With A New Puppy

You want to know the first thoughts of a new puppy owner?

I got a new puppy… Now what?
As soon as you get your puppy, start loving on him and let him hear the sound of your voice. The first day with your new puppy will involve traveling, whether it’s a short distance from the shelter or a local breeder or a long car ride or in the cabin of a plane. This is the perfect opportunity to start teaching your puppy to love his crate. Be sure its well-stocked with treats and if possible, a towel, blanket or toy that bears the scent of his mom or littermates. This scent will be comforting to him his first few days in a new home. Don’t rush to wash them right away, as you want that scent to be what he looks for in feeling comfortable and settling in.
When you arrive, make sure he potties before you bring him indoors. Praise him and give him a treat when he does but do it outside, so he associates going potty outside with getting a treat there. If you give him a treat inside, he’ll potty inside because that’s how he associates it. Also use a key word when going or taking him potty so when he hears that word, he knows what time it is: “Potty Time” or “Let’s go outside to go POTTY”.

Sit on the floor with him or on the sofa, if you plan to allow him on furniture. Love on him and talk to him so he gets to know the sound of your voice and the touch of your hand. This is a great time to start teaching him that its OK for you to touch his paws, look inside or sniff his ears, rub his belly, touch his tail and groom him with a soft brush.

Keep it low key and pleasant at first. For a shy puppy or dog, being taken to a new place then deluged with lots of loud, lively stranger can be overwhelming. Remember that puppies don’t have a good bladder or sphincter control yet, and excitement can make them need to pee or poop. Take your puppy out after 15-20 minutes of play, as well as after every meal, usually about 10-20 minutes afterwards. A potty run should be the first thing you do with him in the morning and the last thing you do at night.

A good rule of thumb with potty training is for every week of life that’s how much he’ll need to go out. Let your puppy spend a short amount of time in his crate. This is a big day for him, and he needs time to himself, so he can process his new surroundings. Its okay to have the crate in the living room or some other area in the home where people are coming and going, but don’t bug him while he’s in there. Unless he needs to go potty, walk away calmly if he starts to whine or bark. Don’t let him out until he’s being quiet.

You’ll want to get him to the veterinarian within 48 hours of bringing him home. That’s important to make sure he’s in good health. Many puppy purchase contracts require an exam within that time frame as well. Without it, the seller may be unwilling to accept the pup’s return if he has a serious illness or congenital or hereditary defect.

The first visit can be strictly for a physical exam and weigh-in. It’s a good opportunity for your pup to meet some nice new people, get handled by them and get some yummy treats. I would also recommend taking a stool sample from that morning or right before apt if possible so the vet can check for any type of worms.

Depending on when his last set of shots of vaccinations took place, you can then schedule for the next round of vaccinations if you choose to go that route (see further on regarding puppy vaccination suggested schedule).

I would suggest taking your new pup in a blanket, not letting him run around the vet’s office or in the exam room, on the table etc. Many dogs have come and gone throughout the day and you don’t know what kind of germs may be lurking around that a young pup is more susceptible too since they’re immune system hasn’t had time to fully mature.

It’s strongly recommended to consider a veterinarian that is a holistic or integrative vet that will be on the same page with you should you want to feed raw as well as voice your opinions on vaccinations and future litters. If the vet insists on vaccines every year and feeding kibble, time to find another vet (we’ll explain more in detail later on).

Eating… Sleeping… Playing

Feeding your puppy does more than help them grow – it’s a way of bonding and gets him on a schedule that makes it easier for you to house train him. Start with the food the breeder or shelter has been giving him. If you want to change it, gradually mix in the new food over a week to 10 days to limit tummy upset. With our pup, the breeder was feeding raw and we wanted to continue the same regimen. We got the butcher’s information, reached out and lucky for us, they distributed to our local area.
I don’t recommend free feeding dogs, leaving food down all the time at any point in their lives. A regular mealtime gives your dog something to look forward to, helps prevent obesity and ensures that you know if he is starting to eat less or become ravenous, both which can indicate health problems.

I would recommend feeding 3-4 times a day small meal throughout the day until they’re about 4 months old then scaling back on a meal. Currently we’re feeding as such:

  • 8-10 AM Morning Meal 1 C. Raw Food
  • 12-2 PM Midafternoon Meal 1 C. Raw Food
  • 6-7 PM Evening Meal 1 C. Raw Food

Your puppy’s socialization continues throughout the night – even though you’re both asleep. You may plan to let your pup sleep on the bed, but right now he’s too young to be allowed that privilege. When its bedtime, take him out for one last pee and then put him in his crate with a treat and his towels/toy that smells like mom. Don’t respond to his whining or barking. Tell him goodnight and go to bed yourself. He’ll soon settle down, and your scent and sound of your breathing will help calm him.

