Everything you need to know about getting your puppy off to the best start
- Parasite Prevention
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Your puppy needs to be regularly vaccinated throughout his/her life in order to prevent the life-threatening diseases that are contagious:
Core Vaccinations: distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parvovirus andparainfluenza. It is also important to know that certain diseases such as leptospirosis (also known as Weils’ Disease) can be passed on to humans from animals and can be fatal both to animals and humans if left untreated. Puppy vaccination courses begin when the puppy is aged from eight weeks onwards and consist of two injections that are given 2-4 weeks apart with the second vaccine given at 12 weeks or older. Your puppy will then be free to go out for walks 2 weeks after the 2nd injection. It is necessary to give your dog annual booster vaccinations for the rest of his/her life in order to maintain immunity from the above diseases.
Kennel Cough: If your puppy needs to go to a boarding kennels in the future, he/she will need to be vaccinated against kennel cough. This is a highly contagious disease that is passed through the air to unprotected dogs. The risk of catching kennel cough is higher in environments where a lot of dogs are gathered and it causes uncomfortable symptoms such as a dry, hacking cough and a sore throat. It is usually not life-threatening but can cause persistent problems especially in the young and old. We would always recommend dogs being vaccinated against kennel cough when being kennelled, although it is not compulsory at all kennels.
Rabies Vaccination: If you are considering taking your puppy abroad in the future, it will be necessary to give him/her a rabies vaccination as part of the Pet Passport Scheme.
All animals develop infestations of worms. The most common type found in puppies is roundworm. If left untreated, your puppy will become emaciated and weak with a pot belly.
It is important to worm puppies from 2 weeks of age and every two weeks until 3 months
The mother passes worm infestations on to her puppies whilst carrying them in her womb or through her milk. There are a number of products available to treat roundworms in puppies.
Milbemax is our wormer of choice and treats round, tape and lungworm.
Many of the products sold in supermarkets and pet shops are not effective at killing all worms and none of them contain an ingredient to kill lungworm.
Most common parasite found on puppies. They cause discomfort to the animal when they bite and they carry tapeworm. Newly hatched fleas also do not tend to be fussy and will bite humans as well! A common misconception amongst pet owners is that flea infestations are clearly visible or that the puppy only has one or two fleas because they have only seen a couple at a time!
The reality is that 5% of the flea infestation is on your puppy and that 95% of the problem is actually in the environment where the various stages of the flea are developing!
A lot of products sold over the counter at pet outlets and supermarkets do not provide a persistent, satisfactory level of protection.
Microchipping is now compulsory by law. It is the most reliable method of permanently identifying your pet.
The microchip itself is implanted with an injection and contains a barcode. This barcode is your dog’s individual identity number.
Once the microchip is in place, a scanning device can be passed over your dog, picking up the barcode on the microchip. When a dog goes missing and is then found, the barcode on the microchip is matched to your personal details. This makes reuniting you with your dog a much easier task! Puppies can be microchipped from time of vaccination and onwards.
There are many types of diet available and it can be difficult knowing which is best. Supermarket foods and tinned foods contain a lot of salt to encourage the dog to eat it. However, this is not good for the heart and kidneys. We recommend a good quality dry food that is low in salt and provides excellent and complete nutrition for your growing puppy. We find Royal Canin brand to meet all the requirements of a growing puppy
This procedure can be carried out from 6 months old
The operation involves your dog being admitted for the day. Neutering your dog will not change their personality! However, due to a reduction in the hormone testosterone after castration, it is common that male dogs will calm down.
Benefits of castration
- Decreased tendency to wander and be hypersexual
- Protection against anal cancer, testicular cancer, prostate enlargement and some types of hernia.
Benefits of early spaying (before the first season)
- Complete protection against breast cancer (risks can be as high as 40% in unneutered females)
- Prevention of uterine infection (also very common and life-threatening in older dogs)
- Prevention of unwanted puppies.
We strongly recommend pet insurance. It enables us to provide the best level of care for your dog. It covers illnesses or accidents that may affect your dog throughout his/her life.
We can offer very advanced surgery and medicine either here or at a specialist practice, should it be required.
Chemotherapy, cataract removal, pinning of fractures, spinal surgery etc. are all possible, but can be extremely expensive, as can be lifetime conditions such as skin allergy, diabetes and Cushing’s disease.
Having a good insurance policy means that you do not have to consider cost when deciding on the best treatment options for a pet. There are now many insurance policies on offer. However, please remember that the cheapest policy does not usually mean the best policy. Therefore, while it is wise to ‘shop around’, look at policies carefully to make sure you get the most satisfactory level of cover.
Socialisation is the process by which puppies learn to relate appropriately to people and other animals. It involves meeting and having pleasant encounters with as many adults, children, dogs and other animals as possible. It also involves becoming used to a wide range of events, environments and situations.
By the time your puppy reaches about 12 weeks of age, anything not yet encountered is likely to be approached with caution.
It is vital that, between three and 12 weeks of age, a puppy meets a wide variety of people, situations and other animals.
Check out our online shop here with lots of crate training goodies.
Crate training can be a very useful way to give your dog a comfortable den all of their own where they can relax and enjoy feeling safe. Crates can also be useful when travelling with your dog, or should they ever need to be confined during recovery from surgery or following an accident. Teaching your dog to enjoy spending time alone within a crate, even when you don’t really need them to, means that whenever you do need to use a crate, they will already be comfortable doing so! Most dogs quickly and easily learn to love having their own special space to chill out in!