As time draws near for your puppies arrival or pickup,  I wanted to share some things with you.

PAYMENT:  Cash only for the balance of the puppy.  I do not accept checks for final payment. 

NO SHIPPING:  I do not ship puppies.  I have received three shipped puppies over time, and it was not the greatest experience for them.  I have difficulty shipping such a young small creature that I love so much and just won't do it any more.  Shipping is between $350-$400 and you can find a cheap ticket and fly in and carry your puppy back as a carry-on for that amount or less.

FOOD:  Between six and seven weeks, your pup is eating chopped chicken, along with boiled hamburger crumbled, steamed vegetables, fruits, a bit of brown rice,e  Orijen, Pinnacle, Natural Select, Freeze dried raw, Blue Buffalo, Solid Gold ground kibble etc., mixed with goats milk.  They are able to lap up water also.  They will be off milk by 7 1/2 weeks, as I will give them their first worming prior to departure.  I like them completely weaned prior to their departure after 8 weeks of age.  I leave the water down  as they drink often.  Please ask your vet what nutritious food he/she would recommend and give your pup what you feel is best.  PLEASE stay away from kibble that has corn as the first ingredient.  Corn does not digest and is not good for dogs.  Most lower end dog foods use corn as the most prominent ingredient, including Science Diet and Iams.  I won't give a health guarantee for a poor diet.

Our adults eat 1/2 cup kibble as a base so there is consistency in their diet and fends off the trots.  They also eat a lot of chicken and beef, vegetables, fruits and more. No raw meat prior to six months of age.  I know that kibble with a fish base is good for their coats and skin and sometimes I switch flavors.  As you may be aware after talking to me, I am an advocate of whole, raw foods.  Our dogs eat almost all the vegetables and many fruits.   I give them all of our fresh peelings, cut ends of asparagus and they love melons and berries, etc.  My dogs eat green beans nearly daily as they are nutritious and will not put on weight.  I have fed my dogs meat, vegetables and fruits for many years and have never lost a dog to cancer.  Vets are now beginning to agree with this type of a diet, as many families have asked their vets.  I just saw this article on the benefits:  http://shine.yahoo.com/pets/10-healthiest-human-foods-dogs-142800057.html  Your pup will need to eat at least twice a day, and will be fed three to four times a day up until you pick them up.

 

TRAINING: Your pup can be house trained quickly, if you are consistent and focus on it as a family.  I kept my pups on a 3-4' leash around my wrist and took them out every hour during the day, and had a bell tied to the back door. We rang the bell, with their paw, then went outside.  Use a command so they associate the bell and your command with what they should be doing, then praise them when they do what you asked.  They are smart dogs and will learn quickly, but if you are not consistent the first few days, they are also smart enough that they will know they can go potty inside whenever they wish, and that will be very difficult to break.  At night, they can be kenneled in your room, so you can hear if they need to go, or pups generally will not eliminate on a leash. You can put them on a leash at night, tie it to your bed post, giving them about 3' of area, with a pillow or puppy bed to sleep on. They will whine rather than eliminate in their area.

 

CHEWING: Your pup will chew extensively, as they are breaking new teeth through their gums.  This will last until they are about 8 months, as they will lose their puppy teeth and cut their adult teeth.  PWD's are known for chewing wood, but mine never touched our furniture.  I keep a basket of their toys and they have access to them whenever they want.  It is like picking up after a toddler, but they know what is theirs to chew and what is not.  They like nyla bones, chilly bones (wet, frozen denim) any nylon toy, be careful to watch the stuffed toys as they can choke on stuffing and small pieces they chew.  I have given them lamb chew sticks and although you may read conflicting reports regarding chew bones, mine love them and it has been healthy for their teeth, as there is less tartar build up.

 

IMMUNIZATIONS:  They will receive their first worming and immunizations at 7 1/2 weeks.  They will need immunizations every three to four weeks after that.  Your vet or local shelter (half the cost) can provide these necessary vaccines.  Your pup will not be immunized against communicable diseases when you pick them up.  Please keep them away from parks, common areas or other dogs.  After the second immunizations, they are still susceptible to communicable diseases and may catch one if directly exposed, but it most likely, would not be fatal.  Parvo is a very common disease, and much more prevalent than you may imagine.  It most likely would be fatal if your puppy catches it after the first immunizations.  After two, it could survive, but after the third, your puppy will be immune, so PLEASE get the immunizations at the appropriate time and keep them away from common areas until they are fully immunized.  I encourage you to research immunizations, as many breeders are beginning to have individual immunizations administered over time, rather than boosters every month.  I am not in a position to give advice so please do what you feel is best for your puppy, after you become informed as to the benefits/detriments.

