Information for new owners of Miniature Australian Shepherd or Toy Australian Shepherd Puppies
The exciting day has finally come and you are getting your new Toy or Miniature Australian Shepherd puppy. Is your home ready for a 4 legged toddler?
Puppy Proof your home: It helps to get down on your hands and knees to observe your home from their eye level. Puppies are curious and put everything in their mouths. Take the time to clear your home of any small objects your puppy could ingest. Put away your children’s toys, your shoes and socks. Put houseplants out of reach. In general, look around for anything a toddler might get into. This will make the first days at a new home less stressful for you and your new puppy.
Purchase a Crate: think of your puppies crate like a playpen or crib for a child. It is for your puppy’s safety, and if correctly introduced, the crate becomes the puppies refuse and place of retreat.
Dishes: Stainless Steel can be expensive when buying dog bowls. They will pay off in the long run! Puppies tend to chew on everything. Plastic can be ingested and rough edges are hard to keep clean. We recommend that you get 2 sets so that way you can run one set through your dishwasher while the other is in use.
Feed: Ask the breeder what food they have been feeding your puppy. Have that brand at home before you pick up your puppy. This will help the transition to his/her new home and decrease the possibility of digestive upset.
Water: it never hurts to take some water the puppy is used to drinking home with you. Take a container with you. Slowly introduce your water source gradually by mixing your new water into the old in increasing amounts over two to three days.
Bedding: Ask the breeder for a towel or rag that has been used as bedding with Mom and the litter mates. This will have smells on it that will be comforting for a few days while your puppy is getting used to a new home. This can often make the first couple of nights a lot easier on you and them. Watch carefully for chewing of the cloth. If ingested it can be very dangerous and mean a trip to the vet.
Toys: This is one place people tend to go over board. Puppies are hard on toys and Toy or Miniature Australian Shepherd puppies tend to be hoarders. If you buy toys that will hold up to those needle teeth, you won't need so many. We always recommend Kong's for our puppies. Not only are they hard to destroy, they provide mental stimulation as well. Get the right size for your puppy now, not a large one they will grow into. While filling the Kong with homemade treats is the best thing nutritionally, just using the kibble will work to give the puppy something to work on. Soft or stuffed toys are fun, however they can be hazardous. The stuffing can be pulled out, shredded all over the house, but worst of all, when ingested, can be a health hazard that can result in death.
Chews: Rawhide is wonderful thing when puppies are cutting teeth. But, they too can be dangerous. Large chunks chewed off a rawhide bone can be choking hazzard and if injested, can swell in the stomach, resulting in a very sick puppy. I only give rawhide when I am in the same room and can pay attention to the puppy. When they get one chewed down to any size I think they might try to swallow, it goes in the trash. Ice cubes work really well as chews when your puppy is cutting teeth.