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Your puppy is growing rapidly in its first few months and is eager to explore and make friends. Giving your puppy the best start in life will make all the difference to its development.
It’s important to consider the right nutrition, preventative healthcare, environment, playmates and socialisation. Register your new puppy with us and receive a FREE Health Check and weigh-in with a vet.
You will also have access to Nurse appointments to check your puppy’s weight and apply flea & worming treatments (treatments not included).
Puppies are born with their sense of taste and touch immediately present. During this neonatal stage their mother has the most influence over them.
This is known as the transitional stage and is when a puppy’s behaviour is still being influenced by its mother and littermates. By now, a puppy’s eyes will open, hearing and smell senses start to develop, and their first baby teeth should start to appear. Puppies will also wag their tail, stand up, take a few steps and try out the odd bark!
At around 4 weeks old, puppies are most influenced by their littermates, they are helping each other to learn how to play, develop social skills, learn the inhibited bite, improve their physical coordination and discover their social boundaries and hierarchy. By week 4 or 5, a puppy’s eyesight will be well-developed.
Your puppy may be ready to leave its mother at 8 weeks old. Discuss this with your breeder to ensure the time is right for the puppy. Your puppy should be microchipped at 8 weeks, this will mostly likely be done by the breeder who will then change the owner details to yours on the microchip database.
This is puppy’s key socialisation period outside of their littermates when they need to meet other puppies and pets, a variety of people, noises, sounds, environments and situations to make sure they grow and develop into well socialised, friendly, confident young dogs.
Puppies should have had 2 rounds of vaccinations by the time they are 12 weeks old. Whenever you bring your puppy in for a vaccination with one of our vets they will receive a full health check. Apart from trips to the vets, a puppy should be kept indoors until it has received its full course of vaccinations to ensure optimum protection.
During this period your puppy will be learning who’s boss and where they rank within the household ‘pack’ (dominance and submission), against people and other pets. A puppy’s playgroup may have extended to other species and this becomes highly influential in their life. This is also when teething and chewing begins, so be prepared with some size-appropriate chewable toys.
It’s time to think about neutering your puppy. Talk to a member of our team about the many benefits of neutering.
When you pick up your new puppy and bring it home, we recommend you register them with a veterinary practice and book a full health check to ensure they are growing and developing correctly.
It’s a very good idea to insure your pet to help you cover any vet fees if they become ill or injured. Pet insurance will help ensure that if your puppy becomes ill or injured then you can afford the best treatment available not the best treatment you can afford at the time.*
Make sure you have a suitable bed, food and water bowl, puppy food, puppy training pads, a collar, tag and lead. Puppy-proof your home by moving any harmful plants, substances and objects out of their reach, including any objects you don’t wish your new puppy to chew! Cover any holes or gaps your puppy could squeeze into such as behind cupboards and appliances, and consider getting a stair gate if you do not wish your puppy to venture into certain rooms or upstairs – this is for the protection of your puppy and your home.
Your puppy should not be allowed outside (apart from trips to the vets) until a week after their final puppy vaccine to ensure they have adequate immunity. Before any trips outside it is vital to make sure your garden is safe for your puppy – cover any ponds, fill in any holes, remove any hazardous substances.
Having a dog collar and tag with your name and contact details on is a legal requirement. You should never put your dog’s name on the collar as a this makes it easier for thieves to take them.
Microchipping is also a legal requirement in dogs and could make all the difference in reuniting you with your pet should they go missing. Microchipping should be taken care of by the breeder, who will then change the name in the microchip database to yours. We can microchip your puppy in minutes if this has not been done.
If the breeder has not given your puppy its first set of flea and worming treatments, book into your vets straight away. We recommend Advocate, which protects against Roundworm, Whipworm, Hookworm, Lungworm, Heartworm, Ear Mites, Lice, Sarcoptic and Demodectic Mange, some of which can be fatal. Drontal or Droncit will protect your dog against tapeworm and is a tablet that needs to be given every six months, from six months of age. We recommend our gold standard products to best protect your puppy.
Vaccinations can be done from as early as 6 weeks and may be arranged by the breeder, otherwise, you can bring them to us and receive a full health check with a vet. Our vaccinations protect your puppy against canine distemper, canine parvovirus, infectious canine hepatitis, leptospirosis and kennel cough. Once your puppy has received an initial vaccination course they will then only require yearly boosters. It’s important that your puppy does not come into contact with other dogs outside of its home before their first course of vaccinations has been started.
During yours puppy’s first few months, they should be getting used to different people, pets in the home, pets and animals outside of the home, sounds and experiences to help socialise them. We recommend introducing new experiences gradually so as not to overwhelm them.
Another socialisation experience you may want to consider is swimming, as it can help to build confidence and is a great idea if you live near water or plan to take your puppy to the seaside, as it doesn’t always come naturally. Find out more about our puppy swim sessions at our Pet Fitness & Rehab Centre.
Fill in our form and we’ll send you our FREE puppy advice booklet, featuring a list of essential things your new puppy needs such as the best type of bedding, nutrition and more.
By entering your email address you agree to us emailing you with our news and special offers. Please note we will never sell or share your details with a third party for marketing purposes and you can unsubscribe from our emails at any time.
Please note. you should always check the details and exclusions of your pet insurance policy to ensure you understand what conditions are covered.
*TLC cost of £11 per month based on 0-25kg dog gold membership which consists of a £25 joining fee and 11 payments of £11 per month in year 1, and £11 per month in subsequent years. Equivalent monthly cost for dog 25kg and over is £13.