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Importance Of Setting Rules Up Early

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Disa Emerson is the Behavior Program Director at Seattle Humane Society. Please visit them to check out their adoptable and foster dogs.

Set rules up early for your dog:

It’s critical for owners to set the rules up the first day they bring their dog home. So, if they do not want their dog to be on the bed, they shouldn’t allow that even the first day. They want to setup the dog with consistent expectations. Where they are going to be fed, how often they are going to be fed, how often they are going to be left alone. I know a lot of new dog owners attempted to be home with their dog every single day for the first week or so, but that actually can be kind of detrimental to the dog it sets them up with the expectation that this is how life is always going to be. So, if they are very consistent from day one with what that animal’s routine is going to look like that’s the best chance for that dog to have success.


Consider these rules:

  • Will your dog be allowed on the furniture?
  • Will your dog sleep in bed with you?
  • Where will your dog eat?
  • Where will your dog sleep?
  • When will your dog go on walks?
  • What time will your dog eat?
  • How vocal will you allow your dog?
  • How much roughhousing will you let your dog?
  • Where will he play?
  • How rough will he play?
  • Will your dog be allowed to wake you up?
  • Where will your dog stay when you are gone?
  • Who will care for your dog when you are gone?