Many people question if they can pick out, see, or play with their puppies before they are ready to go at 8-10 weeks old. The answer to the question is NO. There are several reasons why we do not let anyone around the new puppies between birth and 8 weeks – all to protect our dogs and your puppy. Below you will find not only details as to why the answer is no but also information as to what you can do in the meantime to prepare for your puppy.
First, it is extremely stressful for the mom to have strangers visit as she is caring for her new litter. This, in turn, will put stress on the newborn pups. Remember, you are one of many people (sometimes as many as 10) who are getting a puppy, not including everyone else who “just wants to peek at the new babies.” If we allow everyone to see, touch, or spend time with the new pups, the mom’s routine would be disrupted: her eating and caring for pups and even her ability to produce enough healthy milk for them could be at risk.
Like a new baby, the opportunity for young pups to pick up infectious diseases is increased with all new contacts. Their immune systems are building, so at this time, the moms and pups live in whelping nests which have controlled temperatures and are separate from all outside traffic. Most illnesses and diseases are innocently carried on people’s shoes and clothing. Entire litters of puppies can be wiped out within 48 hours by the puppy killer parvovirus. This disease could be picked up unknowingly by people in a schoolyard, a park, or on a sidewalk, and this is only one disease. We cannot risk exposing our dogs and your puppy to diseases that could destroy them.
Your puppy is not the only puppy. By protecting all of our puppies from stress and disease that could be brought on by high traffic, we are protecting your puppy. Just think about how you would feel if someone who just wanted to see his or her pup happened to bring in stress or illness that would cause us to lose a litter and you to lose your future puppy. We have heard from many people that pet stores, other breeders, or other kennels let clients visit puppies; the reality is that their number one concern is selling a puppy. Also, will those people be there to support you, replace the puppy, or guide you in the days, weeks, or years after you get your puppy home? Are they willing and capable to help you with training, breeding, behavioral, or health questions? Just because someone allows you to see the puppy, it does not indicate the quality of dog or of service you will receive throughout the puppy’s lifetime.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. We take great care and much time caring for all of our dogs and their puppies. It is time and energy consuming. This is what we do best, so please let us do it. We understand your excitement, and we are happy that you are enthusiastic about getting your pup. But until you take your puppy home, we are responsible and the puppy’s health and safety is our priority. I guarantee you that in 8-10 weeks after the birth it will be well worth your wait.
IN THE MEANTIME WHAT CAN YOU DO?
You can come to meet us and see any litters that have been vet checked, immunized, and are 8 weeks old.
You can visit our Facebook page, Northweast Lagotto Kennels, where we often post pictures of new litters and puppies.
You can prepare your home for your new puppy:
✦Puppy proof the house,✦Get a Vari Kennel (type of dog crate) for crate training,✦Get some good puppy toys (we recommend nylar bones, gummy bones, and other chew toys – not stuffed or squeaky because the pup can choke on stuffing and the squeaker),✦Get your leash and collar (9-10”),✦Get dog food (we feed Fromm Family Foods), and✦Get stainless steel food and water dishes.
All the best,