Puppies are so cute! But don’t always stay that way, and although they can be hard work they are also a rewarding family pet.
Allow a new puppy to explore their new surroundings without too much interference or noise and remind the kids that the new puppy needs lots of love and rest and should not be overhandled. Any other family pets should be introduced slowly and under close supervision.
It’s a good idea to section off a part of your house such as the laundry for your puppy. Provide a blanket and a basket or box to curl-up in. Your puppy is used to being cuddled up with other puppies and may cry when put to bed for the first couple of nights or when left alone. You can place a ticking clock under the blanket to simulate the mother’s heartbeat and/or a hot water bottle in the bed to keep them warm.
During the day or when left alone, always make sure your puppy has somewhere to shelter from the weather both sun and rain.
Puppies only have small stomachs and require small meals often. Three to four meals spread throughout the day is best. Whether you go for a supermarket brand or special vet formula, start out with the puppy sized food.
To keep your puppy’s mind active, supply a good range of chew toys and treats which can be rotated over a period of a week, so there is always something new to play with.
There are certain signs you should watch out for that will alert you that your puppy needs to go outside.
- If your pup walks around in circles.
- Sits or whines at the door.
- Sniffs at the ground.
There are also times when you should ensure you take your puppy outside to prevent accidents.
- First thing in the morning.
- After every sleep.
- After being left alone for a period of time.
- After every meal.
- Last thing before you put your puppy to bed.
Using praise is the best method of training. Puppies only want to please their owners. Give your puppy lots of praise whenever they do the right thing.
The peak socialisation period in your puppy’s life occurs between the ages of 6 to 16 weeks. At this age a puppy will quickly and willingly learn many training commands including sit, stay, come and heel.
It’s worth investing in Puppy school classes, especially if you haven’t had a dog before, to help equip you with the skills to mould a well behaved dog.
Your dog should be registered with your local council and microchipped. The microchip is painlessly injected under the skin and can be read by a special scanner. Your pet’s details are kept on a national database so you can be contacted and re-united with your pet should they ever be lost.
Some canine diseases are very serious and can be fatal even with treatment. At 8 weeks of age puppies should receive their first vaccination; this is temporary and needs to be followed up with another one at 12 weeks. After the 12 week vaccination you can then take your puppy out in public areas. Your puppy will need annual boosters.
Heartworm and flea tablets or treatments will also need to be started from 12 weeks. Puppies should be wormed every 2 weeks until 12 weeks then 2-4 times a year after that.
Desexing prevents pets from roaming, fighting or causing nuisance to neighbours and unwanted puppies.
If your puppy appears listless, lethargic, off their food, or if you have any concerns about your puppy’s well being, call your local vet.
- Frugal Living
- Frugal Living