Depending on his age, he might not be able to make it through the night without another potty outing. If you hear whining or scratching at the crate door late at night, hustle him outdoors, so he can do his business and then bring him right back into his crate. You don’t want him to get the idea that you’ll play with him in the middle of the night. I set my alarm and took Howie out every 3 hours till 3 months and every 4 hours at 4 months, 5 hours at 5 months till he got the hang of it. Some dogs grasp the concept quicker than others.

You most likely bought a few toys before bringing your new pup home. Now that you’ve observed him for a couple of days, you probably have a better idea of how he likes to play and what types of toys he likes to play with. If he’s a big pup who likes to chew, make sure his toys are tough. They shouldn’t have any pieces that he can chew off or swallow or any stuffing that can come out if he rips the toy apart.

Some pups are gobblers. They rapidly bite off and swallow pieces of anything they can chew up. Avoid giving him anything that is too large, tough rubber items such as balls that they can take a bite of. Be care of dollar store toys or toys that are made with formaldehydes and chemicals, which can cause stomach upset and also facial irritations.


Grooming should begin at a young age as well so your puppy can get used to your touch. Whether its cleaning his ears to trimming his nails, the touch of your hand on these areas should begin from the time you bring him home. As mentioned earlier, let him get used to the touch of your hand on his face, ears, feet, nails, belly etc.

Some of the grooming items you’ll need are in the list provided below.

How often should I bathe my puppy/dog?
For a lot of new dog owners, it can be difficult to determine how often you should give your dog a bath. The truth is, the answer depends on a lot of things. How frequently a pet needs a bath greatly varies based upon their breed, lifestyle, and length of coat. Puppies in generally can benefit from a bath once a month using a gentle puppy shampoo free of chemicals and fragrances. Be careful to keep water out of your puppies’ ears and eyes. Using warm water and gently massaging the shampoo into your puppy get him used to the feel of your hand and the enjoyment of this bonding time between you. Get him used to the feel of the water and your time together. I usually assemble my products beforehand along with some towels, so I don’t have a wet puppy running through the house. When we had a pup, we did it in the laundry room sink or even in a baby bathtub works until they outgrow it. It was as pleasurable for them as it was for me as an owner and we both looked forward to those baths together. That set the tone for baths throughout his life and it was always an enjoyable experience.

Coat Type
The type of coat your dog has is a big factor in how often he requires baths. However, it’s not as simple as the shorter the hair, the less bathing required. For dogs with medium-to-large coats, a bath could be needed from weekly to every 4-to-6 weeks, as long as the coat is properly maintained in-between baths.

Thick coats on breeds such as Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, Siberian Huskies, etc. naturally insulate the dogs seasonally. Over-bathing could strip too much oil from the skin and disrupt this process. Using a product specifically for shedding will help avoid this.

If your dog suffers from certain health conditions, your groomer and/or veterinarian may suggest that you use medicated shampoo while bathing your dog. Even if your canine companion is healthy, a grooming regimen is important to keep him that way. All pets benefit from monthly ear cleaning and nail trimming. Thorough coat brushing and combing and conditioning are more integral to the pet’s health than bath time.

Dogs with an active lifestyle may be easier with a short-coated breed, given that keeping the dog clean in-between baths typically requires less effort. You can get away with giving shorthaired dogs a good rubdown with a damp washcloth to remove the dirt that was picked up during a busy visit to the dog park.

Of course, dogs that are playing in oceans, hunting in muddy waters, or herding sheep all day may end up needing more baths than pups that spend most of their time indoors — regardless of the breed. At the end of the day, we should wash our dogs when they are no longer huggable.

Puppy Teeth

Whether this is your first dog, or it’s been a long time since you’ve owned a puppy, there’s a lot to learn about what to expect and how to handle certain changes in your dog as he ages. Here, we are focusing on the teething process. (Yes, puppies have baby teeth that fall out, just like human babies!) We’ve compiled a puppy teething timeline, so you know exactly what to expect as your furry friend grows into his adult body.

Weeks 2 to 4:
Your puppy will still be with his mother and breeder when his baby teeth start coming in. At this point, his eyes will have opened, and he’ll still be nursing.

Weeks 5 to 6:
By now all of your puppy’s baby teeth should have come in. Dogs usually have about 28 baby teeth total. Around this time, the breeder will likely have already or will be in the process of weaning the puppies in the litter as they learn to eat moist, soft and preferably raw puppy food.

