Bringing Home A New Puppy – First Night Survival Tips Included

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bringing home a new puppy

Bringing home a new puppy is a very exciting event for all the family, but the first month at home with your new Labrador puppy can be challenging.

The first few hours and days in his new home mark a major life change for your little Labrador pup, and probably for your family as well.

And a little support can make all the difference!

Getting support

In this article we will look at what you will need to consider when you first walk through the door with your new puppy. We’ve also included first night survival tips and plenty of new puppy care guides and resources.

If you have more questions when you get to the end, do join the forum where you’ll find support from other new puppy parents and from experienced dog owners.

You might also find my free training tips helpful. Just drop your email into the box below and we’ll send them to you.

It’s normal to worry about how your new puppy will adjust, but we’re here to help make sure that those first days are a magical time!

And we’ll be showing you where you can get help and support when things don’t quite go to plan.

Bringing a Puppy Home

Bringing home a new puppy is a potentially stressful experience for you and the pup. Just imagine being separated in an instant from everything you’ve ever known.

Of course, it would be better if you have been able to visit your puppy regularly before collecting him. But for most people, time and distance make this an unlikely option.

Bringing home a new puppy - we help make it funEverything he sees, smells and hears, in your home will seem very strange to him at first.

Your New Puppy Will Soon Settle in

Fortunately, most puppies leave their mother and siblings at an age when they will readily accept their new friends and family.

What would be a shockingly traumatic experience for a human child, if sensibly managed will have no lasting effect at all on your puppy’s confidence or happiness.

In a few days time, he will have settled in and accepted your home as his, and your family as his new family.

How to Look After a Puppy

If this is your first puppy, you will naturally have some concerns. Bringing home a new puppy is a big responsibility. You’ll want to get everything right.

You’ll need our puppy care center which is packed with information. You’ll find more links and resources on that page.

These will help put your mind at rest on topics like feeding, potty training, and vaccinations. That way, you know what to expect at each stage of your puppy’s development.

You can also join our Puppy Parenting course where you’ll find an example of a my own puppy diary and a detailed guide to a puppy’s first month.

But the purpose of this article is to ‘zoom in’ on those very first few days and get you through them safely and happily!

Holding Your Fur Baby

The first thing to master when bringing home a new puppy is holding them the right way. If you didn’t grow up around pets or have never had a pet, this might be tricky for you.

But here’s a quick tip to help you handle it like a pro. Place one hand between your pup’s legs from the front and tuck his rear between the same arm and body.

This is the most comfortable position for puppies. And if they’re especially small, this keeps them well supported.

New Puppy – First Day Home

Bringing home a new puppy is a pretty big event — your Labrador puppy’s new life is beginning and everyone will want to meet the new member of the family.

But if you have had a long car journey, the first thing your puppy will need is to pee!

Carry him in your arms to the area you want him to use for toilet purposes, and put him down there. If you put him down before you get there, he’ll probably pee right where he is.

As long as you stay in his future “bathroom spot” with him, he will probably trot about near you and hopefully relieve himself.

Your first steps in potty training have begun.

Maintaining Regular Bathroom Breaks

Puppies vary widely in how often they need to empty their bladder. Some may last an hour or more from day one, whilst others seem to need to go every 15 minutes or so. This phase doesn’t last long, but you need to be ‘on your toes’ to keep up.

During the course of the day, take the puppy to the toilet area at regular intervals (half hourly at least to begin with).

In addition, take him there every time he finishes a meal or wakes from a sleep. Also, for some pups, if they’ve been playing excitedly for more than a few minutes, they probably need to pee.

NEW PUPPY TIP: In the excitement of the day, it’s easy to forget bathroom breaks. Set an alarm on your cell phone to remind you.

In no time at all, he will be able to last longer and you can gradually stretch out the gaps between ‘toilet breaks.’

You’ll find a complete potty training guide and potty training problem-solving instructions in these two links

First Mealtimes

After using the bathroom, the next thing your puppy will appreciate is a small meal. The word ‘small’ is important.

Many Labrador puppies are very greedy and will eat astonishing quantities of food.

How much to feed

Follow the guide on the pack for your puppy’s daily ration and divide into several small portions.

