The puppies will be getting their first shots just when they are 7-8 weeks old and will need to stay here with me that day to make sure nobody has any bad reactions. We anticipate the puppies will be able to start to go to their new homes after this happens. If the puppies are not fully weaned yet, we do not anticipate that situation but just in case, they may need to stay with us for an additional week or two.
We send our puppies home with a care package to help make their transition to your home as easy as possible. Our puppy package contains:
• A couple of toys with the litter scent
• A small blanket
• Some kibble the puppies are used to
• A starter collar
• Some shavings and wee pads to start house breaking
• Puppy’s growth chart
• Veterinarian record of first shots
• AKC paperwork to register your puppy
In addition we recommend you have the following ready:
• A crate if you will be crate training your puppy. * see below for recommendations
• A crate liner or doggy bed for your puppy.
• A food bowl, we recommend stainless steel.
• A water bowl, we recommend stainless steel.
• We recommend some kind of tray or mat to go below the food and water bowl, it just makes cleanups easier. Puppies love to spill their water and food bowls!
• A good quality puppy food - you will mix the kibble we send home with you with this food to switch the puppy over to its new food. We recommend any high quality food that you can easily find near you.
• Puppy cookies - we have been giving them Milk Bone brand puppy cookies, but choose something easy for you to get.
• Chew sticks - and lots of them! Those puppy teeth are sharp and having lots of chew sticks around will make it easy to trade your finger or clothes for a chew stick and start to teach your puppy what is theirs to chew on.
• A couple of toys with your family smell on them to mix with their toys with the litter scent.
• Consider a good x-pen or some kind of gate for the puppy area. We do not recommend a mesh or thin plastic barrier gates as our Maya destroyed those easily. Our puppies all seem to be good climbers so 24 inches tall is the minimum!
• A leash, a lightweight short leash is fine, we still use our beagles first leashes as car leashes after they are all grown.
• A good enzyme cleaner to help with puppy clean ups.
• An appointment with your vet within 4 weeks of taking your puppy home for an exam and their next set of puppy shots.
• If you have other pets at home, have your plan ready on how you will introduce the new puppy to the rest of the family.
The first night is usually the toughest when they are first away from their litter-mates and parents. We provide you with a blanket and some toys that have the family scent on them to help make the first night a little easier. Throw their blanket and toys in to their new crate or bed and let them sleep with them that first night. Some people like to also add those toys that make the heartbeat sounds. Make sure you take the puppy out to potty before going to sleep. As hard as it is, try not to give in to any cries they may have, if they seem in real distress, then check on them. They may need to go out and go potty again during the night (see house-breaking tips), if so, you want to take them outside to where you want them to do their business and praise them madly when they do the job. Try not to make this play time or they will try to play and not get down to business as long as possible just to keep you with them.
When you first take your puppy home, you will want to keep them somewhat isolated from other dogs until they have had their third set of puppy shots at around 16 weeks old as their immune systems are still quite weak and they are very susceptible to disease during this stage. However, socialization with other dogs and puppies that you know are current with their shots and/or are in good health is encouraged. If you take your puppy to dog friendly stores with you (Lowe's, Home Depot, pet stores), we recommend carrying them inside since you do not know what other dogs have been on the floors there. You will probably want to schedule the second set of puppy shots within 4 weeks and the third set of puppy shots and rabies another 4 weeks later depending on what your vet recommends. After that your puppy should be good and protected and can start to go on real walks, to dog parks and anywhere else you wish to take them. Your veterinarian may recommend other vaccinations and preventatives as well for your area.
We do recommend puppy kindergarten, our vet also recommends Bordatella vaccinations if you decide on puppy classes, consult your vet for their opinion, our beagles travel with us enough and occasionally have to go to "camp" so they get this every 6 months. Heartgard or other heartworm preventative is recently recommended for our area, our two get theirs monthly, once again, consult with your vet about this as well. Flea and tick prevention is another thing to discuss with your vet to find a solution that works for you.
Puppies, especially beagle puppies, like to put everything in their mouths. Piper was and still is a pro at finding dead things and for some reason thought pinecones were tons of fun. Hunter and Mocha couldn’t walk past something without trying to pick things up. Additionally Mocha was really good at getting things off tables, dressers other places we did notthink he could get to until he did. Shelby has been known to kill critters in front of her kids to try and teach them. This can lead to some diseases, like giardia or coccidia, which are very treatable. If you see vomiting or diarrhea that lasts more than a few times, talk to your vet as it may be time for a quick check.
Give your new puppy lots and lots of exercise. They will still sleep a lot when they first go home, but will have more and more energy every day. A tired puppy is a better puppy!
G-d made them cute so you won’t kill them!
* Crate recommendations - If you get a larger crate, make sure it has a barrier so you can start off the puppy area as a smaller size. We started off all our beagles in the same crate and it worked for over a month before they needed to go to a larger size, this crate was just one of the plastic PetMate smaller crates, and while still useful to us (transferring puppies), we recommend something like the Midwest Life Stages crates that your puppy can grow into. Our large crates for our adults are 36” x 24” x27”, you could also get away with 30” x 21” x 24”, we happen to travel with our monsters and occasionally they have to share and the larger crate lets us do that. We would avoid soft sided crated until after the teething process is completed.