Ive grown up w pets but this will be my first time being responsible for this type of living being myself. Ive been doing a ton of research since i paid my deposit and have realized theres much more than i knew to it and i dont think google can educate me with all i need to know. So im hoping some of you fellow dog owners can help! I pick my male yellow lab puppy up on Feb 2 and he will be only 6wks old (born dec 22). My research has shown this to be definitely at least 2wks too early but the breeder insists this is fine and will not keep him another 2-3wks with his mother. So I’m hoping I can give him the proper development tools during those few weeks and any advice would be appreciated! I have purchased a metal kennel with dividers for his growth (blue in color because I read they see that color somewhat better?) and have researched crate training (again any additional advice would be great). I also purchased an extra large dog bed so he will grow into it without having to change/replace his known comfort area, and a metal 8 panel exercise pen for the living room because my research said not to allow him full access of the house during training and this allows him to not be secluded in his more appropriate spaced living area (do I really have to keep him from the whole house for at least 6months?) I’ve printed the food list from hound mom but does anyone have any suggestions and reasons to the best choice? I have a food store fairly close by that carries most of the listed options. I think ive gotten pretty good training guidance online but as ive said advice is welcome. Ill be looking for a vet i like but would like some feedback as to fle medication, heartguard, whats the best shampoo etc for this type of dog and age, supplies such as right brush, teeth care, toys, etc. Also i read he can not be outside or around other dogs until like 12 weeks but that socialization with other dogs is crucial during the time before that as well as walks and outside play, so any suggestion/feedback on that? I have three kids 8, 6, and 5 who are a bit wild and im concerned will interfere with the correct training/ pack order our puppy will need, amy help with that? I am taking this very seriously, i want to raise this dog properly for his mental, emotional, developmental, and physical health. Ive learned that i wont be able to love him like a member of our human family as planned but instead love him as a member of his dog family in us. So any and all help, advice, information, and suggestion is requested and much appreciated!!! Thank you all so much!!
Oh and just for fun, any puppy name ideas with cool meanings? Thanks!theBCnutMember
You are in for quite an adventure! Have fun!
You may have to wait even longer than 6 months to be able to let your puppy roam the house alone. My newest pup waited until he was 8 month before he all of a sudden grew up and quit trying to eat everything. I’ve know many dogs that took even longer. That doesn’t mean he can’t go all over the house, it just has to be with someone who can keep an eye on him.
Teach him a command that means go to your bed. And as soon as he is old enough, enroll in an obedience class. Don’t think that one class will be enough, just like education, training is lifelong.
One of the most important things puppies learn in those last 2 weeks with their littermates is to not bite too hard, so it’s important that you don’t just stop the pup from biting, but teach it to have a soft mouth. Allow the pup to put it’s mouth on you, but if it clamps down, yelp and stop playing with it. Make sure your kids are on board with this too. It takes a little time, but when he is older and stronger, he will know not to bite hard, even if something frightens him.
Socialization with other dogs will have to wait, but you can find places with people for your puppy to meet. Let many, many different people pet and touch your puppy all over. Have them touch paws, ears, tail. Look in mouth and ears. Pass him around.
If you want great foods at any price, the Nature’s Variety Instinct and Annamaet formulas are good. If you are looking for good food at a good price, the Earthborn formulas are good.InkedMarieMember
This is probably not what you want to hear but get your deposit back. Six weeks is too young and any breeder saying its fine isn’t reputable & doesn’t deserve your money.aimeeMember
I’ve owned several Labs and used to show in conformation and obedience. I love the breed. I do think 6 weeks is too young to remove from the litter. Any chance the breeder will keep the litter together for at least another week?
The time to start puppy classes is about a week after the first vaccination so well before 12 weeks. The key is that the exposure is to other healthy vaccinated dogs in a controlled environment. You can find some good information at dogstardaily.com The information is broken down into what you need to know before you get your pup, first week home, first month home etc.
As for feeding, in addition to appropriate calcium levels I only feed foods that have passed feeding trials during the growth period. I raised my last two Labs on Pro Plan large breed puppy. In addition to HDMS list you can find food suggestions here https://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/canine-nutrition/hip-dysplasia-dogs/#comment-510071572
Thanks for all the info everyone and websites! The breeder is definitely not open to keeping them longer. She said this is the age they do all their liters and there are plenty of people willing to take them home. I’ve been searching and searching foods but all brands that have the requirements I’ve read about are made by diamond and that seems to be an unsafe idea? I will look into pro plan I haven’t read on that one yet. Thank you!InkedMarieMember
She’s not open to keeping the pups longer? Wow. I do suggest you check the laws in your state. Here in my state, it is against the law to transfer ownership before 8 weeks of age.theBCnutMember
This does sound like a very bad breeder.
Ok I live in idaho ill look into it. Ya based on a lot of other things I’ve read I’m not thinking they are very good breeders either.
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