Puppies are so cuddly and cute, but they can also be quite destructive -- especially if you don’t do a thorough sweep of your home from a “puppy’s eye” view. Learn what 8 things you need to get out of your puppy’s way before they make their first adorable appearance in their new home.
1. People Food
Your puppy cannot wait to explore every nook and cranny of your home -- and that includes your kitchen, which can be full of danger. The inside of cupboards and cabinets in your kitchen contain items that, while we find them delicious, can be quite toxic to pets. Check this infographic for foods that could harm your dog.
Some dogs really enjoy rooting around in trash. And while kitchen garbage cans aren’t as much of a problem since they tend to come with lids, many bathroom trashcans are wide open and low enough to the ground for a puppy to eat out of -- the perfect recipe for a disgusting mess. Your dog might try to ingest tissues, cotton swabs, used razor blades, or anything else you see fit to toss into the bathroom trashcan. While you can opt to keep the can inside a bathroom cabinet, you might simply want to invest in one with a lid.
While you’d think that something that smelling or tasting terrible would be enough to deter your puppy, think again. Puppies are serious about exploring new things, even if everything about it seems disgusting. Also, some harmful substances simply don’t taste or smell bad, like antifreeze.
Consider installing childproof locks on any cabinets you want to keep off-limits to your pooch. Things to put away and lock up:
Medications for people and pets (make sure there are no stray pills on the floors)
Laundry detergent and bleach
Paint and paint thinner
Weed killer and plant fertilizer
Snail pellets or slug bait
Ant traps, insect poison and repellent, rodent poison, mothballs, and silverfish packs
Too many pet parents learn the hard way that your puppy has no qualms about making your exquisite Italian leather shoes into their newest chew toy. Drawn to your scent, your puppy sees your shoes, socks, and slippers as something to chew on. Combine that with their tough, chewy consistency, your footwear is enough to make any pup swoon with delight.
5. Dirty Laundry
Dirty laundry, to your puppy, is a scent coated pile of chewy perfection from your puppy’s perspective. Beyond not wanting holes chewed in your clothes, it might also be nice to keep your unmentionables from making a surprise appearance in your living room, after your puppy decides to drag them out of the laundry room. One common item for puppies to ingest are nylons, which can cause an intestinal blockage if your pup can’t pass them.
6. Kids’ Toys
Sometimes it’s hard for us to tell kids’ and dogs’ toys apart, so just imagine how tricky it would be for your puppy. Small pieces like Legos are likely to be either chewed to bits, or worse, swallowed. Soft toys, like dolls or plush animals, are perfect to cuddle with, but they are also likely to get slobbered on and chewed up. Chew toys are important for the teething process and they relieve stress, so be sure to get your puppy some toys of their own.
7. Electrical Cords
Clearly dangerous, electrical cords offer a lovely, chewy consistency for your teething puppy. Not only could your puppy be killed or seriously injured from an electrical shock, an exposed wire can start a fire. To be safe, either keep your cords out of reach or covered up. Here’s a pet fire safety checklist to go over with your household.
8. Indoor Plants
House plants are a curiosity you don’t want your puppy exploring due to the potential for a dirty mess, the destruction of the plant, and the chance that your puppy could chew leaves that are toxic. Here is a list of plants that are common in homes and can be harmful to pets. Ask your vet for a full list of plants that are poisonous for your pup, and keep these plants out of the house to be safe.
By keeping these objects out of your puppy’s reach, you’ll help keep your puppy (and your belongings) safe and sound.
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