Bringing Your Puppy Home
Use the information in this section to prepare your home and family for life with your new puppy.
The Supplies You Need
Before you bring your puppy home, be sure you have the following supplies:
- Premium pet food to get your new puppy off to a good start. We use "Life's Abundance Puppy and Adult Dog Food". Using a puppy only formula, unless made specially for large breed dogs, can cause them to grow unevenly and end up with hip problems later in life.
- Stainless steel, non-tip food and water bowls. (It is thought that the chemicals in plastic can cause fading of a dog's nose, making it appear "pink". (Per the AKC website.)
tags with your puppy's name, your name, phone number and your
veterinarian's name and phone number and microchip number. A 10"-14", adjustable collar and a leather or nylon
6-foot leash that's 1/2 - 3/4 inches wide (consider using a "breakaway"
collar with plastic clips that will unsnap in case your puppy gets hung
up on something).
home and travel crate that will accommodate your
puppy's adult size, usually a 42" wire crate with a divider to "grow" with your puppy is best. This crate will serve as your puppy's new "den" at
home, when traveling or riding to the veterinarian's office. His scent
in the crate will provide comfort and a sense of security during these
- Stain remover for accidental soilings.
and combs suited to your puppy's coat; ask your veterinarian or breeder
about an appropriate brush or comb for your dog.
- Dog (or just simply human baby) shampoo, toothbrush and paste.
- High-quality, safe chew toys to ease teething.
- Flea, tick and parasite controls. We recommend Frontline Plus or Advantix. However, unless fleas are a huge problem in your area, we recommend only using them during tick season, as they contain harsh chemicals that we believe should be used sparingly. Should your dog ever contract fleas, give one dose of the Frontline Plus, and they'll be gone in 1-2 days. You may have to repeat it one month later for added security, but it really does work! PLEASE NEVER USE TRIFEXIS (or other similar brands) as many dogs have become very ill or passed away from this medication!!
- Nail clippers, whichever type you choose from the dog section of a discount or pet supply store.
- Healthy treats, and LOTS of chew toys!!!
- Use stainless steel, non-tip food bowls, which won't break or absorb odors.
- LOTS of chew toys. They love squeaky, stuffed animal types and rubber balls.
a comfortable collar fit, allow for two-fingers of space between the
collar and your dog's neck; consider using an adjustable collar.
Making a Home Safe
make your home safe for your new puppy, eliminate potential hazards
around the house and pay attention to the following items:
- Keep breakable objects out of reach.
- Deny access to electrical cords by hiding or covering them; make outlets safe with plastic outlet plugs.
- Safely store household chemicals.
the following house and garden plants out of reach: poinsettias,
azaleas, rhododendrons, dumb cane, Japanese yew, oleander and English
ivy among others.
- In the garage, be sure engine lubricants and other poisonous chemicals (especially antifreeze) are safely stored.
- If you own a pool or hot tub, check the cover or the surrounding fence to be sure they're in good condition.
you provide your puppy with an outdoor kennel, place it in an area that
provides sun, shade and shelter in the pen; be sure the kennel is large enough
to comfortably accommodate your puppy's adult size.
The First Days at Home
The ideal time to bring home a new puppy is when the house is quiet. Establish a daily routine and follow these steps:
Step 1: Before
bringing him in the house, take him to the area in your yard that will
serve as his "bathroom" and spend a few minutes there. If he goes,
praise him. If not, proceed into the house but be sure to take him to
this spot each time he needs to use the bathroom.
Take him to the room that accommodates your crate—this restricted area
will serve as his new "den" for several days. Put bedding and chew toys
in the crate, leave the door open and line the area outside of the
crate with newspaper, in case of an accident. Let him investigate the
crate and the room. If he chews or urinates on his bedding, permanently
remove it from the crate.
Step 3: Observe
and interact with your puppy while he's acclimating to his new den.
This will help forge a sense of pack and establish you as the pack
Special Puppy Concerns
treat a puppy as young as 7 to 12-weeks old like an adult dog. Treat
him the same way you would your own infant: with patience, constant
supervision and a gentle touch. The way you interact with your puppy at
this age is critical to his socialization. Use these tips:
bring home a puppy while you're on vacation so you can spend a lot of
time with him. Instead, acclimate him to your normal, daily routine.
- Supervise your puppy at all times and interact with him regularly.
- Be alert for signs (sniffing and circling) that he has to go to the bathroom, then take him outside immediately.
young puppy has little bladder control and may need to urinate immediately
after eating, drinking, sleeping or playing. At night, he made need to
relieve himself at least once.
punish an accident. Never push his nose in the waste, simply scold him. He
will want to please you, so won't want to continue disappointing you. Praise him when he does go potty outside. He'll realize that made you happy and will want to repeat this, rather than disappointing you.
use a super premium, 100% natural, holistic dog food for puppies and adults called Life's Abundance. Of
course we include a bag of the Life's Abundance when you receive your
puppy so should you choose another brand, please mix it with the new food to make it easier on his/her little tummy. Remember, we offer a Lifetime Guarantee (up to ten years) for all puppies adopted from us, that continue to be fed the Life's Abundance.
Meeting Resident Pets
When introducing your new puppy to your resident pet, put your new puppy in his crate, give your resident pet
access to the area. Let both pets smell and touch each other through the
crate. Do this several times over the next few hours, or even days, if necessary, constantly supervising their behavior towards each other. When they're both comfortable with each other, i.e., tails wagging, etc., then allow them to be together. It's best to just open the puppy's crate and let him walk out when he's ready, still constantly watching your older pet's body language. If he/she shows any sign of aggression towards your new puppy, then separate them for a while and try again later or the next day. Never leave your new puppy alone with your older pet until you're sure they've become friends, as he/she could seriously injure or even kill your new puppy very quickly!! If an older pet is jealous, you never know how he/she will react. One trick is to give your older pet extra attention and treats so he/she doesn't feel less loved than the new puppy. If your current pet is also a puppy, just older, he/she will likely love having the companion to play with, however he/she may play a bit too rough for a young puppy. Be sure to supervise their playtime so the baby doesn't get hurt. Once the younger puppy can keep up with the older one and you feel comfortable leaving them alone together, they'll really enjoy having a buddy!! Ever noticed that "Lab homes" almost always have more than one! Once you've had a Lab you'll be addicted too and will soon need another one! Two (or three) really are better than one!!!
puppy will have had at least his/her first two puppy vaccinations to help give your puppy a strong start. He/she will also have been
dewormed at least 3 times as well as received a dose of Baycox to PREVENT the Cocidia parasite. We also always give the puppies five days of Safeguard to help prevent Giardia, a very common parasite that almost all dogs and cats carry in their systems. Regular deworming is recommended as
follows: Once a month until 6 months of age, then every 3-6 months
after that for life. A monthly Heartworm and flea/tick treatment is
also recommended. We do not recommend giving Heartworm medication or using flea/tick treatments until your puppy is at least 12 weeks of age. Your
puppy will also need additional vaccinations, usually at 10 and 13
weeks, and Rabies by 6 months of age. All of these vaccinations should
be repeated again one year later.