Puppies are small and very cute

What to look for when you buy a Puppy

Due to the current situation with Covid, lockdown and people being furloughed from work, there has been a massive increase for puppies. Sales have gone through the roof and prices are getting higher. Dogs are seen as a commodity, making some people a lot of money. I have seen French Bull Dogs advertised for up to £5,000. Although it might seem quite an easy thing to do, buying a puppy can be a bit of a mine field. Below are some things to bear in mind if you are thinking of becoming the proud owner of a puppy.

I would say firstly, consider if a puppy is the best thing for your family, or would you be better rehoming a dog who has been abandoned or who’s owner can no longer care for it. There are plenty of Rescue Centres in the UK who are desperately trying to find homes for dogs and puppies.

If it’s a specific type of puppy you are looking for then the first thing you need to do is to research the breed, what sort of dog will suit the family. Dogs have been domesticated for thousands of years in a number of different roles, such as herders, guarding, ratting, retrieving, scent trackers and hunting, so you need to be aware of their natural instincts and how they will fit your lifestyle. For example, some dogs require more exercise than others, some are not keen on being left of their own, some enjoy following a scent.

Where should you purchase your puppy from? You’ve probably heard about puppy farms, so called as puppies are bred for selling, mostly they do not receive human touch, they have little experience of the outside world, can be separated early from their mothers and other littermates and may not be medically cared for. So buying a puppy from a puppy farm could bring you a whole host of problems. Some have such serious illnesses and they won’t survive the first few months. Others might need ongoing medical treatment. Little socialisation early on can lead to problems with fear related aggression as the puppy gets older.

Make sure you have a reputable breeder where you can meet the mother and father of the puppies, if the father doesn’t live at the home, ask to see photographs. Try and meet the puppy on 2 or 3 occasions before collecting and ask questions about the grandparents health and personality, how the puppy’s been handled, how much human interaction and what kind of surroundings, noises, smells and sights it has been introduced to. If someone arranges to drop the puppy off to you, think carefully as you may be receiving a stolen dog. Do not hand over any money until you have met the puppy and know the breeder is genuine.

Remember that a puppy is the same as any baby, it is not born knowing how to behave and interact, it is your job to nurture and teach the behaviour you would like.

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