This post, How to Bond with your Puppy is sponsored by © Nature’s Recipe, LLC., all opinions are my own.
The other day I had a realization. While I love our new puppy Addison, I have not fully bonded with her. I was talking to a friend who is going through a divorce about who is going to get their dog and she mentioned she did not think her husband had a very strong bond with their dog because he was still mourning the loss of their last one. And it hit me I think I have the same problem.
My last puppy, McKenzie, was like my first child. I got her as a graduation present for myself when she was only 8 weeks old. I will never forget when my roommate and I drove to Canton, Georgia to pick her up. She was so tiny and so nervous. She was salivating all over my shoulder. When I got her, I was working part time and studying for the GRE, so I was home all the time. Since she was less than 10 lbs, I took her everywhere with me. Yes, I was that girl with a white fluffy dog in a purse. She traveled all over the country with me and was my buddy. When she passed away, I was devastated. I did not want to come home because everything in my house reminded me of her and how she was gone.
At first, I focused on all the benefits of not having a dog. We no longer had to rush home, we could travel with ease. There was no chance of an accident. The thought of B growing up without a dog was sad for us, so we started our search for the perfect family dog. We had already been talking about getting a Goldendoodle when Mac was still alive, so we knew that was the breed we wanted. We also wanted to adopt but figured it would be difficult to find one since they are such a popular breed.
I was in a Facebook group for Goldens of South Florida on Sunday night and there she was. A scared looking puppy in a blurry photo. I quickly messaged the contact and I was shocked when she called me the next morning to say, if we wanted to meet her, we would have to agree to foster her for at least a week. We did, and the rest is history.
With school starting back up, I am ready for my next project with Addy. I really want to create a better bond with her. So, I am going to follow B’s lead and do the following things to create a better bond with our puppy.
How to Bond with your Puppy
Exercise is Key
The first week Addy was home with us she was an angel. Like the perfect dog, we could not understand why the other family could possibly give her up. And then week two started and she was a crazy dog. I realized she needed lots of exercise. For the first couple of months, we needed three walks a day. We are down to one to two walks a day now. It is incredible how exercise can transform a dog’s behavior. Every time we take her for a walk she acts like it is the first time she has ever been. She is so excited. Over the summer, my schedule has been busy, and the heat has been a good excuse to skip our normal morning walks. I am committed to getting back to walking together.
Learn How Your Dog Communicates
It is amazing if you take a step back and realize that your dog is trying to communicate with you, how barking can become less annoying. We are quickly learning that Addy generally barks at us in the morning and at night when she wants to go for a walk or when she needs food or water. I have signed up for a group training class to help me continue to learn about her and to teach her some new skills.
Addy loves to play chase. We call it her happy hour because she will do laps around the pool. It has helped us bond more as she sees how much fun we can all have together. Try to do something you dog loves. It could be playing catch, getting on the floor with them, or snuggling.
A simple car ride can be a great way to bond. During the school year, I often bring Addy for pick up. When I say, “Do you want to pick B up?” she sprints to the garage and jumps in the car. This summer we have missed having these little adventures together. We also have lots of restaurants and shops that are dog friendly.
Back to Basics
Dogs know who they can depend on for the basics like food and water. Commit to be the one in your house to feed your dog. And feed your dog a premium dog food like, Nature’s Recipe® is premium dog food. We like to buy the grain free since it is easy-to-digest. Addy love to combination of real salmon and the nutrient-dense carbohydrates of pumpkin. It has no corn, wheat, soy, poultry by-product meal or artificial flavors and preservatives. We buy it at our local Walmart. What flavor will you buy first?
Give it Time
Strong bonds do not happen overnight. Give it time and know that it will happen if you make the commitment to it.