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Your Puppy's New Home


The question of when a puppy should move to its new home causes more problems than any other. There can be psychological conflicts between a caring breeder parting with a litter of puppies and a new owner eager to acquire one of them. A breeder may even delay selling a particular puppy because it has show potential and could command a higher price later, or even think it too good to sell.


For getting to know its new family, six to seven weeks is the best time to move a puppy. From this age, the more human contact it experiences, the better its temperament will be.


Strangely enough, the eight to nine week period is said to be the equivalent of a "fear period" seen in babies of eight months, and it is usually best to avoid changes of home during this time. Smaller, more insecure breeds and puppies going to noisy homes with very young children are often best left until they are ten weeks old. There are no hard and fast rules, though, and if the breeder considers the new home suitable, the owners sensible and the puppy well- adjusted, six to seven weeks seems a good age to make the transfer.


If you're about to acquire a puppy, there are arrangements to make and equipment you need to ensure the puppy's happiness and safety in your home.


A place to sleepLab Puppy Sleeping
A bed of its own makes a very important contribution to the puppy's sense of security in its new home. It will certainly miss its mother, brothers and sisters and previous home and so will benefit from having its own "territory". The first bed doesn't have to be elaborate - a cardboard box with the front cut down provides a good start. The only bedding needed is newspaper with a folded blanket on top. Once the teething stage is over and the puppy chewing less, you can provide a sturdier bed.


Food and water bowls
Your puppy needs separate bowls for food and water. When deciding where to put them, remember that the water should be available at all times, so choose an out-of-the-way place with an impervious surface. Place the bowls on newspaper to keep any stray food tidy; when the puppy is past the chewing stage, you can place them on a plastic wipe-down mat.