A tiny handful of food can look a bit lost in your big new bowl, but don’t be tempted to give in to those pleading puppy eyes!

New puppies are especially prone to upset tummies. The new environment and the stress of leaving home all add to the risk. You can reduce that risk by feeding little and often.

What to feed

It’s also best to stick to exactly the same food the puppy was eating at his last home.

If you want to change diets, do this gradually once the puppy has settled in. Don’t try to do it in the first few days.

How often to feed

Four times a day is the minimum number of feeds for an 8 week old puppy. Five or even six portions are better for a puppy with an upset tummy. Remember that the daily quantity is the same. More portions means smaller portions.

It’s okay if you haven’t got a dog bowl yet. Any clean plate or dish will do, and if your puppy spills his food and eats it off the floor, it doesn’t matter.

In fact the very best approach is to use all of your puppy’s food up in little short training sessions of games. If you get this right, there will be little or nothing left to put in the bowl when mealtimes come around

You can find out more about using puppy food in training games by joining our Puppy Parenting course

Meeting the Kids

Bringing home a new puppy is an exciting time for all the family. For much of the first day, your puppy will probably be cuddled and admired. If you have young children, however, you’ll need to supervise.

Don’t let them carry the puppy off to their rooms. They won’t remember to take him outside for a pee, and they won’t notice when he is getting overexcited, or about to poop on the carpet.

You’ll also need to show your kids how to hold the puppy. For smaller children, it’s best to hold the puppy while sitting. Kids should also be aware of safety precautions, such as learning to let the pup be if he seems uncomfortable.

Helping Your Pets Get Along

If you have an older dog, you’ll also need to supervise (and at times separate) them.

Some older dogs will play too roughly with a puppy. Others will growl and appear to reject the puppy at first. These are normal reactions but they do indicate that you are going to need to keep a close eye on things for a while.

A baby gate or other barrier is a perfect way to keep a puppy from annoying the resident dog or cat while they adjust to the newcomer.

In the early days after bringing home a new puppy, you’ll need to be his guardian angel and make sure he gets plenty of chances to rest and sleep. Don’t worry, the novelty will soon wear off, and life will return to normal.

As the day draws to a close, your thoughts will turn to night time, and getting your puppy to sleep! Let’s take a look now at the first night with a new puppy

bringing home a new puppy

First Night with Puppy

If you settle your puppy down to sleep on their own, the first night often goes one of two ways.

Either the puppy whines for a little while, then falls sleeps you don’t hear a peep out of him until morning. Or he howls the house down either constantly or intermittently throughout the night.

The problem is, you won’t know in advance which of these two groups your puppy will fall into.

There are two approaches to choosing where a puppy sleeps for those first few nights. One is to get him used to his permanent sleeping quarters right from the start. The other is to have him next to your bed until he has got over his homesickness (usually three or four days).

Leaving a puppy to cry

The problem with the first approach is that you won’t know whether or not you have a ‘howler’ until you close that door and walk away. And if you keep going back, the howling may well increase.

Leaving a puppy to cry alone in a strange house is also probably very distressing for the puppy and not a great way to start their new life. If your puppy is already crying a great deal, check out our article on Crying Puppies for more tips and support

It’s up to you (and possibly your neighbors), of course. But we recommend having the puppy next to your bed for the first three nights. This reduces the risk of getting into an increasing spiral of night howling or having your puppy miserable for the first week.

Can My Pup Sleep in My Bed?

It isn’t a good idea to have a dog that isn’t house trained sleeping in your bed, even if you intend to do so later.

Small puppies fall out of beds and even if they don’t hurt themselves, will then pee or poop quietly on your bedroom carpet. Which you won’t discover until you step in it next morning.

If you don’t want to lift his crate up and down the stairs, find a deep sturdy cardboard box. Just pop his blankets in there and put the box right next to where you sleep. He’ll be able to hear and smell you. And most puppies don’t cry at night if you do this.

Night waking

Most 8 week old puppies wake in the night to pee for the first week or so.

Unless you intend to ‘paper train’ your puppy indoors, you will need to take him outside at least once during the night, for at least the first week.

You can get tips and advice on how to manage this in our potty training guide, but it’s important to recognize that it is normal.

Keeping your puppy close

In the future you’ll want your dog to be happy to be left alone sometimes, and this is something that you need to teach your puppy in gentle stages.

