CHOOSING A PUPPY

© Fredgoldstein | Stock Free Images &Dreamstime Stock PhotosSo the whole family has decided to get a puppy? Owning a puppy comes with great responsibility and commitment. Your relationship after choosing the right puppy will last for many years and following simple tips and advice will make owning a puppy a pleasure for all the family.

 There are many personal factors to consider when choosing which breed of puppy will best suit you and your family. For instance, if you live on your own and are not able bodied, it may not be wise to choose a breed which requires plenty of exercise, such as Husky, Malamute, Boxer or a German Shepherd. You may love the breed very much but it is important to meet the needs of his or her life.

Some more factors to consider are:

  • Sex: Male or Female? There are different characteristics in both sexes and it is important to research the traits in the breed.
  • The size of breed: A little puppy is very cute when it is, well, little. Some dogs grow to be very large within a short period of time. The expense of feeding a large breed of dog can often be overlooked.
  • The puppies coat: Maybe long haired, short haired or something in between? A dog with a long coat may need regular maintenance such as grooming and clipping.
  • Your work regime: Do you work 9 to 5? Consider how long your puppy or adult dog will be left alone. Maybe there is a family member who can watch him or you may consider employing a dog walker. Some breeds don’t like isolation and become bored very quickly. Most dogs need a lot of stimulation to keep their minds active or behaviour problems can start to occur very quickly.
  • Puppy Training: Do you and your family have the time to commit to his education? It's important to start the training from just a few days after your puppy arrives. It may be difficult to dedicate the time if you work long hours?
  • Illness: Some breeds are prone to certain problems. For instance, a Dalmatian should be given a particular type of diet because they are prone to urinary stones. Consider pet insurance just in case there are any problems in later life.

A good source of information on different types of dog breeds can be found on the Kennel Club website - click here.  If you want specify what characteristics you are looking for then Petplanet -click here - has dog breed selector questionnaire that suggest options for you to consider.   

What to look for

  • © Ice | Stock Free Images & Dreamstime Stock PhotosTake your time watching the whole litter at play.  Try to avoid having one dog to pick from.
  • It is wise not to choose the cute little puppy sitting all by itself away from the rest of the puppies.  It may have temperament issues and could be too difficult for first time owners.  If you already have succumbed and picked a puppy like this, we have the techniques to help with the training of all types of puppies, including these shy and nervous types.
  • Unless you have the temperament for it, don’t pick the puppy that comes bounding over to you as this dog could grow up to be a very confident dog that could want to make its own decisions and not listen to yours. 
  • The best puppy to pick is one that is playing happily with the other puppies and not being too rough.  When you see a dog like that, ask the owner/breeder if you can pick them up.  If he likes being picked up and cuddled and doesn’t try to mouth or wriggle too much he is likely to grow up to be a nice friendly dog.  
  • When you have chosen the puppy you want, leave a toy or blanket with the owner/breeder and ask them to leave it with the puppy when it sleeps.  This will help you when you take your puppy home as it will have something familiar with it.
  • Consider very carefully about taking 2 puppies home from the same litter.  They can simply play with each other all the time and not be that interested in their owners.  If you absolutely must take two home, choose a boy and girl first.  If you really want 2 of the same sex, 2 boys are preferable to 2 girls.  2 puppies can mean double the trouble, but if they are properly managed and trained, they can make great pets.  If you have already taken 2 siblings home and are struggling, I can help sort out your sibling issues.

Choosing a Breeder

Spend time talking to and visiting breeders BEFORE you decide which breeder you want to buy a puppy from.  ALWAYS BUY A PUPPY FROM A REPUTABLE BREEDER THAT SPECIALISES IN ONLY ONE OR TWO BREEDS.  

SURPRISE LICKING by Lisafxfreeimage-919374 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Things to consider and ask the Breeder:

  • Ask how many litters they breed each year from the same mother.  A good breeder does not breed often and do not breed to order. They will be able to tell you when their next litter is planned so be prepared to wait – if you have chosen your breeder well, it will be worth it.
  •  Do they own both breeding dogs?  It is better to see both parents as puppies often resemble one of the parent’s personalities.  Look for parents that are not aggressive, nervous, over excited, over confident and are happy to be both stroked and ignored without them seeking your attention.
  •  Are the parents certified clear from any inherent breed problems? 
  •  Are the dogs kept in the house or kennelled?  If they are kennelled will toilet training be started with the puppies before homing?
  •  Are the puppies well socialized?  Has the breeder started to introduce the puppies to other people, children, noises, smells etc? 
  •  Will toilet training be started before the puppy comes home with you?  A good breeder will always start this process.
  •  Does the breeder provide written advice on how to look after and feed the puppy?
  •  Does the cost include the puppy’s first injections?
  •  What is the vaccination and worming schedule?
  •  Does the breeder care enough about their puppies to ask you about your home situation? E.g. garden, fencing, who is in your home, time at home, other dogs and animals?
  •  At what age does the puppy come home? Puppies should be with their mother until at least 8 weeks old and some need up to 10 weeks.  This gives the puppy the best start in life and they will be healthier and more stable.  If a breeder says 6 or 7 weeks, find another breeder.

What if the breeder isn't a professional breeder but you still want to buy a puppy from them? 

The RSPCA and Animal Welfare Foundation have got together to offer detailed advice to help both you and owners who are not professional breeders.  Read through the Puppy Information Pack provided by them and then use their “puppy contract” to help you get as much information about your new puppy as possible. Any person who is not a professional breeder will be able to use this contract to provide you with all the information you need and this contract is a commitment between both you and the seller that you have the welfare of the puppy as a priority. For information about the RSPCA and Animal Welfare Foundation puppy contract click here.  This will take you to a page where you can download it and to other links to useful information.   

 For further information, prices and to find out how I can help you with your puppy

Call Freephone 0808 100 4071

 

 

 

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