Helpful Hints For The New Pet Owner

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Here are some helpful hints for new pet owners. Remember, your pet depends on you to look after it. Providing your pet with all the love, attention and care that they deserve will make them be a much happier, healthier pet and a best friend for life!

House Training:

One way to house train a puppy every time he does potty or pee inside the house, whether you are at home or not to see this happen at the time, walk over and pick him up, take him over to the poop and rubbed his little nose right in the middle of it. Whether it was poop or pee, rub their little noses in it and when you are doing this, give them a very stern NO! Then pick him/her up and take him/her outside and place their nose down on the grass and rub their nose very gently along the top of the grass and tell them that this is where to go potty. Leave them outside a little while each time they make a mess. Then every time he or she does their doggy business outside, tell them what a good boy/girl they are.

If you use this method every time your puppy goes poop in the house, within three weeks time, he or she will be house trained. You can also train a puppy to do his pooping and peeing on newspapers but if you teach your puppy to do his business on the newspapers, do not teach him to go both inside and outside the house to do his poo/pee. This will only confuse the puppy. Just pick one method and stick to it. Using newspapers or doggy pads to house train puppies is a very messy way of house training because if you use doggy training pads or newspapers, most puppies are going to just chew all this up and make a big mess but it does work.

Note:

You can reward them with a treat but if you do this every time they go outside and pee/poop, they will associate receiving a treat each time they go outside and will just bug the crap out of you to go out every second just to get that treat. You can just tell them what a good boy/girl they are whenever they do their business outside but only reward them with a treat every now & then. Reward your puppy with a good scratch on his ears. They love that!

For kittens, just show them where their litter box is and nature will take over.

Food:

There are many choices of pet food that is specifically formulated for puppies and kittens to give them the necessary vitamins & minerals that their little growing bodies need. You do not want to feed an eight-week-old puppy or kitten an adult food because this does not contain the necessary nutrients that puppies and kittens need to grow into strong and healthy adult animals. Adult pet food does not contain the higher levels of protein, vitamins and minerals, which young puppies and kittens need to let them grow up healthy, happy & strong. For smaller breed dogs such as Chihuahuas, you can leave food out for them all the time even after they reach one year of age so they can nibble on throughout the day. Larger breed dogs can be fed only once a day after they reach one year of age. Just be sure that you feed the right size of kibble to your puppy. Choose small bites for small puppies such as Chihuahuas and go for a larger size kibble for breeds of dogs such as a German Shepherd. Dry pet food is sometimes too hard for puppies and kittens to chew so what you can do is moisten their dry food with a little water so they will be able to eat better. Eight-week-old puppies & kittens have tiny little teeth, which makes it a difficult chore for them to eat the dry food.

Keep your pet on puppy and or kitten food up until they reach one year of age and then slowly switch over to a good quality brand of adult food. The way to switch your pet to adult food without causing any stomach problems or diarrhea, is to mix in some of the puppy/kitten food with the adult food and each day add more of the adult food and less of the other. You can feed your pet only the new food after just one week without mixing the old food in and without causing the animal to have diarrhea. Always keep fresh water available at all times.

ID Tags & Collars:

An important thing to remember about placing a collar around your pet’s neck when they are young is that as the animal grows, so do their necks. The tightness of the collar needs to be checked at least once a month and adjusted to the animals growing and replace the small collar with a new one as the animal grows. What happens if a collar becomes too tight around the puppies neck and is left there and is not loosened, then the collar will become embedded down into the flesh around the entire neck of the puppy and will cause deep wounds and severe trauma to the neck that will require immediate attention by a vet. Another important thing to remember is that if you have a teeny tiny puppy such as a  Chihuahua, a lot of times the collars and ID tags are much bigger than the puppy and this can cause them to get one or their front legs caught in the collar.

Bathing:

Bathing a pet can be a harrowing experience for both the pet and their owner and using the correct shampoo is important. Dogs that are under the age of 8 weeks cannot be bathed using a flea and tick shampoos because of the insecticides that are in the shampoos are harmful. For pets under the age of 8 weeks, use Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Shampoo and follow with the conditioner after the shampoo is rinsed out. Baby shampoo is mild and gentle and is safe to use on dogs and kittens under the age of 8 weeks. Any fleas that are on the animals will die.

Once an animal reaches 8 weeks and over then a stronger flea and tick shampoo can be used if you prefer or you can continue using Johnson & Johnson Baby Shampoo and conditioner. Be sure and rinse all of the shampoo and conditioner out of your pet’s fur because the thoroughness of this final rinsing is important. Even the smallest amount of soap and or conditioner left on the ani­mal can cause severe irritation of the skin and this is one of the most common causes of eczemas in animals.

Toenails

It is a good practice to get into the habit of trimming your pet’s toenails at least once a month when they are still puppies because their nails grow so fast and are sharp and pointed which is easier for their nails to become caught in carpeting. This could cause a toenail to be ripped right off the cuticle. Give them a manicure regularly to keep the toenails trimmed down to prevent any accident from happening and get them used to having their paws touched. If you do cut the nails too short, just rinse the entire paw off under warm water and then wet a washcloth with warm water and wrap the cloth around the animal’s paw and place slight pressure on the paw for twenty minutes and the bleeding should stop. Be sure and remember to trim the dewclaws on puppies too.

Ears:

You can clean your puppies and kitten’s ears at least once a week and every time they have a bath by using a cotton ball and dabbing a little bit of baby oil on to it and wipe the part of the ear that is exposed to view and you can go down inside the ear just far enough as to not loose the cotton ball. A Q-tip dipped in alcohol also works well as long as the ears have no infection in them. Just do not go far down into the canal of the ear because you can damage their ear canal with a Q-tip. If your pet’s ears feel too warm or almost hot to the touch, this could mean that there is an infection somewhere so you should take your pet to see your local veterinarian.

Vitamin

A vitamin & mineral supplement can be added to your pet’s food daily or it can be given to them directly. Having a healthy pet plays an important role in them leading a long and healthy life. Pet owners might need to supplement their dog/cats diet to ensure they are giving them all of the nutrients they need. Pet vitamins are available in chewable tablets, powder, and capsules for both dogs and cats.

Pet Tabs Vitamin and Minerals for dogs can be found at Petsmart for a bottle of 60 chewable tablets for $10.99. They also carry a vitamin and mineral supplement for cats called Nutrish-Um, which comes in a 2.5-ounce tube. You squeeze a dab of the vitamin supplement onto your finger and then wipe this on to your cat’s mouth right below their little noses and they lick it off.

Sources:

I worked as a veterinary technician for 10 years & learned a lot of valuable information.

DISCLAIMER:

 I am not a licensed vet but I did learn many useful tips and information during my years working for one. The above information is intended for educational purposes only and shall not take the place of seeking professional medical advice from a licensed veterinarian.

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