Weeks 12 to 16:
This is around the time you’ll get to take your puppy home with you (some breeders let puppies go to their new owners’ homes at 8 weeks, but others wait an extra month or so, depending on the breed and the individual breeder’s preferences).

This is also the time when may start to find little crumb- to rice-sized teeth around your home as your puppy’s baby teeth start to shed and permanent adult teeth emerge. Anyone who has ever cared for a teething baby know this process is painful! You should offer your puppy chew toys, like a Kong or a teething bone, at this point in his development. Also, ask your vet to check your puppy’s mouth to make sure everything is moving along, as it should.

This period is also important for socialization — that is, getting your puppy used to new experiences in a low-stress situation. There’s a lot involved in this process, but since we’re on the topic of teeth here, this is a good time to start touching your puppy’s mouth, outside and in. (Be careful that he doesn’t nip you — those remaining puppy teeth are razor sharp.) By doing this, you’ll be setting your puppy up to be able to enjoy (or at least tolerate) getting his teeth brushed.

6 Months and Older:
By the time, your puppy is about six months old or so, all of his puppy teeth should have fallen out, and his adult teeth should have grown in. In general, adult dogs have about 42 teeth (fun fact: that’s about 10 more than people!). If you notice any baby teeth remaining, make sure to let your veterinarian know, as they may need to be removed.

Keeping the Teeth Healthy
Now that your puppy has a full mouth of pearly white chompers, your job is to keep them that way. Dogs don’t have the sense to use their tongue to dislodge chewed food from their teeth—that combined with plaque in the mouth can lead to dog with stinky breath, if periodontal disease occurs, serious medical problems.

By brushing your pups’ teeth regularly, you can prevent or decrease the need for veterinary cleanings, which usually require anesthetizing the dog.

Begin by gently scrubbing the teeth with a finger brush or gauze pad. Later you can graduate to a toothbrush and canine toothpaste. Toothbrushes should be soft, and toothpaste must be formulated for a dog’s system (an enzymatic toothpaste will work both mechanically and chemically to destroy plaque). Toothpaste made for people can cause an upset stomach if your pup swallows it. Teeth can also be cleaned with a paste made of baking soda and water.

Nail Clipping

Puppy nails are sharp. Because puppies have yet to learn that jumping on people is unwanted, those sharp nails can do some damage to your skin. It’s important then to introduce your puppy to nail trimming as soon as you bring him home. When his nails are trimmed early and often, it becomes a normal part of his life rather than a frightening chore. Our fear-free tips will help you to teach him that nail trims aren’t scary and can even be rewarding.

Accepting Handling
Your puppy needs to learn to hold still while his nails are being trimmed. If he squirms or jerks his paw you could accidentally trim the nail too close and cause it to bleed. You can avoid this by teaching him to become accustomed to having his paws handled.

Lift your puppy onto your lap or sit on the floor and cuddle him. Offer him a treat when he’s on your lap, give him a slow, gentle massage, and talk softly to him. Relax him.

When he’s relatively calm, gently roll him onto his back, and give him another treat or two. Again, relax him with your hands and voice. When he’s calm, massage one of his paws for just a couple of seconds. Give him another treat and let him go.

Repeat this several times a day for several days until he stays calmly on your lap and allows you to touch and massage all four paws, each toe, and each toenail. Now it’s time for actual trimming.

Choosing Your Supplies
You’ll need several tools to trim your puppy’s nails. Gather your supplies and make sure you know how to use them before you attempt any trimming.

There are several types of nail trimmers:

  • Guillotine cutters have an oval shape at the end; you insert the tip of the nail in that shape and when you squeeze the handle a movable blade cuts the nail; these trimmers are inexpensive, but don’t always provide the best view of a small toenail
  • Scissor type cutters look like scissors except the cutting edges are curved to accommodate the toenail; these are usually easy for most dog owners to use
  • A Dremel is a power hand tool with a rotating cylinder with a sandpaper surface; by touching the cylinder to the nail, some of the nail is ground off

You will also need some treats to act as both a distraction and a reward.

Last, you need something to stop the bleeding should a nail be trimmed too close to the quick. A styptic pencil or powder, often called Quick Stop, will both work. Simple cornstarch works the same way too if you need something quick.

Trimming Toenails
Invite your puppy on to your lap as you did to restrain him. Have several treats at hand. Take a good look at your puppy’s nails before you trim them. If your puppy has white nails, you can see a pink or dark line as you look at the nail from the side. That’s the “quick,” a bundle of nerves and blood vessels. When you trim the nail, don’t trim it so short that you hit the quick. Getting “quicked” is the number-one reason dogs hate having their nails trimmed.

