Dogs adopted from a local shelter make some of the best lifetime pets.

Congrats on your new family member…you must be brimming with excitement! By deciding to adopt a pooch, you have made one of the most rewarding decisions of your life.

And you have certainly made a world of a difference to this wonderful creature you’re about to welcome into your home. However, for those among you who are new to the notion of pet parenthood, the following tidbits of advice will be handy to make the transition as smooth as possible!

Structure a Dog-Friendly Routine

Dogs coming from shelters will often need extra time to adapt to their new environment. They’ll need to get used to all the smells, sounds, people, and their fear of abandonment might still be strong. Depending on the age and type of dog you have adopted, consider creating a schedule of regular walks, when the feeding times will be, as well as a safe spot for them to rest.

Keep in mind that youngsters don’t have the same bladder control as adult doggos, so following proper potty-training rules is a must! Consistency is key.

Make sure you consider the financial costs of dog ownership before you adopt.

Stock Up on Pooch Essentials

Make sure you place the water bowl in an easy-to-find area and that you acquaint your dog with this area. Choose a a crate and perhaps a dog bed. It’s also wise to find premium dog food in order to keep their immune system strong, and help them develop properly with the right balance of micro nutrients like calcium.

Develop a Training System

While it’s always a great idea to have delicious treats with you when you teach your dog the basic commands of obedience, you can also consider other rewards such as verbal praise or a belly rub.

However, many dogs, no matter their size, require professional training, so in order to prevent rather than correct unwanted behavior, you can always talk to a qualified dog trainer to help you bond with your new pooch and build a strong connection of love and respect.

Consistency is key!

Stay Consistent

To help your little furry friend understand the expectations in your home, you should be consistent in what is allowed, rewarded, and what is forbidden. That means that other family members should enforce the same rules, so that the pooch doesn’t get confused about whether the carpet is a safe pee place, or if they are allowed to munch on the sofa. If you have kids in your family, teach them the best and most appropriate ways to interact with their new family member!

Find Balance

Just like with people, every pooch has different needs, and the sooner you recognize what they need, the sooner your routine will become more of a natural flow. No matter if you have adopted a mixed breed or a purebred, certain dogs love to sleep more, while others need ample amounts of exercise such as running, walking, agility work, and stimulating toys to develop their intellect, too.