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Getting a Puppy
  • AngelusAngelus
    Posts: 84
    So this summer I am getting a puppy from an AKC breeder in Oregon. I have a deposit on a companion pup and I am aiming for a black and tan male, but I really just want a male, I think all the coats are beautiful, I have just always had boy animals! They are expected to be ready by mid-July (with current delivery date estimation).

    I am aware of the Shiba's temperament (been researching for a year and a half now, head hurting :P). I'm ready for a puppy mentally and financially, but I want some advice from some veteran owners for good measure. I know I'm not a pro here with some research and talking with breeders!

    1. Anything that took you guys by surprise I should watch out for? Puppy or Shiba-specific? I'm a first-time dog owner, but have a lot of animal experience (a LOT) and a lot of dog experience, just always lived in apartments!

    2. I have a cat. He's neutered, very attached to me, very calm and loving. He's a mutt but mostly Norwegian Forest cat or Turkish Angora, he's 13lbs and pretty big- not fat, but low energy. He's never shared before, and while I know he wont hurt the dog (he would just run away), I don't want them to just coexist, I would like them to like each other! I'm much more confident the dog will like my cat than my cat liking the dog actually. He's just so scared, and the one hyper puppy he met for half a second he couldn't have run away fast enough (he didn't get hurt by the dog, it was just an excited puppy -on a leash- and my cat was very surprised by the strange new beast in his house haha). Any advice about 6yo cats with new puppies?

    3. Last but not least- dog stuff!
    Collars: I'm thinking buckle nylon until adult to save me money if he destroys it + outgrowing them. Puppy size?
    Harness: Want to walk with a harness, thinking puppia or step-ins for now, better for full grown again for $$. Puppy size?
    Leashes: 4/6' nylon basic
    Crate: Wire, MidWest with divider. Is 30Lx21H good for an adult Shiba you think?
    Ex-pen: MidWest, 36H, wire top for when I need to be gone for a couple hrs or something
    Toys: The indestructible types: kongs, tuffys, godog, gonuts, any other brands? For cheap toys- anything I should stay away from? I know no tennis balls (bad for teeth) and to not let them eat stuffing, but cheap shredder stuff would just be while supervised!
    Bed: Should I even bother? Should I get a blanket at least?
    Misc: Snuggle puppy, I really am scared about puppy crying at night, if this helps I'm gonna get it! Also, I live in an apartment, do you think indoor pet-grass potty would be okay for when I'm gone for a couple hours and I can put it in his enclosure? Or should I just do puppy pads?
    Food: Wellness, grain-free puppy formula. Any objections? I'll make sure to wean off old food obviously! :P

    Thanks everyone, I know that's a novel, but any input is great. It's so close that I'm all nervous about doing something dumb now, or forgetting something (after waiting for a yr and a half, yes 3.5mos is close). :D

    [changed category ~mod.]
    [additional mod edit: removed link for breeder... See forum rules]
    Post edited by sunyata at 2013-04-08 15:54:02
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    There are existing threads on all the questions you've asked. Please use the search function.

    Edit: got two for you while on mobile and got lazy :(

    Post edited by Bootz at 2013-04-07 03:18:20
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    Glad you are doing your research early.

    All your questions have been answered many times on here, so feel free to peruse the other threads and use the search function. You can always post a specific questions in those applicable threads for your question, this also helps future members seeking answers find discussions on specific topics.
    Post edited by redcattoo at 2013-04-07 06:03:35
  • Tre26Tre26
    Posts: 96
    Depends on the Shiba concerning the bed. We had an old cat bed lying around not being used. The first night we brought her home Mazda found it and dragged the bed bigger than she at the time and snuggled right in.
  • XabiXabi
    Posts: 432
    Don't go crazy buying a lot of stuff, because your puppy may have no interest in a lot of it. Like with puppy pads... my guy wouldn't use them ever. I mean... EVER.

