Thursday, July 31, 2008

6 Easy Steps for Raising a Puppy

Welcome to our Potpourri Blog. Christine (my blog sister) and I share many interests including our love for dogs and cats as you can hear from our screaming wallpaper. Aren't they cute? I realize my text is a little difficult to read with this template, but in time that will change. That's the beauty of blogs. You can change a background with a few keystrokes and voila!

If you ever watch Animal Planet and all the wonderful work by the ASPCA or the local city police in various major U.S. cities, you know you want to adopt a dog or pet and welcome them into your family as FAMILY MEMBERS not just pets. But pets require lots of care and responsibility. If you're starting with a puppy and never had a puppy to train before, following these steps can prevent a "Marley & Me" hurricane. If you have not read the book--it's a must read for anyone--especially men. The author lived and worked in South Florida.

1. Never leave your puppy unsupervised. Placing puppy in a confined area or large cage for dogs, but making it comfy with little bed, bowl of water, newspapers, is not cruel. It's being kind and smart! This will prevent him/her from developing bad habits and from hurting himself.

2. Utilize critical stages. Week six to week eight of your dog's life is a time when a small amount of exposure to other dogs will have a lasting effect on how he relates to other canines throughout his life. Week eight to ten is the stage for socializing with other people.

3. Establish yourself as Pack Leader. Your puppy is a social pack animal. By establishing yourself as the "Alpha-dog" or leader of the pack, Buddy will grow up to respect you, respond to you, bond with you, and want to please you. This will instill confidence in Fido too.

4. Mix Food with Water before serving. Mix Monty's dry kibble with water so that it looks like a stew. Allow it to sit for 10 minutes before feeding. Kibble can expand up to thirty percent, so let it expand in the bowl rather than in Zeus' stomach.

5. Touch conditioning. Gently rub all areas of Phee Phee's body so she will become conditioned to your touch and feel comfortable with your feel.

6. Puppies and dogs need routine and attention too. If you work long hours, do the responsible thing and hire a pet walker or pet sitter to walk and play with your dog. Dogs and cats too, are live creatures and depend on interaction for stimulation, confidence and happiness. Would you like to be locked up with no one to talk to except for swatting at flies?

Your puppy will grow to an obedient, best friend and family member!

Share your Puppy tricks and lessons learned. Go ahead! POST A COMMENT!


Marte said...

And, please, please remember to adopt from your local animal shelter. Your new pet should have had it's first shots, and will hopefully have been spayed or neutered.

Please stay away from pet stores that sell puppy mill puppies! (And most of them do!) And as for the puppies at the side of the road - be careful! They probably have had no immunizations and could have been exposed to the deadly Parvo Virus.

If you get a puppy who has had less than its first 2 shots - make sure everyone who touches him has washed thoroughly, and don't let him come in contact with shoes you've worn while out and about. Parvo really is that contagious!

If your puppy becomes upset when you have to leave him or her home while you're off to work, there's a great product called "Home Alone" available at They're the Bach Flower Essences people, and their products are simply amazing.

Since my mature dogs are used to us being here all the time, when I have to be gone for a whole day I put "Home Alone" in their water bowl starting the night before.

Here's to life with dogs - there's nothing better!

Marte Cliff