You've just brought home your new puppy; how cute is she? There she sits staring at you with those big brown eyes waiting; she is waiting for you to help her integrate into your human world. Puppies do bad things; a common phrase but incorrect. Puppies do bad human things; as far as being a member of the canine species they are perfect at that. Of course not all are perfect at being dogs but most are.
Many folks go through a "pulling your hair out," stage with their new puppy. When I get the chance to talk to I some of the folks who are struggling I tell them this: Just imagine; this puppy has only been alive for maybe 8-10 weeks or so. They've been taken away from everything and anything that they've known over that very short time. Then there are plunked into a new home, with new people and possibly new dogs to deal with. Pretty scary if you ask me, just imagine.
We expect so much from them don't we? Humans can conjure up the most wonderful image of the perfect puppy frolicking through a field of daisies, running beside us and gazing into our eyes with love. First off, just try to find a big field of daisies. From the day your puppy lands at your home you have to get to work; it's a big job creating a smooth transition for them but it is one that we chose when we home a puppy. Education is the key to success; leave that little mind empty and they will fill it with whatever they see fit given the lack of guidance.
Patience along with education is what is needed to help puppies grow into well adjust mannerly dogs. Dogs that can deal with our human world; after all it is a weird world that we live in, even for us humans. Step by step, day by day we help the new ones work their way through each obstacle and challenge. They will be watching you; examining each move you make and storing the information. Knowing how much our dogs watch us helps us to monitor our own behavior; this in itself is guidance for the puppies.
The more calm and relaxed you are throughout your daily life will reflect upon your puppy. When each problem, issue or challenge arises deal with it very steadfast. Sometimes an acting job is required; something may have freaked you out just as much as your puppy but you must be the one to show the way. Many times I've been big time startled by a very large dog charging my dogs. No matter how I feel I step into the "leader" role and take control of the situation. Taking the reins is often enough to calm a dog when they feel uncertain.
If you are one of the lucky ones with a new puppy; enjoy this time because with a blink of an eye it will be over and you will once again missing those puppy days.