, and doing the same things, then there are no mixed messages and the dog is being set up to succeed and learn the right behaviours quickly and accurately.
If you are bringing a new puppy home and would like some support during the first few months of your puppy's life with you, My Puppy Care Services are based in London, and you can click on the link below for more information...