Advice page for our buyers, please read all of it .
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Food that They Need
The food your pup has been fed on up to delivery will be grain free kibble we've found any good one seems to work well , also tinned Pedigree Puppy, with some VIP preservative free dog roll from the deli and some home cooked meat and veg for a change.
We buy only Australian made and owned, preservative free food, reason being that imported food, no matter how good it might be in the country of origin is said to be irradiated for the journey, after which not even a weevil will eat it, neither should your dog.
As to preservatives in food, these are bad, even in small ammounts preservativs can be the cause of anything from skin conditions, fits, constant runny stools, to death in dogs, and in QLD there is no limit to the ammount that may legally be used, so be aware that the lovely fresh looking mince or meaty bites for pets that you might see in the deli are more of a danger to your dog than they are a nutritious feed ! DONT BUY THEM.
Buy only human grade meat or very good quality, cereal grain free kibble.
Always check the contents of dog food, if the first thing you see is grain as in cereal grains, leave it on the shelf, no matter how enticing the label is or that some well known personage may be endorsing it !
Buy grain free, Australian made. In puppy kibble rice is often used, but meat products need to be the MAIN ingredient, and the main ingredient is always the first one mentioned on the packet.
We give pups adult grain free Australian made and they do very well on it.
For your adult dog you can get totally grain free for his kibble.
We would like to give more natural fresh food than we now do out here, but stick mostly to kibble because it is hard to get a regular supply of suitable raw fresh meat for the dogs, and since changing over to kibble, due to being no longer able to access the raw chicken we used to feed, we have noticed a HUGE increase in general health and a lack of coccidia infestations in both pups and adults.
This has bought us to the conclusion that fresh, in bulk buys, may not be best after all !
What you need to know about basic care is all here, so do have a good read, and contact me if in doubt or if not clear on anything.
Collection and FOOD.
If going to the airport or collecting from a road trip just take some water and maybe a little food, and an old towel, do not let a pup loose unless on a collar and lead, a very small collar and light lead is all you will need, if you do not take these do NOT let pup loose.
Pups are usually hungry although some pups will not eat a lot while stressed from the move, others will eat well, whichever they do it is normal, feed a bland food as close to what the pup is used to as you can, if you are going to change diet do that later and over a period of about a week.
Our usual feed these days is grain and preservative free kibble, we use mostly Stockman and Paddock, but do like Stay Loyal which is a postal based business and you can find them online and order it in, but if you cannot get that in time try getting, BLACK HAWK (adult ) or CANIDAE, or WELLNESS CORE PUPPY FORMULA, get only GRAIN FREE kibble, tinned Pedigree puppy is also used here.
Keep to this diet until pup settles in, then if you want to add fresh meat do so over time, a little more each day, do not change diet all at once.
if changing to fresh food we recomend a quick boil or steam for all meat,poultery or fish, just enought to kill any parasites it may have on it, no need to fully cook it.
Add a few veggetables green ones are best, those can be grated or steamed lightly and mashed through.
Other good things are the ocassional addition of yoghurt, honey, egg, fish or coconut oil, do not over do it.
Cows milk is not good for dogs as some cannot handle the lactose in it and it will upset their tummy.
As long as you keep in mind that dogs were never meant to eat a lot of grain and most of the cheaper, and even some expensive kibbles are grain based, with grain being the main ingredient, steer well clear of those foods and also be careful not to get food with preservative in it and your dog will do much better.
Be particularly careful of treats, many have been treated with deadly chemicals,
First nights at home can be stressful for all concerned, personally I go against all professional advise and sleep with the pup, but I get up through the night and toilet puppy so we have no accidents in the bed, we have no puppy tears either !
Next best thing is to crate the puppy in a safe place, and maybe where you will still get some sleep in spite of puppy crying.
There are many articles on the net about crate training, look some of these up if you are new to puppy ownership and intend to crate your pup at night or while not with him.
Some pups just walk right in and take over, others are not so sure, how you handle this first contact can affect how your dog turns out, if he is happy to interact and be cuddled right off, that is fine, but if he is uncertain and wants space, leave him alone to sort out his new area, just be about, but not intrusive and stop kids from insisting on aproaching, if he finds a quiet spot and hides, leave him alone, he will venture out when ready, have food there but do NOT keep poking it under his nose if he refuses it.
All pups are different and those who are not forced into contact with what to them with their small knowledge of this, all of a sudden, huge world full of stange beings, will do far better with levels of confidence later on if they are not terrified by forced intimacy right from the start, be calm and more or less let them think you are ignoring them, they will come to you in their own good time, do not fuss or worry just keep calm and matter of fact.
