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The Puppy Blues Are Real! Here Are 5 Tips to Deal & Cope | Pupford

December 12th, 2023

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Raising a puppy (or older dog) can be very difficult... many of us face the 'puppy blues' from time to time. We may even question if having a dog or puppy is the right choice!

When you first bring a puppy home, there is so much excitement! You envision all of the fun things you will do together, the tricks you will teach them, and the companionship.

Then reality hits. There is biting and peeing in the house, excessive barking, and running out of the front door of the house… and things can get really, really hard.

Let's look at some things to keep in mind when the puppy blues hit and negative feelings seem to be the new normal.

We'll also discuss what the puppy blues are, how long they might last, and, of course, what to do.

Let's get right to it. 👇


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While there isn't one exact definition as to what the puppy blues are, the puppy blues are often feelings of despair, and or frustration when trying to raise a puppy. It is often seen as a type of puppy depression.

The challenges of raising a pup often overwhelm new pup parents and can even lead to feelings of depression, anxiety, and overwhelming stress. While we certainly love and want the best for our new puppy, the toll of trying to do everything right for that puppy can be extremely taxing and difficult.

a woman feeling the puppy blues as she tries to raise a new dog | Pupford

The puppy blues are often common for new puppy owners (we call them puppy parents, btw).

Many pup parents who experience the puppy blues end up feeling worse because they feel bad about any type of resentment or sadness toward their puppy. It can be a vicious cycle...


As mentioned earlier, the feeling of sadness or anxiety that new puppy parents may experience is a real mental health challenge and should be acknowledged as such.

If I were to ask you, how long does being stressed out last? Or how long does anxiety last? How would you answer..?

There isn't one answer, and you also shouldn't put timelines on your own mental health challenges. These things take time and self-reflection.

So, above all, be patient with yourself!

With that being said, generally speaking, the puppy blues last a few months or so. But remember, it depends on a myriad of factors, so don't get hung up on timelines.

So, what can be done? 👇

🐶 Don't miss out on the 100% free and highly-rated 30 Day Perfect Pup online video course. Sign up here!


puppy blues are often caused by bad behaviors like chewing furniture | Pupford

When the puppy blues show up with a new dog, the first thing you can do is allow yourself to experience those feelings. Having regrets about getting a puppy, feeling inadequate, and sadness/depression are totally valid feelings.

One more time to drive the point home...

Feeling the puppy blues is a completely normal and valid feeling! Practice empathy for yourself!

Now, let's talk about some ways to get over the puppy blues. Here are five things you can do to cope and deal with the puppy blues:

  1. Remember, the beginning is often the hardest
  2. Lay a strong training foundation
  3. Set a routine and stick to it
  4. Find a support system
  5. Be patient and consistent

Let's look at each below. 👇


Number one, the beginning is often the hardest. Just like with anything in life, whether it's snowboarding, raising a puppy, learning piano, or learning how to speak a different language, the very beginning is almost always the hardest.

You are a beginner. You're a novice.

You may feel like you're constantly trying to read and watch videos and consume content and understand what's happening with this puppy, but it seems like it's all just disconnected, and it can be very, very frustrating.

And then you usually get over that first little hump, and then new challenges constantly pop up! It is not easy.

person snuggling a new puppy | Pupford

But again, if we remember that the beginning is often the hardest, it can give us some insight into knowing that, hey, if I can get through these tough early stages, it's going to be better in the long run.

When we first get a new dog, we are getting to know them, their temperament, personality, and quirks.

On top of that, we are dealing with all the things new puppy parents deal with. Training, educating ourselves to train them best, trying to understand what is happening with our dog, finding a vet, and the list goes on and on.

Then you get over the first hump, and more challenges arise.

But when we remember that the beginning is often the hardest, it can give us some insight, and we can know that if we can get through this, it will be so much better in the long run.


small puppy working on leash training | Pupford

Arguably, the most important way to deal with the puppy blues is to focus on basic puppy training skills. Foundational behaviors like impulse control, potty training, and leave it are all important things to teach new puppies.

This will set you up for future success with your dog. It is a lot of work but needs to be done before we can increase the difficulty of your training.

When training, you need to start off training our dogs inside the house. They need to learn to focus on us instead of distractions around them. The foundation work will help you down the line as your dog comes to know what to expect from you. Consistency is key!

As a pet parent, it is important to lay the foundation for ourselves as well. We should be using positive reinforcement training, learning how to use a clicker, rewarding our dogs consistently, etc.

If you need help with laying a strong training foundation, please sign up for the 100% free online training class, 30 Day Perfect Pup. Millions (yes, millions) of pup parents have found hope, understanding, and actionable techniques through this course!

Best of all, it is 100% free. No credit card is required. Sign up here!


Part of a training system is to set a routine and stick to it. Dogs like routines, and it can help you and your new puppy find a groove in what can often feel like chaotic times.

This can and should include a feeding schedule!

A puppy feeding schedule is the best way to improve your dog's potty training skills. And nothing is more frustrating than another pee puddle on your carpet! 🤪

a puppy feeding schedule helps to overcome the puppy blues by improving potty training | Pupford

So, set a schedule and find a routine that works for you and your new dog.

🐶 Don't miss out on the 100% free and highly-rated 30 Day Perfect Pup online video course. Sign up here!


When dealing with post puppy depression, having a support system is vital!

woman with puppy blues talking to a friend | Pupford

Support systems look different for everyone, but here are some ideas to help:

  • Have a friend or family member "puppy sit" for an hour or two so you can get some rest and relaxation
  • Join an online community of other new puppy parents; this can be so helpful to have others who genuinely understand your challenges (PS- we offer a private FB community as part of the free 30 Day Perfect Pup Course)
  • Find someone you can have puppy play dates with; dogs are much better at tiring each other out than we humans are
  • Ask a friend or family member to be a listening ear you can vent to
  • Consider getting help from a mental health professional
  • And sometimes, scream in a pillow 😅

Trying to cope with the puppy blues alone is challenging, so find a support system to help!


person loving their puppy even though it is challenging | Pupford

The truth about your puppy's progress is that it may feel slow at times. And on other days, you will feel surprised at how much your little pup has improved!

So, be patient!

And that patience should apply to yourself AND your puppy. You're both learning and growing together.

Take the time to connect with your puppy, and know that with consistent training, things will improve!

Investing in activities to improve your relationship is so important. That's truly one of the best "tricks" for enjoying puppy parenthood.


The puppy blues are normal, and it's oh-so-important to remember that!

In our opinion, the challenges you are facing right now will be well worth it. Our relationships with our dogs are so strong that we couldn’t imagine our lives without them.

Don’t give up; keep fighting, bring in an in-person dog trainer for additional help, and use some of our resources, like Pupford Academy, to improve your puppy's behavior.

Again, if you haven't already, sign up for the 100% free (and available in the Pupford App) dog training course 30 Day Perfect Pup. Sign up for free here!

And on a personal note, you're doing better than you think!

How were you able to get over or improve the puppy blues? Tell me in the comments!

PS- Learn about mental health in dogs here.

🐶 Don't miss out on the 100% free and highly-rated 30 Day Perfect Pup online video course. Sign up here!


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