But the first few days is a time for settling your puppy in, building their confidence and avoiding bad habits such as whining or howling, getting started

The best way to meet all those goals, is to keep your puppy very close to you until their homesickness has passed. That’s usually a period of about 5-7 days.

Bonding with your puppy

Your main objective now is to bond with your puppy.

Spend lots of time with your puppy. Make him feel at home. Pay him a lot of attention when he is quiet, fuss and praise him when he pees outside. Don’t forget to feed him often, and clear up accidents without comment.

Once he has settled in, there will be plenty of time to think about crate training and learning manners, but for now just enjoy his Labrador puppy loveliness, and that scrummy new puppy smell. It will be gone all too soon, replaced by a bouncing, boisterous, and joyful friend who all too often smells of pond water.

Don’t Forget to See the Vet

You need to visit your veterinarian within the first week of bringing home your new puppy. Both to get your puppy’s first shots, and to make sure that your puppy is brimming with good health

It’s also a good point at which to establish a relationship with your puppy’s main health care provider and share any concerns your might have about your new pup.

Potty training progress

There will be ‘accidents,’ puddles, and poops indoors, possibly on a daily basis initially. It helps if you remember that each of these is your fault – not the puppy’s.

Remember, you are responsible for ensuring he has sufficient visits to his ‘toilet area.’

Never punish a puppy for house-training accidents; it is pointless as he has no control and no understanding of what is expected.

What you are doing is establishing good habits, which will last a lifetime.

What About Crate Training?

A quality dog crate is an excellent source of help with potty-training. But a puppy should not be left inside a crate for longer than his immature bladder can hold its contents.

For some puppies, this is not very long at all.

You’ll find some great crate training advice and schedules in our detailed crate training guide

Puppy socialization

Your key focus for the first month with your new puppy, will be socializing him. Socialization is a big part of bringing home a new puppy. This is the process we take puppies through, to make sure they are comfortable with all aspects of living in human society.

You’d be surprised how scary our strange human world can seem to a baby dog.

For instance, dogs need to be confident around things like vehicles and machines. They should be happy to meet people of all different shapes and sizes and to go boldly wherever people want to take them.

A confident dog is not just a happy dog; he is a safe dog. Keep in mind that almost all dog bites are triggered by ‘fear.’ So, making sure your dog isn’t afraid of anything he’s likely to meet will keep him and those around him safe.

Socializing also means taking your puppy out and about. Naturally, many worry about exposing a not-yet-fully vaccinated puppy to the risk of infection. You can find out more about this issue in our guide “When Can I Take My Puppy Out

Can I Start Training My New Puppy?

Yes you can! If you use modern dog training methods, you can get going right after bringing home a new puppy!

In the first week puppy training is based on a series of fun games. So that your puppy will be learning without even realising.

The games you play should lay foundations for future good behavior, teaching your puppy not snatch, to say please, to focus on you, to love their crate, to wear a harness or collar and to run towards you rather than away from you.

A lot of people worry about whether or not to take a puppy to classes, and some are unable to do so. But there is a great deal you can do at home by yourself. You can find out more about teaching your puppy at home in this article:Dog training at home

Check out our online trainng courses if you’d like more support.

Recall

One of the most common problems that many dog owners experience is a dog that runs off or doesn’t come when called. You can avoid this by getting off to a great start with recall training in the very first week. The video below will help you.
PUPPY RECALL TIP: Never call the puppy by whistle or by his name unless he is already running towards you. And never chase after a puppy.

Puppy recall training starts right after bringing home a new puppy. Build an association between the act of running towards you and the sound of the recall word or whistle.

If you call the puppy and he does not come, you will have begun to teach him that the recall command is optional. Check out our puppy recall training video to give you an idea of how easy it is to build this a good association if you start off in the right way.

You can find out more about building a great recall from the beginning in Total Recall. But for now, in these first few days at home together, make sure no one calls the puppy to them. When they want him, they can simply pick him up.

If he runs away, all they need to do is run in the opposite direction and he will come chasing after them.

Bringing Home a New Puppy – Summary

Try to get good toilet habits started from day one, with lots of trips to the ‘bathroom zone’ in your yard.

