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Your New Puppy

Everything you need to know about your new puppy

  • Grooming
  • Nutrition
  • Parasites
  • Socialising
  • Vaccinations

Grooming

Your puppy can be introduced to the grooming salon soon after their 2nd vaccination. The sooner you familiarise them with being groomed the happier your dog and you will be.

What a groomer asks of your puppy:

  • To stand still on a table
  • To be brushed and combed
  • To be able to touch and hold paws
  • To be able to bath and use a hairdryer
  • To be able to use scissors and electric clippers (not all breeds)

You must remember that when you first introduce grooming at home, patience is key. The whole experience will seem alien to your puppy and it is completely normal for them to not cooperate  initially. Start by choosing an appropriate location and a table to place them on with a towel or rubber mat on top to allow grip.

Your pet will soon remember this place and understand it as ‘grooming time’ and not play time.

Show your puppy the brush and let him sniff it, then gently brush the coat a few times, use lots of praise and a treat, do the same with the comb.

Begin with frequent short sessions using lots of praise and a treat. Touch your puppy’s feet and between the toes daily, this will make nail clipping easier.

Play with your puppy’s ears by touching them on the inside and out, also touching and holding puppy around the face, again lots of praise. This is important as many breeds require the hair to be plucked from their ears and hair to be cut or clipped from their face.

When buying a shampoo a hypo-allergenic or puppy shampoo diluted would be suitable. With all these points taken into consideration grooming your puppy/dog will be a happy enjoyable experience for you both.

Nutrition

Selecting a food for your puppy can be difficult especially as there are so many different types to choose from. It is important to select a complete diet for your puppy and ensure the volume you feed is in accordance with the feeding guidelines. Dry diets are often preferable as they are cheaper, easier to weigh out and store.

At Market Veterinary Centre we recommend Hills Veterinary diets. These diets have been formulated to a high quality and are designed to provide essential nutrition to your puppy throughout its lifetime.

Any changes to your puppy’s diet should be done gradually to avoid stomach upset and in general transitions should be made over a 7 day period.

Parasites

Your puppy can get many types of worms but the most important to treat at this age is the roundworm. Puppies can be born with roundworm, can get them from the environment and can also become infected via their mother’s milk. The most significant roundworm is Toxocara Canis which on rare occasions can be passed to humans and cause blindness.

At Market Veterinary Centre we tailor worming regimes to each individual puppy dependant on its lifestyle. There are many worming products available and some can also be used to treat against fleas too.
As most houses are centrally heated, fleas are no longer just a summer time problem and we see just as many flea related conditions in the winter.

Fleas only live on the dog to feed and breed, the rest of their life cycle takes place in the environment meaning that 90% of flea problems are within the home! Just one female flea brought home by your pet can lay up to 50 eggs a day and 1500 in its lifetime.

The eggs are laid by the adult flea onto your pet but the eggs drop off into the environment which could be your carpet, sofa or your bed.  They often spread rapidly throughout the home, in the carpets, sofas, beds and even the cracks of the floor and skirting boards. These areas provide the perfect breeding ground where the larvae can develop into new adults fleas in only a few weeks, hatching can be triggered by warmth, humidity and vibrations, it can take from a week to a year for them to hatch.  It is therefore strongly advisable to use a regular preventative measure to stop this happening in your home.

If you are worried your puppy has fleas it is essential that you treat them and the environment quickly to avoid continuous burdens.

Socialising

Socialisation is absolutely vital to  ensure a balanced and well behaved adult dog. The more you expose your puppy to at a young age, the happier and more relaxed they will be in adulthood. Consequently dog ownership will be a pleasure rather than a strain. 

If during puppy training your puppy appears frightened, try to avoid talking to them or touching them as they will perceive this as a reward for being frightened. Simply ignore the anxious behaviour and remove the puppy from the situation and try again another day.

Whenever your puppy reacts in an appropriate way to a new situation ensure you reward them with plenty of praise so they understand they are acting correctly. If you are having any problems at all, they can be resolved very quickly and easily at a young age, so please do not hesitate to contact us so that we can offer you advice or put you in touch with a behavioural expert.

The Following Steps Outline How Best To Socialise Your Puppy:

Birth
Puppy will still be with mother and siblings but should experience human scent, both male and female at a very early stage.

3 Weeks
All environmental stimuli should be interesting and non threatening to the puppy. The breeder should expose the puppy to household noises  e.g. washing machine, vacuum and television. Plenty of handling should be instigated to include grooming and mock veterinary examinations.

6 Weeks
They should meet all the family e.g. men, woman, children, other pets and babies. Puppy should also get use to car journeys, visitors e.g. postman and milkman and also start to come accustom to being left alone for short periods.

