THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR PUPPY
Many dog owners don't realize how much a puppy will change their lifestyle. A new puppy isn't like a house plant; you can't add it to your home and expect everything else to remain the same. A puppy is a wonderful addition to your life if you are aware of the changes it will make and if you are ready to make those changes.
Shih Tzus are considered to be an excitable breed. That is to say they come alive when something happens. Excitability does not necessarily mean they have a high activity level. These dogs are relaxed and quite happy to be the couch potato. They will be happy to get down and play for a time and then are quite happy to return to their comfy spot. Havanese are a little more laid back in temperment but do contain a wonderful active spirit.
They have a desire to be close to their owners. Your puppy will want to be cuddled whenever possible. It is not an outdoor dog that will be happy in a backyard for extended periods, but a companion to sit and watch TV with.
Most cities do require dogs to be licensed at 3 months of age. This cost is approx. $30 but the fines for not complying are large. This can be done at the animal services building.
QUICK NOTES ON THE FIRST DAY/WEEK
Expect the first 24 hours to be the most difficult. Your puppy will be missing his family and will be making adjustments to new rules and living arrangements. We have tried to make this transition as easy on your puppy as possible but it is still a transition for a little puppy.
Show your new puppy his area. He should have time without family distractions to get used to this new area. If you are going to be away for 8 hours of the day this area should be a pen, section of the kitchen or bathroom. Somewhere he can have a place to sleep, play and defecate.
Make your puppies place warm and cozy. The ideal situation is a training crate. Whereas some people think this is cruel, it provides your dog with the cave-like atmosphere dogs have enjoyed for as long as there have been dogs. They feel instinctively at home. It is a cozy place to be when it is necessary for him to be unsupervised for short periods of time.
Puppies can usually hold their need to go to the bathroom for as many hours as they are months old for a maximum of 8 hours. For a two month old puppy that is only two hours. Keep that in mind while choosing his area and planning your schedule.
Supervise your new puppy. There will be many things that he will try to explore. You will need to puppy proof your home just like you would for a baby. Do not forget your back yard when doing this. There are several plants and berries that can be poisonous to dogs.
If you've seen Walt Disney's Lady and the Tramp you will remember the scene when Lady is a puppy and cry through the night. Expect this. It is a natural instinct for puppies to cry when separated from the pack. If you go to him you will be reinforcing this behavior and it will continue. Ignore it and it will stop in a day or two. Please realize that any attention from you, both negative and positive, will reinforce this behavior. Affection to a crying puppy will train a puppy to cry. Intermittantly ignoring and encouraging the behavior will cause your puppy to become more persistant.
Keep your puppy at home and away from other dogs until his vaccinations are complete. Taking him into pet stores or places other dogs may defecate before he is properly vaccinated is dangerous for your puppy. A puppy is not fully immune until he has had three sets of shots.
Begin teaching your puppy right from wrong from the start. Do not let him get away with things because he is a puppy. If you are not going to let him on the couch as an adult don't let him on the couch as a puppy. Say no to play biting, begging at the table, Jumping up, and other behaviors you wouldn't find acceptable in an adult dog.
Stress can cause diarrhea in puppies. Changes in their environment, travel, different water, food, sounds and smells around them are all stressful to puppies. Some pups will take it in stride and others may get diarrhea. This can last upwards to 10 days. If the pup is eating, drinking and playful it shouldn't be a cause for concern. Let their system adjust and they should return to normal. A teaspoon of canned pumpkin or 1 ml of peptobismal can also be added to their diet to help calm down upset tummies.
Stress can also cause bacterial imbalances in a puppy's system. If they are harbour bacteria and are then put in stressful situations the bacteria can rise in number until the pups immune system gets it back in check. We do frequently deworm the pups so this is usually not a concern, but farm dogs can also catch to common bacteria cultures called Giardia and Coccidia. Giardia or Beaver Fever is usually caught by drinking from water sources that contain Giardia cysts or poop. Coccidia is also picked up by being around animal poop. Our adult dogs are raised on the farm and are mainly free to roam around. Adults rarely show any symptoms of either bacteria but pups will show symptoms. The most common of which is diarrhea, which can also contain traces of blood or mucous. Symptoms usually only appear after the pups experience stress so it is difficult to tell if the pups are carriers before hand. When you take your pup in for his exam it is suggested you take in a fecal sample as well to have it tested.