If your puppy has black nails you won’t be able to see the quick. In this instance, look at the shape of the nail. From the side, see where the nail curves downward? Trim the nail toward the tip of that curve.

Once you know where to trim, give your puppy a treat. While he’s chewing, trim one nail. Praise your puppy. Then give him another treat and trim another nail.

When one paw is done, four nails and perhaps a dewclaw (the thumb), stop for the day, praise your puppy, and play with him. You can do another paw tomorrow.

Learning Starts Early

Depending on where you got him, his breed and his individual breeder, your pup is anywhere from 7-12 weeks old. That’s right during his critical learning period, when he is soaking up all kinds of information about the world around him and how he should behave in it. This critical period lasts until he is 14-16 weeks old, so you may have as little as a couple weeks to make the absolute most of this rapid learning stage. Of course, he’ll still learn afterward, but the things you teach during this time, good and bad, will really stick in his memory, so make sure it’s the right stuff. The goal is for him to have lots of positive experiences with friendly people, dogs and cats.

Meeting the neighbors, learning the sounds in your home and neighborhood and going to the vet for the first time are all part of your puppy’s socialization process. Once he’s been with you for a week, its time to turbocharge his introduction to the world.

During his critical learning period, your puppy should meet at least 100 different people. Not just the same 10 people over and over. To get the numbers up, introduce him to the mailman, people delivering the pizza or packages and people in your neighborhood. Take him for short car rides and on errands where you can take him into local businesses such as the dry cleaners, the post office, or an open-air shopping mall. (Be sure he potties outside immediately before you take him onto the premises, so he’s always welcome back.) If it’s a place where other dogs might go, carry him in a puppy sling or backpack or put him in a cart and don’t expose him to other dogs until your veterinarian tells you he’s had enough vaccinations. Take treats for strangers to give him.

Meeting new people and having lots of different experiences is important, because it gives a puppy broad experience to draw on later in life. A puppy who has met only middle-aged people or only your friends or neighbors doesn’t cope as well when he meets other types of people, such as young children, people wearing uniforms, people in wheelchairs or people from other cultures.

A little adversity during this time is good for your pup’s adventurous soul. Moderate amounts of stress during the socialization period can prepare a puppy to be ready for anything. Give him a change of elevation by putting him on top of a picnic table or clothes dryer or surprise him with a toy while playing peekaboo. These simple things can help him become unflappable as he matures.

Time For School

The first two to three weeks after you bring him into your house is a great time to start training him at home. You’re teaching him how to learn and developing a relationship with him at the same time — a real win-win! It’s easy to teach tricks such as sit, down, come, high-five, roll over and more. You should also start to work with him on important commands like “drop it” and “give it,” which not only improve his manners but can help to keep him safe.

Start looking for a good puppy kindergarten class as soon as you take your pup home. By the time he has typically had two sets of vaccinations — usually by 10 to 12 weeks of age — he’s ready to start school. Ask your veterinarian when your puppy is ready.

Puppy kindergarten classes offer socialization opportunities with other pups and people. The trainer can help you learn to teach your dog throughout his life. If you’re smart, you’ll never let learning end for your dog Learning new things keeps his mind and body active and helps to keep him out of trouble.

Here are six things your puppy should be learning:

  • No teeth on people — ever!
  • No jumping up on people
  • Always potty outside (don’t give him any chances to make a mistake)
  • Meeting people is great!
  • Going to the vet is fun!
  • Getting his ears, toes, nails and teeth touched is ok

What do you need to get before you bring puppy home:

Decide if you’ll be crate training, as you’ll need a crate big enough to fit. Not big enough to run around in, but large enough to move around and lay comfortably. I don’t recommend putting food or water bowls in the crate as it makes them think it’s ok to eat and drink then pee in there as well.

Our Checklist For Your Pets Full Body Health

It’s important to look over your pet regularly so you’ll notice what’s normal and what’s not.

You probably see your pet every day. He may look perfectly fine to you, but how can you tell if he isn’t? The short answer is sometimes you can’t. That’s why its so important to schedule wellness visits with your veterinarian, sometimes even if your pet is totally fine. Some medical conditions aren’t easy to detect without the benefit of a physical exam and perhaps even diagnostic testing like blood work and urine testing.

It’s always a good idea to let your vet know of any changes in your pet’s activity level, appetite, behavior and personality. But other than that, what does a normal, healthy pet look like? Here are a few of the basics:

Eyes: Your pets’ eyes should be bright and clear, not red, cloudy or watery. Some pets have eyes that are normally waterier than others. When in doubt ask your vet if your pets tearing is normal. As they get older if you notice the tearing and tear stains continue, consider what you’re feeding with regards to diet as raw is always best. Also adding a few drops of Apple Cider Vinegar to the water bowl helps as well.