For the first few days after bringing home a new puppy, focus on bonding and helping him to feel safe. And don’t forget that first trip to the vet!

Consider having your puppy next to your bed for the first few nights. This will comfort him while he is feeling homesick and missing his mom and playmates.

Expect to get up in the night to take your puppy out to pee for at least the first couple of weeks. Set a reminder to avoid teaching your puppy to cry for your attention.

During his daytime naps, dive into the feeding, potty training, and obedience training guides mentioned in this article, and head over to the forum for support from our other readers, many of whom have been where you are now, and come safely out the other side!

If you want help choosing an adorable puppy name, make sure you take a look at this article too!

More Information on Puppies

Happy-Puppy-jacket-image1-195x300For a complete guide to raising a healthy and happy puppy, including helping him to settle in with the family, don’t miss The Happy Puppy Handbook.

The book will help you prepare for bringing home a new puppy, and get your puppy off to a great start with potty training, socialization and early obedience.

The Happy Puppy Handbook is available worldwide.

Puppy Parenting Courses

For more in-depth support during the first month or so of your puppy’s life, I have created a Puppy Parenting online course.

The course includes all the puppy games you’ll need for the first four weeks, with detailed lessons accompanied by over fifty videos, a puppy diary and detailed solutions to common puppy problems such as biting, crying, and potty training issues. It also includes membership of our private student’s forum. And we’d love to see you there.

Good luck with your new puppy and have fun! And don’t forget to grab those Training Tips!

References:

Veterinary Medicine, Dvm360. Bergman, L. VMD, DACVB Ensuring a Behaviorally Healthy Pet-Child Relationship
Psychology Today. Coren, S. PhD., DSc, FRSC Aggression Between Dogs in the Same Household
Veterinary Record, Vol 182. Limb, M. (2018). New pet owner ignorance–still a problem.

The Labrador Site Founder

Pippa Mattinson is the best selling author of The Happy Puppy Handbook, the Labrador Handbook, Choosing The Perfect Puppy, and Total Recall.

She is also the founder of the Gundog Trust and the Dogsnet Online Training Program 

Pippa's online training courses were launched in 2019 and you can find the latest course dates on the Dogsnet website

43 COMMENTS

  1. Hi Pippa
    I am trying to have plenty of recall times with my pups aged 12 weeks. They do respond and come to me. I will try to do this separately and together as we are together alot of the time. I know it is controversial to have 2 littermates but we did. My concern is that when I do have them off the lead they seem to be happy to be away from me and less of the magnet pull that is recognized in the first four months. How can I support recall training safely so they don’t run off??

  2. I just got a 6 week old Labrador mix should we start training? And if so what she is also biting a lot how do you stop this habit so she won’t do it as a full grown dog. She is going to be an outdoor dog. How big should her pen be and should she sleep out side or inside the first week. We have a lot a neighbor dogs should we keep them away from her or have them meet each other? Thank you for your time!

  3. I bought a labrador age 37 days and the first night he slept well for some time at mid night like 2 am he started to bark and cry so we left him to cry and around 15 to 20 min he is back to sleep so is the dog normal or what any suggestions

  4. Thanks for the tips about taking care of a puppy. My sister wants to get her dog potty trained as soon as possible but she doesn’t know how. I will suggest that she reads up on training while her dog is napping in the daytime. It’s also a good idea to take your puppy to the vet for the first checkup.

  5. Hello . I have a question when you bring your puppy home and you had not bring any food for him and I think that the vet will tell me what to feed him but wait ? Isn’t he hungry but I will have to ask the vet oh…. I am so confused please help me ????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

  6. I like that you mentioned to make sure you take your new puppy to the area where he will go to the bathroom every half hour at least. That way, he can relieve himself when he needs to and know where he needs to go. I am going to get a puppy this week, and I want to make sure I cam prepared when he arrives. I will definitely keep these tips in mind, thanks!

  7. Hi Pippa,

    Great article, thankfully I read it. I was about to buy a lab puppy for my son on his 2nd birthday, which is coming week. My wife is already not in the mood to take additional responsibility, and I think it will be a toll on my family and the puppy if we can’t give him the care and attention s/he needs. For now I am postponing my plan to bring home a cute lovely puppy.

