Puppy Care

Newfie Puppy

When You First Take Puppy Home:
This is such an exciting time – you’re bringing home a baby! What do you do? Let’s start at the beginning:

  • Crating – Your puppy will need a crate for sleeping. It’s best if you have a small crate for the first two months, so puppy won’t be running laps (and peeing) in an adult crate. Try to borrow one as you’ll only need it for a few weeks. Your puppy should travel in the car in a crate, and should sleep at night in a crate, unless he or she is sleeping outside in a fenced area with another dog.

    The crate should be next to your bed at night. The dog is a social animal and should not be isolated away from others especially for sleeping. After the age of four to five months, your puppy can have an adult crate. Some puppies sleep best with a few ice cubes in a plastic dish in their crate at night. As adults, they go in their crates with fresh water in a stainless steel bucket clipped to the side of the crate. The crate is a great place for eating bones and napping but never for punishment.

  • Grooming– You will need a comb for grooming. A puppy should be groomed daily to teach it to let you handle its body. You can turn your puppy on its back and stroke its tummy every day to prepare. Get your puppy used to being handled all over right away. Do its nails once a week. You can use a nail grinder but any dremmel tool will work. Remember, being able to do your dog’s nails yourself means that your dog accepts you as the ‘pack leader’ and everything else that you do with your dog will be easier.

    At first it may take two of you to teach your dog to lie on its back and have its nails done, but later your dog will lie down and roll over on command when you tell it to. Ahhh, that’s much easier…Bathe every two to four weeks. Do ears every week with a cotton square or ball. Feet and ears should be trimmed every 4-6 weeks with thinning shears. An adult should be groomed with a Belgium Greyhound comb at least once a week. The picnic table is an excellent place for this.

  • Feeding– Feed fresh food. If you’re not doing the natural diet (The Holistic Guide For A Healthy Dog by Volhard and Brown), then we recommend fresh frozen Bil-Jac® (1-800-842-5098). Giant dog breeds do best as puppies when fed a moderate protein food, and when they are slightly underfed during that first critical year. (Always ask your veterinarian for her or his nutritional advice first.) Your puppy will eat about 2/3rds of a cup four times a day at first, then quantities will increase as your puppy grows. By 11-12 weeks, your puppy will be eating three times a day. Feed three times a day until puppy is four months old, then twice a day throughout the rest of the dog’s life. Keep puppy slim. Do not leave food down. Refrigerate leftovers. Give puppy five minutes to eat by itself (no watching). I fast my dogs one day a week after they are six months old. I feel they live longer. Add Norwegian Kelp Meal or another immune system booster to each meal to help the immune system. Give your puppy 1000 mg. vitamin C each morning and night, and 400 IU vitamin E once a day. No calcium supplementation is recommended.

    Brewers yeast and garlic tablets are recommended if you wish to prevent fleas. I do not use any chemicals on my dogs, everything is natural. I have never had fleas on the dogs in 26 years (honest) and my dogs have not had internal parasites in the last eight years.

    Treats – Stay with natural treats. Nothing else.

  • Veterinary Care – Puppies should be wormed before they go home. However, you should take a fresh stool sample to your veterinarian to be checked on your first visit. Innoculations: Puppies will have their first vaccination at 7-8 weeks. Separate the innoculations by four weeks. We recommend the new high titre, low passage vaccines by Fort Dodge® or Pfizer® which is distemper, hepatitis, parainfluenza and killed parvovirus. We don’t give leptospirosis or coronavirus. I give the homeopathic remedy Thuja (30C) once a day for four days after the injection to counteract side effects of the vaccine Rabies vaccine is given by itself, and the homeopathic remedy hydrophobium is given afterward.

    Remember, one of the best defenses against disease is puppies bred to be healthy, free of internal and external parasites, eating fresh food and living in a natural, clean environment. Talk to your veterinarian and see if he/she will work with you on this before you bring puppy home.

  • Training, Socialization, and Playing – Puppies need to be trained at an early age. Puppy obedience can be started as early as 10 weeks-of-age. Be sure to pick a class where a good motivational method is taught by instructors who are experienced.Your puppy will use its mouth on everything, including you, to investigate. This is normal. By the age of 12 weeks your puppy should no longer be using its teeth on your body. Please get your puppy into a training program right away. Early training is never forgotten, and the socialization away from home and with other dogs is very, very important.

    Your puppy should be traveling with you everywhere especially during the first few weeks. You want to introduce your puppy to as many new things as possible right away. Stairs, elevators, cows, horses, traffic, vacuum cleaners, cats, other people, other dogs, etc. Games are great. Put some training treats in a fanny pack and go outside. Let your puppy get distracted and go hide. Call the puppy and when it finds you, give a treat and lots of praise. “What a smart puppy!” Now two of you take treats and separate. One calls the puppy and when puppy arrives, feed a treat and praise. Then stop interacting. The other person calls and – you know the rest.

  • Exercise – Should be moderate and daily. Double extension running is important every day, and becomes more important as the dog gets older and stronger. Remember, most barking, naughty chewing, stealing and general ‘naughtiness’ in the home can be prevented with adequate daily exercise, combined with obedience training. Absolutely no wrestling , tug of war games. Play by teaching your dog to retrieve and bring it back to you, and by running away and hiding and letting your smart puppy find you. A fenced in back yard is a must. Puppies need to play on natural surfaces off leash to grow properly. Exercise increases the density of their bones and makes their muscles stronger.

    Puppies should be outside off leash playing on natural surfaces at least 60% of their waking hours each day. Leash walking should be limited, several miles will tire the puppy’s muscles too much. Off leash the puppy can stop and rest when needed, and can actually get more beneficial exercise that way.Playing with another puppy that is not too large is good. Absolutely no sleeping on concrete, no slippery floors. These surfaces are very bad for growing bones and muscles. Keep puppy slim the first year. It goes without saying that for a Newfoundland the very best exercise is SWIMMING in clean water. Teach your Newf to retrieve a boat bumper from the water, it’s great fun.Puppies should spend several hours a day outside on natural surfaces where they can build up their muscles. Leash walking, stairs, slippery floors, sleeping on concrete, and playing with older, heavier dogs, all contribute to the crippling of puppies.

  • Cleaning Up Accidents – Use white vinegar on floors to neutralize odor. Use club soda on carpet to remove stain and odor. Use a crate for housebreaking. Nature’s Miracle has an excellent product for cleaning up accidents, for getting rid of ‘doggy odor’ on the dog, and ‘Skunk Off’ for totally neutralizing the worst odors. If applied to the dog, do not wet the coat first.