Bringing a new puppy home to meet the family is a joyous experience. I can still remember my first puppy and how thrilled I was to get her as a present. She was the best dog I ever had and lived to be my loyal companion up to the ripe old age of 17. If you’ve recently added a new canine companion to your list of family members, then here are 7 things you must know about puppy care.
The first vaccination should be given to your puppy once he’s reached the age of 6 weeks. Most puppies are taken from their mothers around 8 weeks of age, so check to see if an initial vaccination was given or if you need to make an appointment with your vet. Vaccinations are typically given to dogs at 6, 9, 12, and 15 weeks and then once a year after that.
If you want to maintain your sanity, then I suggest using the crating method for housebreaking a new puppy. This is a great technique for new puppy owners who work and who aren’t able to be with their puppy all day long. There is a lot of information on the net about housebreaking puppies with the crate method. However you decide to go about training your new pup to use the bathroom facilities outside, instead of your lovely carpet, remember to be patient.
A puppy doesn’t know that he isn’t supposed to chew on your new leather shoes or that the trash can isn’t there especially for him to knock over and rifle through. Teaching puppies what they can and can’t do will take up a lot of your time, but you’ll have a very well-behaved pup before you know it. Be sure to have plenty of toys on hand. These keep your puppy entertained and you’ll spend a lot less time telling him ‘no’.
Bored puppies are just like kids; they tend to get into a lot more trouble. Don’t expect your puppy to be satisfied to chew on his toys all day long. You need to give him time with you as well. Interact as much as possible with him. If you have a place where he can run around and use up some of his pent up energy, then he’ll take a good long nap for you or maybe even with you!
Many vets recommend letting puppies eat whenever they want. I find that puppies tend to eat a kibble or two and then they get distracted and take off to play. Eating habits will also vary according to the breed of puppy you have. For the most part, puppies eat more often than adult dogs and sometimes they even eat more.
Food made especially for puppies is smaller in size and packed with essential vitamins and minerals growing puppies need. They need more protein to build muscle. Most puppy food isn’t only high in protein, but also rich in every other way as well. Don’t feed your new pup adult dog food that you might already have on hand. Buy him his own puppy kibble to keep him healthy and growing strong.
When you bring your puppy home, chances are that he hasn’t been away from his mother and siblings yet. He will suddenly be all alone so expect lots of whining and crying for the first week or so. Snuggle, cuddle, and pet your new puppy as much as possible. Once he begins to feel safe and starts to consider you as his new pack mate, then he shouldn’t become distressed when left alone.
I think these 7 things you must know about puppy care will be useful to anyone who is getting a puppy for the very first time. May you enjoy your puppy to the fullest! They are loads of fun and make loyal companions for life. If you have recently raised a puppy, what do you think are some Must Know tips that new puppy owners might need?
Top Photo Credit: Mar*~
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