It’s your first night with your brand-new addition to the family; you are both very excited. The puppy is frightened and so are you. It’s perfectly normal that you both want to stay close to each other in tough times and the first night is one such occasion. Your puppy is separated from his mother, and you got yourself a baby and if it is a first timer, you have no clue what to do and to expect.
The first thing to consider is travelling from the breeder to your home. Make sure you have enough “bedding” to comfort the young one, which will perhaps sleep most of the way if it is a long drive. Add a little cuddly toy to the bedding, it will give some comfort.
A puppy’s place is not in your bed, t least not at night when you sleep in it. There’s no problem if your puppy (and later an adult dog) sleeps in your bed during the day, but it’s important to keep them away at night. The reason behind this is quite simple—canines have a hierarchy. Wolves from the bottom of hierarchy pyramid don’t sleep together with the chief wolf. In your family you are the chief, has to be the chief. Your puppy is not. In fact all members of your family should be at some point chiefs to your puppy. This is very important to understand for better living later when dog becomes more stubborn and self-conscious. NOTE: Please heed to these instructions; you ARE the master, the chief, the “boss”. There is a saying that bull terriers do not have owners, they only have servants.
Now that you know what you shouldn’t do, let’s see how to survive through the first night. If your breeder gave you a rag from smelling like the puppy’s mother, it will be of tremendous help. If not, then prepare a few old unwashed shirts or any part of your clothes which has your smell. From time to time I had to give up my mohair jersey, or rather, it was “confiscated”. It will help the puppy feels safe and cosy and will give him a sense of being near you. Also, it’s advisable to give him plenty of old rags so the puppy can dig and make his place more comfortable.
Be sure the puppy has performed everything outside, before retiring to bed. This is very important for the pup to understand that this has to happen. Since the pup does not have full control over the bladder, accidents do happen. Prepare then at least a corner for old newspapers that the pup build a sense of there is a place to go to do his thing. Also make sure he’s not hungry, but don’t feed the puppy once you placed him in his bed. This will just awake him and you don’t want a cheerful puppy at 3 in the morning. Generally, a good practice is to play a lot with a puppy during the day, so he becomes exhausted for the evening.
If there is trouble for your puppy to fall asleep, and he wants to climb into your bed, place his bedding near your bed. To calm him down, just speak to him gently, but don’t touch him. Let him know you are near, but don’t get him used to physical contact during bedtime. In the morning, get up early and take him outside, so he doesn’t make a mess in your bedroom.
Writing this short note I have chuckled quite a lot. It is difficult, very difficult to adhere to these simple rules. Bullies are just too adorable when they are pups, strolling behind you grunting all the way, perhaps just like a little piglet as this Alexander the Great does. It is the beginning of many grunting talks and demand trying to persuade you they are the “boss”.