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Greencross Vets are your partner in pet care and we’re here to support you with your new family member and it’s important that your puppy starts off on the right paw.

A new puppy brings a lot of excitement and joy to the family unit and is often a much awaited event for existing members of the family. In spite of the temptation to show your new family member to everybody, the very best advice is that it should have nothing but peace and quiet in the first 24 hours. Try to encourage all family members to handle the new arrival quietly and gently, and particularly if your new friend is quite young, allow adequate periods of rest by itself. 

How do you housetrain your puppy?

Developing a routine will assist you in housetraining your puppy. There are times when you should take your puppy outside to prevent accidents. Such as, first thing in the morning, after every sleep, after being left alone for a long period of time, every meal and just before you put your puppy to bed.  Also watch out for some simple signs that will alert you that your puppy needs to go outside including walking around in circles, sitting or whining at the door and sniffing at the ground.

Of course accidents will happen, but if you catch your puppy in the act, take them outside immediately. Never
spank your puppy, rub their nose in it, or reprimand them after an accident has occurred. A puppy will not connect this with what they have done wrong. Just remember to praise whenever they do the right thing.

Puppy School

Acquiring a new puppy is very exciting, but can also be a little challenging as your puppy needs your time, care and lots of attention.  New puppy owners need a source of support and information while caring for their new family member and Greencross Vets is an excellent starting point.  Learn more about our puppy school classes

Vaccinations

The diseases that vaccinations protect against are serious and oft en fatal (sometimes despite treatment), so vaccinations are VERY important. Complete protection can only be achieved if all vaccines are given and your dog is kept away from public areas such as parks and shops until after the 14 week vaccine.

  • 6-7 weeks Distemper, Hepatitis & Parvovirus
  • 10 weeks Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus, Parainfluenza & Bordatella
  • 14 weeks Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus, Parainfluenza & Bordatella

ADULTS Annual boosters are required to maintain immunity.

Learn more about vaccinating your canine companion

Parasite Prevention

Worming

Puppies should be wormed every 2 weeks until 12 weeks of age (2, 4, 6, 8, 10 & 12 weeks), then every month until 6 months of age (4, 5 & 6 months), then every 3 months routinely. Worming should be performed regardless of whether worms are seen in droppings or not, as many worms are too small to be seen with the naked eye. A thorough all-wormer should be used, these are available in both tablet and chewable forms.

Heartworm prevention

This can be started at 3-6 months of age, increasing the dose as your dog gets heavier. Heartworm prevention is available in several forms. Once yearly injections or monthly tablets are easiest. Dogs over 6 months of age must have a blood test for heartworm before commencing prevention medications. If your dog misses its medication for any period of time, please phone the clinic for advice. Learn more about Heartworm

ONCE YEARLY HEARTWORM INJECTIONS give you the security and “peace of mind” of knowing it’s done. This can be started at 6 months of age.

Flea control

All pets will be exposed to fleas at some stage so rather than letting an infestation develop, it is better to use a regular prevention treatment. Newer products that are very safe and easy to use are the SPOT-ON drops
applied to the skin once monthly and can be used on your pups at any age. There are several options available. Please discuss with your veterinarian which option is best for your pet.

All pets in the household must be treated.

Tick control

Paralysis ticks are found in or near bush, scrubland and riverbanks. The main tick season is August to January, however ticks can be prevalent at any time of the year. If your pet is in a tick area, you should search him/her daily for ticks.  Prevention can be difficult so ask your veterinarian for more information as treatment may vary depending on your pet’s level of exposure. No method of tick prevention is 100% effective, so you still need to manually search your pet.

Desexing

All pets should be desexed between 4 and 6 months of age.  Desexed pets are healthier, and less likely to roam, fight or cause nuisance to neighbours. Many behavioural problems can be prevented with desexing. Plus unwanted litters are avoided. There is no advantage in allowing females to have a heat or litter first. Learn more about desexing your pet

Diet

Correct nutrition is important, particularly during rapid growth time of the first 1-2 years. Please ask our healthcare team for advice on feeding your dog, as a balanced diet is essential for a long and healthy life. Learn more about choosing the right food for your puppy