    Best,
    Harish

  8. Hello pipa, i have a month old labrador puppy (Marley) kust need some advice on how to properly feed him and care for him since he is very small/young and might’ve been still attached to his mom. Thank you.

  9. I need help I’ve saved many breeds over my years I got a black lab 8 weeks ago and he is very friendly extremely loving everyone who has met him he takes to in a loving way he’s 21 weeks old now and he urinates on his toys and plays with them he urinates on all 6 beds I have in different rooms of our house as and tries to lay in them he is loved goes out side every 2 hours and urinates outside I have cut back his water dont know where it keeps coming from but he pees so much I’ve never heard of a dog that lays and chews on his own pee please help

  10. We have just brought our 8 week old puppy home, I have three children, age 6,8,11. They were involved in visiting the pup and choosing him, now home they are quite nervous of him when he has a silly half hour, do you have any advice to help them get over this?

  11. Hi Pippa,
    I am writing to you out of the emotional upheaval that i am going through right now and i need to feel better. i have an 8 month old labrador, absolutely gorgeous and handsome. he loves me and my husband dearly, and i love him more than my life. unfortunately, we are migrating to a different country in a month’s time and we cannot take our handsome fellow with us, as their are restrictions in the housing culture of that country, dogs aren’t allowed in many places outside over there and can’t be left alone as well. and we are young and living a modest life and won’t be able to afford a bigger house t accommodate him in that country. hence, we have the only choice of giving him up for adoption. his history says, that whenever we had left him to a creche for 5 days at a stretch, he would come back feeling sad and distant, he wouldn’t recognise us for first day back, but then would soon bounce back. so we feel he has a very adaptive nature, because he is able to adjust anywhere, as long as he gets love and food and playtime there. this makes us feel a little better in case of giving him for adoption. but i want to ask you — you think an 8 month old lab will be able to adjust and adapt to a brand new family and learn to be happy there and slowly forget us?? i really hope your answer is yes…because i want him to be happy..i owe him that! thanks, spb

  12. Hey! hi Pippa . I had bought a 2 months old Labrador 1 week ago and iam very much thankful to you for giving me a good advice . Doing a great job . Keep it up !

  13. hi friends…
    i hv baught a labrador pup today…
    this is my first time and i m very confused regarding his care…can u please guide me..

  14. Hi Pipa
    i got a 7 weeks old female labrador. what food should i give him other then the dog food “royal canin” that the pet store owner suggested ? is it advisable to give him curd she seems to like it…
    and how many times do i need to feed her every day? we feed her 4 times but she still seems to be hungry.

  15. Hi , thnx a lot for all this info. I just want to ask you that i have a lab of 40 days, we called BRUNO . I brought him home 3 days ago. Its my first time with a pet ! What should me feed him ? What are the basic meal for a pup which can be ideal and make him strong enough ? OR Anything else which we must not feed him ?
    Thanks a lot .

  16. hi!!
    we are planning to get a labrador pup in next month. the problem that i have is my mum said that we wont be giving the pup meat and bones. Will it be ok to do so??
    what else can we feed him??

  17. Hi Pippa,
    Your website is really very helpful for first dog owners like me. I love lab since my childhood.

    I am from India.IT professional.

    Our chocolate lab pup Scotch is now 45 days old. Its been only two days he arrived at home . We brought it from Breeder. He left his siblings & mom. We are training & behaving properly as per your guidance on the website. We love him a lott .The only thing is yesterday we have given him bath with slight Luke warm water to clean him. As earlier he was not kept very hygienically there in the kennel.
    so is it OK.? If we give them a bath ?

    Issue 1- Food ?

    We shud ideally gve him 4 meals of kibble.When we gve him dry kibbles he doesn’t eat , He doesn’t drink water at all , when we mix those dry kibble with water he doesn’t luk at them. I know we should not give him cow milk however whenever we mix those kibbles with milk or chicken stalk he immediately finishes it off.
    Really worried what to do. Becoz he is already lean & might loose his weight very fast. I want him to make very healthy.

