How To Avoid Common Mistakes Made By Someone Who Has Adopted A New Puppy ...by Bill Knell
Whether the puppy came from a rescue source, a breeder or a pet store, there are some things that people who adopt a new pet dog into their lives need to do to be sure that animal finds a good home in that household. The very first steps that anyone with a new puppy must take is to educate themselves about their puppy, be sure he or she is healthy and make their home puppy friendly. Itís a sad fact that many puppies that pass away during the first forty-eight hours of being adopted do so for no reason other than ignorance on the part of their new owner.
Begin by educating yourself about your new pup and making sure it is healthy. If your pup is a purebred or hybrid, learn everything you can about that breed or hybrid type. Collect as much information as possible about your puppy from the adoption source. If you have adopted your pup from a pet store, breeder or even a rescue center, it is likely that he or she has been given any number of antibiotics to keep the animal from becoming infected with various bacteria or viruses. Pups that have been given large doses of these medications tend to crash after they enter a new environment because the antibiotic treatments suddenly stop. Ask the pet store, breeder or rescue center if your new pet has been on antibiotics, find out which ones they were given and for how long.
Your next step should be a visit to the Veterinarian. Let the vet know if your pup was on an antibiotic regimen. Even if your new pet comes with a health certificate, you should still take him or her to the vet for a quick check up. A visit to the vet is especially important if you have any other animals in your household to avoid any cross contamination. Other household pets should also be checked for any potential health problems that could be passed on to your puppy. When introducing your pup to other animals in or outside of you home, be extremely careful and move slowly. Puppies should be kept away from other dogs and any cats until you are absolutely sure that these animals will all get along.
Puppies are like human babies in the sense that they will tend to eat, drink and sleep a lot. One of the greatest health dangers to a new pup is a lack of proper rest or over-playing with its new owners which can result in a low blood sugar condition. That kind of a condition can be fatal to young pups. Make sure you allow your pup time to sleep and recharge. Have plenty of water and the right kind of food available, be sure your pup has constant access to it and be sure to keep it in one place to avoid confusing your new pet. Pups need puppy food and I recommend dry for their long term dental health. However, you should find out which kind of food your puppy was given before you adopted him or her. Continue with its regular food for at least a week or two until you are able to wean the pup off and on to whatever food your vet or you decide it should have.
Choking and suffocation are dangers that your pup may face. Be very careful about which doggie toys and snacks you offer to your new pet, and be sure you do not sleep with your pup or allow it access to over-sized blankets. A doggie bed and small puppy blanket is a better and safer idea. Make your home pet friendly be denying your new pup access to any areas where they might be trapped or hurt. Things like stairs, basements, areas which are not properly heated or cooled, rooms with small spaces a puppy can crawl into, ground level pools, toilets, litter boxes and places where young children can gain un-supervised access to your pup are all danger zones.
If you want to potty train your pup, it is never too early to start. Set aside an area inside the house where you can spread newspaper or wee wee pads. Puppies get used to doing things the same way all the time and get confused by changes. Keep your pupís potty area away from food and water. Anytime you see your pet about to urinate or defecate, bring it to the potty area. Reinforcement is a great way to potty train your pup. As he or she gets older and you want your pet to go potty outside in the yard, just take a used wee wee pad or some newspaper that your pet has already urinated on and place it outside in the area where you want your pet to go potty.
Finally, I strongly suggest that you do not bring your puppy outside for walks or allow it contact with the grass ground until it is well over six months old. Meet ups with the neighborís pets are also a bad idea when a pup is still very young. Parvovirus kills more puppies than anything else and has reached epidemic proportions in the USA. Even after your pup has been vaccinated against it, that may not be enough as this virus has become resistant to vaccines. Contact with grass or ground that has had animal feces on it from parvovirus infected pets can kill yours. Be sure to ask your vet about booster shots for your pup to protect your new friend against this deadly threat.