Tips for First Time Dog Owners

Bringing a dog into the family for the first time is exciting, however there is a lot of preparation needed to make it a smooth experience.

Anytime you adopt a new dog, you want to purchase all the necessary dog-friendly items, such as a leash, collar, and a friendly dog bed. You also want to find a good veterinarian to preserve your dog’s health.

Furthermore, it is essential to play with your new dog and give them safe toys to enjoy. You also need to be available when your dog needs to go potty and take them outside for a walk. Read on to learn more about tips for first time dog owners!

tips for new dog owners raleigh nc

What Are Some Tips for First-Time Dog Owners?

There is nothing like being a pet parent. The unconditional love we experience from our pets is immeasurable. If you are a first-time dog owner, bringing a new dog home can present many challenges, as well as unfathomable rewards.

The following are some suggestions to help you navigate being a first-time dog owner.

Know the Responsibility of Having a Dog

It would be best if you are equipped to understand what your dog needs. You should take the time to devote to walking them and playing with them. You also need to have the budget available to take care of your dog’s food, toys, vet bills, etc.

Some of the other pet supplies you will need include the following:

  • Leash
  • Collar
  • Dog bedding
  • Food and water bowls
  • Identification tags
  • Package of disposable doggy waste bags
  • Dog brush or comb
  • Dog shampoo

When you welcome your new pup into your home, you want to have all the supplies they need to be happy and healthy. It is your assignment as a pet parent to prepare your home for the arrival of a new family member.

Find the Right Veterinarian veterinarian raleigh nc

It is important to seek out a veterinarian that you can trust. It is always best to find someone who genuinely loves animals and treats them with the respect and kindness they deserve. This love and affection are often overlooked, but it is probably the most important detail when choosing a veterinarian.

When choosing a veterinarian, it is best to get second opinions and recommendations from friends, family, and other pet owners that you trust. If you are still having trouble finding a veterinarian, you can look on the internet.

There tons of trustworthy directories online to find great veterinarians. For example, you can use the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) or the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) to find an accredited veterinarian.

Train Your Dog Consistently

If you adopt your canine from a shelter, chances are, the dog will take time to adjust and feel comfortable. Part of the purpose of training is not only so that your dog understands the rules of the house, but they will learn to bond with you.

Create a daily routine for your pup. Consistency and stability are what your puppy needs the most. It is also true that the more you can manage your dog with commands, the better you can protect them. For example, a dog that runs off the leash is more likely to run out into the road or get out the front door before you are ready to leave the house. Your pup will need to learn boundaries and how to behave in social situations.

It could take some time to get your dog to obey your commands and know the rules. Be patient with them, as it could take time for them to listen and learn. Your pup will eventually understand that you only have their best interests at heart.

Pick the Right Food for Them

Good nutrition is also part of the responsibility of having a dog. You need to know what foods are nutritious for them and provide them with optimal energy. Some foods can trigger allergies and other health issues.

Other foods may not be suitable for their size or activity levels. Your dog will need the proper balance of protein and carbohydrates. The two primary sources of protein for your pup are meat and vegetables. Protein also supplies your dog with essential amino acids.

Carbohydrates are essential to your dog’s energy. Your pup needs the energy to support their specific level of activity. If you have any questions, you should talk to your veterinarian about which food is appropriate for your dog.

Consider Microchipping Your Dog

This topic is an essential consideration because if your dog gets off their leash and runs off, having them microchipped will significantly increase the chances that they will be found and given back to you.

A microchip is a device that detects a radio frequency identification transponder that has a unique identification number. It is no bigger than a grain of rice and is placed under the skin between your pup’s shoulder blades.

If your pup gets lost and ends up in a shelter, they can scan them and find the microchip with their information. While you are at the vet, you should talk to your veterinarian about getting your pup microchipped to protect them if they go missing.

However, you should know that the microchip is not good unless you register it with a national pet recovery database. According to the American Kennel Club, animals with microchips are 20 times more likely to be reunited with their pet parents.

Love Your Dog

This situation may seem obvious, but when you get a dog, you need to make sure your pup knows that they are loved. Let your puppy know you are their devoted parent. Give your baby lots of pets and cuddles and enjoy them for their unique personality and adorableness!

how to love your dog


Being a pet parent is a significant responsibility that comes with many rewards. Your canine companion is an important family member, and you want to make sure you are prepared for the privilege of having a new pup.

If you have any questions about being a first time dog owner, Bowman Animal Hospital and Cat Clinic is here to help. For new dog owners in the Raleigh, NC region, call us at 919-847-6216 or make an appointment online today!

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About Bowman Animal Hospital & Cat Clinic

Established in 1986 by Dr. Gale Bowman, Bowman Animal Hospital and Cat Clinic is dedicated solely to the health and well-being of our pet community. We are a team of compassionate veterinarians and pet lovers who invest our time and resources into providing the very best medical care to your pet.