Dear Puppy buyers
Here is a little breed related advice, to help You and Your puppy.
I urge all puppy-buyers to sign up for puppy-classes in Your area, ASAP. The sooner the better, as there often might be a waiting-list, delaying Your start with Your pups training and socialization.
Already before you get your puppy home, you must decide what it is allowed to do, and what it's not allowed to do. Because remember, that what it's allowed to do, it will ALWAYS be allowed to do, and what it's not allowed to do, it's NEVER allowed to do.
Dogs don't understand, that they are not allowed on the furniture, just because they are wet and dirty!
OR, that it can be fed at the table on Saturdays only, and not any other days.
When you get home with your puppy, allow it to explore its new home on its own time. Show it it's sleeping-quarters, it's eating-place, and where the water always will be.
It's sleeping quarters should be a quiet corner, with no draw from doors or windows.
Don't buy it a nice doggy-bed, because it will chew it to pieces anyways. Rather start with a good card-board-box fitting the size of the puppy - it should be able to lay stretched out in it, but no more than that.
Exchange the box as it gets chewed, and as the puppy grows.
Give it a blanket in the box, so it sleeps comfortably and warm. The blanket should be washable.
Teach EVERYBODY in Your family - children as well as adults, that when the puppy is in its bed, it must be left alone and have quiet. This is where it is "safe" and it must never be interrupted - all together don't wake up the puppy. It has a tremendous need of sleep, and the need must be covered, for the puppy to develop normally. Even if you want your dog to sleep in your bed, it's still a good idea also to let it have its own bed. Otherwise it has no place it can "retire" to, and where it knows it will have peace.
If You, as I, want your dog to be calm when indoors, and lively when outdoors, then get it used to from the beginning that you don't play wild inside. Of course You can play with the dog indoors, but not something that gets the puppy over-excited.
The puppy should have different toys. I.e. a carrot, the center of an empty toilet roll and/or an old sock with a knob on it. If you find that a certain material has the puppy's interest, give it a toy of that material, but make it visible, that it IS indeed a toy - like a sock BUT with a knob on it…..the puppy is smart enough to know the difference. Never give the puppy toys it can chew pieces off of, like plastic items. Also be aware of small object which the dog can swallow, such as Lego-pieces etc. it can destroy it's stomach.
The puppy is used to "go" on newspapers and/or piddle pads. In the whelping-box they only do their "business" in the end, where they don't sleep, already at just a couple of weeks of age. That is actually the first start of them becoming potty-trained.
One way to teach the puppy to become potty-trained at night, or when it has to be home alone, is to cover the entire floor with newspapers. When you are home, and can keep an eye on the puppy, use only 4-5 newspapers. Then when you see the puppy "circling" for a spot, carry it to the newspapers, and praise it lots, when it hits the papers. If you see it go elsewhere, don't ever run towards it yelling at it, cause it will just get scared and pee more. Walk calmly up to it, and carry it to the newspapers, and praise it, because now it IS in the right place. In that way, You can make it a habit to the puppy, only to go on the newspapers - and have some patience...it WILL learn it.
If you are home the entire day, you can bring the puppy outside every second hour. With a little bit of luck you can prevent it from ever going inside. You have to bring the puppy outside to the same spot every time in the beginning.
The puppy needs to go, especially right after EATING, SLEEPING and PLAYING.
So: It's all a matter of avoiding that the puppy goes in the wrong spot, and to praise it lots, when it goes in the right spot. Should an accident happen on the carpet (a puppy's favorite place to go), a good way to remove pee-spots is to first suck op as much as You can with paper-towels, and then spray with an anti-odor stain-remover. By the way - puppy-pee almost doesn't stain at all. Anti-odor stain-remover also takes the smell and the stain if the accident is "bigger".
The principal in potty-training is really the same principal, you want to use in all other training. Make sure the puppy makes as little mistakes as possible - in that way the puppy will get a lot of praising, and it will be bonding and happy, and You will obtain a good contact to the dog - and this is very important. Without contact, You can't teach a dog anything.
If you should catch the dog "in the act" of something, like chewing on the carpet, say "NO" with a sharp, angry tone. If this doesn't help, you walk up to it and grab it gently by the neck, and say "NO" with a sharp angry tone. If it does the same thing again right away, you were too soft. If it yelps and runs away, you were too rough. There should be a visible reaction in the dog, no more, no less. One is only allowed to punish a dog while it's in the act of doing something wrong - anything else is abuse, cause the puppy won't know, what it is punished for.
