Category Archives: puppies

Puppy Housebreaking Do’s and Don’ts

housebreaking krizBy Langley Cornwell

When a new puppy comes home with you it’s all smiles, kisses and puppy breath. But once that little bundle of fur eliminates in your house, it’s easy to get upset. Many people, especially first-time puppy owners, stress over the housebreaking process.  Luckily, you have Mother Nature and mother dog on your side. If you understand a few basics and remain consistent, house training your new puppy should be an easy task.

Do: Create a Den

Dogs love small spaces; they are natural den animals. Before you bring your puppy home, use a crate, a baby gate or a corral pen to create a den for him. This will be his safe place, and as the pup gets older he will likely go to the space as a way to self-sooth when he feels stress or discomfort. Introduce him to the area in a positive manner. Once the puppy fully grasps that this area is his den, he will naturally endeavor to keep his den clean.

A puppy learns to keep his den clean at an early age. Sure, when puppies are newborns they soil indiscriminately but the mother dog always cleans her pups so there is never a trace of elimination in their special space. They also observe their mother, and since she never eliminates in the den, the puppies learn the concept of keeping the den clean by imitating mom.

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Boundless Puppy (a Poem)

By Laurie Darroch

In their charm and soft innocence, puppies tug at every heartstring. It is a good thing they are so cute when their antics and exploring the world test our patience. With a puppy comes heartfelt love and moments of sheer exasperation, constant challenges and times of laughter, pride and amazement. Puppies are unfettered in their consumption and absorption of life. Once they worm their way into your heart with unerring love, they are there for good, a constant lifelong shadow to their loved human. Here is a poem I wrote in celebration of puppyhood.

Boundless Puppy

Into your life they wiggle in
Cute as cherubs and naughty as jinns
Soft as down, and rough and tumble
Antics laughable, but small and humble

“Aw, she’s so cute!” onlookers say,
“Watch how she rolls and tumbles and plays.”
Loving licks that wet your face
Eyes like saucers when caught in disgrace

Time demanding and all insistent
Feed me now, and non-resistant
Mournful whimpers and pleading eyes
Soft warm cuddles and contented sighs

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How to Puppy Proof Your Home

By Laurie Darroch

Like any baby, puppies are curious about the new world around them. They are very oral and want to test everything out that seems like it might be tasty. Chewing also feels good to a puppy and keeps them entertained. You can prevent some of the negative issues by starting off right and puppy proofing your home.

Puppies are drawn to everything that isn’t nailed down, and even to some things that are immovable, like edges of furniture for example. They learn what is edible (or not) by the process of elimination and by you training them. Not all dogs are as oral or prone to getting into trouble as others, but it is better to avoid the issues by removing or adjusting items that might tempt them. Puppies do outgrow the extreme oral stage eventually.

Besides the possible damage they can cause in your home, a puppy can also get hurt ingesting poisonous or dangerous things. They don’t know what is safe and what isn’t. They can chew everything apart with their razor sharp little teeth. The last thing you want is an emergency vet trip for illness, choking or injury caused by something that could have been prevented.

Look around each room to determine what needs to be moved, removed or protected. To really get an idea of what a dog sees, get down on your hands and knees in each room. From a human standing position, you may not see things that are in their visual field. It is sometimes surprising to view the world from the puppy point of view. Remember, they can also easily see under things and behind objects that we can’t. They get under and into everything.

Plants

Remove any plants that are poisonous for a dog. Even if a particular house plant is considered pet safe, a puppy might be tempted to go after it if it’s at floor level, because it moves with drafts, has dirt and looks enticing.

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How to Establish an Eating Schedule for Your Puppy

By Laurie Darroch

Puppies grow at a fast rate. The quick and ever changing development and growth they go through to reach their full adult size requires special nutrients, different feeding times and more attention than an adult dog needs. Feeding a puppy is much more manageable if you set up an eating schedule from the very beginning.

Puppies seem to be hungry all the time, but they can get used to eating at specific times during the day. The key is consistency. They are capable of learning and living with your routines. They will get used to a routine of their own as well.

Feeding a high quality, healthy dog food to a puppy helps keep them full. CANIDAE Life Stages dog food is formulated for the energy needs of all ages, with choices in wet or dry food.

Don’t leave food out all the time if you want your puppy on an eating schedule. It might seem like it would be easier, so they can eat whenever they feel like it, but they may eat too much at one time. If you’ve ever seen a ravenous puppy at feeding time, they often eat the food so quickly that it makes you wonder if they even bothered to chew it. They almost inhale their meals.

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How to Pick the Right Age Dog for Your Lifestyle

By Laurie Darroch

Breed is not the only thing you should consider when deciding to adopt a dog. The age of the dog you choose is also an important factor. You want a dog that fits your location, energy level, patience level and lifestyle. What things should be considered in the choice?

Puppies are adorable and seem like a wonderful choice, but they take constant supervision, consistent and regular training, and positive behavior reinforcement. They are not the right choice for everyone who is considering making a new fur baby part of their lives.

Take into consideration the fact that training is around the clock. Teaching a puppy to potty train, for instance, involves constant monitoring, reinforcement of good and bad behavior, and the almost certain possibility of accidents happening. Think of a puppy as a child without a diaper. They go when they need to, wherever they need to. Their control is not the same as an older, trained dog whose digestive functions have matured. Potty training a puppy may mean multiple night trips outside, even in the winter or rain. Like a human baby, you are at the beck and call of their needs, not yours.

Feeding is more of a challenge with a puppy. They are constantly ravenous. Their higher metabolisms burn through the energy their food provides more quickly than an older dog. They may require multiple smaller feedings each day. That means more attention to feeding schedules more often, every day. It takes time to adjust to a feeding schedule.

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Raising a Puppy – Teething and Puppy Breath

By Linda Cole

Raising a puppy can be challenging; dealing with house breaking, chewing, nipping, teaching basic commands and making sure the cat and furniture are safe from exploring teeth can be a full time job. However, the most challenging time comes when he’s teething. When pups are around six to eight weeks old, mom will start the process of weaning them, and with good reason. Puppy teeth start to come in when they are ready to begin eating solid food, and those little teeth are sharp – all 28 of them.

As puppies mature, their baby teeth fall out and are replaced by adult teeth – 42 for most breeds. Once a puppy’s baby teeth begin to fall out, you might find one or two on the floor, but not usually. Most teeth are swallowed, but there’s nothing to worry about. Teething is a natural and necessary part of raising a puppy.

Because the teeth are well positioned and strong, a mature jaw has the necessary strength needed for protection and eating. Puppies, on the other hand, have weaker jaws, so their teeth have to be razor sharp to make up for inadequate jaw strength so they can eat solid food easier.

Puppies can start to lose their baby teeth as early as three months, but most will start closer to four months. However, some may not begin until they are older, at around six months or so. It depends on the breed and his size. For the most part, pups should have their adult teeth between seven to eight months old. Once teething begins, so does the chewing.

Chewing is how puppies soothe their mouth during teething. They will pick up anything and everything they find, whether it’s an appropriate chew toy or not. This is an important time to be vigilant, to make sure your pup isn’t chewing on electrical cords, furniture, shoes, clothing or anything else that could be dangerous.

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