Are you bringing home a puppy during the holidays? First of all, congratulations! What a memorable holiday season it will be for you and your whole family as you get to share the Christmas spirit with your new four-legged best pal. But, it also means you’ve got to be fully prepared for both the holiday madness as well as taking care of a new living being in your household. In this guide, we’re going to walk you through some of the most important things you should consider when bringing home a puppy during the holidays so that you can be fully prepared and all goes smoothly for everyone involved. 

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Bringing Home A Puppy During The Holidays: Introduction

If you’re bringing home a puppy during the holidays, you have two responsibilities to handle at the same time. It’s safe to assume that you have holiday parties and gatherings to attend to or even host, not to mention all the things you need to get done before the pup arrives. 

There are those fun parts of bringing home a puppy during the holidays, such as shopping for their new bed, choosing a cute name for them, and meeting them for the very first time. But there are also plenty of responsibilities that come with pet ownership. 

In addition to that, those very first days and weeks with a new pup will certainly be a bit more stressful than usual while you and your pup settle into this new life change. Your new pooch will most likely need a bit of time to adjust to their new home environment, away from everything and everyone they’ve known so far. Likewise, you have a whole new little life to take care of and nurture. 

If this holiday season is going to be a bit more special than others thanks to your little fluffy bundle of joy, then this guide will help you get prepared for this magical holiday season. 

PS! If you’re loving the holiday content, we also recommend you check out our video guide on keeping your dog safe during the holidays.

Should I Bring A New Puppy Home During The Holidays?

It’s without a doubt one of the most wonderful Christmas presents anyone could give to their families – a new puppy! You’ve got the tree all set up, all of your Christmas ornaments and decorations out for you to enjoy, and all the exciting planning for the holidays in full mode. And to make things even better, you’re also getting a new puppy during the holiday season. Imagine that joy! 

On the other hand, the holiday season also tends to be very packed and oftentimes borderline stressful for many of us. You’ve got to take care of all the presents, Christmas menus, perhaps even planning a few parties for your loved ones. Also, you might need to work extra hard before the holidays to get everything done in time. 

Although it’s definitely doable, getting a puppy during the holidays might be too much of a hassle for some. For starters, for the very first days at home, your new puppy will most likely feel a bit shy and anxious, even stressed out as they’re not in their usual familiar environment anymore. They don’t have any of their littermates or their mama by their side to turn for comfort. 

Speaking of which, if you’re planning to host Christmas parties at home with guests coming over, it’s very likely going to be even more stressful for your new puppy. Even though you could perfectly well pull off bringing home a new puppy during the holidays if it’s just you, your significant other, and kids, it’s a whole other story when you’re hosting other relatives, too. 

Don’t Forget To Pamper Your Pup

Your new puppy will also require a lot of attention and affection so that they have an easier time adjusting to their new home and family, as well as new routines. You can’t just put them away in another room and hope for the best. That’s not how it works with living beings! In fact, we always recommend that new puppy owners start training their pups as soon as they arrive home. Naturally, during the busy holiday season, it can be tricky to pay full attention to your pup, which is what they very much need during this critical time. 

Ah, The Christmas Decorations…

There’s also the matter of your Christmas decorations around the house. Keep in mind that you should always puppy-proof the house when bringing home a new puppy. But when it’s the holiday season, all of those Christmas ornaments and decorations will add another layer of risks for your new puppy. That being said, if you can use puppy-safe ornaments and keep them securely out of your pup’s reach, then it likely won’t be a big problem. 

5 Things To Consider While Bringing A Puppy Home During The Holidays

Make Sure To Make The Puppy’s Transition As Comfortable As Possible

The very first thing to consider when bringing home a puppy during the holidays is, of course, your new puppy. Regardless if it’s the holiday season or any other day of the year, you’ve got to be mindful of this new living being in your family. A new pet will need a few weeks to adjust to their new home, the very first days being the hardest for them. 

You should be able to give your new puppy undivided attention so that they have an easier time adjusting to their new home and family. They will need soothing as it’s very common for puppies to be confused, whine, and get a bit anxious in their new surroundings. It’s best to keep your home as calm and quiet as possible. So, if you have young children in your family, make sure to properly educate them beforehand on how to interact with their new furry best pal

It goes without saying that you should be fully prepared before the Gotcha Day with all of the necessary supplies your new puppy will need. These include items like food and water bowls, puppy food and training treats, toys, and bedding, to name a few. 