We feed our puppies Orijen Puppy food which we will provide a bag of. We suggest that you stay with the Acana brand of food but keep puppies on the the puppy formula until at least a year. . It is available at Petland, Pet Pros, Pet Planet, Peices Pet Emporium, UFA and G&E Pharmacy. Several smaller pet retailers also carry it. Our pups are fed 3 times a day. Small breed puppies under 5 pounds can eat anywhere from 1/4 a cup to 1 1/4 cup in a day. Certain pups may eat more in the evening than in the morning or vice versa. Under stressful conditions adding warm water to the food may make it more appealing but as a general rule we do not wet their food down here. Smaller pups may need to have more frequent meals as they eat less at each meal.
BE THE PACK LEADER
Dogs are pack animals and by nature need to live in a group situation. It does not take a new puppy very long to accept it's new family as it's pack. A dog's position in a pack can be at only one of two levels; the leader or a follower. It is easier for a dog to be a follower and will easily accept the position. He will need to know that you are in charge at all time though. If he is not sure if you are a leader or follower he will take the leadership role until you show him differently.
You cannot lead with creulty but with a calm-assertive manner. You must be firm but fair. It needs to be your goal to ensure that the dog learns what is acceptable behavior and he can do this only if you are clear, consistent and properly times.
HOUSE TRAINING/CRATE TRAINING
The number one complaint from dog owners is house training. It is hard to enjoy life with your dog if everyday your cleaning up accidents. The ONLY
way to succeed in this area is CONSISTENCY
on your part.
Begin house training your puppy right away. If you follow our crate recommendations and establish a cozy environment for your puppy, house training will be easier, because his instinct is to not soil in his bed.
Start by putting your puppy on a regular feeding schedule and by making frequent trips outside. If you are feeding a good quality pet food you will find that this period will be easier because his feeding and elimination schedule will be more routine. We suggest Eagle Pack Small and Medium Breed Puppy Formula on a feeding schedule that is three times a day, 1/4 cup per feeding. Puppies will defecate approx. 20 minutes after eating.
There are certain signs you should watch for that will alert you that it is time for him to go outside. He may walk around in circles, whine or sit at the door. You should routinely take him out; first thing in the morning, right after naps, before you leave, and immediately when you get home, right after meals, and last thing before bed.Always
stay outside with your puppy to watch and encourage him. When he has finished quietly praise him and bring him back inside. He will soon connect elimination outdoors with praise and will be eager to please.
Accidents will happen. Be patient. Should you discover a mess, do not raise your voice, spank your pup or rub his nose in it. While he will certainly cower in fear, he is too young to connect your reprimand with his mess.
If you catch him, immediately take him outside to finish, and when he does, praise him for his efforts. You must catch him in the act for him to understand what he is doing wrong. Puppies will not understand scolding or negative attention after the fact.
To clean up the mess, deodorizer and repellents may work effectively. DO not use ammonia-based cleaners. Chemically ammonia and urine are very similar. Once you have cleaned the area barricade the spot until it is dry. Otherwise your puppy will be back to investigate the scent and may feel the urge to repeat the mess. Vinegar works well for this - keep a gallon on hand.
Crate Training is a useful tool when house training your puppy because his instinct is to not soil his bed. Although some people do not like the idea of crate training, most dogs love their crate. It provides them security and comfort like a den does to wild dogs.
Crate training is useful in a variety of circumstances:
It prevents vocalization at night because the crate can be moved to your bedroom
It prevents chewing or other destructive behavior
It is the BEST method for house training
A crate trained dog will travel calmly and not need to be sedated
It is a handy place for your dog to go when company or repairmen are expected
The only disadvantage to crate training is it cannot be used if the pup is isolated for long periods. DO NOT leave your puppy in the crate for more than 6 hours during the day without checking on him or letting him out to eliminate. However it is fine to leave them all night.
TIPS IN CRATE TRAINING
The crate should be large enough for the puppy to stand up and turn around with ease but small enough the pup won't eliminate in one end and sleep comfortably in the other. You may be required to buy a larger size as your pup grows.
