Exploring the new surroundings of your home is one of the first things your new puppy will do when he arrives. When you see your home through his eyes, you’ll begin to notice all kinds of interesting things, such as cords and plastic bags.

Unfortunately, some of the things he’ll want to venture into will get him into big trouble. By puppy-proofing your home, you can make your new puppy feel comfortable, happy and safe.

Certain household plants such as aloe vera, calla lily, and peace lily, amaryllis, eucalyptus, English ivy, azalea and bird of paradise can be toxic to your new puppy. Keep them out of his reach.

Various food items—chocolate, avocado, onions, garlic, grapes and raisins—caffeinated drinks and alcoholic beverages can be dangerous to your furry new puppy friend as well.

If your new puppy is exposed to a poisonous item, he will display symptoms such as vomiting, drooling, dilated pupils, stumbling or a change in breathing. If you suspect poisoning or sense any unusual behavior, check with a veterinarian, or the ASPCA Poison Control Center immediately (call (888) 426-4435 or visit www.aspca.org/pet-care/poison-control/).

Puppy-proofing around the house

When puppy-proofing your home, keep these tips in mind:
Never leave the new puppy unsupervised.
Cover any electrical outlets and wrap any loose cords.
Keep the toilet lid down.
Store small items such as coins and jewelry, as they can be easily swallowed.
Put kitchen and bathroom trash cans up high.

Consider what furniture items could tip over on top of your new puppy, such as a rocking chair, and look for places where he could get stuck underneath or inside, such as in the lower back of a recliner.

Chewing is common

What puppy owner do you know that hasn’t had a favorite pair of shoes torn to shreds? Your new puppy will want to chew on anything in sight. When puppy-proofing your home, remove or secure any items that you don’t want your new puppy to chew on, and purchase a few interactive toys for him to play with.

Puppy-proofing your home will provide a safe, healthy environment for your new puppy. It will not only help prevent accidents, but it will allow your new puppy to enjoy a loving and comfortable haven.