These 10 hacks for new dog owners will make your life much easier and they’re not only useful for new owners. Every dog owners will find these useful. Number 6 is my favourite! Thanks to Terry Rucsandra Denham.

Hacks for New Dog Owners

Getting your first pet dog is undoubtedly exciting. Whether you bring home a puppy or adopt an older dog, welcoming a canine member into the family is a commitment. You must be financially, emotionally, and psychologically prepared to give the amazing animal the best life you can afford until the very end. Fortunately, there are tons of life hacks that experienced pet owners have learned over the years that can help you save money and time. Here are ten hacks for new dog owners to make the journey easier.


1. Cover your furniture

If you allow your new dog to chill with you on the couch, you may want to invest in a couch cover or sofa slipcover. You can buy these at furniture and home stores, or have them custom made if your furniture has atypical shapes or design. Because slipcovers are easily removable, they’re much easier to clean. You can even find or fashion a cover for your dog’s own bed that you can just throw in the wash.


2. Use disposable diaper bags for poop

Buy some disposable diaper bags from the baby section to use for doggie waste. Good citizens are expected to scoop up any poop that dogs leave outside while on a walk or at the park. Opting to buy diaper bags online or at the store will often come out cheaper, especially if you grab them in bulk. The money you save can instead go to the vet, special treats, toys, or other supplies.


3. Make your own chew toys

You don’t have to buy colorful and novel toys brand new at the store. You can take the DIY route and recycle old, ratty clothes you have at home instead of throwing them away. T-shirts and rags that you don’t plan to use again can be tied, twisted, and braided into tug toys. You can also slip an empty plastic bottle into an old sock, tie up the end to secure it, and give it to your dog. The budget-friendly possibilities are endless.


4. Dilute dog shampoo

Another cost-effective hack is to dilute your dog’s special shampoo with water. The shampoo will last longer, hence saving you money. When pet shampoo is diluted, it’s also actually easier to apply over larger areas during bath time.


5. Bring a big carabiner

Whenever you take your dog for a walk, bring a big carabiner along. The nifty multi-purpose gadget can help secure the leash to a post if you need to leave your pup outside while you pop into a store. You can also use it to attach the leash to your backpack or belt loops if you want to walk your dog hands-free.


6. Clean up dog hair with household items

Reuse dryer sheets to pick up dog hair around your house. You can also use rubber gloves. Just put one on and rub your hand all over the loose hair you find. You can boost the clinging power by doing it while the rubber glove is damp. A squeegee for windows will work wonders removing dog hair from carpets and rugs. These household items can work more efficiently than lint rollers and tape, especially considering the fact that they can be reused over and over again.


7. Use WiFi monitors to look after your furry friend

Thanks to mobile communication technology, it’s now easier to check up on your dog while you’re at work or away from home. There are a variety of pet cams that allow you to see what your pup is doing while you’re gone. Current options can be mounted on various surfaces, offer night vision, allow you to communicate with your pet through a speaker, take HD photos or videos at whim, and even dispense treats remotely thanks to IoT technology.

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8. Put pet toothpaste on toys

Brushing your dog’s teeth can be a chore especially if your pup doesn’t enjoy it. However, it’s definitely recommended to prevent plaque buildup, gum disease, tooth decay, and bad breath. Even if you can’t do it daily, you should at least try to once every couple of weeks. If your dog just won’t have it, lather the enzymatic toothpaste on chew and rope toys. That way your dog takes care of the brushing while having fun.


9. Prevent chewing with bitter spray 

Training a new pup to stop chewing furniture, loose objects, and power cords can be a challenge especially if you aren’t around 24 hours a day. Some people cover their power cords with a protective layer of PVC pipe or tape, but you can also condition your dog to avoid them using bad taste. Pick up some bitter apple spray from the pet store and spray it on anything you don’t want your dog to chew. Pet owners also see great results from using hot sauce or a mixture of lemon juice and cayenne pepper.


10. Give your dog a digging box 

If you have a yard or garden that you don’t want your dog to ruin, you can build a designated digging box. Make your way to a gardening store, landscaping shop, or somewhere like Home Depot. Find a gardening kit that you can easily assemble. Then fill it with sand or dirt. Make it more fun for your dog by burying treats and toys in the new digging box.


All the training, exercise, and visits to the vet can seem a little daunting for a first-timer but pet ownership doesn’t have to be stressful. Dogs simply need your attention, enough discipline, a proper diet, ample stimulation, and your dedication. With a little imagination and helpful tips from experienced people, you can learn how to become a pro guardian in no time. The life of the owner of a happy dog that’s well cared for is a rewarding one filled with indescribable joy. If you figure out your own dog-related life hacks, you could end up sharing them with the world to help others. 

About the author: 
Teresa (Terry) Rucsandra Denham was born into a modest family in Romania. At 20 years old, during a scholarship in Denmark, she met her future husband. They have two young boys (7 and 5 years old). After graduating in 2005, she moved to Boston, UK, with her husband. Since then, she takes care of their children and 4 dogs, creates and sells all kinds of handmade art (baby clothes, paintings, crafts with kids), and runs the family garden.

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