    Issue 2 – His behaviour

    The problem is we are 3 people at home , Me , my hubby & my younger Bro. My bro is at home full day.First two day’s puppy scotch was completely ok. He was mekin noises , pooping here & there , playing & also very responsive & quick learner. During day we keep him inside our house & some time on the terrace in evening 6.00 Pm & cum back at 4.00 Pm in the morning. Yesterday night for the first time my bro has tried to keep scotch on terrace besides the room however every 30-40 mins he was barking & mekin noises. So my Bro has slapped him very slighty on his head. When me & my hubby came back home Scotch was very quiet . So we felt very unusual . He is very pampered by us . We gave him recall . But he didnt turned up. We pampered him a lot. He was sleeping at our lap . He is ok now. But He is not that playful like before , Not giving any responses to the trainings which we have taought him as per your blog. Also not eating anything even not drinking water. Me & my hubby we were worried hence taken him to the vet. he has given some medicines. Vet said it happened becoz of the bath which we have given him day before yesterday. He doesn’t have temperature .Still he has given few calcium drops for scotch . Earlier scotch use to sleep inside the house however now he is going in the terrace to sleep again & again. Though my bro pampered him & brought him home several times he is not sleeping in his crate & going on terrace again & again . Dont understand what to do now. because in the evening being working people we cant be at home to look after him though whenever we are at home always make sure that he get full love & attention which he deserves.

    Please guide me. Awaiting your response.

    Lot’s of Love & Regards,
    Sambhavna

  18. Hey peppa,
    I have a 50days old Labrador pup(Rambo)….nd till nw he is not vaccinated….plz tell me …when i take him to a vet…plz reply soon..m scared??????????

  19. Hey Pippa,
    For the first few months when your puppy is bonding with you,should your puppy sleep on the bed so that it feels safe and loved or on its own puppy bed so that it doesn’t make a habit of always sleeping on your bed?

    • Hi Catherine, it is entirely up to you where your puppy sleeps, and your puppy will still feel loved if he has his own bed. For the first few nights, when pups are still homesick, they may settle quicker next to your bed, but after that, it is a matter of personal preference. It is worth bearing in mind that if you do have your dog sleep on the bed, it may be a big shock for him if you leave him in kennels or with friends whilst you are on holiday.
      Pippa

  20. Hi Pippa,

    I had purchased a male Labrador Pup last Sunday. I should say that I had not given a deep thought before buying the pup. Me and my wife are both working and I have 2 children one is 7 and the other is 2.5. We live in a small 2 bedroom apartment . I was too excited when I purchased the pup who was about 30 days old. To be honest I started to love him for the day one. However after the day I bought it realization dawned on me that its a long term responsibility and I am not very confident or rather scared if I would be able to be there to fulfil all his needs. As of now we have a maid at home who feeds him and takes care of him when we are not around but this might not be a permanent feature. I might have to leave him alone at home for 8 to 9 hours when we are out for work. Moreover I am not sure on the amount of time pups or full grown labs need from us when they are sick . I can probably take a day off if needed but may not be able to take more than that and the very thought of leaving the pup alone when its sick makes me feel very guilty. I have been living with the guilt of getting the pup for past 3 days when I am not sure if I will be able to do all thats needed for it though I would love to do it. I also spoke to the breeder and he was willing to take it back. However the pup and me have made a connection and I am a bit confused what to do.. In teh interest of the pup should I leave him back or should I continue with him which I feel like doing. I am also worried that I may not be able to take him for a walk twice daily and may have to leave him in a kennel when I travel which is for one week every 3 months. Do you feel that the pup will feel bad if I leave it with the breeder. Will it be able to adjust to a new family and forget us ( Though I will never be able to forget him).. I am extremely confused and guilty and am not able to sleep at nights thinking of this.. PLease advise whats the right thing to do in such a case

    • Hi Rajesh,
      It is good that you are thinking about this now, rather than in a few weeks time. It sounds as though you and your wife are possibly not in the right position to care for a puppy right now. Have a look at this link it may give you some ideas of what to expect if you keep your puppy.

      If you are going to return him to the breeder, it is better to do this sooner rather than later. He will adapt well to a new family whilst he is so young and in any case, he is best left with his brothers and sisters and mother until he is eight weeks old.

