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Puppy Care


Puppy Care in St. Petersburg

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How We Help.

House Training.

Also visit our Kitten Care page.

Pictured: “Nerja” Bybel

How will our vet care for the health of my puppy?

So, you’re thinking about bringing home a new bundle of joy. Or, you’re reading this because you couldn’t resist that cuddly puppy anymore! We’re so excited for you! This begins some of the best years of your family’s lives. The bond you will make with your new dog is one you will cherish forever. We can help make sure the happiness will endure by devoting ourselves to your puppy’s quality of life.

Shooting an arrow to hit a distant target requires patient aiming right from the start. Likewise, your puppy needs our time and commitment—both yours and ours—from the very beginning to help ensure they progress straight into a healthy and happy adult. That is the goal we aim for, and we want to equip you with essential knowledge and guidance that will help keep your pup on target.

We will provide you our New Puppy Checklist (shown here for information purposes) when we start your puppy’s health care. It lists the major milestones that your fur bundle will reach as they grow through each stage of puppy life. Use the Checklist to monitor your pet’s progress as we guide you through these critical stages. So, what’s on the Checklist?

We want to rule out the possibility that your puppy may already have a health concern, and we want to create a baseline for your puppy’s health so we have a basis for comparison on future visits. Both of these goals can be accomplished with a thorough wellness exam on the first visit. We will also create a vaccination plan with a schedule for administering the vaccines.

No one likes the idea of parasites! This is especially so since they can spread diseases to both humans and animals—an even worse idea! Our veterinarians can lead the charge against parasites by equipping your puppy with defenses for heartworms, intestinal parasites, fleas and ticks. Not all prevention and treatments are created equal, however. So your vet will discuss which ones are right for you and your pet.

Many new dog owners ask, ’What should I feed them? How will I know if my puppy is sick? What if my dog gets lost? How can I prevent unwanted puppies?’ We will discuss with you these questions and more. We can explain the signs of puppy illness, as well as recommend a puppy food that will provide the best nutrition for your pup. And we can provide microchip ID and spay/neuter services that are sure to bring peace of mind!

Rest assured, your veterinarian will give your puppy the same care that they give their own. That’s part of our mission, and so is our devotion to pet owners. If you decide to adopt a new pet from a rescue organization, we will perform his or her first exam for free! (See our Client Savings page for more details.) Whether you choose to adopt or buy, please call us to schedule your new puppy’s first appointment. We aim for health and happiness!

How do I care for my puppy at home?

Behavior and Socialization

You will soon learn that dogs use their mouth for just about everything they do! You will even find your hand in your puppy’s mouth during playtime and teething. This should be deemed a negative behavior because we don’t want him to learn that hands are fair game. Ween your puppy off of human hands by distracting her attention with a more appealing chew toy or other activity. Then reward puppy with praise and a treat after successfully shifting her attention.

This same method of distraction and positive reinforcement can be used with other inappropriate behaviors, such as chewing shoes and jumping up onto people and furniture. Reinforce only those behaviors you wish to encourage. This will also give your aspiring puppy a sense of confidence.

Potty Training

Potty training a puppy, like teaching any new skill or habit to a human toddler, takes time, patience, diligence, consistency, and praise. Start by establishing a regular routine of taking your puppy to his or her designated outside spot. Appropriate times are when you wake up; just after your pup eats, drinks, naps, or plays; and before you go to bed.

As soon after puppy goes potty, give positive reinforcement with praise and a treat, so she learns to associate going potty outside with good things. If he has an accident in the house, don’t scold or punish. Simply take pup outside to finish any business, and reinforce with positive things. With patience and vigilance, your puppy will soon get the hang of it!

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