Puppy-Proof Your Home And Create A Dedicated Space For Your Pet

Young puppies are notorious for getting into trouble. Even though some of their antics may be simply funny to look at, they may also get a hold of items that can be extremely dangerous for them. 

When bringing home a new puppy during the holidays, it’s that much more important to properly puppy-proof your home so that there are no potential health hazards for your new puppy. Electrical cords and cables, sharp objects, Christmas ornaments, batteries, coins, and any other items that your puppy might want to chew on should be stored away so that they’re out of your puppy’s reach. 

We also recommend you create a separate area for your puppy to retreat to when they’re feeling a bit overwhelmed or need a little nap. Crate training has proven to be one of the best methods, as you’re creating a safe haven for your pup to relax and recharge in. Make it as comfy as possible for your pet with soft bedding and plush toys. You can also put dog beds in different areas of the house that are away from the busiest hustle and bustle. 

Create A Routine For Your Puppy

To help your pup ease into their new environment and family, we recommend you set a daily schedule for your new pooch from day one. This includes potty breaks, meal times, bedtime, training sessions, and so forth. Not only will this massively help with potty training, it’s also one of the best ways to build your new puppy’s confidence. 

Keep in mind that during the holiday season it’s likely going to be a bit more difficult to stick to that same schedule day in and day out. In fact, even for adult dogs this change in their usual routine can cause some serious stress and anxiety! So, if you’re really not keen on following a schedule during the holidays, you might want to reconsider when you’re actually bringing the new pup home. 

Book Vet’s Appointment In Advance To Avoid Holiday Rush

The holiday season tends to be one of the busiest not just for us, but for veterinarians, too. When bringing home a puppy during the holidays, trying to schedule that first vet appointment can become quite tricky, especially if you haven’t booked it beforehand. 

Since you’ll most likely have agreed on a date for bringing home your new puppy with your breeder, we recommend you also book that first vet appointment as soon as possible to avoid holiday rush or having to postpone the first checkup. 

For the appointment, be sure to bring along all of the health records your breeder has provided with other purchase documents. Your vet will be able to schedule the following appointments and vaccinations according to your pup’s health records. 

Getting your puppy fully vaccinated is absolutely necessary to prevent them from catching any serious health conditions that could potentially become fatal. Likewise, your vet will be able to keep a close eye on your puppy’s health and growth as they grow through puppyhood into their adult years. 

Start Training Your Puppy From Day #1

We strongly recommend you start training your new puppy from the moment you bring them home. If you’re setting a daily schedule for your pup, you’re already halfway there! 

Of course, you’ve also got to stick to their daily schedule and training routines for them to grow into a well-behaved and well-rounded adult. The sooner you introduce your new puppy to the house rules and teach them what’s expected of them, the easier it will be to enforce good behaviors and for them to stick well into adulthood. 

Whether you’re a first-time dog owner or have a few pooches at home already, you might find the Online Puppy School by Baxter & Bella a helpful resource to guide you along the way. We absolutely love this program because for a one-time fee you get access to countless resources on training methods, common behavioral issues and how to fix them, and many other topics a puppy or dog owner might need some extra help with. 

By the way, as it’s an online program, you’re going to be learning all of those helpful skills on how to raise your puppy into a well-behaved adult. The bond you’ll build with your new pup will be unbreakable! 

Bringing Home A Puppy During The Holidays: FAQs

What Age Is Best To Bring A Puppy Home?

Ethical breeders usually let you take your new puppy home some time between 8 and 10 weeks of age. By that time, puppies are usually fully weaned from mother’s milk, have received their first puppy shots, and learned some crucial socialization skills from their mother and littermates.  

When Can Puppies Drink Water?

Puppies can start drinking water between 3 and 4 weeks of age when they’re being introduced to solid foods to slowly start weaning them off mother’s milk. 

How Many Times A Day Should A Puppy Eat?

Puppies that are 8 to 12 weeks old should be fed 4 times a day. Around the 4 to 5 month mark, you can graduate them to 3 meals a day, and at 6 to 7 months of age, you can adjust your pup to 2 meals per day. 

Bringing Home A Puppy During The Holidays: Final Thoughts

Bringing home a puppy during the holidays is surely going to make this Christmas the most magical, most memorable of them all for you and your loved ones. But, of course, only if you’re properly prepared beforehand! We hope this guide has helped you understand what are the key things to consider when bringing home a puppy during the holiday season so that both you and your new pooch have a smooth and easy transition during this wonderful time. 

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