Mouth & Nose: Aside from your pets’ eyes, his mouth and nose are the first things you see when he approaches you. If your pet’s bad breath reaches you before he does, it could mean a problem. Dental disease is common among pets; even seemingly healthy ones and having doggie breath can be a sign of this problem. So can having ready or swollen gums or discolored teeth. Pawing or rubbing the face or excessively drooling can also be signs of mouth pain. Some dogs naturally drool more than others, but if you notice that your dog is drooling more than he normally does, schedule a checkup. Your pets’ nose shouldn’t be excessively runny either and despite an old myth, a wet nose does not necessarily mean your dog is fine.

Ears: Your pet’s ears should be clean and shouldn’t have a bad odor. A little bit of wax can be normal, but excessive way, a brown buildup or redness may mean something’s wrong. It’s a good idea to check your pet’s ears weekly and clean them with a cotton ball and a pet-safe, non-irritating ear cleaning solution (we recommend K9 Ear Solutions). Checking your pet’s ears regularly makes it easier to notice changes. If you see your pet shaking his head, scratching his ears or rubbing them, use the ear solution or try the Zymox Ear Cleanser. For more serious issues, contact your vet.

Skin & Coat: Your pet’s coat shouldn’t be red, flaky, or excessively dry or greasy. Any lumps or scabs warrant at least a phone call to your vet. Not all pets have “shiny” coats, but the fur should look healthy for your pet’s breed, not dull, and there shouldn’t be any bald patches or matted areas. When you check your pet’s skin and fur for these changes, you can also take that opportunity to look for ticks or use a flea comb to check for fleas. We do not recommend the use of Flea Tick Chemical Treatments or Collars.

Bones & Joints: Does your pet seem to move uncomfortably? Is he as active as he normally is? Does he struggle to stand up, hesitate to jump, or use the stairs? Does your pet limp or struggle to complete his regular walks? Bone or joint issues can definitely cause mobility issues, but sometimes the signs are subtler, like simply not being interested in playing.

Joint disease is not just a problem for elderly pets. Some joint and bone problems can even affect puppies. Joint or bone problems can also be easily misinterpreted in older pets. Don’t assume that if your aging pet is slowing down, its old age. Several medical issues can cause similar signs, and even if your aging pet is suffering with joint pain, your vet may be able to recommend medications, joint supplements and environmental modifications that can help. Water therapy, laser therapy and acupuncture have also been found to be very effective in certain pets.

Heart & Lungs: Some dogs, especially short-nose breeds (like pugs) naturally have “noisier” breathing compared with some other breeds. If you’re not sure what’s considered normal for your pet, ask your vet. Dogs can also develop heart disease, respiratory infections and other conditions that might change the way they breathe. Changes to pay attention to include obvious things like coughing, sneezing, labored breathing and wheezing. Sometimes signs of heart or respiratory illness can be more subtle, such as being reluctant to exercise or play, or getting tired or winded more easily than normal. Check with your vet if your pet seems to have breathing problems.

Digestive System: For most pets that receive a quality, balanced diet, their appetite, toilet habits and stool quality tend to be relatively consistent. Diarrhea or vomiting can clearly indicate a problem, but other signs of digestive issues may be less obvious. Watch for changes in appetite, an abdomen that seems swollen or larger than normal, burping more than usual, passing gas, passing stool that’s a different color or consistency than normal, or having trouble passing stool. If you suspect your pet has a tummy ache, a simple fix to try is a bit of Pumpkin. Get a can of Pumpkin (not Pumpkin Pie as it has too many sugars in it) give your dog a few spoonfuls. It helps with diarrhea and constipation due to the high fiber in it. If in doubt, always consult your vet.

Urinary System: Let your vet know about any changes in your pet’s urination. Having accidents in the house (if the pet is house trained) urinating larger amounts than normal or with greater frequency, passing urine that smells or looks different, or having trouble urinating all means your pet needs to see his vet. And if your pet is trying to urinate but nothing is happening, seek immediate medical attention-this could indicate a life-threatening blockage. If at any time you see blood in the urine, consult your vet, this could be an indication of a UTI (Urinary Tract Infection).

Overall Body Condition: Don’t be lulled into thinking that a chubby pet is healthy, especially in bulldogs. According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, more than half our pet dogs are overweight or obese. Carrying extra weight can lead to other problems, such as joint and respiratory issues. And don’t forget about the other extreme. If your pet seems thinner than normal or is losing weight, that can also indicate a medical problem. What’s considered normal, healthy body condition can vary, depending in part on how muscular your pet is. But in general, you should be able to feel your pet’s ribs but not see them, and your pet should have a “waist” or a slight tuck-in behind the ribs if you’re looking down on him from above. If you notice that your pet seems to be losing or gaining weight, contact your vet for advice.

