6 Basic Puppy Needs for a Happy, Healthy Start in Life
Puppies are definitely some of the most popular pets, and dogs have long been known as man’s best friend.
Whether you live alone and are considering adding a four-legged companion to your little family, or want to welcome a dog into your big, happy family as a playmate for your kids, there’s always something quite special about bringing a cute little puppy home. But with a small puppy comes a big responsibility; it’s down to you to make sure that they have the best start in life and that they are provided with everything that they need to grow into a happy, healthy and well-behaved adult dog.
In this guide, we’ve put together a list of puppy basics that every pup, no matter their breed or size, will need to thrive.
A Healthy Diet
Just like humans, puppies need to eat well to be healthy and happy all round. Your puppy should be getting a healthy, balanced diet that provides them with all the nutrients that they need, especially right now as they are growing. But with so many options available when it comes to puppy food, it’s normal if you are feeling a bit stuck when it comes to what to feed. Raw feeding is becoming an increasingly popular choice for dogs of all ages since when done well, it is a great way to ensure that your pup is getting the right amount of nutrients. If you’re not sure how to get started, Bella and Duke’s raw feeding guide for puppies can help you figure out how much of each food your pup should be eating. The raw feeding guide for puppies also provides further advice on switching your pup over from kibble and other puppy foods. Bella and Duke offer tailor-made raw meals designed to fulfil your puppy’s dietary needs.
It’s never too early to get started with some basic training for your puppy. As the saying goes, a well-trained dog is a happy dog, and your pup will certainly feel very accomplished and proud of themselves when you praise them for getting things like pooping outside or sitting on command right. Puppies from as early as eight weeks old are like little sponges, and with persistence over time, you will be able to teach them everything that they need to know. Once your puppy has been vaccinated, it’s definitely worth taking them to some puppy classes where they can put the skills that they have learned at home to the test and meet some new canine friends.
It is extremely important that your puppy is vaccinated before you start taking them for walks or allowing them to meet other dogs outside that you do not know. Getting your puppy vaccinated as soon as possible is all part of being a responsible pet parent. The vaccinations are usually given over 2-3 weeks and will include protection against serious diseases such as canine parvovirus, which your pup could pick up from other dogs’ poo outside.
Although your puppy cannot go for walks until they have been fully vaccinated, it’s during this time of their lives that they are very impressionable and the social skills that they learn now will stay with them for life. Thankfully, there are several things that you can do to socialise your pup without putting their health at risk. Taking them for walks while you carry them is a good way to let them get used to cars passing by on the road and other animals. If it is possible, let them meet as many friends and family members as possible so that they can get used to how to behave around people.
Puppies will instinctively need to chew, and they don’t really care what they’re chewing on. If you want to save your shoes, furniture, and even the electrical wiring in your home, then it’s important to make sure that your puppy has access to all the chew toys that their heart could desire. Rubber chew toys, rope toys or dog-safe bones are the ideal choice; rawhide chews are often cheap and widely available; however, there have been many safety concerns with some dogs swallowing and choking on pieces of the rawhide, so these are best avoided for your pup.
Lots of Fun
Puppies are naturally playful and they always want to have fun and play. And the best thing is that through playing with your puppy you can also incorporate training and bond with them. Playing games like tug and fetch gives your puppy the chance to learn some basic commands like drop it and sit, and it will keep them mentally stimulated. Puppies often have a lot of energy, so plenty of time for them to play and wear themselves out during the day will keep them calm at other times.
Bringing a new puppy home is an exciting responsibility. If you’re about to welcome a new pup into your life, make sure that they are provided with these essential basics for a great start.