When you buy your first puppy, you might have all kinds of questions. What should I do? How should I do it? How do I get my puppy housebroken?
Well begun is half done! Here are some tips that may come in handy.
The puupy you bought was handed over to you in good health. All vaccinations are listed in the vaccination booklet that comes with the puppy.
It is a good thing to have the puppy checked out by your local veterinarian in the first week, to confirm the state of health and to start recording the medical history of your puppy with your local vet.
The puppy has been de-wormed at least 4 times before going to the new owner. This must be repeated at 14 weeks, 6 months and 10 months. Therafter every 6 months. Also ask your vet about required vaccinations! Do not underestimate the de-worming. Larvae of roundworms can do great damage to the body. it can result in brain damage, blindness and so on.
At about 16 to 18 months, you can have the dog x-rayed to check for hip displacia.
The first days
The puppy will experience a lot of changes in a very short time. Brothers and sisters are gone. The mother is gone, well known scents are gone… Therefore the following points are important:
- Let the puppy explore his new surroundings, the house, the garden etcetera .
- Give the puppy enough time to get used to the scents of his new surroundings, and the people.
- Do not punish the puppy if he pees inside.. he is not yet used to doing everything outside, and therefore he does not yet understand why you are mad at him. Do not expect him to be fully housebroken within a few days.
Many people put the puppy in a bench at times they cannot give him attention. The puppy will see the bench as a nest, and will try to keep it clean. Take him outside when he leaves the bench again and praise him if he pees or poops outside!
- Another advantage of a bench is the fact that the puppy cannot damage anything. Slowly increase the time that the puppy is spending in the bench. Put him in the bench during the night.
If the puppy has problem with being alone at night, you can also try putting the bench in your bedroom for a couple of days.
It is wise to keep him in the bench until he has changed teeth. This way he will not chew on your expensive furniture when the final teeth start to come….
- Prepare for the combination of little children and dogs. Children can become jealous if they think the puppy is getting too much attention! Teach the children to be carefull with the puppy. (it is not a stuffed animal!) Teach the children to leave the dog alone when he is in his bench or dog bed. This must be the private place of the dog!
- All pups are different, and you should respond to that….
Housebreaking your puppy
Housebreaking your new puppy does not have to be hard or messy, nor should it take very long if done right. Getting your dog to do its business outside is a matter of training, and the more attention you can give to your puppy during this crucial training, the shorter this stage will last.
Place him in a bench when he cannot be watched. Dogs do not like to soil their beds because they would be forced to lay in the mess. It works, and while in these confines, most pups will control their bladder and bowels for a longer time than we would expect. The first thing you do when you take the dog out of the bench is another trip outside.
One of the key issues in housebreaking is to follow this rule: If you do not catch your puppy doing it, then do not punish him for it! We do not care what someone else may tell you or what you read, if you find a mess that was left when you were not there, clean it up and forget it.
Discipline will not help because unless you catch the puppy in the act, he will have no idea what the scolding is for. At this point in his life a puppy’s memory is very, very poor. Tthe pup will not relate the punishment, regardless of its form, together with something he has done without incident numerous times before. Especially if he did it more than 30 seconds ago!
Rememver that not all indoor peeing comes from a lack of housebreaking. Some dogs do this as a sign of being submissive. This natural behaviour is ment to show that he knows you have a much higher rank, and to prevent aggression from you. great exitement can also lead to unplanned peeing.
Punishing this behaviour is useless! Best thing to do, is just ingore it, and clen it up….
The puppy will grow in the first six months to almost adult size. That requires a lot of energy. If the puppy indicates that he/she is getting tired, you already went too far. Don’t forget: a puppy needs lots of rest and sleep. Take it easy in the first year. Walks of 5 kilometer are out of the question in the first 10 to 12 months. 6 walks of 15 minutes are beteer than 2 walks of an hour. After the first year, you can slowly start increasing the amount of exercize. Talk to your local vet for more advice.
Do not start too soon running the dog next to a bike. 8 months is really the minimum age to start with this.Begin niet te snel met het rennen naast de fiets. Slowly build up, with not more than 5 minutes every month. The speed should not be more than 10 to 12 kilometer per hour.
A puppy of 8 weeks should get 3 meals of 50 grams. Check the instructions of the supplier (age – amount) and keep deviding this into 3 meals a day. After about 6 months, you can start switching to 2 meals a day. A boiled egg once or twice a week is also good. Always make sure that there is fresh clean water available at all times.
Watch your dog, because it tells you if you are giving too much or too little food. If the dog is still very hungry after feeding, and his belly is not too round, you can give a little bit more. Of the bowl is not emptied, or it takes a very long time, you are probabely giving a bit too much.
The dog is overweight if you cannot see and feel the ribs. Over feeding the dog is always bad, but especially in the first nine months. Overweight can cause problems with the skeleton, especially the joints. If your puppy starts to grow too fast, you may consider switching to adult food. Ask your local vet for advice.