It should be kept in the kitchen or bedroom. You may wish to keep it in the kitchen for the day and move it to the bedroom at night. It should not be left in isolated areas.
To start with, put treats, meal, water, and toys in the crate so the pup can go into it on his own. Associate the crate with fun things - DO NOT USE IT FOR PUNISHMENT.
Put the pup in for a few minutes with the door closed. If he misbehaves, try to distract him. Try to leave him in his crate if he is barking, howling, or whining, as you are reinforcing this behavior if you let him out. Instead, try to distract him by making noise, (Shake a tin can full of pennies) and if he quietens for a few seconds, let him out of his cage and praise him or reward with a treat. Gradually extend the amount of time you leave him in his crate. Once he is comfortable in the crate for about a half an hour without making a fuss, then he can be left alone. By crate training in this manner you will teach your pup that he will not get out of his crate by making a fuss and you are rewarding his quiet behavior with praise and attention.
Respect you puppy's privacy when he is in his special place. Don't just reach in and pull him out. Let him come out to you. Don't let children tease or bother him. He needs to feels safe in his special place.
If you are leaving for longer periods of time a puppy pen will be required. Toys R Us sells super yards that are approx. Four feet wide, eight feet long and 3 feet tall and retail around a hundred dollars. These are great enclosure for puppies. A bathroom, Section of your kitchen, entry way, or any easy to clean surface will do. The area should be large enough for your puppies kennel (door off so he can move in and out), water bowl, and a paper lined area.
Initially the entire floor area should be covered in paper so that when the puppy needs to eliminate it cannot miss this area. Do this for about a week. Week 2 put paper on a smaller area of the floor but leave a sheet that already has been soiled (urine) on top. The puppy will go to that smell and eliminate on the paper.
Using this method you should be able to reduce the puppies area to a small patch of paper that he will seek out to go pee. This works really well if you would prefer to litter train your puppy. Gradually reduce his paper area until the only area with paper is inside his litter box. Remember to always use a piece that is urine scented on top.
Puppy training pads are usually urine scented and also work well for inside puppy pens. These also do not leave newsprint stamps on your floor as most are rubber backed. Wal-Mart sells these cheapest. They are a little quicker to clean them up and whereas some puppies may still choose to play with them, they are not sheddable like newsprint.
Some dogs are easier to house train than others. Mismanagement and miscommunication cause most problems with elimination behavior.
Sometimes puppies realize they should eliminate outside but don't know how to ask to be let out. You can easily hang a bell from the doorknob of the door leading to your puppy area. Every time you take the puppy out to do his business, ring the bell before opening the door. Puppies notice the connection between the bell ringing and the door opening so readily on their own that they don't need to be taught. Within a few days to a week you will hear that bell ring and when you go to the door your pup will be waiting to go out.
House training your puppy will take time and patience. If all goes well, your puppy could be house trained in about a week. However many dogs take longer. Persist and be consistent and don't give up.
When training a puppy to use a litter box start with the same basics as paper training. Keep the puppy in his pen with paper on all of the floor so that when he needs to eliminate he can not miss. Gradually reduce the paper down until the only paper is in his "litter box". Once he is consistantly going to his litter box to eliminate, slowly begin increases his area. Increase the area slowly, making sure before you increase his space he is consistantly returning to the litter box prior to giving him more room. Eventually he will have run of the entire house but always return to his litter box.
Watch for Signs - BE with your puppy as much as possible so that you can learn his different sounds and behaviors. You will notice he behaves in a certain way before he relieves himself. If you see him start to circle and sniff the floor, place him in his potty area.
Pick a Potty Area - Pick a spot that you want your puppy to use as his potty area. Place some of his stool in that spot. This will act as a cue for the pup. Take him to his spot after he eats and praise him when he starts to relieve himself. When he is finished shower him with praise and play with him in a different area so that he does not associate play with his potty spot. Keep this area clean everyday leaving just a piece or two of stool as his indicator.
Be Patient - Don't play with your pup until he relieves himself. I he doesn't relieve himself in 10 minute put him back in his crate and try again in 20 minutes.
