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Bringing a new dog into the household should be one of life’s happiest events. The process always starts with excitement and high expectations. Too often, though, it ends in disappointment. The new puppy wakes everyone three times a night, gnaws on furniture, piddles everywhere, knocks the children down. The new adolescent dog is too wild. The new adult dog growls at your neighbors. And where did all this dog hair come from?
Most people spend hours researching a new mattress, days researching a new car, and weeks researching a new home or job. Yet for a new dog, a companion for the next 10-15 years, the most they do is visit the nearest shelter or pet shop and buy whatever looks cute and appealing. It’s no wonder they end up disappointed.
Whether you are looking for a purebred puppy or a charming mixed-breed, the type of dog you bring into your home matters. A quiet owner will struggle to keep up with a high-energy labrador mix, for instance, while an active outdoor family will be impatient with a snoozy bulldog. And finding the right kind of dog means becoming the right kind of owner—a task that takes some forethought and planning.
How To Find Your Dream Dog is here to fix the disconnect of dog ownership. It walks you step-by-step through the process of choosing the right type of dog for you—not only exploring the canine qualities that can determine your perfect puppy, adolescent, or adult dog, but also assessing your lifestyle to make sure you’re a good match for the dog, too. The book also looks at good (and bad) sources for finding healthy and sound pet dogs, gives guidelines for evaluating individual puppies, and warns of some red flags to watch out for during your dog search. With this guidebook in hand, you can be confident that the next puppy or dog you bring home will be the right companion and friend for you for the rest of its days.
Dixie Tenny is a Certified Training Partner with the Karen Pryor Academy of Animal Training and Behavior. During her 30+ years spent working with people and their pets, she has seen again and again how mismatches between dog and owner can create “behavior problems” that never would have happened if the right dog had been matched to the right owner in the first place. She wrote this book to help puppy buyers and dog adopters start out on the best possible foot with their new pet dogs, and stay on that path for years to come.
Avoid taking your dog to a shelter because of a bad choice! This book directs the potential owner through some profound dos and don’ts in selecting the ideal puppy/dog for one’s family. Guidelines to determine IF you really want a puppy or dog, such as: reasons for getting a dog, consider the expense, what to expect in mannerisms, behavior, and tendencies. What type of dog is the best fit? How much personal time does it require? What is its main purpose? How much time for “upkeep” does it require? Will a family member be allergic to it? Where to find that “perfect” puppy/dog! Adult dog vs. the puppy. This short book ends with a question nd answer section then a resource section.
This is one book all potential pet owners should read, whether or not it is finding “the right dog” or most other species of pets. It is best to be prepared and evaluate one’s true reasons and willingness to be a responsible pet owner.
This is a very informative, simple, well-written book of which I give a Five Stars rating to!
*This book was sent as a gift but I am not required to post a positive review. This is my honest review.
Ten Puppy Facts to Know by Dixie Tenny
There’s a lot more to puppies than soft fur and sweet breath!
Puppyhood ends at approximately four months of age. After that, your puppy is an adolescent dog. He still has a lot of growing to do but his babyhood is over. “Puppies” between the ages of 4-5 months have even been known to sire litters!
Puppies have a “critical period” between the ages of about 5-16 weeks. This is when they are learning about the world and making decisions about what is safe and what is not. After that “critical period” ends, many of their feelings and opinions will not change. That is why it’s very important to get puppies out to see the world and have lots of different, positive experiences during their “critical period”.
Every puppy is unique. The same as with human families, no two puppies in a litter are alike. Each one has its own personality. There might be a wallflower, a go-getter, a bully, a shy pup, a strict follower of rules, a wild child…all in one litter of puppies. Of course lots of differences aren’t as obvious as those examples. But when choosing a puppy, remember to take this into account. Get the input of whoever raised them so that you take home the individual pup that suits your family best.
Puppies can be trained to respond to cues such as “sit” and “down” from the time they arrive at your home, ideally between 8-12 weeks of age. They have baby-length attention spans, so they need very short training sessions, lots of repetition, loads of your patience, and kind, treat-based training.
You can expect a very young puppy to need to eliminate around fifteen (15) times a day. Yes, I said fifteen times.
Puppies generally learn to get along well with other household pets if they meet them during their early puppyhood (while they are in the “critical period”) and if the interactions are well-managed and friendly.
Puppies are not blank slates. Different types of puppies come with different basic instincts built in. Retriever-type puppies will usually chase balls from infancy. Tiny Pointer or Vizsla puppies will point at a bird wing. German shepherd-type puppies may be cautious around strangers and need extra friendly exposure during their “critical period”. Beagle puppies or mixes will be easily distracted when they smell something interesting. It’s well worth your while to research the type of puppy you are considering and be certain that its natural instincts are ones that you want.
Mother is the primary influence on her puppies. While she contributes 50% of their genes just like their father, she is their example of how a dog should behave. If she is shy, they are likely to be shy. If she is aggressive, they may well grow up to be aggressive. If she is calm and friendly with people who visit, her puppies see that and are likely to be the same. My #1 rule when I choose a puppy is, if I don’t love the mother, I don’t take home one of her puppies.
Puppy brains are fully developed at 8 weeks of age. But puppy bodies and attention spans take much longer to mature. That is why you can teach a very young puppy to sit or lie down on cue, but should not expect it to be house trained, ask it to hold that sit position for more than a few seconds, or take it on a hike until it is quite a bit older.
There is nothing sweeter than a warm, sleepy, fuzzy, cuddly puppy. But I bet you already knew that.
Win one of 5 Dream Dog prize packages! Each package includes a copy of How to Find Your Dream Dog, a $15 Amazon Gift Card and Outward Hound Slow Feeder Dog Bowl) Open to USA & Canada
Ends April 8