Help for first time pup owner!
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Thread: Help for first time pup owner!

  1. #1
    Hawkeye is offline Junior Member
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    DefaultHelp for first time pup owner!

    I will be getting my puppy in a few days and as you guys may have already guessed, have a boatload of questions! Please bare with me and help me out to make my transition of being a first puppy owner somewhat smooth.

    1. I will be getting a 46in crate from Walmart, a buckle collar, a leash, steel food bowls, food, and some treats for training. Will I be needing anything else?

    2. What is the regular maintenance I need to do for my dog and how often? I've read that raw beef bones from the butcher can cause broken teeth. Is there a safe alternative? (i.e ear cleaning, brushing teeth, showering)

    3. Can I allow the puppy to have free roam of the house if I can constantly supervise him? Or do I need to have him tethered to me?

    4. When crate training, I've read that I should slowly ease into the door closing. How will I let my pup sleep? Do I just leave the crate next to my bed and close anyway?

    5. When housetraining, and I see the pup beginning to soil. I would say "NO!" to startle him to stop and carry him in my arms outside correct? I've heard some people say put him on the leash and bring him outside but don't carry while some say carry. Confused!

    6. I've read the general rule of thumb is 5 minutes of exercise per month. So do I play personally with the pup for around 15 minutes and stop? If the puppy runs and plays by himself it is A OKAY right?

    Well, that's all that I can think of for now. He will be 8 weeks when I get him. Thank you for your help!

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  3. #2
    Samson is offline Senior Member
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    1. I will be getting a 46in crate from Walmart, a buckle collar, a leash, steel food bowls, food, and some treats for training. Will I be needing anything else?

    You will need a divider to reduce the size of the crate until your pup is older to discourage him from eliminating in the crate. You might think of a long line for training but that's not an immediate requirement.

    2. What is the regular maintenance I need to do for my dog and how often? I've read that raw beef bones from the butcher can cause broken teeth. Is there a safe alternative? (i.e ear cleaning, brushing teeth, showering)

    Nylabones.

    3. Can I allow the puppy to have free roam of the house if I can constantly supervise him? Or do I need to have him tethered to me?

    Free roam is fine with supervision.

    4. When crate training, I've read that I should slowly ease into the door closing. How will I let my pup sleep? Do I just leave the crate next to my bed and close anyway?

    Feed and treat the pup in the crate. At that age they won't be too concerned if you close the door apart from some crying at night perhaps which you should ignore normally but you will need to be getting up maybe once or twice during the might for the first month or so until their bladder is big enough to hold all night.

    5. When housetraining, and I see the pup beginning to soil. I would say "NO!" to startle him to stop and carry him in my arms outside correct? I've heard some people say put him on the leash and bring him outside but don't carry while some say carry. Confused!

    Use the leash when he is used to it. I don't see any harm in carrying a very young puppy to show him where he should be eliminating but start his leash training straight away.


    6. I've read the general rule of thumb is 5 minutes of exercise per month. So do I play personally with the pup for around 15 minutes and stop? If the puppy runs and plays by himself it is A OKAY right?

    That only refers to forced exercise such as walks. Playing by himself is fine.

  4. #3
    Sophiesmama's Avatar
    Sophiesmama is offline Senior Member
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    Welcome Hawkeye! Where are you located? You have received great advice from Samson, and I can add a few comments.

    1.- I would buy the leash that is a chain with a loop to hold in your hand. Sophie could shear a nylon leash in two like a buz saw! You also need a good brush and nail clippers. Brush your dog daily. Labs shed a ton! Also find out what the breeder is feeding and buy a bag of it. Keep the pup on the same food. Treats can be chunks of cheese (limit this though, calcium you know!) and pieces of fruit. I did find some yogurt treats for Sophie during training that she loved. Also, you will need a good flea preventative. We use the oral pill Comfortis we get from our vet. Fronline didn't work for us, and we since heard it has caused seizures in some dogs. Advantix II works well, and prevents ticks too, if you live where there are ticks.

