Training and caring for puppies

Feeding

Puppies need to eat three times a day and please use a puppy meal. They need the higher amount of protein as they are growing so quickly.  By a year they can go to two meals a day or even one for some dogs.  As for the type of food, I’ve always said if it has pretty colors it’s probably not the greatest food.  I like holistic.  Some people feel feeding raw is very good as well.  This is an expensive method, however.    And honestly whether dry or wet food is better seems to change every few years.  Studies keep switching back and forth.
Don’t let your puppy become a grazer.  They tend to never eat well then.  If they do not eat all their food within 15 minutes, pick the bowl up.  And as for water; I know you want to minimize the pee-pee accidents but, please keep the water bowl full about a 1/4 inch.  The pup will learn to regulate it’s drinking.  Otherwise you will end up with a dog that will drink all of the water straight down anytime you fill the bowl.  And this is not healthy especially after eating dinner.  It can cause bloat in the dog which can be deadly.

Food that are poisonous to dogs

Chocolate, Cocoa Powder, Coffee, Tea, Caffeine, Citrus Oil Extracts, Bones from fish, poultry, or other meat sources. Grapes and Raisins, Macadamia nuts, Mushrooms, Onions, Persimmons, Potatoes, Rhubarb

Housebreaking

I always recommend crate training.  I think it is the easiest and fastest way to housebreak a pup.  Make the crate small enough that all they can do is sleep in it and turn around.  The concept is they will not pee where they sleep.  At 8 weeks puppies need to be taken out every hour and a half to two hours, max is 3 hours.  Their little bladders cannot hold it beyond this.  Some can go a little longer so pay attention when you bring them home to their pattern.

When you take them from their crate, don’t speak.  Your voice will get them excited and they will pee immediately.  Just scoop them up and take them out quickly.  Then praise them.  After they go they can be out of the crate for awhile.  However, whenever they start to excessively sniff your floor take them out again.

By four months they should be able to wait up to four hours and then by 6 months they should be able to go 5 to 6 hours.  Again, always pay attention to what they are doing in the house or there will be accidents , AND YOU WILL HAVE THEM, the less accidents you have the faster your pup gets trained.

Spay/Neuter

Your pup should be spayed and/or neutered around 5 to 6 months.  Your vet will let you know when the appropriate age is.  I do not believe in pediatric spay and neuter.  I do understand why some rescues have begun doing this, however, it can create urinary tract problems later in life.

Unless you are going to show your dog in AKC, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE spay or neuter them.  There are so many unwanted animals in shelters being euthanized every day.  Do not add to this problem.  Additionally, an un-neutered male will be more likely to mark, take off to find a female and fight another male.  If you neuter a male too late, you also may not be able to do away with unwanted behavior, such as the marking.

Advantages of Spaying and Neutering:

  • Spaying eliminates the possibility of uterine or ovarian cancer
  • Spayed and neutered pets live longer, healthier lives
  • Spaying before the first heat cycle greatly reduces the chance of breast cancer
  • Neutering reduces the incidence of prostate cancer and disorders
  • Did you know that there are over 70,000 puppies and kittens born in the US every single day? That's 7 times the number of human babies born a day