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Congratulations on your new companion! If you have adopted a new puppy or dog, there are some things you can do to help make the settling process run smoother.

Crate training 

Crate training takes advantage of your dog's natural denning instincts to seek out a comfortable and safe place to relax. This can be when the environment is too loud or overwhelming. The benefits of crate training include preventing your dog from chewing on things in your home, offering a safe way to transport your dog in a vehicle, and preparing them for future veterinary or grooming visits. 

To learn more, visit: Crate Training 



Puppies and dogs learn by experiencing the world around them. Gradually expose them to different people, places, sights, and sounds. You will want them to get used to travelling in cars, being around children and other animals, and being comfortable when people are near their food and toys. Socializing your puppy is key to ensuring they will be a happy, confident dog. 


Puppy/Dog Training 

Training should begin as soon as you get your new pet. For a puppy it might include things like wearing a collar or walking with a leash. Using force to train your pet can ruin the bond you have with them, so make sure training methods are based on positive reinforcement in accordance with current professional guidelines



Good nutrition is essential for your dog/puppy. All dogs are different, and a growing pup’s diet will change over time. Consult with a veterinarian to determine the proper food for your dog based on their age, size, breed, and health. 

To learn more, visit: Pet Food Labels



Regular veterinary checkups are an excellent way to prevent disease and obtain professional advice about the care of your pet. 

To learn more, visit: Got a Pet - Get a Vet



Exercise is important and keeps your dog healthy. Going for walks, running in a dog park, or even playing in the backyard can be a great way for you and your dog to spend some quality time together and get exercise for the day. 



Vaccinations help protect your pet from potentially serious and life threatening diseases. Talk to the veterinarian about the types of vaccinations your dog will require. The timeline may vary depending on your pet’s age, health, and immune status. 


Spaying and Neutering 

Did you know an intact female dog can have as many as 21 puppies in one year? 


Spaying and neutering are surgical procedures used to sterilize animals, making it impossible for them to reproduce. Sterilization of your pet by spaying or neutering prevents the birth of unplanned litters and helps keep animals out of the rescue system. Spaying and neutering also reduce the incidence of certain behavioural issues such as aggression, roaming, urine spraying, and mounting behaviours. 

To learn more, visit: Spaying and Neutering



Grooming is important to your dog’s health and happiness. Brushing or combing your pet’s coat on a regular basis prevents matting and knots. Ask your veterinarian if your pet has any special grooming needs. Some breeds require regular brushing and toenail clipping. 


Dental care 

Oral hygiene is a vital aspect of pet health care. Daily brushing of your dog’s teeth helps prevent periodontal disease, which can cause pain and discomfort and lead to other health problems including lung, heart, kidney and joint infections. Consult your veterinarian to learn about the proper dental care for your dog. 


Pet Insurance


A variety of pet insurance plans are now available to assist with the cost of unexpected illness or injury. 

To learn more, visit: Pet Insurance

To learn more about the care of your new dog or puppy, be sure to check out the Dog Owner's Handbook, prepared by the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association:

Crate training
Socialization and behaviour
Check ups
Spaying and neutering
Dental care
Pet insurance
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