      You are obviously trying to consider the puppy’s needs, best wishes, Pippa

  21. Hi,
    First of all I would like to thank the developer of this site.
    Not only have I learnt a great deal about Lab Pups but it has only reinforced my decision to get a Lab Puppy. It had been my dream for almost last 2 decades… finally its gonna come true tomorrow. I am getting a male Lab puppy tomorrow. It’s 43 days old( I apologize for this since you strongly recommended not to bring one home before 8 weeks in a previous article).
    Me & mom both being doctors have to stay outside for prolonged periods but during the next 15 days we will be home to take care of him.
    I have a few questions-
    I am from India, Kolkata and the summer here is scorching. The breeder from whom i will purchase Shadow(yea.. 🙂 that’s the name i thought of for a long time) doesn’t have an AC in the room. How should i get him to adjust to my home AC environment. he will stay indoors always so will it be ok when later i have to leave home after turning the AC off.
    Secondly I have several cats and kittens in my home, but they are of outdoor type how do I get him to adjust. I read in a separate article that Labs are the few dogs that can adjust easily to other pets.
    And last of all the pups probably still on breast milk at the breeder’s place… What type of food should i start of with now & are chew toy bones safe at this stage?
    Thank you once again.

    • Hi Oisharya
      I’m afraid I cannot advise you on your air conditioning. I simply don’t know enough about raising a dog in a hot country. I suggest you chat to your vet about it, and about your puppy’s diet for the next couple of weeks. Here is an explanation of why I don’t give advice on feeding puppies under seven weeks old. Young puppies

      With regard to chew toys, safety depends entirely on how they are manufactured, so again, not knowing your local situation I’m afraid I cannot comment. If you can get these Kongsin India, they are excellent. Good luck with Shadow.
      Best wishes
      Pippa

  22. Hey. I recently purchased a Labrador bitch. Shes 6 weeks old, and chewing everything, including my hands. Whats the best way to stop her, even just chewing on people body bits. Toes, noses, hair, fingers, all of it.

  23. Hi
    We are planning to get a Labrador puppy in a couple of months. We also have a pet rabbit which lives in a hutch in the garden but which also has free use of the garden which is totally enclosed. How will I teach my puppy to leave the rabbit alone? The puppy will also have an outdoor kennel and run right next to the rabbit and its hutch.

    • Hi Richard,
      A lot will depend on your puppy. You will probably need at least a visual barrier between the kennel run and rabbit hutch to avoid the puppy getting excited over the rabbit and running up and down or barking at it. First introductions need to be made with care and under close supervision. Have the puppy on a lead and harness, feed and reward the puppy for looking at you and ignoring the rabbit, walk him away if he becomes excited.
      Pippa

  24. When we brought our puppy from breeder I thought it was going to be very stressful but it turned out to be a great experience (minus the milk teeth 😉 ). We were finished with potty training in less than a week where he learned to call us to take him out. Of course, he had a few accidents but hey! It happens 🙂 We picked Perun up from a breeder that lives 1200 km away from us so he was immediately in for a 13 – 14 hour ride in the car. My husband was driving and I was sitting at the back seat with our puppy. When we took off from the breeder the little one didn’t cry just, as I was holding him on my chest, looked straight into my eyes and we made instant connection. It really was the love at first sight. My husband now says he that he’s a “mama’s boy” which he is and I love every second of it! Since we were the first ones to contact the breeder when the bitch was pregnant and we already had a name in our mind, he was nice enough to put Perun’s name in his papers and started calling him by the name once we knew which one is going to be our new fur baby (I would’ve taken all 4 of them 🙂 ). That helped a lot, too. Perun is now 8 months and 9 days old. Strong willed, good tempered, spoiled and goofy. He learns incredibly quick and is too smart for our own good 😉 Thank you Pippa for your great site and advice! 😀 Nina

  25. Hi i have a almost 2month old puppy and i was wondering if you can help me regarding wee training and the pup alsp keeps on playing with telephone wires because its my first time caring for a labrador pup and i’m having a hard time. Thanks zoe.

    • Hi Zoe, you can find out all about housetraining and crate training in the articles in this section. But why not also drop into the forum for lots of moral support and practical advice from other Labrador owners. Hope to see you there. 🙂 Pippa

  26. hi i have a three year old labrador/pup and was wondering if i can still get her scanned for hip dysplasia,elbow dysplasia,and her eyes tested because i was thinking of breeding her next year thanks peter

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