When you bring home a pet, you commit yourself to providing affection, play, training, grooming and exercise, in addition to food, shelter and medical care throughout his life. Be sure to think about these responsibilities before making your purchase.
Once you've brought your puppy home, you can't expect him to behave like a perfect house guest until you've invested the time and attention it takes to train him well. That first year is full of training so that in the end you get a good dog.
Puppies are like babies, they do not come pre-programed to "BE GOOD". They must learn all the things that a good canine needs to know, this takes time and effort, just like with human babies. So love your puppy, but be consistent & be patient, and be firm. Teach "No" (like a million times), and provide the stimulation of toys and rawhide chewy sticks that keep your puppy on the right track. Little treats are a great encourager for your pup to mind you, his owner and the one he depends on to make the right choices for him as a companion dog.
Even through you're excited about your puppy, don't invite the neighborhood over to meet your new dog on his first days home. Spend some time getting to know him and letting him get to know you. Remember, he has just been moved to a new environment, he probably is not thru his shot series, and just as with a new child, he will not have his full resistance until he is thru the shot series. Let your puppy get used to your family and his new environment in a calm, leisurely way, lots of mellow downtime especially the first few days. Take time to play, but give him a chance to sleep whenever he seems tired. He may sleep alot during the first few days just to adjust as a defense mechanism. TEACH THE CHILDREN TO TREAT HIM GENTLY AND TO LET HIM BE WHILE HE'S RESTING OR EATING.
Before your puppy arrives at your home, place his food and water dishes in the area in which you intend to keep him. Have his bed ready which may be an old, soft blanket placed in a quiet corner that's free from drafts. It's a good idea to set up the bed in the room or area where you intend to confine your puppy while away. The ideal would be to place him in a crate. (This is his own special place, like your bedroom is your comfort zone. As he grows older, he will go there on his own when he wants to rest.) Leave a radio playing to keep him company.
Your puppy will probably cry during his first few nights at home. Although the cries may be heartbreaking, you should leave him alone unless you feel that he is crying to go potty, then, yes you need to get up and let him relieve himself, then it's back to bed. After two or three nights, maybe a week, he'll grow accustomed to his new surrounding. In some situations I have taken the crate in beside my bed or the couch and am able to reassure puppy that he is not alone and all is well. Yes, I was inconvenienced a bit but we get thru the night and puppy learns to relax better in his crate. I cover the crate with a blanket to make it dark and 'cavelike' which is restful to the puppy.
Take the puppy to the vet within the first 4 days that you have him. Even though his health is likely fine during the transition, some puppies will stumble a bit and require maybe an antibiotic or probiotics and special care during those first few days adjusting to it's new home. Keep an eye out if they do not EAT, DRINK or POOP. Just like with a baby those are indicators. Most Warranties require the visit, it is only fair to the breeder that if anything is wrong, the pup can be provided with the proper care. Plus you can schedule the balance of the puppy shot series that is needed and have a fecal done to ensure there are no residual worms remaining in puppies GI tract.
During the first few weeks, a young puppy needs twice the adult requirements of most nutrients. Remember to keep fresh, clean drinking water available at all times. Consult with your breeder on the type of food the puppy is used to eating. The food should be one that is high in protein. The puppy should be fed three times a day in the beginning, once they are older you can feed in the morning and the evening. Scheduling his meals make housebreaking easier.
Puppies receive their first antibodies through their mother's milk. Most pups receive their first vaccinations at 6-8 weeks of age. Additional booster shots should be given every 2-3 weeks up to 16 weeks of age. After that, the rabies vaccination. You'll need to take your dog to the Veterinarian's office at least once a year for booster inoculations and an annual health exam. This trip is necessary even if your dog seems perfectly healthy. Without regular checkups and shots, your dog can become deathly ill and may die.
Neutering or Spaying your dog is strongly recommended. You can not convince an intact dog not to do what nature is telling it to do. No matter how many times you try to explain, they will follow what their hormones are saying. The decision to fix your pet ensures that he or she won't add to the population of America's homeless dogs. Each year, the majority of these unwanted pets must be humanely killed in animal shelters. If you breed, YOU are responsible for each puppy brought into this world. Breeding is hard work and nothing to be taken lightly, and is not for the faint of heart. There are lots of problems that can arise including but not limited to the cost of c-sections, the loss of your puppies or even your dam. Finding homes for all of your puppies, which can be harder than you think IF you care about where your puppies end up. Consult your vet for the best age at which to neuter your puppy. Most will encourage by 6 months of age. Neutering & Spaying helps to address cancer issues in the reproductive parts.
Most dogs are joyous, effusive animals and often blessed with lots of energy. For your sake, for the peace of the neighborhood and for the pups own safety, train your pup to respond to the basic commands. There are many obedience classes to which you can take your puppy for training. Talk with your Vet who may have a list of locations. Petsmart does offer obedience training. Call them for information and times.
Puppies that have sufficient exercise tend to be more content animals. They love a good walk and the time spent with their new family. They are a great reason to get out and play, walk a few blocks, learn to know the neighborhood and its neighbors. It helps to make "this place" feel like home and familiar to them. Obviously tho, do not expect a new pup to be leash trained right away, that takes time. The best way is for you to have a dog who is experienced on the leash also accompany you and the puppy will follow. Otherwise it may be more like taking the puppy for a "drag" for the first few attempts.
To help your pet become accustomed to daily separation, here are some guidelines: