BRINGING PUPPY HOME CHECKLIST
DDW BLOG Post #0007
It is quite an exciting and memorable event to bring home a new family member of the furball genre! The event itself can be quite overwhelming where we may forget to consider or just be unaware of all of the needs of the pup. DDW put this very reflective checklist together to utilize for your convenience which involves awareness, resources and amazing products.
NOTE: If you still are figuring out which breed that would best fit your lifestyle, or how to go about finding one that would thoughtfully not support the puppy mill epidemic, please consider also reading the previous BLOG post, "How to Find and Pair the Right Dog With Your Family".
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***Most important to do before we go over other needs: Research and interview local vets; find a local emergency vet and have them on speed dial especially for after hours, etc.
Please observe your new pup closely and familiarize yourself with the signs of Hypoglycemia and Parvo. They can both be deadly, but Parvo is also a contagious disease if not treated immediately. According to AKC.org:
"Part of what makes the virus so dangerous is the ease with which it is spread through the canine population. The virus spreads either by direct contact with an infected dog, or through feces, and an infected dog can begin shedding the virus four-to-five days after exposure — often before the dog starts exhibiting any clinical signs of infection. The dog will continue to shed the virus while he is sick and for up to 10 days after he has recovered. This means that accurate diagnosis and quarantine are essential for the health of your dog and of other dogs, as well...Young dogs between six weeks and six months old, unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated dogs are most at risk for contracting parvo. "
"Accidents happen" that is why they call them accidents When they are small and untrained, anything can happen. Also, get coverage before "pre-existing conditions" become relevant. It takes time for the policy to take effect. I recommended Healthy Paws and you can read the DDW BLOG post entitled 'Pet Insurance and Financing High Vet Bills' to learn how I chose this carrier. If you prefer another, remember CAP is extremely important when choosing. Otherwise...what are you paying for?
2. Wellness Policy: As a humane pet owner, you are also expected to keep up with the wellness check and shots/vaccines. A regular vet visit could cost $75 and that would not include shots, vaccines, preventative medicines, testing needed, neuter/spay, anesthesia...the list goes on! A decent wellness plan is especially beneficial in the first year of your pet's life as everything needs to be done possibly including spay and neutering. Read more in the DDW BLOG post entitled 'Pet Insurance and Financing High Vet Bills' .
3. Nutri-Cal: In my opinion, this is better than any of the alternatives (maple syrup, Karo) because Nutri-Cal is made of a thicker substance and would be easier to force down in an emergency. If they do not like the taste, you can easily place an amount at the roof of their mouth. I recommend this product as it has saved the life of my small pup two times who went into hypoglycemic shock. Small pups are susceptible to this; be ready if you have to revive them. You can also give this to a small pup every two hours to maintain their sugar levels in addition to its purpose in the product description. I suggest every owner having this great product on hand wherever the pup is at all times.
4. To Crate or Not to Crate:
Finally, for the really tiny puppies, both a kitten collar and a kitten harness can serve a purpose. It can be a challenge finding each of these small enough made for dogs. The kitten collars typically have bells on them and at any time you can hear when they are moving around and know where they are. The collars are also easily detachable and do not put the pup in danger if they got caught on something. Do not get anything too embellished; you would be surprised at how much extra weight that puts on a tiny baby's neck. The harnesses should not be left on and should be removed when not being used for safety purposes.
8. Food and Treats: There is so much CRAP out there! Please do your due diligence while figuring out good food that will promote healthy living and a long and deserved quality of life! My rule of thumb is if it is found in a grocery store: BEWARE! Dogs get sick off of these foods. Google reviews and ingredients! Personally, I have had a bad experience with a popular brand found in a supermarket that I was just using for a wet food treat. All of my pups started throwing up. Start your research online and/or talk to your vet. Remember one thing...Please, ween the puppies off of their previous food while introducing them to another.
9. Toys: Play encourages stimulation, healthy curiosity problem solving and sometimes includes exercise. This is great for their overall mental well being. If pups do not have these outlets, they can develop anxiety which leads to bad behaviors. You especially want teething toys. DDW offers a toy collection and you may want to look into puzzle toys to keep the pup busy. A good brand is called KONG and you can find a big selection of KONG toys at Amazon like the red toy image on the left. These toys have a great reputation for being durable even with the strongest of teeth.
10. Flea and Tick Preventative: You definitely want something to help avoid flea infestation on your home or a bite which can develop into heartworms or Lymes disease among several other diseases. All are serious nightmares and can get to be costly and dangerous. I use the Seresto collar sold here at DDW on sale in the shopping section. There are all-natural or alternative options, as well on the same health page dedicated to flea and tick preventatives for you.
**WARNING: Do not buy anything from China including chew toys, food or shampoos, flea and tick prevention, etc. Most products would not fit into our US regulations which ensure the safety of our pets. Do not buy anything from dollar stores or the like for your pets, there are too many deaths related to numerous products sold at these places.
FINAL WORDS FROM DDW
Whether you do or you do not yet have a pet, it is great to take more time to consider your options to support the needs benefiting the pet's overall health. You will, also, will be more equipped to manage the financial demands of maintaining their health. Ultimately, you never want to feel burdened in any way as it is a pet's right to live its best life and your home will deservedly be the only home the pup will ever know. Too many pets get re-homed due to poor planning and this IS NOT healthy for pets.
Many dog experts say that a dog that is acting out or has bad habits is not the fault of the dog, but the owner. Please educate yourself as a dog owner, in the long run, you will have a happy house and a well-adjusted dog always eager to please.
Finally, keep an eye on your dog while training just like you would a mischievous child. This way you can be consistent with your training. Give high praise when the pup is doing well and a firm NO when he/she isn't. Please do not hit your pups, your dog should not fear you!
Remember CONSISTENCY and PERSISTENCE....Best of luck, Kimberly
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