What to look for when getting a new puppy

Holly with Mojo

Meet Mojo, Nurse Holly’s beautiful new puppy.

We love new arrivals at our Veterinary Practice. So, to help you choose your new pet we decided to share some advice about what you should look when getting for in a puppy.

Research: Firstly, make sure you’ve thought about whether a dog is right for you. They can live to 15 years old so getting one is a big commitment. They will need to be  walked every day and they can cost a lot to maintain.

Click here to read what you need to buy to prepare for your puppy.
Click here to read how our VIP scheme can help you with the costs of a puppy.

Make sure you also think carefully about what breed you want as little puppies (like Dunder ) can grow up fast. Certain breeds also have associated health problems. For example, Bulldogs are more likely to have breathing problems than other dogs and Cavaliers are prone to heart conditions.

Certification of the Parents:  Many breed societies have screening programs to prevent breeders from using dogs with genetic problems passing on their genes to the next generation. Discuss with your vet the conditions that can occur in the breed you are looking for and what certificates to insist on. This simple step could save you from heartache and possibly very large costs indeed.

Where to buy: It’s important to get your pet from a good home. Avoid puppies in pet shops as these are often from puppy farms, where dogs are kept in poor conditions and bred only for profit. Instead look for family pets who have had puppies. We often have adverts for them on our waiting room notice board so come and have a look. Do not buy a pup just to get it away from appalling conditions – unscrupulous breeders often use this ploy to make you buy.

Parents: When viewing the puppy ask to see the mother and father if possible, so you can see that they are in good condition.

Behaviour: Try not to pick the small quiet puppy in the corner as it may be more likely to have health problems. Think about what type of character would suit your home. Do you want a very confident playful puppy or a laid back calmer puppy? Whichever one you pick, make sure you check them over thoroughly.

Appearance: Look for a puppy with a lovely shiny coat and no sores, a clean and dry behind with no irritation or discharge, clean ears and clear, shining eyes with no discharge.

Vaccinations, worming and flea treatment: Make sure you ask if the puppy has had any vaccinations (the first vaccinations should be at 8 and 10 weeks), Ask if it has been wormed.and if so, note down the when and with which product. The same would apply for flea treatment.  Also try to get a sample pack of the food the puppies have been fed, so that you can change them over to a new food gradually.

Information Packs: We have drawn up an information pack for first time owners or for owners who have not had a young puppy in the house for some time. Packs are free and can be requested by calling either surgery and requesting one.

Post Purchase Examination: Bring your pup in for a free post purchase examination immediately after buying it. This will allow us to warn you of any problems and enable you to go back to the breeder before the puppy has stolen your heart and you cannot bring yourself to give it back.

If you would like any more information or to book an appointment then phone 01621 818282 (Tiptree Veterinary Centre) or 01206 561407 (Willows Veterinary Centre) or visit our websites on www.tiptreevets.co.uk or www.willows-vets.co.uk

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