    Puppy is going to cry, and you're going to need to steel yourself to be able to not cave-in to his some of his attention getting techniques. It's hard to know what cry means what, but if you put your puppy in his crate for bed after you just took him to go potty, chances are he's crying for contact and that's not fostering a sense of self-sufficiency.

    I'd advise looking at collars & leash stuff at a dollar store since you're puppy is not going to be in any of it too long or may destroy it anyway. Kongs are a good investment, but that's probably the only toys I'd spend any money more than a dollar on. Your puppy still needs to engage the world around him, but not at the expense of your pocket. Find cheap options. This applies to beds too. You want to give him something like a blanket at least, but you don't need to go overboard. Harness is probably another thing to spend a little money on, but once again, he'll outgrow it within a few months.

    Unless you really need an ex-pen, it might be best to just keep your puppy in a crate while you're gone. I say this because when I put my guy in his ex-pen he could climb out of it by 3mos.

    To me this is THE most important part of my advice. I'd also look into puppy classes before you get your new friend. Since you don't have a lot of background in dog training. Your little shiba may be kind of exasperating with the mouthing or other habits, and you want to know exactly how to correct without losing your mind. Patience is a virtue. The PetSmart/PetCo options are good as a last resort, but you want to talk to the trainer and make sure the class is positive reinforcement only. I think a better option is to ask some vets. Some practices have specialties, and my vet told me about another vet who is a behaviorist. Their classes were I believe better than what I would have experienced at PetSmart. Not very different, but still better value. You may ask what professionals they take after and you want to hear names like McConnell, Dunbar, Yin, not Milan. Look for books by Patricia McConnell, Ian Dunbar & Sophia Yin at your library, or visit their websites for free information that is excellent. You still want to find a local expert to have on hand to address your worries and concerns.

    All puppies, but shibas in particular need a lot of socialization, and you want to get started sooner than later. In fact, some classes may say on their information that they need to be fully immunized, but ask if you can bring your ten/eleven week old puppy to classes if you keep him up to date on vaccinations. Waiting until four months to start socializing/trianing is missing the critical socialization window. A lot of puppy classes is an unstructured play time.

    If you haven't found a vet, you want to do that now too. There's a lot of variety in price and quality, and depending on your needs it might be best to know several different ones for different things. You want to stay with a vet that makes you feel comfortable, through the puppy's first few months. Now that my shibas are older, I have ones I go to for illness (expensive and thorough) and I have ones I go to for simple vaccinations (cheap and quick).

    As far as food goes, don't buy a whole lot at once. Your puppy may find he doesn't like one food over another or has a reaction to one. Wellness is a good brand, but there are several ones that are just as good. Find a good pet food store (walk past their toys & supplies), and investigate their foods and talk to their employees. This is an element where you do want to spend your money, but it doesn't help to have a 25lb bag of food your puppy has no interest in. A good store will take back any food you bought for them, and probably donate it to a local shelter or non-profit spay/neuter center.

    It sounds like you're well on your way, but you just want to make sure you're going to next step to be fully prepared and know particular: vets, stores, books, trianing classes, even places to take your puppy out and about. This way you'll have a more guided plan for your new arrival as opposed to making choices on spur of the moment basis. There's a lot of choices to make when it comes to raising a puppy well, and if you're prepared then it's not that awful or difficult.

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  • BrandyBrandy
    Posts: 7
    It sounds like you are doing everything I did before I got my girl last summer. As for the training I found this to be one of the best things I did. This helps me understand her and also she was able to get plenty of socialization. As for the Trainers I found an excellent one at my local Petsmart, so don't rule them out. An yes I've seen some poor ones at the chain stores as well. Just do quality research be for you sign up for anything. I talk to some of the owners, at the dog park and after training classes. I personally use Blue Buffalo food and treats, check out their website. The above post put out some great information.
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8589
    Since this question has been asked multiple times on the forum, I am going to close the thread. If the OP has further questions, feel free to use an existing thread on the topic to ask those questions.

    Bella 2Mountains 2Nola 2
    Casey, with Bella and Nola, hanging out in the mountains of Virginia.
    I Wander, I Ride
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