 

SAFETY:  Just a reminder, as many of you already know, a young child does not understand that they may inflict pain on others.  Many pups die each year because a small child hurt them.  Pups have very sharp baby teeth and sharp claws.  They hurt when they play, but they need to learn how hard is too hard, and they need your guidance.  We work diligently on this and have begun now that they have teeth, but a child holding a pup, may drop it, if it bites or scratches them.  Please supervise interactions with the puppy and small children, and remind older children that puppies are babies and need them as a mentor to learn how to play.  Pups will pull on anything hanging down, and it can fall on them.  They will chew on cords, area rugs, and pick up anything on the floor.  If you supervise their play and provide good toys for them, they will not have a need to destroy your home.  I have found that old play pens or expandable exercise pens are a great way for them to get contained exercise.

 

CRATING/CONTAINMENT:  Many ask me where a pup should sleep or what to do when they are gone.  Here are only suggestions.  Pups generally will not eliminate on a leash.  You can put them on a leash at night, tie it to your bed post, giving them about 3' of area, with a pillow or puppy bed to sleep on.  They will whine rather than eliminate in their area.  Your pup will come to your home piddle pad trained. so feel free to put them in your room at night, with a piddle pad on the floor and they will seek it out and use it in the middle of the night (this works much better if you have wood floors in your bedroom, just in case).  You can crate them, but expect them to howl the first few nights, as they love people and other dogs and will be lonely.  If you want to crate train, I suggest purchasing a large crate with a barrier in it, such as a box.  They will grow in to the crate, so you only need to buy one, but when they are little, they will go to the back of a crate to eliminate.  This can be a bad habit so prevent them from having full access.  You must be able to hear them though, and let them out when they have to go.  Another great option, especially if you need to leave during the day:  buy an X-pen (Exercise pen).  They are available at any pet store and online.  Put the crate in the expanded X-pen and put the X-pen on a tarp with piddle pads down.  This only takes up about 8' and allows freedom for your pup, rather than such confinement in a closed crate.  I understand the importance of crate training, but I am not an advocate, as I like my dogs to have more room.


Plan on your pup whining the first few nights home.  It is as difficult as having a newborn.  If you send an article of clothing, I will kennel them with a litter mate with your item, so they will recognize your smell.  It will help familiarize them to you, but will not prevent the all night whining that you may experience. I break all rules and my dogs sleep in our room at night.  We are all happy with that choice.  Please call me at 435-640-9255 or email me if you have any questions. 


 SPAY/NEUTER:  I am a strong advocate for waiting for a pup to be spayed or neutered.  I believe that appropriate hormone levels are crucial for muscle development and overall health.  I also believe that if a vet spays at a very young age, their only concern is eliminating reproduction.  My only concern, is a long, healthy life for your dog and I believe to do so, your female needs to have a heat or two with appropriate progesterone levels, and your male needs the testosterone in his system to develop into a healthy mature dog.  Please wait until your pups are at least a year old to spay/neuter, preferably 18 months old.  Most males will learn to lift their legs even if they are neutered young, and bad habits will not develop by waiting until a healthy age to have this surgery.  See articles on spay/neuter that I have posted to the link on the right.

TEACHING YOUR PUPPY TO SWIM:  All puppies must learn to love the water and swim.  PWD's have an affinity for water, but if thrown in, will develop a fear.  It is best to let them play at the waters edge, or go in with them and support their rear ends.  They will naturally sink, and need that support and positive reinforcement to learn to love water.  If you hold their little rears or support them in the water, they will dog paddle.  Eventually, they will learn how to hold their bodies in the water and will swim like ducks.  It takes time and patience, but well worth it in the end, as they will love water of all kinds once they feel safe.

Congratulations on your new little loved one.  They have all been held and loved extensively every day.  They are used to licking faces and getting a lot of kisses and hugs.  We will miss them terribly, but this will be the next step of their wonderful lives.