Your Healthy Pet Begins with you
Scheduling wellness visit with your vet, not over medicating, not over vaccinating, feeding a 100% nutritionally complete diet that is formulated for your pet and making sure your pets get adequate exercise can work wonders for your pet’s health. Between vet visits, its important for you to know what’s normal and what may not be. When you look over your pet regularly, you’ll get used to noticing what’s normal. That way, you’ll know when something isn’t right and when you need to call your vet.

8 Mistakes New Puppy Parents Can Make

Car Rides to the Vet
If the only time your puppy knows the car is when you take him to the vet for scary things like shots or strangers prying and poking, this unknowingly sets up travel fears. Stop this behavior by nipping it in the bud early on. Take your pet in the car for rides other than the vet. Go to a park, a pet supply store, a friend’s house, or a doggy play date. Praise your pup for being a good boy and do the same when you arrive home.

Ignoring the Paws
Many dogs develop an aversion to having their nails clipped and or having someone touch or handle their paws. By touching your puppy’s paws early on, acclimating him to a brush and using positive reinforcement in association with these behaviors, you teach your pup a valuable lesson. Paw touching and handling is awesome and can be rewarding for you both.

Being a Loner
When I got my first puppy, I made the mistake of not socializing him the proper way or exposing him to being around children, adults and everyday life. Also because he was a bulldog and lazy, we didn’t walk him like we should have which led to more problems than we anticipated with not only weight, hip and joint issues, but also he did not have the proper socialization skills needed to be around other pets and people. Puppies who are introduced to a variety of dogs and situations early on tend to be better socialized and learn to play well with others as they mature.

Not Understanding Diet and Nutrition
We’ve all been taught that kibble is the best and most nutritional option for our pets and especially puppies. You may have picked your new puppy up from the breeder with them being on a common kibble. It is my personal preference and what my new puppy is feeding is a raw and natural diet. The truth is, these manufactured dog foods are made with such low quality, inexpensive ingredients for the sole purpose of increasing profits. The ingredients are heavily processed and preserved to sustain a longer shelf life. These foods are made to be profitable for the pet food companies but not made to benefit the health of our pets. Back in time, farm animals ate raw meat scraps, raw milk, eggs, and any scrap food they could find by scavenging. We need to go back to those times. The anatomy of a dog’s digestive system provides them the protection they need to consume prey, drink pond water, and eat food contaminated with bacteria. Bacteria like salmonella or E. coli and other food borne pathogens are not a problem for healthy dogs. It is recommended for puppies and dogs alike to eat a meal made from raw meat and your puppy can start as early as you get him or if you’re like us, your breeder has fed raw while being weaned from mom.

Wanting Them to Learn to Fast
Most puppies leave their littermates at 8 weeks of age. The first several weeks with a new puppy mean a huge adjustment. Do not get frustrated with your new puppy. Puppies don’t stay young for long and dogs mature quickly. Imagine you are the puppy and suddenly everything you know from your siblings to your mom are gone. I’d cry too! Learn patience and if you aren’t a patient person, then a puppy is simply not the right choice for you.

Incorrect Reactions
House training a puppy and teaching him to do his potty business outside is perhaps the biggest challenge most new puppy parents face. Never ever scold a dog for peeing inside the house long after the fact. After a long day of work, returning home to a soiled rug is no fun. Yelling or shouting at your puppy isn’t pleasant for him either. Your pooch only understands that you came home and got loud. He’s long forgotten about the pee spot that he left you. Again, patience and correct expectations are essential.

Putting your hands on a dog as a form of punishment is not only wrong, but is also harmful in your relationship with your dog. As per dog trainer, Victoria Stillwell writes….when you hit a dog, you teach him to fear you, break his trust, and you weaken his confidence. Insecure dogs are the ones who are more likely to lash out in an aggressive display. “Bullies hit people and pets”. Take a class with your dog that teaches positive reinforcement.

Long Periods Alone
Dogs are pack animals, plain and simple. Dog crate training is an option for many, but so is doggy daycare, or pet sitting services. Puppies should not be allowed free rein of the house, as this allows wandering eyes and minds to get into trouble. Have a friend, relative, or trusted colleague check on your dog and allow potty breaks and interaction throughout the day. Never use a crate as a punishment. The puppy should view his crate as a safe haven away from the hectic world. It is truly his place to get away. Never leave a puppy in a crate for extended periods of time. One of the greatest rewards in being a new puppy parent is helping him grow into a canine good citizen. Knowing what to expect and doing right by you and your new friend will lead to a lifetime of special moments and memories shared together.