Worms and other parasites.
Your vet is going to want to know this so take note:
We worm pups about 2 days before they leave us. They are also given a coccidiostat and extra Drontal over preceding days to ensure no giardia is present. ( We seldom see the latter parasites here, this is done as a precaution, as both coccidia and giardia and very common in pups, both are as easily treated as are worms, and both can multiply quickly when a pup is stressed by the move to a new home, so we think it best to be sure all parsites which may cause trouble are nil or at minimal levels.
Worm your pup again in two weeks ( From delivery ) do this until pup is 4 months of age then go to three monthly and keep doing your dog every three months. Use only DRONTAL wormer for pups, later you may change to others now and then as using the same old chemicals all the time can lead to a level of immunity in some parasites.
Blood in Faeces.
If you see just a few drops, this is probably nothing, since we worm pups just prior to leaving us, it is most likely from any worms they had just letting go as they die, this causes some spotting.
If your pup also has loose bowel motions, plus blood, yet seems happy and is eating and playing, this is usually just nerves due to the big changes in his life, a change in diet, ( Feeding dry food based on cereal grains will cause voluminous loose stools ) or the worming he got before leaving us ect. it should settle in a day or two.
If it does not settle, CONTACT me, do not panic, in spite of all our efforts on rare occassions pups have either picked up more parasites, or perhaps the things shed after treatment and kick off again, worms, coccidia, and giardia are very common in all states and both in the water table (giardia) or are spread by other animals, even birds or lizards can carry parasites and drop eggs or cysts in gardens, parks, footpaths or backyards so never think a pup with their habits of mouthing absolutely everything is safe.
It is not a matter of cleanliness, these things are endemic in all household pets, a USA study done some years ago found giardia in 70% of pets !
In adult dogs most parasites do not cause any symptoms most of the time, but they can cause bouts of loose stools with or without traces of blood in them, most people think its caused by a sensitive gut, or irritable bowel, its usually Coccidia or Giardia shedding in large numbers, treat for both and the problem will usually resolve straight away ! but in pups, if left untreated they will not only cause symptoms as listed above, but can make puppy ill if not treated. Loose bowels..... ALWAYS treat for both, Drontal kills not only worms but Giardia, and you can give it three days in a row to do so, you need to get a cocciostat from your vet, and use it, it will save you many hundreds of dollars in vet fees and special diets which never were needed in many cases.
Start heartworm prevention at three months, ordinary wormers do not prevent heartworms, so either monthly treatment, see what your vet has to offer here.
We do at least the first vaccination, most often we do the first two, for those whose puppy is to fly I no longer post their vet certificate of vaccinations because Australia post is a disgrace and the things either arrive late or not at all, I will send a scanned copy, make sure to keep that for your, and your vets records, one small section is a signed and dated desex certificate, in the bottom left hand corner.
For those who are to meet me and pick their puppy up I will have it with me.
Do not neglect to get ongoing vaccinations and at least your first yearly booster, after that we recoment a titre test be done yearly to see if and when the dog needs vaccinating again.
We give C 3 s only, I do not believe in giving a young puppy too many live virus vaccines at once.
Do not lose you're vet certificate, you need it to get the discount many councils give to register desexed dogs, in the left hand bottom corner you will see a small box which our vet will have signed and dated, this is proof of desexing, your micro chip number is on the back of your certificate, you will also need that to register him with your council. ( On scanned copy )
MICRO CHIPS..........PLEASE READ
I will change details over to you within two weeks of delivery not before.
This is now done online and I MUST have your email address to do it, please take care in giving this, your certificate will be emailed to you by AAR.
Your puppy does not need a lot of grooming their short coats need little more than an ocasional bath, use a mild shampoo, we use baby shampoo and not too often, frequent shampooing will remove the dogs own oils which he needs to keep his skin healthy, brush if you wish but it really is not needed, wipe over with a damp cloth if he gets grubby from playing outside or even a wash using just plain water is ok.
Ears need a clean now and then but do not go poking ear buds down into them, just a moist cloth is fine or you can buy special ear cleaner from pet barn or vet.
Eyes, now on these breeds eyes can be a problem due to the fact that they tend to sit in a shallower socket than the long nosed breeds, one of our followers on Face Book advised that her dogs opthamologist had advised her that 90 percent of the opthamologists clients would not need to see her had they simply put moisturising eye drops in their dogs eyes twice a day
So I pass this on for what it is worth, given that the breed is one known to suffer from dry eye I think it is well worth your consideration.
