Getting a new puppy is extremely exciting – don’t get us wrong, but do you really know how to look after your new furry friend? There is perhaps far more to think about that expected when this new bundle of joy comes into your life, and many would argue that they can be harder to take care of than newborn babies!
Your new puppy won’t come with its own manual we’re sorry to say, so you will need to do some research and get stuck in with a bit of trial and error to make sure you’re giving the correct level of care and support.
So, you really want a puppy? Here’s what you need to know beforehand:
1. You need a license
This aspect is greatly overlooked by most prospective dog owners, but in some states, you need a license to keep a puppy. In order to find out whether or not you’re going to need one, it would be best to check with your local authorities. Although licenses must be renewed each year, they aren’t too expensive. Your proof of a license often comes in the form of a tag, which should always be attached to your puppy’s collar.
2. They need vaccines
Like babies, your puppy will need to be given regular vaccinations within the first six months of life. Therefore, you need to make sure you have enough time to dedicate to their healthcare before opting to have a puppy. While some vaccinations are completely optional, your puppy will be required to have an absolute minimum of a rabies vaccine. From then on, they will also need a booster vaccine every three years or so.
3. They need a good diet
As you probably know, dogs will eat absolutely anything put in front of them, but owners should be concerned about giving them the best diet as puppies.
Puppies grow 20 times faster than adult dogs, therefore, a special diet is advised to aid their growth. They will also need to be fed four times per day until they four months of age and then twice per day when they reach six months old.
The food given to your puppy should be high in protein, have enriched fatty acids for healthier skin and organs and is easily digestible. https://pawcastle.com/best-puppy-food/ provides an ultimate buying guide on the best puppy foods of 2018.
4. It’s a good idea to get them neutered
If you’re not planning on breeding your puppy in the future, it may be worthwhile getting them neutered. Puppies are extremely hyperactive at the best of times, but those that are left un-neutered are even more likely to jump on other dogs, get into fights and be generally excited. What’s more, if you allow your puppy to roam freely with other dogs, you could end up being responsible for a litter of puppies. In the U.S alone, 1.2 million dogs are taken to animal shelters each year – please don’t be responsible for adding to this number!