Here are some basics you’ll need for your new puppy:

  • Crate or Puppy Pen
  • Puppy Pads in case of accidents
  • Puppy Bowls, one for water, one for food
  • Puppy appropriate chewing toys, stuffies and squeakies; at least 5-6 so they can be rotated
  • Dog bed, something comfy so he wants to lay in it and become his favorite spot
  • Puppy Collar and leash, we prefer a harness; we also suggest getting them first so you know their size to get one appropriate and upgrade as they grow.
  • Lead (for outside tie up)
  • Puppy bags (for taking them out and cleaning up the mess afterwards
  • Pooper scooper
  • Treats for training
  • Dog gate(s)
  • At least 1 4-6’ leash, (an additional longer lead useful for training)
  • A soft bristle brush or sturdy metal comb like the Furminator Brush
  • Gentle puppy shampoo
  • Good quality nail trimmer
  • Kwik Stop Styptic Powder
  • Identification Tag
  • Cleaning supplies, we like our Spot Bot for accidents and enzymatic cleaner
  • Toothbrush; a doggy toothbrush and toothpaste is ideal, but a child’s toothbrush will do; don’t use human toothpaste, though, which is not made to be swallowed
  • Zymox Otic Cleaner
  • Vet Contact
  • Dreft Baby Soap or something without fragrance or unnecessary chemicals
  • Baby wipes (and wipe warmer to make the wipes comfortable for the pups)
  • Cotton Balls
  • Zymox Ear Solution
  • Zymox Topical Cream
  • Zymox Inflammation Cream
  • Wrinkle Paste
  • Snout/Skin Soother
  • Adored Beast Anti Vacinnossis
  • Lyssin (for rabies detox if treating homeopathically against the side effects of rabies vaccine)
  • Vet contact information
  • Emergency Vet contact information
  • Pet Insurance (We use and recommend Nationwide)

Food Supplements for a new puppy:

  • Puppy Bac – Dogzymes – Nature’s Farmacy (Colostrum & Digestive Enzyme) till 12-14 weeks
  • Answers Goats Milk
  • Give the above Puppy Bac until 12-14 weeks then you can switch it out for the complete vitamin supplement
  • Complete – Dogzymes – Nature’s Farmacy (Vitamins, Phytoplankton, Omega 3’s, Digestive Supplement)
  • Immunity Sticks
  • Homeopathy Kit

When can a puppy go for a walk outside?
How long do I wait before taking my puppy outside? Vets recommend waiting until one to two weeks after your puppy’s last vaccination booster – usually at around 14–16 weeks of age – before introducing them to the wonders of local parks, beaches and walking trails.

Where should your puppy sleep the first night?
These are a few things that you can do that might make the puppy feel at home:

  • Your puppy’s sleeping quarters should be in a small crate
  • Keep the crate in a draft free area next to your bed
  • Under no circumstances take the puppy to bed with you
  • Give the puppy a stuffed dog toy to snuggle with

How long can a puppy be left alone?
3-6 months: At this point, consider the one-hour per month rule. Three month old puppies can wait for three hours, four month old puppies for four hours, and so on. After 6 months: An older puppy, like most adult dogs, has the ability to hold it for up to six hours.

How do you settle a new puppy?

  • Try to avoid triggering the puppy’s fear response or teaching him to cry for attention
  • Have the puppy by your bed at night for the first four or five nights
  • Teach your puppy to be alone during the day for short periods from the second week
  • Build up alone time duration gradually

Puppy Vaccine Schedule

This is the recommended typical schedule; see below for alternative vaccine protocol should you work with getting a puppy that has not yet been vaccinated.

  • 9-10 weeks of age: Distemper, Parvovirus
  • 14-15 weeks of age: Distemper, Parvovirus
  • 18 weeks of age Parvovirus only. (Note: new research states that last puppy Parvovirus vaccine should be at 18 weeks old)
  • 1 year after last vaccination (optional booster: Distemper)

Dos, Don’ts (and Nevers!)
DO…ask about measuring vaccination titers as an alternative to vaccinating adult or chronically ill pets.
DO…avoid vaccinations such as Lyme, Bordetella, and Leptospirosis, which have questionable safety and efficacy.
DO…give only one modified live canine parvo/distemper vaccination between the ages of 14 to 18 weeks; this can provide many years and often a lifetime of immunity in most dogs.

