How to Puppy-Proof Your Home

October 18, 2023

Cute brown puppy in the grass

Before your new puppy walks through the door, as a responsible pet parent, you want to make sure your entire home is puppy-proof! We know that it can be overwhelming to determine where to start when preparing for your new puppy’s arrival. We’ve put together a quick list of essentials you will need to puppy-proof your home to set your new puppy up for success!


The toys you provide your puppy can have a significant impact on their behavior inside of your home. For toys, we recommend investing in 8-12 appropriate toys such as antlers, Kongs, and nylabones. Skip the cute plush toys for now, as they can make chewing more challenging to address later. Tennis balls are great for training, so keep them tucked away in a drawer to keep them extra special. 

Doodle puppy chasing a ball on green lawn

Crates and Gates

For your puppy’s safety, it is imperative that you crate-train them as soon as they come home. Puppies tend to be extremely curious, especially with their mouths. It can be easy for a puppy to destroy something valuable in the home, swallow something they shouldn’t, or accidentally get into something dangerous such as chemicals in just a few minutes. To keep your puppy safe, we recommend watching them when you are home and using the crate when unsupervised, even if that is just running to grab the mail or hop in the shower.

There are many crate and gate options on the market. We recommend investing in a plastic airline kennel. You may need to start with a smaller size and then size up once your puppy gets bigger and is no longer at risk of having accidents in the crate. Secondary management that can be used when supervised are exercise pens and baby gates. Just be sure the gates are tall enough and secure enough that your puppy will not try to climb or jump over them. 

Mastiff puppy at baby gate in the home


We recommend your puppy drag a leash when supervised at home. Having your puppy on a leash will get them used to wearing a leash, as well as provide you the ability to redirect them if there is a behavior problem such as an accident in the home or chewing something they are not supposed to. You want to be sure not to grab your puppy’s collar when correcting them, as it could develop an aversion to being reached for in the future. We also recommend a front clip harness for leash walking such as the easy walk harness, which will take the pressure off of your puppy’s trachea. 

Golden retriever puppy with red leash and harness

Recommended Reads

In addition to physically preparing for your puppy, mentally preparing and knowing what to expect can be just as important! We have put together a list of our go-to blogs for new or expecting puppy parents below!

These are just a few of the many puppy learning resources that we have available for you. We hope that you can successfully puppy-proof your home with this guide and are so excited for your new puppy to come home! If you want to take your learning a step further and work with one of our Houston behavior consultants, contact us today!

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