RAISING A PUPPY RIGHT
Apuppy will not be cute and little for long. If you raise him right, he will turn into a great dog. If you don’t make the effort, you will have problems.
Welcome. He has been torn from his loving mother and litter-mates and is feeling lost and lonely. Stay with him constantly and keep petting and talking gently to him.
Potty training. On his first night with you, take him outside to do his business and then put him in a warm, comfortable bed indoors. Take him outside first thing in the morning.
Every two hours, especially after a nap, play, or a meal, take him to the same spot in the garden. Reward him with praise when he uses the outside toilet on his own. Rest. Puppies are babies and need lots of sleep so don’t let children disturb his rest.
Children. Never leave a pup unattended with a toddler or young children. They are likely to break his fragile bones or inflict other serious injury. Monitor all child-dog interaction until both child and dog have learned to play nicely together. Teach children to think of the puppy as a sensitive, living thing. Teach them how, where and when they can touch him and to respect his space. Routine. Stick to a regular mealtime routine and feed 3-4 times a day.
Food. To lay the foundations of strong bones and good health, feed brand-name formulated Mealie-meal is not dog food. puppy food. Veterinary checkup. Get a puppy Dewormer from your vet and schedule sterilizing and vaccinations:Six to eight weeks – Parvo and five-in-one 10-12 weeks – five-in-one booster 12 weeks - Rabies Five to six months – Sterilising 12 months – Rabies and five -in- one. (Repeat these vaccinations annually.)
Company. Dogs are genetically programmed to live in packs and if isolated will develop mental problems. If there is no one to stay with the pup during the day, don’t get a dog. If he has to spend short periods alone, get two dogs.
Environment. Puppy needs a stimulating environment to develop intelligence and personality: people and other animals to play with, places to explore, toys to play with and chew (nothing small enough to swallow), lots of things to smell, look at, listen to, feel and taste. s. Let him meet friends and neighbours and other trusted (and vaccinated) dogs.
Collar and lead. Introduce him to a light, soft collar (harness for a small breed dog) gradually for a few seconds at a time while distracting him with a tasty treat. Slowly increase the time he wears it. Now introduce a light, soft leash. Keep his associations with these items pleasant. He should be excited and happy when you take out the leash, anticipating a walk.
Pack member. Dogs protect their pack, so treat him as part of the family so he develops naturally into a guard dog.
Leadership. A dog requires leadership to give structure and security to his life. His mother was his first boss. If no leader is provided the pup will fill the role. This is usually shown through growls, nips and other dominant behaviour.
Rules and boundaries. Everyone must enforce the same rules or puppy will become confused. Either he can sit on the sofa or he can’t.
Training. Start training early, you don’t want puppy behaviours like nipping, chewing, digging, etc. to persist. Use a calm, firm voice when training. Never punish. A stern “No” is enough. Always use positive motivation. When he does something right, praise immediately in a happy, enthusiastic tone.