DON’T…vaccinate young puppies under 12 weeks of age. At this young age, vaccination is not usually effective because of pre-existing antibodies from the mother’s milk.
DON’T…vaccinate with multiple combination viral vaccinations at the same time. Do one at a time spread out over two-four weeks.

NEVER…vaccinate at the time of hormonal, surgical or emotional stresses, including at the time of any surgery, dentistry, or while boarding.
NEVER…vaccinate a pet that is ill with ANY symptoms, including those pets suffering from skin/ear allergies, and those with any digestive upset.

Be Aware

  • Over-vaccination is not only a waste of money for animal owners, but may jeopardize the long-term health of our animals
  • Vaccine reactions are quite common, and may occur not only immediately after the shot, but over days, weeks, months or even years later in what is immunologically accepted and known as a delayed hypersensitivity reaction
  • Autoimmune conditions, cancers and severe neurological disease have been reported in recently vaccinated pets
  • Modified live parvo/distemper vaccination has been shown to cause immune system suppression 10 to 14 days after administration
  • Modified live combination parvo/distemper vaccination has been demonstrated to increase allergic responses to grasses and pollens in recently vaccinated dogs
  • Most commercial animal vaccinations contain unhealthy levels of mercury, aluminum and other heavy metals

So you’ve made up your mind to forgo or decrease vaccines for your animal. Please remember there are many before you who have made the same decision, and many animals are perfectly healthy without vaccinations. If you’re still unclear, do your research, then do more research, and find a natural rearing support group or veterinarian to further educate you. Knowledge is power.

The Main Concerns:

  • Vaccines contain dangerous carcinogens and disease-causing chemicals, such as mercury and formaldehyde
  • Early vaccination can neutralize natural maternal antibodies and leave your puppy unprotected
  • Combination vaccines often overwhelm the body and cause immune system problems
  • Repeated exposure to vaccines can create toxic build-up and serious chronic disease or even cancer

Wondering what the alternatives are?
Here Is Your Healing Solution:

  • Never vaccinate your puppy before 12 weeks of age, if you have a choice
  • If your puppy has been vaccinated early, any medical condition may or may not be a vaccine side effect
  • Consult an open-minded holistic practitioner who knows how to recognize vaccine-related issues
  • You can administer one dose of homeopathic Thuja 30 C or Thuja 200C to neutralize vaccination side effects

Nature’s Vaccination Protocol – The Ideal Choice

  • Maternal antibodies protect puppies fully until around the age of 10 to 16 weeks
  • When your puppy is 12 weeks old, get an antibody titer test done that is available in most veterinary clinics
  • The most concerning diseases are distemper, parvovirus and leptospirosis. Most clinics run just the first two tests
  • If any antibody level is present, retest at the age of five months and socialize your puppy moderately with other dogs
  • Your puppy will learn the ropes by being in the company of other canines and will produce its own antibodies by being exposed to them while being protected; this is nature’s way of vaccination
  • Know that no methods can provide you with a 100% guarantee

Alternative Vaccination Protocol
For puppies vaccinated early, with an unknown history or who have tested negative for antibodies here is an alternative vaccination protocol. Early vaccinations often neutralize or block the maternal immunity. Vaccines simply put the antibodies out of commission. If there are no antibodies, consider getting a vaccination with one antigen of parvovirus (not a combination) when your dog is 12-weeks-old and then a vaccination for distemper four weeks later. Avoid boosters and unnecessary vaccine exposure by getting a titer test done one month after the last vaccine and then two to three months later.

Do not use vaccines for Kennel Cough, Lyme disease and Giardia – they have the highest side-effect causing properties. For example, I have seen many dogs vaccinated for Lyme disease with arthritis symptoms by the age of two to three years old. This vaccine has not been approved for people because of safety issues. Kennel cough is a self-limiting disease similar to a cold. Vaccines cause very frequent side effects, such as kennel cough itself.

If you live in an area with rabies, the vaccine may need to be given, however, give it at least four weeks from other vaccinations. Never give more than one antigen at a time.

Based on my experience, healthy puppies may not need any vaccination and maintain their protective antibodies for a lifetime. This is the safest way.
It is more likely that no vaccines or a minimal vaccine protocol are safer. Vaccines can cause serious side effects that are often not noticed or recognized by conventional medical science. No one can give you a 100% guarantee that your puppy will not get infected with or without vaccines. Healthy food, fresh water, the right amount of exercise and low-stress levels are the best disease prevention. My choice will always be no vaccines whenever possible and when antibodies are present.

PS: If you currently work with a vet who demands vaccinating your pet, remember it is you who makes the final decision. Be polite, state your request clearly and notice how much you can stand your ground. You are there for your pet.