A GUIDE FOR NEW PUPPY OWNERS
1. Do not let your puppy get too heavy during the growing stages. They should be well fleshed, ribs covered but lean is better then heavy until the bones set.
2. No forced exercise like jogging until the dogs are two years old and the bones are set. Understand these are still puppies at 18 months of age. Use common sense do not let older animals rough house with the puppies. They are fragile and need supervised exercise in a fenced in area or daily walks with you. Your dog will tell you how much exercise the needs if you simply observe. The key is moderation and common sense in raising these dogs.
3. Your puppy should not be crated for more than 8 hours. The amount of calories taken in and the amount of normal free exercise and daily movement around the house is a delicate balance in the early stages. For strong bones you need normal moderate exercise in order to develop the proper muscles to support the bone.
4. Elevate the dog’s food bowl as they grow.
5. No vitamins or food enhancers. A good quality dog food will have enough supplements to ensure good health. Natural calcium in the form of yogurt or cottage cheese may be given daily.
6. Vitamin C is an important supplement to prevent hip dysplasia. Use a sustained release formula.
7. Ask your veterinarian about heartworm preventative and what is best suited for your area.
8. Watch the amount of treats dog and human. Try bits of apples, carrots and bananas.
9. Allow the puppy to eat in quiet, non-stressful environment. They deserve to be undisturbed and should not be hassled by kids or other animals.
10. Amount to feed: start with what is recommended on the bag of food and remember that amount is for twice a day. So go by the weight chart. Then if they seem lean or hungry, increase it. If they leave food, decrease it. This will differ with each puppy. A high protein food in large amounts does not mean a bigger animal. A high quality food in normal amounts means the dog will reach his genetic.
11. Feed only a premium quality, balanced, moderate protein food. No super food, stress food or performance food. The idea is for the animal to grow slow making a solid sturdy bone.
12. Hip dysplasia can be caused by heredity and/or environmental factors. Environmental factors include over nutrition and excessive exercise. So for your puppy’s sake, please do not over-feed and avoid playing on slick surfaces such as kitchen or waxed floors. Also avoid jumping until 18 months. Avoid going up and down stairs until 6 months.
THE BASIC DIET
Dry food: High quality, moderate protein (21% to 26%), meat based food. Your puppy has been started on Natural Choice Large Breed Puppy Food.
Meat: I recommend Hills Science Diet “Mix-it” canned food. Start with one tablespoon per feeding. If appetite is poor, add warm water.
Calcium: One tablespoon of Yogurt per day.
Vitamin C: Start with 500 mg. Tablets, one per day. Increase every 2 weeks to 1000 mg until puppy is 18 months old.
I have reviewed and been given a two page copy of “A Guide for New Puppy Owners”.
Date: ___________________________ Name: __________________________________________