Example Schedule For Potty Training
6:30-7:00 Puppy wake up - take him outside right away for a potty break
7-7:30 Breakfast followed by a potty break. Put out water. Free time supervised by you.
9:00 Potty break followed by a nap in the crate
12:00 - Take out of crate and let him go for a potty break. Now it's time for some lunch followed by a potty break outside. Supervised free time.
2:30-Potty break followed by crate time.
6:00 Potty break followed by supper, followed by a potty break. Supervised play.
7:30 pick up water until morning
9:00 Potty Break followed by bedtime.
Some pups will be okay over night others will need a potty break around 3:00 in the morning.
TROUBLESHOOTING CRATE TRAINING
Is your puppy defecating or urinating in his crate? Here are some tips.
A) Your crate may be too large. You should have a crate that is just slightly larger than the puppy, so that when he is lying down he covers most of the floor.
B) The dog or puppy may have been previously kept in a crate with a wire bottom so that when he went to the washroom it did not affect his sleeping area. This is one of the main concerns with pet store puppies. They are expected to relieve themselves where they are without going for a walk or outside. If this is the case, begin to take the dog out for walks to the potty spot very frequently. Give extra praise when he relieves himself outside.
C) You may be leaving the puppy in the crate too long. Get him on a shorter schedule. An 8 week puppy should be in a crate a maximum of 3 hours. At 12 weeks - 4 hours. at 16 weeks - 5 hours, at 6 months - 7 hours and at 1 yr - 8 hours. Just because your puppy is able to stay in his crate for a longer period of time than what is recommended doesn't mean you should keep him in the crate that long.
D) Your puppy may be sick. Your vet may want to check for urinary infection or disorders or an upset to the digestive system. There is a defect in some dogs that causes the leakage of urine when the bladder is partially full.
E) Your dog or puppy won't relieve himself in his potty area but then does relieve himself in his crate when you bring him in. Have you ever caught your dog in the act of relieving himself where he shouldn't be doing so? Did you scold him? The puppy may think you don't want him to relieve himself at all, so is waiting until you are out of sight before doing so. Give extra praise to puppy when he is eliminating outside where you want him to.
Many puppies even some adult dogs crouch and urinate when they greet people they perceive as high ranking. This is normal gesture of submission intended to placate higher ups. Dogs appreciate this sign of respect but most people find it annoying. Puppies generally outgrow submissive urination. To change this behavior do not scold or act displeased. Punishing submissive peeing will cause the dog to act even more submissively. He will crouch lower and grovel while peeing, or perhaps flip on his back and wet his belly.
It's best to greet a dog with this habit outdoors. Keep walking while saying hello so the puppy doesn't get a chance to squat and piddle. Don't
pet the dog until his excitement wanes and never
reach over their head to pet him as this is a dominant position and will cause submissive peeing.
Marking is urinating with the purpose of leaving a message. It is a big part of canine life, it isn't about elimination but about communication. They mark to show fear, friendliness, flirt, express rank, blaze trails, claim resources, and to leave calling cards.
Intact males mark more than neutered males if it is caused by hormones. Neutering occasionally does stop the habit. It is better to neuter a male before he reaches sexual maturity in order to nip the instinct before it starts. There is no guarantee but it does reduce the behavior dramatically. It does sometimes take 3-4 months of management to stop a dog from marking indoors. The best cleaners never get rid of the urine smell and a dog should not be let into a room unsupervised where he had previously marked.
If marking is a Dominance issue - the dog is confused about who is in charge - a few brush up lessons on the leash will remind him that he is not the dominant member of the family. If you use a firm fair hand in training the dog will normally stop the behavior. Males in small toy breeds are notorious for marking if not neutered.
Good feeding habits start as soon as you get your puppy! His diet will influence health, development, appearance and attitude. How you feed him will influence many behavior aspects, from house training to begging. It is also important to prevent him from gaining too much weight, which can predispose them to obesity and it's associated health problems.
Following are some good steps to get you off to a good start.
