Having a set schedule allows your pup to rest easy knowing that their needs will be met. And when dogs don’t have anything to worry about, they don’t act out and cause headaches for their parents.
Routines become even more important if you’re welcoming a new puppy into your home. A puppy’s daily routine is absolutely essential to ensure a smooth transition.
Dog Routines To Incorporate Into Your Day
Your dog’s daily routine should cover all of their basic needs: feeding, potty time, exercise and mental stimulation, socialization, and sleep.
If you want to start your dog’s day on the right paw, make time for potty and light exercise first thing in the morning. The good thing is, a walk around the block will hit two birds with one stone.
And don’t forget to give your dog or puppy cuddles and pets before you leave! Bonding time is a great way to round off your morning routine with your dog before work.
Feeding dogs at designated times not only helps prevent over and underfeeding, but also allows regular bowel movement. Check with your vet or Open Farm’s customer service team on what to feed and how much to feed your dog according to their life stage, weight, and activity level.
Generally, puppies are fed several small meals throughout the day, while adults are usually given two larger meals daily.
Leaving your dog with a full bladder or bowel for too long is an accident waiting to happen. Taking dogs out to relieve themselves at the same time every day helps them learn to hold it in until the appointed time.
For older dogs, potty time first thing in the morning and again before sleeping may suffice. But puppies who have poor control over their bathroom habits need to be taken out every 2-4 hours. Gradually increase the interval between potty breaks as they grow up.
Playtime and exercise
Playtime and exercise provide dogs with mental stimulation, a healthy outlet for pent-up energy (that means less chance of destroying your furniture), and bonding time with their favorite human. From going on walks to learning tricks, playing fetch to working on dog puzzle toys, fur parents are spoiled for choice when it comes to playtime.
Allot at least an hour every day for fun activities. How intense exercise will be depends on your dog’s breed, age, and health issues. Consult your veterinarian about which activities are most suited to your dog’s capabilities.
For puppies, keep your sessions short and sweet. You can add in longer and more vigorous exercise as your dog grows older.
Sleeping and bedtime routines
An adult dog needs 12-14 hours of sleep a day, while a puppy should get 18-20 hours. Facilitating this will require a consistent dog or puppy bedtime routine.
Ideally, the bulk of their shut-eye should occur at the same time you sleep, and during the day when you’re busy.
A dog’s bedtime routine should consist of emptying their bladder and bowels, light playtime to get them a little tired, and down-time to let them settle into bed. Placing their bed or crate in a quiet, dark area will help get them in the mood to sleep.
A dog’s daily routine helps ensure that you fulfill all your dog’s basic needs, which helps curb problematic behavior. Establishing a schedule as early as possible is positive for pups and their humans alike.