New Puppy or Kitten

For puppies and kittens, we like to do a series of

THREE EXAMS

that are 3-4 weeks apart. This is of course depending on the age of your puppy or kitten. In these series of exams, your pet’s doctor will be able to follow the growth of your furry-friend and ensure that they are developing correctly while also building their immunity to life-threatening diseases through a series of vaccines.

PUPPY CARE TIPS

KITTEN CARE TIPS

FIRST EXAMS/VACCINES

Raising an animal can be one of the most rewarding, but challenging experiences! We can help assist you with ensuring that your pet has everything it needs for life. When you first bring in your new puppy or kitten, we suggested bringing them to us to establish their care and create a plan for their future health. Not only will bringing in your new family member help socialize them with new people, sights, and smells, but it was also help us help you to set them up for success in their new lives.

First Exams/Vaccinations

EXAM ONE

Your pet’s first exam with us is when you initially bring them in. Frequently we will see puppies/kittens around 8 weeks old, but as long as your pet is younger than a year old, it will still count as their first exam.

Kitten Vaccines

Puppy Vaccines

EXAM TWO

Our recheck exam is usually for pets near 12 weeks old and is an important exam to assess the growth of your pet.

Kitten Vaccines

Puppy Vaccines

EXAM THREE

The next exam takes place when they are 16 weeks old. Your doctor will assess their growth and health, finalize their immunization, and begin discussing the next steps as your pet becomes an adult.

Kitten Vaccines

Puppy Vaccines

Spay/Neuter Your Pet

Depending on the breed and age of your pet, your veterinarian will suggest a plan on when it is most beneficial to fix them. We will commonly discuss this during their final puppy/kitten exam, but if you have any questions or concerns before then, we are more than happy to answer!

How do I potty train my puppy?

HOW DO I SET A POTTY TRAINING SCHEDULE?

  • First thing in the morning
  • Last thing at night
  • After spending time in a crate
  • Upon waking up from a nap
  • After eating or drinking
  • Time between potty brakes
    should be no more than 2-4 hours 

HOW DO I CRATE TRAIN MY PUPPY?

  • Dogs like clean “home” areas and are less likely to have accidents
  • Place crate near exterior door for quick relief
  • The crate should be big enough for your puppy to stand up, turn around, and lay down

WHEN SHOULD I REINFORCE GOOD BEHAVIOR?

  • Don’t scold your puppy for having an accident
  • Praise them for doing the right thing
  • Reward them with treats, pats, and attention

Puppies are hard! However, if you put the time in now, you and your puppy will be so much happier! We recommend using a crate for house breaking. The crate should only be big enough for the puppy to stand up, turn around and lie down. If the crate is too big, the puppy will be able to pee and poop on one side, and sleep on the other. The idea is to make it uncomfortable for them if they do have an accident. If they have to lie in it, they won’t be happy. If you aren’t going to want to use wee wee pads forever, don’t start with them. It is ok to take your puppy out in your own backyard. Keep your puppy on a leash and take them to the same spot every time. Use the same words and commands every time, especially making sure to praise and reward them like crazy when they do go. Puppies are creatures of habit and puppies have to go out frequently. As soon as they wake up they should be taken outside. If they don’t pee, take them back inside and keep them in your sight. The puppy must stay in the room you are in. You can close the door, use a gate to block the doorway, or keep him on leash near to you, but he must be near to you. If you plan to leave the room for more than a minute (literally), the pup either comes with you on leash or goes into his safe confinement area. This will not only prevent mistakes from happening without your knowledge, it will keep him safe as well. Second, watch for signs of impending urination or defecation. These include wandering away from you, sniffing the floor, restlessness, whining, panting, and circling. Then take the puppy out every 5 or 10 minutes until he or she goes. Certain things frequently bring on a need to go, and they include chewing heavily on a toy, eating, ten minutes or so after a big drink, waking up from a nap, or after a heavy play. When you see any of these signs take your puppy outside and try again! It’s a process! However, the puppy will learn quickly as long as you are consistent and you will both get into a routine. It will also help to limit the puppy’s water intake to meal times and after exercise, don’t leave it down all day. Remember never use the crate as punishment. During the day, puppies spend a lot of time in their crate. There is nothing wrong with that. If you cannot directly supervise the puppy, it should be in its crate. Puppies like to eat anything and everything. They don’t know that shoes and socks aren’t toys or food! For more training tips, we recommend that you check out trainer Brian Kilcommon’s website www.greatpets.com. Play with your puppy’s feet, teeth and ears a lot. This gets them used to being handled. That way, when they come here or go for grooming they will be used to it. We will show you how to clean your puppy’s ears and clip its nails. Clipping nails can be tricky and we will always be available to you to do that. We will also go over teeth brushing. We also recommend socializing your puppy as much as you can, we just ask that you be careful. Your puppy is not fully vaccinated so we don’t recommend taking it to dog parks or pet stores but we DO recommend that you let your puppy play with dogs you know that are healthy and vaccinated. We do suggest that you wait 2 weeks for puppy play time- just in case your puppy breaks with anything like a cold and until we get the results of the fecal analysis. Also, make sure to bring the puppy with you to experience new situations and people so he or she feels comfortable with them.

