Congratulations on the new addition to your family! Your new friend will give you years of unconditional love and companionship. As a responsible pet owner you will want to do the best for your new pup, so here are the basics of puppy care.

Pet Insurance

You can now insure your pet’s health.  Most insurance policies cover a huge range of accidents and illness—even referral to specialist centres.  Ask us for brochures from the best insurance providers, or ask your home and contents insurer about pet insurance.

Click here for more information on pet insurance.

6 to 12 weeks of age

At this age most puppies are finding their feet and exploring their new home.  They prefer being fed a good quality puppy food 3-4 times daily.  We recommend using Royal Canin Puppy Food as it is a complete diet with all the vitamins and minerals needed for growth. There are special formulations for small breed and large breed dogs.

Vaccination

Potentially fatal diseases that all puppies should be vaccinated against include Parvo-virus, Distemper, Hepatits  and Kennel Cough.  Your puppy should be vaccinated at 6 weeks, 9 weeks and 12 weeks of age.  Three days after the final vaccination it will be safe to take your puppy to parks or kennels.

Intestinal Worming

All puppies should be wormed every 2 weeks with Drontal puppy tablets (at 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 12 weeks of age).  Intestinal worms can cause illness and death in young dogs, and can be transmitted to people where they can cause serious problems in young children.

Fleas

Fleas are the single biggest cause of itching in dogs, and on the Sunshine Coast, they are active all year around.  Fleas are everywhere and can quickly infest your home and dog.  We recommend using a monthly flea treatment, such as Nexgard which can be started at 8 weeks.  Nexgard is a tasty chew that is given monthly to protect against fleas and ticks.  Please speak to us about other options for flea control.

Paralysis Ticks

Unfortunately no product can give 100% protection, so daily searching is recommended if you live in a tick area.  The newer tick and flea products are highly effective, convenient and safe to use.  Cheaper product are often ineffective, as there is a much higher chance that fleas will be resistant to the chemical and won’t be affected.  Some supermarket products can also be toxic if too much is given at one time.  Nexgard treats both fleas and ticks for a whole month.  Ask us about which product is right for you.

Microchipping

It is now compulsory for all puppies to be microchipped when between 8 and 12 weeks of age.  The chip, which contains a code unique to your pet, is approximately the size of a grain of rice, and is injected under the skin between the shoulder blades.  We can do this when your puppy is in for their 2nd or 3rd vaccination.

Registration

All dogs must be registered with the Sunshine Coast Regional Council by the time they are 12 weeks of age.  Please visit their website to download the relevant form.

Puppy Pre-school

Why not join our Puppy Pre-school!  Puppy socialization is a vital part of being the owner of a well rounded dog.  This four week course suits puppies aged 8-16 weeks, and is held here at the veterinary surgery.   In addition to basic training, your puppy will learn how to socialize with other dogs and people, which should reduce the chance of unwanted behavioural problems such as fear biting and aggression later in life.

12 weeks to 6 months of age

Heartworm

Prevention for heartworm must be started at this time.  Mosquitoes transmit this deadly disease between dogs.  We strongly recommend the Pro-Heart injection which is a long lasting injection.  The first injection is given at 12 weeks of age, with a booster given at 6 months, then again at 15 months.  Following this, heartworm injections can be given yearly with the annual vaccination.  Alternatively, monthly chews or spot-on treatments are available to control heartworm.

Intestinal Worming

Continue to worm against intestinal worms monthly.

Fleas

Continue to provide flea treatments monthly.

Paralysis Ticks

Continue to provide treatment as directed.

6 months of age

Heartworm

A Pro-Heart booster injection is given at 6 months of age.

Desexing

Both male and female dogs benefit from desexing at this age.  Neutering prevents unwanted litters, reduces reproductive diseases, hormone-related conditions and cancer of the reproductive organs.  In addition, behavioural problems can be controlled such as aggression, roaming, territorial marking and other inappropriate sexual behaviours.

From 6 months old plus

Vaccinations

Annual vaccinations will ensure that your dog remains protected against the more common diseases.  A reminder letter will be posted to you when your dog is due.

Heartworm

Annual heartworm injections will ensure that your dog remains protected against heartworm disease, and can be done at the same time as the annual vaccination.  A reminder letter will be posted to you when due.

Intestinal Worming

Continue to worm your dog every three months for the rest of their life.

Fleas

Continue to provide flea treatments monthly.

Paralysis Ticks

Continue to provide treatment as directed.

It is possible to subscribe to flea and worming reminders to be sent via email.  You can subscribe or unsubscribe yourself at any time.  Visit http://bayeranimal.com.au to subscribe.