You can get moisturising eye drop from your chemist, they are not terribly expensive and the human ones used for our dry eyes are quite good for dogs eyes too.
Nails need the ocassional clip, be careful not to clip back past the quick, you can see where it starts, just look closely.
Skin, If you start to see any sign of patchy, itchy skin get onto this right away, often it is nothing much, but it can be an outbreak of Demodex mites, you cannot see these little mites with the naked eye, dogs always have these mites but usually the dogs own immune sytem keeps their population at such a low level that they have no effect on the coat, however if the immune system is lowered through any sort of stress or even at puberty, you may see them causing an itch and hair loss, if this does not resolve on its own in a matter of weeks (as often it does) you need to get proper veterinary treatment, so do not neglect skin problems, some dogs also develop allergy problems, and it also pays to look up on the net which household plants or weeds may be in your environment that are known to be poisonous to dogs. Some plants and weeds will cause rashes or worse. Mozzie or midge bites will also cause itching. Food containing grain and preservatives can also cause both skin and gut problems in many dogs.
One thing that worries some new owners is the lump which forms on the tummy scar that desexing leaves on the girls, this is a very small wound, usually only two stitches which I will most likely have taken out prior to delivery, if I have not, just use pointy nail scissors to do it a few days after delivery, lift up the stitch by the knot, insert point of scissors in there and cut stitch only on one side of the knot so you can then easily pull the stitch out still holding the knot. ( Some stitches may be dissolvable ones )
The lump that forms under the tummy scar on female pups is totally normal, it will be about the size of a cherry tomato and hard to touch, it will dissapear as puppy grows and is no problem.
Male pups do not have this.
Risk factors for hip dysplasia
1. Genetics - once we believed that genetics were the only cause of hip issues - how wrong we were. Half a century of xraying hips and excluding unsound individuals and we are only a little bit further advanced in the eradication of this terrible disease. Genetic factors are only the tip of the iceberg. While some dogs are more predisposed to the factors that contribute to hip damage all pups are born with perfect hips.
2. Whelping box surface - the beautiful, flat, easy to clean surfaces in whelping areas that are pleasing to the eye are also damaging to developing joints. The way pups move on these surfaces forces the joint into a position of extension and adduction, causing damage to the round ligament which can lead to damage to the developing bones.
The best surface for whelping pups (for hip development) is a hole in the dirt. We use either deep straw litter or fresh and frequently changed loam bought in from a loam quarry and put into the hutch new born pups are to live in until they are old enough to be able to get their legs under themselves, this doesn't take too long, then the surface can be something easier to manage, older pups are put outdoors for a lot of the day, they do still come indoors in bad weather and do spend some time on flat, hard floors, but this is kept to a minimum. The only time they are on pretty, flat rugs is for a photo shoot. Towelling folded in many, uneven layers can be used once feet are under control of the young pups.
3. Weight - while pups should never look malnourished, pups who are too fat too early or grow too fast are risking hip damage. Too much pressure on growing joints will cause problems.
4. Desexing - early desexing can contribute to joint problems but has not been found to cause the problems in small, light breeds, that it can in very large breeds, it causes growth plates to close later so still keep this in mind that care needs to be taken until your pup is mature.
a. Desexed dogs are often much heavier than their entire counterparts and often lack the muscle mass, especially in males, you can keep an eye on this.
5. Diet - it is vital that dogs are fed properly at all stages of life. It is tough not to feed than a little extra, or give them little treats. All treats need to be taken into account when you are filling their food bowl. Don't carefully measure their meals and add another scoop for good luck! They may give you pleading looks but it is for their own good!!
6. Body condition - like people, dogs should be in fit lean condition to keep in optimum health. You should be able to see a defined waist and the last two ribs should be visible. We have become so used to looking at overweight pets it's sometimes difficult to work out what healthy condition looking like. Remember ever 1 kg over ideal adds 6 times more pressure to the joints.
7. Surfaces - now this can be a tough one. Concrete, tiles, lino and stairs are tough on joints. There are no magic solutions. Mats on floors can help, as can discouraging young dogs from walking up and down stairs, no playing or running inside or restricting access where possible but concentrate on the things you can change rather than remodel the house!
8. Exercise - pups need exercise but be careful not to over do it! Also think about the surfaces you are walking on - beach and bush are ideal, as is swimming. I'm working on an age appropriate exercise chart which should be helpful.