How do I get my puppy to stop bad behavior?

WHAT CAN MY PUPPY CHEW ON?

  • Chewing is a calming mechanism for puppies
  • Keep chewing toys around the house; when they start to chew on toys instead of household objects, give them praise 

HOW DO I STOP MY PUPPY FROM BARKING?

  • Scolding your puppy when they bark can make it worse; instead, ignore barking and praise quiet
  • Training your dog to sit helps them fight impulsive barking when they want something 

HOW DO I STOP MY PUPPY FROM BEGGING AT THE TABLE?

  • Feed them first before you eat
  • Create a cozy “go-to” spot near the table where they can be comfortable
  • Praise them with treats when they don’t beg 

How do I feed my puppy?

HOW OFTEN DO I FEED MY PUPPY?

  • 6-12 weeks: 4x a day
  • 3-6 months: 3x a day
  • 6-12 months: 2x a day
  • After a year: 2 half portions a day
  • Watch your puppy to gauge if they are eating healthy 

WHAT FOOD SHOULD I FEED MY PUPPY? 

  • Look for AAFCO guidelines
  • Look for age and health specific formulas
  • Ask your vet for tailored recommendations 

WHAT ARE HARMFUL FOODS FOR PUPPIES?

  • Dairy, chocolate, grapes, and sugary foods, snacks, or desserts

What do I need to do to prepare for a kitten?

WHAT THINGS SHOULD I  BUY FOR A KITTEN?

  • Scratch posts (helps preserve furniture!) 
  • Litter boxes, cat carriers, and food and water bowls 
  • Stain and odor remover 

WHAT SHOULD I MOVE OUT OF THE WAY?

  • Toxic plants
  • Cleaners and sprays
  • Any dog food that might be in the house

HOW CAN MY CAT BE COMFORTABLE?

  • Bed and blanket
  • Small, cozy space
  • Grooming supplies
  • Pheromone products

How should I play with my kitten?

HOW DO I PLAY SAFELY WITH MY KITTEN?

  • Use balls, jingles, anything on a string, and cotton chew toys
  • Avoid “play” with your hands to avoid injury when full grown

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF PLAYING WITH YOUR KITTEN?

  • Strengthens your bond with your kitten
  • Allows them to release energy that could lead to damage
  • Builds trust and comfort for them within a new home

HOW OFTEN SHOULD I PLAY WITH MY KITTEN?

  • 20+ minutes of play per day
  • Set aside at least two times a day preferably early in the morning and late at night

How do I feed a kitten?

HOW OFTEN SHOULD I FEED MY KITTEN?

  • Dry food only: leave available at all times
  • Wet food only: feed at least four times a day
  • Combo: feed wet food twice a day and leave dry food available

WHAT SHOULD I FEED MY KITTEN?

  • Look for AAFCO guidelines
  • Look for age and health specific formulas
  • Ask your vet for tailored recommendations

WHAT ARE HARMFUL FOODS FOR KITTENS?

  • Raw meats, eggs, raw fish
  • Grapes, chocolate, and dairy

Get the best care for your best friend.

Call us or request an appointment online