Putting Your Puppy on a Schedule
Puppies are often much like children. They must be taught healthy habits and eased into schedules and routines. When you get a new puppy, be sure to devote time to developing a schedule that works for both you and your puppy. Take into account his feeding times, outdoor times, exercise and sleep. Once in a routine, life with a puppy becomes much smoother and more rewarding.
First and foremost, make an attempt to feed your puppy at the same times every day. For many people, this is an easy matter of fitting it into their already busy day. However, if your days tend to be flexible, try to maintain a degree of regularity for your puppy’s sake.
By feeding your puppy on a regular schedule, you can often eliminate unfortunate accidents inside of the house. Your puppy’s system will fall into a rhythm and he will most likely need to go outside to do his business at the same time every day. Though it will take time to develop the schedule in the beginning, over time you will both know when he will need to go outside. Be sure to offer praise when he takes care of business outside to positively reinforce his routine.
Try to set aside time for play and exercise each day as well. Again, you will both benefit if you make the same time each day. Your puppy will look forward to the extra attention, and the exercise is extremely good for his overall wellbeing. When he knows he will have exercise and playtime, he is less lucky to entertain himself by getting into trouble around the house.
Regular exercise also ensures a healthy sleep schedule. Let your puppy know when it is bedtime each night. Set him up in his crate for the night, or on his own bed in your bedroom. He will probably be glad to sleep through the night, especially if bed time comes at approximately the same time each night. Between the other regular elements of his schedule, he can take naps to further ensure his health.
Remember that with all endeavors, it is best to start slow and easy. Training your puppy to fall into a schedule is no different. Stay patient with your puppy and disciplined with yourself. Overtime, your puppy will automatically follow your schedule throughout the days and nights.