Getting new puppy is a wonderful and exciting time for any family. Here are some great tips to help you prepare for your new arrival.
Arrange for a veterinary health check within the first 24 – 48 hours – that way your vet can check your pup over and make sure everything is OK. If there are any major health concerns it’s best to know about them as soon as possible. You vet will also make certain the vaccination schedule and general care is optimised.
Mobile vets have the advantage that they can see your pup in your own home and give you smart advice about the best way to set up your house for the new arrival.
Food Glorious Food…
If your pup comes from a quality breeder the chances are they will give a you strict feeding guide and a few days of food. The best way to avoid upset tummies is to stick to what the breeder was feeding for at least 3-5 days. Avoid extra treats which might look tasty but could cause diarrhoea.
At the health check your vet will review the feeding guide and let you know if it’s nutritionally sound. Your vet will also explain how to gradually change your puppy’s diet if you want to.
Food and water bowls
Ceramic or stainless steel bowls are good because they are long-lasting, cannot be chewed and are very easy to clean. Bowls with heavy rubber bottoms are harder to spill or flip over.
Puppy crate and bedding
A puppy crate is a safe place where you can leave your puppy and know that he can’t get into mischief when you can’t supervise him.
A crate also gives your puppy a secure place to rest away from the hustle and bustle of family life. It’s important to realise that the first few days of living with a new family away from mum, sisters, brothers and everything he knows are quite stressful for a pup. He needs a quiet place to rest and recover.
‘VetBed’ or “Dry Fleece” is a great option for bedding. It stays dry on top if your puppy has an accident, is machine washable and dries quickly and is durable and hard for puppies to chew through.
We suggest you don’t give your puppy free-run of your entire house when you’re out or not watching them. A baby gate is a great barrier as long as the spaces between the bars are not too wide for him to squeeze through.
Newspaper or incontinence pads work well for your puppy to pee on when you’re not around to take him outside for the toilet.
Puppy proof your home and garden
Puppies are naïve, curious, active and destructive and can easily get themselves into trouble.
Remove everything at puppy level like electrical cords, low hanging curtains or fabrics, remote controls and shoes. Secure cupboards so he can’t get in and make absolutely sure there are no little holes in the garden fences he can escape through.
Toys to chew
Puppies love to chew. And of course they seem to like chewing i-phones, Jimmy Choo shoes and TV remotes the most! You can encourage your puppy to chew his own toys by leaving these accessible at all times, but don’t leave too many out at once or he’ll be too saturated with them.
The best chew toys are strong and durable. Kong is a good brand. You can use them ‘as-is’ or stuff them with dry puppy food. This makes the toy interactive and keeps your puppy occupied and happy.
Collar and lead
A good collar and lead helps you keep your puppy safely under your control when you’re out walking. Don’t use a choke chain. It’s better to train your dog to walk beside you than to strangle him with a chain when he pulls.
The collar should also have an ID tag on it with your mobile phone number(s) on it. Your pet should already be microchipped so ensure that these details are up to date. If your pet isn’t microchipped it is essential to discuss this with your vet who will chat to you about the options for this. In NSW there is a compulsory animal register that all dogs must be registered on.
Ok now you’re ready for your puppy to arrive. Next time we’ll chat about introducing your him into your home and training.