8 Weeks
The puppy can be transferred to it's new home and owners from this time, and can have it's first vaccination.

9 Weeks
Start to introduce stronger stimuli e.g. street noises, crowds, children's play areas and leash training.

This is an ideal time for puppy socialisation classes under veterinary supervision. Avoid dogs that are aggressive or badly behaved in parks as this may encourage fear and teach bad behaviour.

We hold fortnightly puppy confidence classes at our practices. Puppies that are aged between 9-14 weeks are eligible- your puppy must have had it's first vaccination at least a week prior to the party. For further information or to reserve your puppy's place at the next party please contact us: 01271 344262 or 01769 572176.

12 Weeks
Ensure a broadening range of experiences.

15 Weeks
Lessons learnt can be forgotten unless you reinforce them. This should continue right up until social maturity.

House Rules
These basic rules will provide you with some useful tips on how to get the best from your puppy.

Praise good behaviour use verbal praise as well as touch and treats. Dogs do not understand  the English language or tone of voice so if you tell your dog off by shouting they’ll assume they are being praised and are likely to repeat the bad behaviour again.

Ignore unwanted behaviour if chewing your best shoes gets no response from you they will be unlikely to bother with it again, however if you shriek and chase your puppy around trying to retrieve your shoe they are likely to see it as a game and will pinch your shoe at every given opportunity.

Ignore your puppy for 5 minutes before leaving the house, you leaving should never be a big deal.

Ignore your puppy for the first 5 minutes when you return as again coming home should not be a big deal.

Do not enter the house after being away if your puppy is barking. Doing this just once will teach your puppy that if they bark you will return home. Wait for them to become quiet for a few seconds and then go in.

If you come home to a destroyed item don’t clear it up in front of your puppy. They will see this as attention for the mess they have made.

Remember everything on the floor is a dog toy! Put precious items away and teach children to do the same.

Make sure your puppy is always left with safe appropriate chew toys. Use stuffed Kong's, puppies have to chew in order to learn about their environment.

If your puppy bites you, say ‘ouch’ in a gruff voice and walk away. They will soon learn that this is unacceptable behaviour and will not bite.

Ignore accidents in the house. Clean them up with the puppy out of sight. Use biological washing powder as this contains enzymes that break down anything left behind, so removing the smell. Praise your puppy for going to the toilet outside and they will soon learn that this behaviour makes you happy and will gladly wait for you to take them out.

Consider using an indoor kennel. Dogs are naturally denning animals and enjoy a dark kennel they can retreat too. They are highly beneficial giving puppies a ‘chill out’ zone to encourage rest, provide a safe environment where they can be left and also aids in toilet training as they will have been taught by their mum not to mess in their bed.

Children should not be left unsupervised with a puppy and should never be allowed to annoy or tease them. Remember the only defence a dog has are its teeth and it only takes seconds to cause serious harm. 90% of all dogs in rehoming centres are from households with children and sadly quite often the children were the problem, not the dog.

Vaccinations

Vaccinations are essential to avoid your puppy contracting one of several potentially fatal infectious diseases.

There are four diseases covered by the routine vaccinations; parvovirus, distemper, hepatitis, and leptospirosis.

Once your puppy has completed its initial course of vaccinations, annual boosters will be required to maintain its cover throughout its life. If your dog is going into kennels they will require a vaccine against kennel cough too.

Kennel cough is easily spread or caught when numerous dogs are housed in close proximity. It will be necessary to give the Kennel Cough vaccine at least 2 weeks before your dog goes into kennels and it can be given at any time.

Practice information

Barnstaple

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  • Mon
    8:30am - 6:00pm
  • Tue
    8:30am - 6:00pm
  • Wed
    8:30am - 6:00pm
  • Thu
    8.30am - 8:00pm
  • Fri
    8:30am - 6:00pm
  • Sat
    8:30am - 5:00pm
  • Sun
    Closed

Emergency Details

Please call:

01271 344 262
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Find us here:

Riverview Commercial Centre Riverside Road Pottington Barnstaple Devon EX31 1QN
get directions with Google Maps
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Please call this number for emergencies:

01271 344 262

South Molton

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  • Mon
    8:30am - 8:00pm
  • Tue
    8:30am - 6:00pm
  • Wed
    8:30am - 6:00pm
  • Thu
    8:30am - 6:00pm
  • Fri
    8:30am - 6:00pm
  • Sat
    8:30am - 5:00pm
  • Sun
    Closed

Emergency Details

Please call:

01271 344 262
Back

Find us here:

The Surgery Southley Road South Molton Devon EX36 4BL
get directions with Google Maps
Back

Please call this number for emergencies:

01271 344 262