Checklist for Puppy-Proofing Your Home

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You have finally made the decision to add a puppy or dog to your family and its almost time to bring home your new fur baby and that means you have to get your home, his/her new environment safe from things that are a danger to them by puppy-proofing your home.

Whether you are bringing home a brand new puppy or a rescue dog that is grown it is a good idea to puppy proof your home. If you are getting a dog from a shelter or an older dog you won’t be sure of the extent of the training your new fur baby has if any so to make the transition as smooth as possible its a good idea to puppy/dog-proof your home.

We have made a checklist of the things to be done for puppy-proofing your home and yard before your pooch moves in.

    1. SHOES: Puppies love to chew on a nice stinky pair of shoes, new or old it doesn’t matter to them, either one will do. Make sure all of your shoes get put in a closed closet or up out of reach from the puppy.
    2. GARBAGE IN AND OUTDOOR: The garbage has all kinds of smells that will interest your puppy and if it’s easy to access they are going to want to check it out. If you cant get the garbage up out of reach make sure the cans are secure with a lid to keep them out. Not only will it help keep puppy safe but it will eliminate unnecessary messes.
    3. ELECTRIC: For your puppy’s safety make sure all electrical cords are securely covered and tucked away out of sight.
    4. CURTAINS AND BLINDS: Low hanging curtains can be an easy target for chewing and playing with getting twisted up and torn so tie them up in a knot to get them up and less tempting`. Blinds should be open so the puppy doesn’t destroy them trying to see outside. The most important thing is the drawstrings, the low hanging drawstring can get your puppy or dog caught up and choke the life right out of the rambunctious little pooch. Keep them bunched up and out of reach.
    5. PLANTS IN AND OUTDOOR: Check all of your plants inside and outside to make sure they aren’t poisonous if ingested by your puppy, we all know how much they like to munch on a leaf that is dangling in front of them. Just off the top of my head, I know Delphiniums, Rhubarb leavesDay Lilies, Morning Glory, Ivy, Foxglove, Holly, and many more in and outdoor plants. Click here For a complete guide on poisonous indoor and outdoor plants that will harm your puppy 
    6. MEDICATIONS AND POISONS: If you don’t already have all of your meds and poisonous cleaners up high or locked up, remember the child safety is no challenge for a puppy and his teeth. Keep all meds up in the medicine cabinet and cleaners in an out of reach cupboard or closet. Never leave antifreeze spills without cleaning it up the antifreeze will kill any dog or puppy if they drink it and the sweet smell is tempting for most dogs so NEVER leave out in the open. Rat poisoning and pesticides should also be kept up out of reach for puppies and dogs
    7. CRATE: For your puppy’s own good it is best to have a crate for him/her for a couple of reasons, it gives them their own space, everyone needs a space of their own to get away sometimes and when you cant keep an eye on them if your to busy or have to go to work, keeping them in a crate will prevent them from any possible danger and keep your home safe from destructive behavior. If trained properly your pooch will actually like the crate. Just remember a puppy can only hold their blatter for 3 or 4 hours at most, it’s not until around 10 months that they are able to hold it for 8 hours. If not using a crate the best thing to do is section off an area safe for puppy with pet or baby gates.

  1. FENCE: Puppies can find the smallest opening and get out through it so make sure your fence is secure and escape free. Make sure you don’t have a bunch of stuff piled up against the fence for them to climb on top of and over the fence. You will also want to check around the outside of your fence to be sure other dogs aren’t able to get inside your yard and harm your puppy.
  2. POOL: If you have a pool you may be thinking he can cool off if he gets too hot and jumps in for a swim but unless you are able to supervise it is not a good idea for them to have access. If for any reason they can’t get out of the pool they will eventually get exhausted from having to swim to keep their head above water and at some point will end up drowning if not found. This almost happened to my Husky Sheba once when she got out and I couldn’t find her. Thank goodness the homeowner went home for lunch and noticed her in his pool, he said she was exhausted and barely keeping herself above water when he found her.
  3. SHELTER: A lot of dogs like spending time outside in the yard but even if your pooch is going to be primarily an inside dog, they should always have access to shelter. Weather can be very unpredictable so even though it was nice out when he went outside it could change or it could get too hot for your pooch. Having a dog house of their very own in a shaded area will ensure that your pooch can be protected from heat or extreme weather, it will also be a place for them if they get spooked they can go and hide.
  4. BOUNDARIES: Curiosity and the urge to explore the unknown will get the best of your new pooch. Blocking off rooms or areas from puppy with pet or baby gates and keeping doors closed will ensure he doesn’t get in rooms he shouldn’t be in also keeps him in designated safe zones.
  5. BATHROOMS: Keep bathroom doors closed at all times to ensure he isn’t drinking toilet water, getting the razor off the edge of your tub because chewing on it will slice his mouth, or getting into toxic chemicals from hair dyes or whatever else. The bathroom is a very dangerous place for a puppy so remember to close it off to them.



Adding a puppy to the family should be a fun experience for him/her and you and your family. Please remember your puppy is only a few months old and everything he is seeing and doing is a brand new experience for them and dogs are naturally going to want to explore, it’s our job to keep them safe from anything that may harm them.

Making sure the things on the list above are checked off will help make the transition into your home smooth for you and puppy. You will be able to spend more time bonding if you arent having to deal with the possible disasters that could occur if you aren’t puppy-proofing your home.

Puppy proofing your home will also help prevent destructive behavior before it happens.

It has been a couple of years since the last time we had to puppy-proof our home so if you have something that should be on our puppy-proofing your home checklist please let us know in the comment area below and we will be happy to add it to the checklist.

Enjoy your new fur baby they are so much fun and can bring a lot of happiness to you and your family when they receive the love they deserve.

6 thoughts on “Checklist for Puppy-Proofing Your Home

  1. Dear Lisa
    Thank you very much for your fantastic website. It is amazing that you show people where to start and what steps to take towards looking after their favourite pets. I hope more people will know about your website and follow your guidance.
    Kind regards,

    1. Thank you so much Andrey, I would love for more people to find my website too. I have been very actively involved in raising dogs for 40 years, I have also fostered problem pups for many friends and helped correct bad behavior for them. The information I give comes from many years of personal experience.

      I’m glad you liked my puppy proofing checklist, Thank you for the feedback again.

  2. A very cool and informative article. Thanks for sharing. We’ve been thinking about getting either a cat or a small dog for some time. You’ve brought up some really cool ideas and implementing them I’m sure will make it easier for us to go with a small dog instead of a cat, although cats are quite cool, too.

    1. Thank you, Yama, I agree cats can be cool but cats are more independent and like being alone a lot. Small dogs are a lot of fun, as long as you do your research and find the right breed for your family and lifestyle.

  3. Thank you for this very informative article.

    I really wish I had read something like this a few years ago before we brought our (then puppy) Jack Russell home.

    We thought that we had puppy proofed the house but it didn’t take her long to find our shoes and bin bags 🙂

    I have bookmarked your site and will definitely be visiting regularly. I will also be telling my family with pets about your site.

    Kind regards


    1. Thank you Jamie, I appreciate the feedback. I personally think the Jack Russell terrier is one of the smartest breeds out there, puppy-proofing for such smart breeds can be quite the challenge, I’m glad you got through it, lol.

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