Even though he will greet you with a wagging tail all full of excitement, when it comes time to take him home from the breeder he might be a little confused and reluctant to leave the rest of the litter and his first home. But there are things you can do to make his transition into your home go as smoothly and as stress free as possible.
The first hurdle is getting the puppy home. People often travel up and down and across the country to collect their puppy from the breeder’s home and this will often require a lengthy journey in the car. Before you leave, check to make sure you have ready the same food the breeder has been feeding him. They should either give you enough to last you until you can purchase more of the same, or you should already have some ready at home. Another useful thing to ask for is an old sheet or pillow case that has been kept with the mother.
Car travelling can be highly stressful for an animal that has never been in one before, or that is used to travelling in one frequently. On his first journey home, if possible, let him sit on someone’s lap, or in their arms where he can be comforted and reassured.
Your house should have been puppy proofed, and once you get him home you can give your puppy a chance to safely explore, with your supervision. He will most probably be carefully wandering around, interested in all the news smells.
If you plan to keep the dog sleeping in the kitchen (which will make it easier to clean accidents) then first few nights are going to most probably be sleepless ones. Your puppy will not want to be left on his own, in the dark, in a strange house and will keep you up all hours with yelping and crying.
The next best option to this is to prepare a crate for night time. Lay newspaper across the bottom of the crate and place his new bedding (with the sheets from the breeder if you have any) in it too. If you have an old clock that gives a faint shudder as it ticks, place that buried within the sheets too – the ticking is similar to that of laying near to another puppy or the mother and imitates a heart beat, something your puppy will find comforting. Add any toys and fresh water to the crate as well.
Place the crate close by to you, if possible, in the bedroom with you. Your puppy might pine that he isn’t as close to you as he likes, but he should eventually settle when he realises you aren’t going anywhere.
Most importantly, don’t give up. A pining puppy tugs at your heart string but can also be incredibly tiring when it keeps you awake of night time. Once your puppy becomes used to the home you can gradually move the crate out, and eventually to wherever you want it.