You can register your puppy online at www.akc.org or mail your documentation.
Dogs being fed a high quality food will eat less because they're getting proper nutrition. Many people don't realize that feeding a cheap food can actually cost more in the long run because a dog eats more to compensate for the lack of nutrition.
You want to feed a large breed puppy food that is no higher than 28% to 29% protein and a large breed adult food that is no higher than 23% to 24% protein. A great website that I refer to when researching quality foods is http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com
Regardless of the food you feed your puppy, it's very important to leave them on their current food source for a couple of weeks and then switch them slowly by mixing the two foods together. If you switch your puppy too quickly, this can cause vomiting and diarrhea which if severe enough may be life threatening. I will discuss with every new puppy parent the current food your new puppy is eating.
The puppies are currently being “free-fed”. They always have food in the bowl. This is not conducive to potty training, so I recommend feeding the puppy three times a day and giving the puppy all he/she can eat at each feeding. When the puppy is about 12 weeks of age, please begin watching the puppy’s weight closely as this is when they start reaching their “rapid growth phase".
It's also VERY IMPORTANT to feed your puppy a Large Breed food throughout its lifespan. Large breed dogs have specific nutritional needs. They grow much faster and are more susceptible to injury. Most breeders and vets feel it's best to feed Large Breed Puppy food until 4 to 6 months of age and switch to Large Breed Adult food to prevent rapid growth. Rapid growth of your puppy can contribute to injuries in large breeds that may result in irreparable damage. They can experience crippling and very painful growing pains. I CANNOT STRESS ENOUGH THAT YOU MUST NOT FEED LARGE BREED PUPPIES REGULAR PUPPY FOOD. Please make sure it’s formulated for Large Breeds.
It’s important not to over feed large breed dogs as they are prone to bloat and again, rapid growth can cause hip and joint issues. Please take a moment to read the short article below regarding optimal feeding requirements for large breed dogs. http://www.lgd.org/library/Optimal%20feeding%20of%20large%20breed%20puppies.pdf
Your dog is a perfect weight if when sliding your hands down their side, you can feel their ribs, but not see them.
It’s also very important that you are very protective of the puppy’s joints during the first two years of life. They should never be allowed to exercise for long periods of time nor allowed to climb stairs or jump off of high places such as porches, etc. Due to rapid growth of large breeds, these activities can cause undue stress and permanent damage. Self-regulated play is always appropriate. Also, PLEASE do not allow your puppy to ride in the back of a truck. This is not only extremely dangerous, but can cause many orthopedic injuries in large breed dogs as they must brace themselves around turns and sudden stops. A good article to reference regarding common orthopedic injuries is http://www.k-state.edu/media/audio/podcastorthoinjury.html
It’s also proven that spaying/neutering your puppy before 12 months of age can contribute numerous health issues such cancer, Pano, OCD, and even dramatically increases chances of hip dysplasia. Please DO NOT spay or neuter your puppy prior to 12 months despite what your Veterinarian recommends. A veterinarian who is familiar with large breeds would never recommend spaying/neutering prior to 12 months and I recommend doing your own research. You will find many studies supporting this. A short article explaining some of the risks can be seen at http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2011/02/17/dangers-of-early-pet-spaying-or-neutering.aspx there are many, more in-depth articles available online as well.
Puppies potty within 20 minutes of eating so I recommend that you feed the puppy 3 times per day and then take them outside immediately until they potty. Crate training is the most effective method of potty training. You can find articles on the web regarding this method. Our puppies have indoor/outdoor runs with doggie doors so they are accustomed to going outside already. Most people tell us their puppy only had one or two accidents and many had none at all. I can never guarantee that however, as a few puppies were more difficult to train. It really depends on the puppy.
In regards to toys, please make sure you buy very sturdy toys that can't be ripped apart easily or have small parts that can come off and choke the puppy. All puppies LOVE to chew and due to their size, they can destroy most toys. Treats are up to the individual, but I tend to stay away from them at an early age. Their digestive systems are very sensitive at a young age. Even the stress of the new environment can cause diarrhea so try to avoid any unnecessary changes to their eating habits.
Each puppy varies in size but a collar that is adjustable from 13” to 16” will fit most puppies at 8 weeks of age. As your puppy grows you will need to replace the neck collar with a harness. The Newfoundland's neck will grow in great mass, therefore a neck collar can cause rubbing and very painful rawness to the neck area. If using a neck collar, please remove once it's not needed.
In regards to grooming, you will want to buy an undercoat rake. The rake is a must when removing the dead undercoat. The undercoat rakes made specifically for dogs are not sturdy and wear out quickly so we use a Mane and Tail rake made for horses. It looks like a rake with a handle and can be purchased at any farm supply store. After using the undercoat rake, you can follow up with a slicker brush. There are many shampoos on the market, but Dawn Dish Soap works great. It’s very gentle without harmful chemicals. Many pet shampoos contain harmful chemicals that can dry their skin or cause allergies. If you choose to use commercial pet shampoos and conditioners, try to choose one that is all natural. You may find it necessary to use a conditioner in the winter as their skin can dry out and become flaky. A conditioner is very beneficial for this.
If you plan to kennel your puppy while at work or during the night, don’t buy anything less than a Giant size measuring 54” in length if planning to kennel until maturity. If you plan to use the kennel for crate training purposes or temporarily until the puppy has adjusted to his/her new environment, a smaller one will suffice.
Please be careful when leaving puppy unsupervised as they love to chew and can ingest items, requiring surgery for removal. Electrical cords should be unplugged in puppy play areas.
VERY IMPORTANT~ your puppy is not immune to Parvo until they have received all vaccinations. Please protect your puppy from areas that other dogs have been; such as PetSmart, dog parks, rest areas, etc. My vet recommends all puppies be quarantined from everyone other than immediate family members until they are fully vaccinated. In addition, Vet Clinics are a very dangerous place for young puppies, as this of course is where people take their sick dogs. Please carry your puppy into the clinic and don’t let his/her feet touch the floor. Don’t allow anyone in the waiting room touch your puppy. Take the puppy to the table in the room and set him/her on it. Our vet comes to the Ranch to do our puppy checks, but most customers don’t have that option therefore please do your best to minimize exposure to illnesses.
We also sterilize new toys and food bowls in the dishwasher. Pet owners often times sort through toys and handle pet supplies in the store and can expose the objects to Parvo, etc. Parvo can live on a surface for up to 12 months.
Your puppy will have come to you up to date on all vaccinations. Please consult your Veterinarian with needed vaccines for the rest of his/her puppy life stage.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions & Thank You for making one of our precious babies apart of your family.
Kindest Regards, Lorie Umfleet
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