    2- Raw bones with marrow are too rich and can give a puppy diarrhea. I had the rubber Kong bones, since Sophie never has really liked the Nylabones.

    3- We are lucky and were always home with Sophie, so she had free roam of the house from day one. We never had to tether her, except when people come in the front door. She wanted to jump on them, so we leashed her and made her sit when company came.

    4.-You can put the crate by your bed and even put your fingers through the wire to reassure him. Just try not to give in to the crying at let him out. Take him to potty on a schedule, and limit water a couple of hours before bed.

    5.- Don't use NO as a command. It is too vague. Just scoop him up, and head to the door and as you scoop him use the command you have chosen for potty. We used Outside Sophie! We had her trained pretty fast. Labs are smart.

    6.-the 5 min rule is good. Use it when you walk your puppy. A couple times a day. Do not run or jog with your puppy. It is hard on his joints. Play time is different, let him play as he wants to. He can run as he sees fit when he plays, just not when he's leashed.

    We look forward to lots of pictures and lots and lots of puppy stories! What's his name?
    Last edited by Sophiesmama; 09-10-2012 at 08:10 AM.
    ~Pam



    Sophie DOB 04/13/2011 6 mo


    8.5 mo.

    Sophie 15 months, with Skye

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  6. #4
    Tanya is offline Senior Member
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    find out what the breeder is feeding and make sure ot get the same food, going thru a food switch on top of all the other changes isn't ideal.
    agree on getting a divider for the crate, it needs to be just big enough for puppy to stand up and turn around until they are house trained

    labs don't need regular baths, it strips their coats of the protective oils. if they are dirty rinse off. if they have rolled in poop then sure give them a bath. get a bottle of dog shampoo (not human).

    You do want to get the puppy used to being touched (to clean ears, brush teeth, nails) but I would say start with just touching for now and not actually washing ears and brushing teeth. they have little toothbrushes you can get eventually to get the dog used to that (even though puppy teeth don' really need to be washed it is good practice)ē

    Look up training schools and find a puppy class appropriate for puppies before they get all theri shots and sign up. they will help you train your pup and help socialize him.

    you can play more than 15 minutes if puppy is dictating the speed and energy level (i.e. offleash in the yard). the rule is more for things like walks.

    Take a look in the training section, lots of tips on crate training, house training and biting (which you will soon discover)
    Charlie (foster) and Rocky

  7. #5
    Hawkeye is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks guys

    How often should I apply the flea and tick preventative? Are there any other preventatives like worms that I should give?

    Can Nylabones and Kong Bones replace brushing the teeth?

  8. #6
    Foxred12 is offline Senior Member
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    The Comfortis or the Advantix II are once a month treatments and which dosage you use will change as your puppy grows. Trifexis is also once a month and controls fleas, heartworms, and intestional parasites, but it is more expensive.

    Not much of a replacement for brushing teeth.

    Congrats on the new puppy, looking forward to pictures.


    Kid 12, Squirt 6, Tosh 4,
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    Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole. Roger Caras

  9. #7
    BigBrownDog is offline Senior Member
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    If offered, don't get the 6 month heart worm shot called ProHeart 6. There have been some very bad reactions to this drug and suspected deaths. The usual once a month works just fine, so there is no need to mess with a suspect product.

    And keep your puppy in your arms at the vet as the floors can be full of viruses/germs. Until he has a few rounds of vaccinations in him, you are better being safe than sorry.

    Do socialize him but just be careful about where. Areas that get a lot of dog traffic are best avoided until he has full immunity.
    Last edited by BigBrownDog; 09-10-2012 at 06:22 PM.
    Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.

  10. #8
    Trammel's Avatar
    Trammel is offline Junior Member
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    1. I will be getting a 46in crate from Walmart, a buckle collar, a leash, steel food bowls, food, and some treats for training. Will I be needing anything else?
    I would recommend something better then what walmart carries for a crate. This isn't a temporary thing, you should keep the crate for the life of the dog. This particular crate is cheaper online than it was in the store, it has two doors so it allows you more options to positioning. Each door has dual locking mechanisms and come with a dividing panel so you can make the crate very small and move it back as the dog grows bigger. This keeps them from eliminating in their crate. Not to mention if you crate during the day at work.