1. CHOOSE YOUR PUPPIES DIET CAREFULLY. There is excessive misinformation in the market regarding puppy foods. We know it is confusing, particularly with all the advertising and marketing efforts by competing companies. The old adage "you get what you pay for" probably applies more to pet foods than in many other instances. We encourage you not to compare foods by the guaranteed Analysis on the label - it is a chemical analysis only that measures gross quantities of ingredient types - it tells you nothing about the quality or digestibility of the ingredients. There are many things to consider with dog food such as protein content, filler content, amount of grain, and possible allergens.
The more filler in the food the more your puppy will eat and consequently poop. The more preservatives the softer and runnier the poop. Additions of egg and other possible allergens can cause problems with your dogs skin and coat condition. We feed a high quality dog food that will keep your puppy eating less but still getting the proper nutrition, Because they eat less they poop less and their poop is nice hard little nuggets. Easy for pick up and clean up.
2. DO NOT FREE CHOICE FEED YOUR PUPPY. Free choice feeding is essentially feeding your puppy as much as he wants to eat. This can contribute to digestive upset (vomiting and diarrhea), bloating, difficulties in training and obesity. The best approach is to feed your puppies allotment of food in two to three feedings through the day. If your puppy hasn't eaten his measured amount of food within 15 minutes, remove it. Continue on with the same measured proportion at the next meal. If you find he consistently isn't finishing his meal but is otherwise doing well, cut back on you daily allotment, likewise if he is devouring it and seems hungry, do NOT give more. He may just be greedy and will get fat.
3. AVOID FEEDING HUMAN FOOD. Establishing right from the start the human food is off limits will reduce begging, and possibility of your pet becoming obese. It also helps minimize the chance of dogs becoming picky eaters. If you must feed some human food stick to small amounts of low calorie options such as veggies, rice, etc.. But always put them in your puppy's bowl. Never feed them at the table as certain human foods can be toxic to pets.
4. FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH HEALTHY TREATS. We all like to treat our pets. It helps us in socializing, training and just plain, loving them. There are several healthy treat options now on the market. Ask your vet about home and packaged treats that would be suitable. Remember that more treats on the market have more calories than you would find in half a cup of puppy food.
5. USE MEALS AS A HOUSE TRAINING OPPORTUNITY. Puppies normally eliminate 5-15 minutes after a meal. Therefore after you feed him, take him outside to the appropriate place in the yard and wait for him to do their business. Praise him for doing such a good job and he will realize that it is a good thing to go outside. Puppies also need to eliminate after nap and play times, use this to your advantage in training and avoiding accidents.
6. FEED YOUR PUPPY IN A QUIET PLACE. AVOID FEEDING JUST PRIOR TO OR JUST AFTER EXERCISE. This helps establish consistency, reduces excitement around a meal and reduces the incidence of stomach upset.
7. CHANGE DIETS SLOWLY. If you are changing his diet, mix the new food with the previous diet in small amounts the first day or two. Then the proportion of the new diet can be gradually increased over a week or so until your puppy is completely on the new diet. This will reduce the likelihood of vomiting and diarrhea. Your puppy should make a formed stool that is easy to pick up.
8. BONES AND MILK. Please do NOT feed your puppy any bones. Digestive upsets, bone fragments and their damage can result in having to use medication and possible surgery for your puppy that can be avoided. Many puppies cannot digest milk, and it ends up giving them diarrhea. This can interfere with the absorption of nutrients from the intestinal tract.
The majority of puppies will never experience this condition. Some dogs, when arriving in a new environment, become homesick for their litter mates or mom. Often they will become mildly reclusive and tend not to eat.
What you must understand is: Small dogs, especially newly brought home puppies DO NOT posses much fat reserves, their tiny bodies have not built up fat stores. If your puppy does not eat regularly (at least 3 times each day) They may become hypoglycemic. Dehydration and over stimulation can also play a factor.
Early detection of Hypoglycemia will alleviate undue medical expenses.
Lethargy accompanied by loss of balance
(Unintentional sideways walking and stumbling)
Inability to walk, no desire, legs not functioning.
Animal is down!!! Stiffness in the neck and legs
(Neck and head rolling backward involuntarily)
Past the acute stage
Animal will not be able to regulate body temperature disabling the ability to digest, will become cold, eventually slipping into a comatose state followed by death.
