How to pick your puppy
5 steps to choosing the best dog for you
Finding the right puppy for you is as important as finding the right partner in life. Getting your selection right can be the difference between blissful happiness or a life full of stress and dramas. Below are some easy steps to help you on the way toward having the wonderful relationship that every owner wants with their dog.
Follow our 5 steps to success:
1.Do your research
Find out which breeds suit your situation, personality and lifestyle.
Be honest with yourself – will you really walk your dog twice per day every day or do you need a couch potato? Are you happy for a dog to sit on your lap on the couch or do you want a more independent dog? Is dog hair in the house OK with you or do you need a dog that doesn’t shed? How much time do you have for training and exercise?
Some dogs are very amenable to training whereas hunting dogs like Beagles and German short haired pointers can prove challenging while northern working dogs like Japanese Spitz, Samoyeds, Huskies and Malamutes can prove difficult to train for the inexperienced owner. Small lap dogs are wonderful companions but will become problematic if they are to live outside exclusively.
I can’t stress enough how important it is to be honest and find the right breed for you.
2.Select the right breeder
Find a reputable breeder. Look for a breeder who specialises in one to two breeds not one who changes with the fashion or that has a multitude of different breeds.
A reputable breeder cares about the homes their puppies will go to and will ask you a lot of questions about your lifestyle and wants in a dog. Again, be honest with your answers, the breeder will have spent many hours with the puppies and will know their personalities, helping match the right puppy for your needs.
3.View the parents
Generally the offspring will have many traits of the parents, if one of the parents is unapproachable, the chances of that trait being passed on to the puppy is high.
If you discover an undesirable trait in one of the parents, it is wise to look elsewhere. Don’t be tempted to look at the puppies first – once you see those cute little waggy tails and feel their soft coats – it’s very hard to walk away. We know people that left home to buy a fish and returned home with a puppy!
Finding your next best friend is worth waiting for – don’t rush in.
4.View the puppies
Ok – so now it’s time to view the puppies – this is the best bit.
Watch the puppies playing. The more confident puppies will display behaviour such as biting the other puppies on the back of the neck, jumping on them and barking.
A very confident puppy will push its way in if you are patting or paying attention to its littermates. These are the bossy ones – be careful not to be taken in by the sometimes cute antics of the more confident personalities. It doesn’t mean they love you more, they didn’t ‘choose you’, they just want what their litter mates are getting.
If you are looking for a puppy that is generally easier to train and manage then watch for puppies that move out of the way or avoid confrontation without cowering. They are peace makers, smart and willing to please.
5.Test the puppy’s reactions
Once you’ve identified the puppies that match what you are looking for, ask the breeder to separate them to another section of the yard away from the other puppies. Using a soft toy, drop it onto the ground a meter away from the puppy and watch for its reaction.
The puppy that immediately runs to investigate is fine and should make an outgoing, friendly companion.
The puppy that moves away but returns quickly to investigate is also fine to select. It will be a cautious type, evaluating a situation before committing, with the correct socialisation and training this puppy can make a great pet.
The puppy that runs away from the toy is a concern. This puppy is fearful and this can often develop into fear aggression and nuisance barking in an adult dog.
Optional last step
Pick up your selected puppy and give it a cuddle. You’ve chosen the right dog for you.
Here at Bark Busters WA, we offer specialist in home puppy training services, to ensure your puppy grows up to be a well-behaved member of your family. Please visit our puppy training page for more info on how we can help. Our expert trainers cover all Perth Northern, Southern and metro areas, along with the Peel region and South West. We look forward to hearing from you!
by Heather – Bark Busters Perth South and Perth West