Finding that perfect puppy or dog for your family can be a lot of fun and with a little knowledge you can make the experience a good one with a happy ending for everyone involved.
This article is intended to give you some things to think about when you go out on the dog finding quest.
- Puppies should be no younger than 8 weeks when leaving their litter. If your breeder wants you to take the pup at 5 -6 weeks go find another breeder. Responsible, caring breeders will not let you have a pup any younger.
- Be careful when being offered the last pup in the litter. Why is it the last pup? Why did all those new dog owners pass on this one dog? Is it too shy? Is it stand offish or maybe it appears fearful. There is a reason that it has not been selected. You may be better off waiting for the next litter or looking elsewhere.
- Beware of older pups. Breeders sell puppies at 8 weeks of age they do not want to keep the dogs any longer. That is not the business that they are in. When a breeder has that 16 week old or even a worse a 6 – 8 month old the problem always appears to be the lack of socialization. Plainly put MOST breeders do not properly socialize that left over puppy and that is where the problem develops. Puppies need to be socialized really well before they are 20 weeks old and usually it just does not happen.
- What are mom and dad like? I always want to see the Sire and the Dam. Are they friendly and social or does the breeder say well mom is a bit aggressive so we don’t bring her out for display. That is another sign to pass on this litter. Aggression and fear can be passed on to the litter genetically so why take a chance. There are just so many pups out there why should you gamble with this breeding. Remember this dog will be with you for many years so make a good decision on which pup to choose.
Unsocialized dogs are very likely (almost always) going to start showing fear or aggression sometime between 12 and 24 months of age. Living with an aggressive dog is no fun and certainly can create a huge liability for your family. On the other hand a dog that has been socialized properly will almost always be a joy to own and can be active with many of your family outings and adventures.
Do you need help or have questions about selecting your next dog? We can help. If so visit us at and give us a call, or for our out of town readers www.TrainMyDogOnline.com .
Until next time,
P.S. Do you need some advice from a Canine Behavior Specialist? If so CLICK HERE now!
About the Author: Wayne Booth is owner of in Nashville, TN. Wayne has been teaching people how to become Professional Dog Trainers since 1990 and he is the Training Director of Canine Behavior Specialists Network.