Guide to Puppy Care.

30th October 2013

Caring for your new puppy

A Training Tip

The best advice I have ever given puppy owners is to get a newspaper and roll it up very tight. Secure it with a rubber band and leave it on the coffee table. Then, when the puppy pees in the house, chews up a slipper or does anything he’s not supposed to do, simply take the newspaper and bang it on the top of YOUR head very hard while repeating.. paws puppy

I should have been watching my puppy!
I should have been watching my puppy!

Toilet Training

Immediately the puppy arrives in your home take him to his toileting area in the garden. Do not expect him to do his business immediately, he will be curious and want a good sniff around. When he does go give him lots of praise.

Remember, puppies have small bladders and should be taken out hourly especially after waking or feeding and always taken to the same place in the garden and rewarded when he does as you ask.. Remember, your puppy will have ‘Accidents’ occasionally so when you catch him in the act say ‘NO’ and take him outside to his ‘spot’ before he finishes. Never hit a puppy or rub his nose in it, this is a totally pointless exercise which leaves him utterly confused.

Don’t forget that at the kennels where your puppy came from he more than likely went to the loo on newspaper (also the case with adult dogs), so it can help if you move a piece of paper that he has used over to the door and gradually place it in his spot in the garden. Toilet training is a game of trial and error but with patience and praise you will soon have a well behaved puppy..


It is important not to change your puppy/kittens diet at the time of rehoming, ask the rescue centre/breeder what feed they use and keep him on the same food, this will prevent diarrhoea and tummy upsets. If your pet is runny and it continues for more than 24hrs contact your vet.

Feed your puppy or kitten three to four times a day until he is at least six months old after which you should ask your vets advice. Make sure that there is a bowl of clean fresh water available at all times.


When he has finished eating and done his business, settle your puppy /kitten into his bed to sleep. Wrap a warm hot water bottle in his blanket (he might be missing the heat of mother and siblings) and if possible leave a radio on low so that he does not feel alone. It is advisable to put your puppy / kitten to bed at least an hour before you go yourself to let him adjust to the fact that you are not far away.

Expect him to start whining as soon as you close the door but if you go back into the room you are rewarding him for making noise. He must learn that when he is alone you will come back without him having to cry for you.


A properly socialized dog is well adjusted and makes a good companion. It is not afraid of anything it will experience in every day situations and is good with all people and other animals. An un-socialized dog is is nervous and can become aggressive to people and other dogs, and is difficult to handle.

Start socialisation training already from day one, when you bring your 8-weekold puppy home.

Make sure that each of the following events are pleasant and non-threatening. If your puppy’s first experience with something is painful and frightening, you will be defeating your purpose. In fact, you will be creating a phobia that will often last a lifetime. It’s better to go too slow and assure your puppy is not frightened or injured than to rush and force your pup to meet new things and people.

Invite friends over to meet your pup. Include men, women, youngsters, oldsters, different ethnic backgrounds, etc.
Invite friendly, healthy, vaccinated dogs, puppies and even cats to your home to meet and play with your new puppy.
Carry your pup to shopping centers, parks, school playgrounds, etc; places where there are crowds of people and plenty of activity.
Take your puppy for short, frequent rides in the car. Stop the car and let your puppy watch the world go by through the window.
Introduce your puppy to umbrellas, bags, boxes, the vacuum cleaner, etc. Encourage your puppy to explore and investigate his environment.
Accustom your puppy to being brushed, bathed, inspected, having its nails clipped, teeth and ears cleaned and all the routines of grooming and physical examination.
Introduce your puppy to stairs, his own collar and leash. Introduce anything and everything you want your puppy to be comfortable with and around.
Important Do not’s

Do not put your puppy on the ground where unknown animals have access. This is where your puppy can pick up diseases. Wait until your puppy’s shots are completed. Do not let your pup socialise with dogs that appear sick or dogs that you don’t know, that may not be vaccinated.
Do not reward fearful behaviour. In a well meaning attempt to sooth, encourage or calm the puppy when it appears frightened, we often unintentionally reward the behaviour. It’s normal for the puppy to show some signs of apprehension when confronting anything new and different.
Do not allow the experience to be harmful, painful or excessively frightening. This can cause lifetime phobias in your dog.
Do not force or rush your puppy. Let your puppy take things at his own pace. Your job is to provide the opportunity.
Do not do too much at one time. Young puppies need a lot of sleep and tire quickly. It is much more productive to have frequent and very brief exposures than occasional prolonged exposures.