    NOW feel free to buy a small crate that can be next to your bed or bedroom. Unless you want the constant crying at night from the middle of the house. This board here helped me with that extreme crying and suggested I move the crate into the bedroom at night. Guess what, second night she only cryed to go out to potty. Of course it was to big so we bought a smaller one (as suggested).


    2. What is the regular maintenance I need to do for my dog and how often? I've read that raw beef bones from the butcher can cause broken teeth. Is there a safe alternative? (i.e ear cleaning, brushing teeth, showering)
    Find out what the breeder is feeding them and continue using that food for the first few months, then slowly move them over to a better brand if applicable. Raw bones I believe is for 6 month + dogs if I recall correctly. I think someone mentioned no raw bones until their adult teeth were fully grown in as it can cause problems with new teeth coming in.

    3. Can I allow the puppy to have free roam of the house if I can constantly supervise him? Or do I need to have him tethered to me?
    Yup, you sure can, just keep an eye on him\her. (recommend crating during day if left alone)

    4. When crate training, I've read that I should slowly ease into the door closing. How will I let my pup sleep? Do I just leave the crate next to my bed and close anyway?
    We had two crates (as stated above), one full size located centrally inside the house and a smaller one in the bedroom. The one in the bedroom is only temporary (some people crate longer than others at night) mileage may vary. When ever the pup falls asleep, gently place them in their crate and leave the door open. Encourage and reward them for going in their crate. The crate is their safe zone, so lots of praise and NEVER pull them out of the crate, call them, makes high pitch noises what have you, let them come out on their own. (this will enforce the safety factor). If they run scared in to their crate, it's off limits and you leave them be.

    5. When housetraining, and I see the pup beginning to soil. I would say "NO!" to startle him to stop and carry him in my arms outside correct? I've heard some people say put him on the leash and bring him outside but don't carry while some say carry. Confused!
    Might as well tell you right now, don't wait for them to set the schedule. Begin taking them outside on a leash to the designated spot and use a word. I use "get busy" and would stand there letting them walk around while saying "get busy". Once they go, praise them and if you have a small treat, give them one. I did this on the top of every hour and increased the hours as they got older. You can look up the bladder control of labs and get more accurate information.
    Just last night we visited the inlaws and upon arival I took her out side, said "get busy" and she pee'd on command. Went back inside and enjoyed the party.

    6. I've read the general rule of thumb is 5 minutes of exercise per month. So do I play personally with the pup for around 15 minutes and stop? If the puppy runs and plays by himself it is A OKAY right?
    The scariest thing is forced exercise. Playing with them is fine but don't take them on a bike ride, jog etc where they can't stop. The growth plates need time to close. Oh, and carefull on tug of war, I broke our puppies K9 and had a panic attack. The board was nice and helped me through that one too
    Last edited by Trammel; 09-10-2012 at 06:22 PM.
    CGC

  11. #9
    Hawkeye is offline Junior Member
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    I've read that marrow bones or knuckle bones can replace brushing teeth if given a few times a week. I've seen many members get pearly white teeth from no brushing and giving bones.

    The caveat was that marrow bones CAN cause chipped or broken teeth. Can raw knuckle bones do the same thing? Is it safer? When can I give it to my pup?

  12. #10
    Hawkeye is offline Junior Member
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    I just brought Hawkeye to our home!!

    I have a few questions to ask you guys if you dont mind...

    He sleeps A LOT. Is this normal for a puppy? Should I just leave him and take him potty after he wakes up? Would this slow down the progress?

    Also, when I catch him in the act, I yell a firm NO then carry him outside on a leash to the designatated area. Is this right?

    When I take him out periodically, he would either sit down or tug on the leash until he chokes himself out but go potty. Any remedies?

    Is there anyway I can walk him out on a leash there without carrying him?

    Thank you!!!!!!!!

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