PUPPY PROOFING YOUR HOME
Radica Raeves (Raeves, 2015)
Raeves, R. (2015, 8 14). www.mosmanvet.com.au. Retrieved from Puppy Proofing Your Home: http://www.mosmanvet.com.au/Blog/tabid/21948/EntryId/512/Puppy-Proofing-Your-Home.aspx
Before the arrival of your new furry friend, make sure to walk through your home and garden and just imagine you’re a dog (come on… it’s fun!). What would catch your interest? What’s in reach? What would be the consequence of chewing or ingesting that thing? What items or areas pose potential risk? Rest assured, being new to your home, your puppy dog will want to explore his new surroundings. And, as dogs do, will explore with their nose, paws (knock things over) and have the unhealthy habit of “taste testing” everything (i.e. chewing or ingesting inappropriate and potentially dangerous objects).
So it’s a wise strategy to carefully manage your puppy’s environment, in order to limit any temptations and avoid injury or damage to property.
Many of the items listed below have the potential to cause an obstruction, which might need to be removed surgically; are dangerous or toxic and could make your puppy very sick or worse. It’s not an extensive list, but will get you thinking of what needs to be well out of reach.
secure lamps, bookshelves, decorations, collectables, photo frames
cover all electric cords and outlet
place cords from blinds out of reach
any small items like: staples, paper-clips, erasers, rubber bands, twist ties, craft supplies, coins, keys etc.
keep correspondence and important documents well out of reach
kids toys, especially keep small toys off the ground and out of reach: Lego, board game pieces, puzzle pieces
toxic house plants: philodendron, mistletoe and poinsettia
ashtrays and cigarette butts (potential nicotine poisoning)
candles and table lamps
table runners and table cloths
throw cushions, blankets and throws
keep cupboards and drawers closed and counters clean
cleaning products and household chemicals (air freshners!) are very likely toxic, so keep them well out of reach and behind lock and key
sponges, cleaning cloths, mops can cause obstructions which require surgery to be removed
keep food items out of reach - some human foods are toxic for dogs: grapes, macadamia nuts, chocolate (clear counter tops)
make sure garbage/recycling bins are out of reach
plastic bags can be ingested or cause asphyxiation
medications, vitamins and supplements
cosmetics, cotton balls
keep toilet lids down
keep toilet paper out of reach
lock away your expensive shoes
keep your socks out of reach
Make sure all entry/exits are secure and there are no gaps in the fence
toxic cleaning products and paints
toxic car maintenance (incl. fuels) and cleaning products
fertilisers and pest control products (insecticides, herbicides, rat poison etc.)
secure tools and small objects like nails, screws, bolts etc.
Always put lids on the garbage bins and keep them well out of reach
Always make sure the pool fence keeps the puppy out (unless supervised)
toxic garden plants: lily, azalea, daffodil, tomato and hydrangea
Always check before opening the garage door or moving the car that the puppy is not in harm's way.
Always check all entry/exit ways are secure and your puppy cannot accidently get out
Most of the baby proofing items available are also usable to prevent puppy from getting into trouble.
What about the items you can’t put away? You don’t want empty your home.
Try spraying on a bitter agent, such as bitter apple (e.g. on legs of table and chairs, sofa corners, door-frames etc.).
However, the best way to go about teaching your puppy what is forbidden and what is allowed is to ensure your puppy has enough appropriate chew toys and supervise, supervise, supervise.