West Chester Veterinary Center New PuppyGetting a new puppy is an exciting time, but there are many questions you may have as a new puppy owner. Questions such as – How do I house train my puppy? Should I crate train them? Let them sleep on the bed? What are safe toys for them to play with?

The veterinary staff at West Chester Veterinary Center can help you with reliable advise to start your puppy’s transition to your home a smooth one.

  • House training is a big part of having a happy household. It is most common to have dogs go to the bathroom outside, although occasionally small dogs may be trained to urinate on ‘pee pads’. The most basic part of house training is to take the puppy outside right after they eat, when they wake up and after playing.

  • Crate training is a good way to ensure your puppy’s safety while you’re gone by limiting the number of things they can get into and places they can make a mess. It gives them their own safe place and can be invaluable when unusual circumstances arise.

  • Socialization with other people and animals helps them to lead happier lives. Activities such as puppy kindergarten and trips to the park (once they are fully vaccinated) can be valuable for teaching them appropriate ways to interact with people and animals that are not from their household.

  • Good foods are very important. While any given animal can do well with a given food, better foods are more likely to provide good health.

  • Exercise is critical for puppies. Any dog that is bored is more likely to be destructive and difficult to train.

  • Puppies gain immunity to some diseases from their mothers, but between 8 and 16 weeks, they lose all of this inherited immunity. A series of vaccines will be recommended by your vet every few weeks throughout this timeframe.

  • Unless you are planning to breed your puppy once they are adults, spaying and neutering is always recommended.

  • Heartworms are transmitted by mosquitoes. Any weather that is over 50 degrees is sufficient for mosquitoes to hatch, although they prefer warmer weather. Because they can hatch at relatively low temperatures, we recommend keeping dogs on heartworm preventative year around.

  • Fleas are a common problem and, once in a household, can be very difficult to get rid of. Our homes are ideal places for fleas to live – the temperature is perfect and carpet and other textiles provide the right kind of surface for them live in until they can find a host.

  • Dental care – it may seem early to start worrying about your puppies teeth, but many breeds have genetics that will cause dental problems at a very young age. Regular dental cleanings are recommended throughout their life.

  • Puppies are born with intestinal parasites. General dewormers cover the most common intestinal parasites, but there are a wide variety of parasites that they do not cover.

Every puppy and their family is different and have unique needs. Different breeds of dogs have common traits that can influence their time in your household. Read the complete article about welcoming your puppy on the West Chester Veterinary Center website .  Remember your veterinarian is always the best resource for making sure you and your puppy have a long, healthy life together!