Thinking about adopting a new dog? That’s great! But before you do that, it is important that you understand that you are making a commitment to care for this dog for the rest of his life.

Caring for a dog goes beyond providing shelter, water and food. You need to make certain preparations to make sure that your new furry friend will be safe and comfortable in his new home.

Here are some tips for welcoming home a new dog. These tips will help prepare yourself and your home for the arrival of your new pet.

Plan your dog’s arrival

Dog proof the area where your new dog will spend most of his time. A portion of the family room or kitchen is your best option. The dog will be under a lot of stress with the change of environment, so be sure to make the necessary changes before you bring him home.

Place breakables and household chemicals on high shelves, remove plants that can be toxic to pets, set up a crate and tape loose electrical cords to baseboards. Also, consider installing a baby gate to keep your dog confined in a certain room in the house.

Establish house rules in advance

To make the transition as smooth as possible, you’ll need to set-up some clear structure with your family for your dog. A week before your dog’s arrival, work out your dog care regimen with your family. Decide where he’ll stay during the day and where he’ll sleep at night. Also, make sure that everyone knows that Fido won’t be allowed on the bed.

Divide the chores between each member of the family. Who will be in charge of feeding the dog? Who will walk the dog in the morning? Who will take the dog to the veterinarian for vaccinations and check-ups?

Neutral ground

Bringing a new dog home can be fun and exciting. However, the resident dog may resent having to share his family’s attention, especially if he has had the house and family to himself.

To prevent your furry best friend from getting territorial, it is best to take away all the items he might feel protective of. Also, the initial meeting should be done in an open area like a park. Bring them to the meeting place separately and allow them to interact with one another with as little interference from you as possible.