9. Games - games that involve fast stopping and turning should be avoided for the first few years. Chasing balls, sticks and laser dots at anything but a slow, gentle pace (and those of you with these fellas know that is rarely possible!) risks damage to joints.
10. Pulling on a lead is also very bad for your puppy's joints, training can eliminate this behaviour and make walks so much nicer too, so do take time train puppy not to pull
A crate can be a safe den for your pup if used correctly, never use it in a way that causes him to think of it as a place of punishment.
If used to help with house training, remember he cannot hold on for too long until mature, so be sure to take him out every couple of hours, he will cry to get out if he wants to go, he may just cry to get out at first as well, ignore that, as long as he has been ouside just prior to being crated.
Make sure that if you buy one of those fold down crates most often seen in pet shops that you secure ALL sides and corners with zip ties as dogs have been known to choke to death by getting their heads stuck in the sides when trying to push out. Always use both latches to close the door as well.
If made safe they are ok to use.
Read on to the end for advice on appropriate puppy play.
How you greet and handle your pup from the very first meeting will set the tone for his lifelong interactions with you.
Training is not just a matter of teaching sit and stay commands, it is the moulding of the impressionable puppy into that companion you dream of, rather than a train wreck you cannot control, or an aggressive dog, or a fearful dog, or one suffering from separation anxiety.
A calm person has a calm dog, even in in high energy breeds, (which Toy Bulldogs are not ) the dog of a calm person will be far less inclined to bounce off the walls than the dog of a nervy, excitable type of person.
Your puppy is almost always going to be uncertain or even downright scared when you first pick him up, particularly if he has flown to you, this is his first time away from his pack of siblings and all that is familiar in his little world.
If you rish at him in a flurry of exitment you may well scare him more, also, never EVER, at any time of his life, show what we humans translate as sympathy, do not EVER goo at a scared pup or dog, and pat it and tell it "there, there, all will be well ect" if the tone people use to soothe dogs is that one they might use to soothe a little kid, it is WRONG for the dog.
Greet him happily, but calmly as though there is not a thing wrong, and you are just pleased to meet him, let him get used to you in his own time also, do not force yourself apon him and restrain kids from being overly exictied, a hard one I know.
Dogs are not kids and do not do sympathy, if he got a fright here, his mother would take absolutely no notice of that, she would just sit there, calm and indifferent, and by her reaction the puppy realises, Hey, all is well here, I need not be scared !
If you react to uncertainty with what you think is soothing behaviour, you will only reinforce the very behaviour you do not want. He takes you 'soothing' as praise and reinforcement for being afraid, after all if he sits when told he gets praise, if you are pleased with him you tell him in dulcet tones "what a good boy "he is so if he squeals and pees himself at a truck rumbling by and you pick him up and cuddle him and tell him "there there, it is alright" he takes that as being praise for being scared of a truck, and that this is what you must want from him.
There is a thing called Learned Helplessness, it is caused by people praising, albeit unkowingly, bad behaiviour, so be aware of this, and restrain your natural impulse to comfort your pet when he is uncertain, but praise him mightily when he is in confidant mode !
Toilet training and crates.
Even small pups do not like to soil in what they consider their immediate 'den' area, this, however will not be the whole of what, to them, is a very large house.
A young and even and adolecent puppy cannot hold it's bowels for too long, control comes with maturity and until then do not scold the pup for accidents, it is not his fault but yours for not getting him ourside in time.
Things to watch for to know your pup needs to go out, are circling and sniffing about, he is looking for where he wants to poo, they tend to just pee any old where but almost alway do a bit of circling and sniffing before moving their bowels, so keep an eye on that.
If you cannot be around for a few hours it is a good idea to crate him, he will try to hold off going to the toilet in it as long as he can get out every few hours to relieve himself, if you leave him to just have to go in there, as a general rule, then he will give up and not wait, so try to be there for him, even at night, he will cry to get out before he messes in a crate.
Crates are not cruel if used correctly, dogs love their own space, their own den so to speak, do not use it as a punishment but a place where there are toys, even feed in there for a while to establish that this is a good, safe place, do not EVER throw a pup in there while rousing on him in anger !
One thing to be aware of is that the fold down crates you gerally see in pet shops ect are not terrible strong, they are ok, but dogs have choked to death by pushing though the sides of them, so if buying on of those, make it safe by using zip ties to secure ALL sides and corners that could possible be pushed through, ALWAYS use BOTH latches to close the door.