Caring For A New Puppy
Training Your Puppy
Puppies learn very quickly and training and establishing rules and boundaries should start from day one and should be consistent and enforced by all members of the family.
The golden rules are to praise good behavior i.e. toileting in the correct place and ignoring inappropriate behaviour i.e. chewing/ soiling in the wrong place.
Telling a puppy off first gives them attention and even though this is negative attention, the puppy still perceives this as “attention” none the less. The best way of dealing with discouraging behaviour such as rough play/or chewing is to distract them with something else and a firm ‘NO’ followed by completely ignoring the behaviour altogether, sometimes even putting the dog into another room for a minute to calm down. Disciplining the puppy should be carried out in the same way by every member of the family for this to work.
Every puppy should get used to being left alone for periods of time, built up gradually, with the use of baby stair gates to separate them initially so they can see and hear you in the next room if they are particularly anxious. Common problems we often see in practice are dogs that howl and bark and in extreme cases chew and destroy the house when their owners leave them. This is why it is so important to get your puppy used to being left from a young age.
Don’t be tempted to over fuss your puppy when leaving and returning to the house, this will only make the problem worse. Equally if the puppy has been barking or destructive when left DO NOT tell them off when you return (however hard that may be!!)
Puppy crates are a great way of giving your puppy a safe ‘den’ of their own, somewhere they can retreat to when tired/unsure and somewhere you can put them and know they are safe when you leave them in the first few weeks.
It is a legal requirement to Microchip your dog by 8 weeks of age and ensure the owner details are up to date on the registration database.
This practice has a strong pro-chipping policy – microchips give a permanent form of identification so there is more chance of your pet being returned to you if they lose a collar or especially if you choose not to put a collar on your cat for safety reasons.
Microchipping can be done at any time as it is a simple injection and does not require sedation. Chips can then be checked regularly. All stray animals must be scanned within 24hr of entering the practice, to ensure they can be rapidly reunited with their owners.
Tips for effective toilet training
- Take your puppy out regularly for opportunities to go to the toilet i.e after feeding or when they wake up (roughly every hour)
- Do not punish inappropriate toileting. It’s a frustrating time, but remember your puppy isn’t doing it on purpose and isn’t being ‘naughty’.
- Praise your puppy when they go in the correct place. The use of a command as they are going to the toilet can really be useful for the future if your dog can learn this command to perform i.e if you want them to go before a long car journey or if you are going to be out of the house for a while for example.
- We don’t advise the use of puppy pads or newspaper for toilet training as this gives mixed messages. You are in effect training them to toilet in the house, to the retrain them to toilet outside, puppies have enough to learn when we bring them home, don’t confuse them!