It is critical to recognize these symptoms early at the acute stage and beyond the remedy is more complicated.
If you recognize these symptoms in your puppy we suggest...
If your puppy is in the first two stages. Give your puppy a ½ teaspoon of corn syrup, honey or NutriCal. Wait 20 minutes and your puppy should be recovered.
If you are into the acute stages or beyond...
Ensure their body temperature is at least 37.5-38 degrees.
(A cold puppy can not digest)
Use a thermometer, lubricate the end, insert in the puppies anus.
If your puppies temperature is not 37.5 or above (warm them slowly)
Hot water bottles, heat lamps, magic bags. Remember your puppy is dehydrating, gently warming them over the next 15-20 minutes will be more beneficial than rapidly heating them.
When they have reached 37.5 degrees Celsius administer ½ teaspoon of corn syrup or honey. Monitor for progress over the next 20 minutes.
Failing any improvement, drive your puppy to your veterinarian.
Some vets are better than others, some lack integrity and WILL take advantage of you in your time of need. Remember, most vets are owners of their own clinics. Your business pays their bills. Do not be afraid to get second opinions.
Hypoglycemia is scary, but easily managed. Some vets don't want you to know that.Hypoglycemia is a manageable condition and is not covered by our health guarantee.
It affects a very small percentage of the smallest puppies and usually dispels after the first 2-3 weeks when the puppy has increased fat stores.Some suggestions to avoid hypoglycemia.
Observe your puppy eating 3 times a day. It's not enough to simply have food available. Your puppy MUST eat.
This is even more important in households with other animals. Your puppy is the at the bottom of the dominance pyramid, and is often intimidated by the other animals until a balance is worked out between them. New puppies are rarely assertive in new environments and will go without to keep the peace.
Softening the food for the first few days using water is sometimes more enticing than dry food. Remember dry food will help promotion of natural tooth growth and replacement and help manage tartar so is still perferred.
Canned food is a final stage for puppies that are over finicky. Acceptable canned food is available at the vets. We suggest Medi-cal development formula or Medi-cal gastro formula. Both are irresistible to taste. If you change to these canned alternatives, expect runny stool until you get the puppy back on dry food (Eagle pack) please refer to changing food section of this manual to reintroduce dry food gradually. If your puppy is not eating you will probably not be able to introduce the canned food gradually.
PUPPIES LOVE (AND NEED) TO CHEW
Puppies teethe between the ages of 3-6 months, and they need to chew on something to help the teeth come in. Help avoid destructive chewing by giving your puppy a choice of good, indestructible objects to chew on, a really hard rubber ball (large enough so your puppy won't swallow it) or a tough rubber bone. Giving a puppy an old shoe or any shoe like material will make him think all shoes are acceptable for his chewing enjoyment. The same goes for stuffed animals. If you have young kids or stuffed animals, don't give your dogs plush toys as they will find all plush acceptable. Don't give you puppy real bones - cooked or uncooked. These could splinter and hurt his mouth, cause choking if swallowed or vomiting and diarrhea.
Make the puppy's rubber ball or bone especially attractive to him by playing games with it. Give it to the pup whenever he starts to chew on an unacceptable object, say NO, sternly, take the forbidden object away and replace it with the toy. When your puppy starts to chew on his won toy praise him for the good behavior.
Puppies seem to enjoy chewing on fingers and may appear to be biting. Use the same procedure as above and replace you fingers with the toy. He will soon get the idea that his not to chew on hands, remember to praise him when he begins to chew on his toy.
Remember that puppies forget really fast so you may have to repeat the chewing corrections many times. Eventually he will get the right idea. Once again we need patience to train our puppy.
He will be less likely to feast on your best pair of shoes if he has his own toys to chew on. Help your puppy avoid the wrong things by keeping them out of reach.
Puppy toy boxes work well. Your puppy will soon learn that his toys are in the box and when he feels the urge to chew he will go to his toy box and retrieve a toy.
Remember puppies are like babies, and we have to keep the household cleaners out of reach, they will get into them if they can.
