There are plenty of things a dog owner has to think about when they get a new puppy. Puppy food, bedding, toys, is the house safe? and so on - but what rarely comes to mind when you're enjoying the company of your new pup is taking care of the future.
Like so many things associated with dog ownership, it's always better to be preemptive. It's no good looking into pet insurance the day after your dog needs a costly operation.
Desmond Fellows has compiled a must read list of things you can do to protect your puppy for the future, today.
Insuring Your Puppy
Insurance, as well as providing peace of mind and protection, plays a really important part in responsible dog ownership. When accidents happen and dogs need urgent medical attention and in some cases, life saving surgery, the last thing a dog owner wants to be doing is fiddling with a calculator trying to work out if they can afford it. Insurance, provided you've taken out the right policy, will remove all of that hassle and enable you to make the right decision by your dog.
A lot of people wait a couple of years before they look into dog insurance, but quite often it's too late by then and they've had an unnecessary expense to incur. Keep in mind that pet insurance also covers third parties and public liability.
Find Out More About pet insurance: http://www.insurance4pets.com
In most cases, a breeder will advise on worming and prevention against other parasites, but it is a good idea to keep on top of this one. One way of doing so is to keep a diary or log of when you worm your pup. Puppies are prone to picking up parasites, as well as other nasties, as the immune system is still weak during puppyhood, so ensure that you don't neglect this subject.
Speaking to your vet will enable you to make the right decisions about when and how to prevent against worms, but in almost all cases it is a simple and hassle free thing to do.
Diet - Start As You Mean To Go On
One sure fire way to protect your dog for the future is to get his diet off to a good start. There are a hundred and one different ways to feed a pup and each dog owner will have their own golden rule by which they swear. Do as much as you can to understand the particular nutritional requirements of your pup. Is he a large breed that will grow slowly? Or is he a small breed that is likely to grow quickly? Considerations such as these will help you make the right decisions.
It is also worth remembering that the sooner you begin feeding a healthy, nutrient rich and balanced diet, the sooner your dog will benefit from it. Quite often, dog owners miss out on this opportunity to equip their dog with good nourishment until they realise that there may be a deficiency. Your dog is more likely to grow into a strong, healthy and happy adult if he's been on a good, well planned and researched diet from the off.
Microchipping Your Puppy
Microchipping your dog is a sensible idea.
Whilst a new born or very young pup should not be chipped, a good rule of thumb is this. Many dogs adopted from rescue centres will already have microchipped your dog, in which case you're already set!
If you've bought a new puppy from a breeder and if he's old enough to launch an escape bid, he's old enough to be chipped. Microchipping will give you a much higher likelihood of getting your dog back if he does sneak under the fence.
Early socialisation does wonders for your dog's self esteem, confidence and general happiness. Dogs will inevitably have to come into contact with other dogs as well as strange new people, so equipping them with the ability to handle these experiences like a pro will reduce the likelihood of awkwardness or fear later in life. Well socialised dogs are more likely to be well behaved in new and exciting situations, which means that there is more you and your dog can do together when he's old enough and you're not restricted by your pet's lack of manners.
What's the best - or worst - puppy advice you've ever received? Let us know - we'd love to publish your hints and tips for other dog owners to benefit from!