DOGS AND TEETH
Pets live a healthier and longer life if they have healthy, strong clean teeth. The teeth are the first stage in the digestion process. If food is not chewed well, the food may not be as completely digested or the rest of the intestine will have to work twice as hard to get the job done. Dirty or tartered teeth collect bacteria, which can be spread into the rest of the body. The heart is one of the closest and most vulnerable organs. Bacteria from the mouth can cause the valves to thicken and lead to a heart murmur. The kidneys have to cope with the bacteria which can cause kidney infections. Teeth that have collected tartar become loose due to gum infections. The gums become inflamed, infected and finally recede. Once a tooth is loose it can be painful so the animal is reluctant to chew well. This also will cause very bad breath.
Part or all of your pets diet should be crunchy food, but bones help. Do NOT use bones that may fragment, like animal bones. You can use dentabones, or nylon bones or many others on the market. Cooked animal bones may splinter and cause many other problems with the mouth and the gastrointestinal system. Raw bones are suggested. Brushing the teeth is very helpful and if you start when the puppy is young, it will become habit and won't mind you doing it.
Once the tartar has built up to the point where you cannot brush it off, a vet can use an ultrasonic cleaner to get it off. Using an anesthetic, they can clean both the outside and the inside of the teeth and polish them to help prevent tartar from coming back.
If you become aware of a painful mouth, bad breath, red inflamed gums, or tartared teeth, take your dog to your vet for an examination.
Training is fun and rewarding for you and your puppy. They have an amazing capacity to learn complex demands quickly.
Start training as soon as you obtain your puppy. They learn rapidly but their attention spans are short, so spend 10-15 minutes twice a day.
Training should be conducted when the puppy is not excited and when the home environment is quiet. Once the puppy has learned a response in one environment, move the training location to progressively more complex and more stimulating environments. That is, the puppy will have to be trained in the environment you will be expecting him to react to you in.
Learning occurs more rapidly if one person trains the puppy first and then other family members get involved. Teach the puppy using one word commands such as sit, down, stay, and heel. Try not to use their name in association with a command, using to many words can confuse them.
Reward appropriate behavior as soon as possible after giving the command. Give valued rewards such as, food, touch, and praise every time he responds correctly. You will quickly learn which reward is more valued by them. Once the response is learned, give them rewards intermittently this will result in rapid learning and make the response more permanent.
If he fails at any level of training stop, don't reward and start the training again at a simpler level. How consistently they respond to a command is a function of the degree of training. If they respond only when they feel like it or when the environment is quiet, start again, and train more intensely.
Be patient and never punish. This causes pain or excitement, does not work and generally causes problems. Punishment may also interfere with the owner and animal bond. The opposite of reward is no reward, not punishment. If the puppy is doing something that is inappropriate, distract it or reward it for responding to a command which is incompatible with the unwanted behavior.
A trained puppy is a happier puppy and a great companion.
Grooming is essential to all breeds of dogs and more so in long coated breeds. Daily brushing is a great way to bond with your pet and keep them looking great. Brushing and Grooming your dog keeps his skin and coat healthy and makes them a more pleasant companion.
A puppies first visit to the groomers should occur at 3-6 months of age. Most of the time their first visit will just be a bath and blow dry to get them used to the environment. Blow dry your puppy at home so that he is used to the handling he will get when visiting the salon.
Long coated breeds can be kept with their hair long. This requires continually brushing by yourself and trips to the grooming salon to have it done professionally monthly. It is a more costly appearance if it is a desired one.
Some people choose to keep their dogs in a puppy cut or "teddy bear" cut. This keep their hair shorter, easier to care for and still gives them a cuddly poofy appearance.
We keep our dogs shaved 3-4 times a year in what is known as a kennel cut. This cut is very easy to maintain and looks quite dapper on the dogs. If your dog has accumulated lots of mats this will be the cut the groomer suggests rather than putting your dog through the stress of brushing out the mats.
Hair grows around dogs eyes and like with us can irritate them. This causes tearing. Hair can be brushed out of the eye area or cut back to stop this reaction.
Hair also grows around the bum of these small dogs. This hair can retain poop and make it difficult for a puppy to continue pooping. Special care and attention is needed to ensure that a puppies bum doesn't become blocked causing intestinal infections. Clean this area well and keep the hair trimmed neatly.