Should the dog try to control the family by growling or biting people, you need to straighten it out really quickly. It might seem fun, while it's a puppy, but it will be put down for it, when it's grown up. Of course this is not the case if it is just play, that it bites and growls - that's how puppies play, until someone teaches them otherwise. The way, to make it quit this game, is to calmly grab it around the nose or by the neck (without lifting it up), and say "easy, we don't play that way" or "No bite", and then hand it some of its toys, that it can chew on instead.
When you take the puppy for a walk, it needs to have a collar and a leash. Make sure the collar isn't too big, so it can pull it over the head, if it pulls backwards. The collar should have a dog-tag with name and contact phone-number on it.
From the puppy is rather small, it can get used to not being on the leash. The best place to start teaching it is in a fenced area. Utilize that the puppy will try to stay close to You, while it's small and insecure and scared to get lost, but never allow it to be off the leash, where it can be hit by a car, or in other ways get hurt.
You utilize this by teaching it to come, when it's called. Let the dog loose, and keep walking slowly, call it every now and then, praise it, and then let it go off again. While the puppy is small, call it only when it's on its way to you anyways. Don't call it while it's busy doing something else, it won't come anyhow, and you’ll just be teaching it, that it actually doesn't need to come, when you call. If you meet anyone walking in the opposite direction, make sure that the puppy follows the correct "set of boots". Remember, that a Farmdog puppy is quite faster and often more sure-footed, than most pups, at a very young age. Even a 9-10 week old pup, can be impossible to catch.
Something you need to be in particular aware of with a Farmdog-puppy is that other people like to pick them up. Be aware that they don't do that, and don't be shy to tell someone "put the puppy down". It is very common, that the Farmdog puppies are "dropped", from a standing height, because all of a sudden they will wiggle and jiggle, or jump right out into the air. Ask people to sit down and talk to the puppy instead...it's stupid to get an invalid dog, just because You're trying to be polite!
When teaching the puppy to come, when called, you squat down and call the dog's name with an inviting voice. The puppy will usually come running, and then you praise it a lot, pet it, and maybe give it a little goodie. Never call a puppy in an angry or upset tone. It should always be a pleasant thing for the puppy to come, when it's called. Otherwise it will find everything else more fun, and just run off somewhere else.
Right when you get your puppy, it is around 9-10 weeks old, and it can't be expected to walk on a leash for more than 10-15 minutes at a time, but it can play with you or other dogs for ½ hour to 1 hour. BUT - be aware of, when the puppy is tired, and in the winter, notice when it's cold, and take it home - if needed carry it.
Also be aware of road salt in the winter. It can hurt your dog's paws. Best way, to make sure, no salt is hiding between the toes, is to flush the feet with luke warm water after a walk, then dry them well with a towel.
REMEMBER! 1 hour consecutively a day, without the leash, from age 6 months. It is not enough to just let it out in the yard, it needs to be in a place where something is going on, where it can meet other dogs, smell different smells and learn and experience something.
It is very important for the puppy's development to a normal dog that it is allowed to play with other dogs. And don't pick it up, even though it's a big German shepherd, who wants to say hello, allow the puppy to take care of the situation itself, it knows how to do that!!! The exception is if a large dog wants to chase it - even if the dog's owner says "it only wants to play", then stop it, cause Your dog will become scared, and that game just ends with, that the big dog bites the little dog, when it catches it.
In the beginning, don't over-exercise the puppy, by taking long walks, and it shouldn't walk up and down stairs too much either - carry it up and down stairs until it's around 6 months old.
For the adult dog, running next to a bike, or next to You, jogging is great exercise, but the dog must be at least a year old, before it's legs and joints are strong enough to run like that.
Get the puppy used to being home alone from the start. When it gets tired and wants to go to sleep, let it in a room by itself with some papers on the floor, its bed and its food and water. Show it to the bed, give it a cookie, and say: "I'll be right back, be good" or whatever suits you best to say. Don't create a "big goodbye scene", stay calm, and keep it brief. Then walk out and close the door. Most likely the puppy will go to sleep. When it has slept for a couple of hours, go back in there and praise it a lot, cause it was so good, and take it out to pee. Should the puppy on the other hand go to the door and cry and wine, right when You leave, go to the door and scold the pup, but don't open the door, until it's quiet….otherwise it will think, that when it cries, You'll come back, and it will always be crying.
If the puppy needs to be home alone, exercise it well, and let it calm down afterwards, so You with reason can expect it to remain quiet, while You're gone.
From the pup is very young it should get used to standing on a table and get brushed. Place it on a table (maybe patio-table) with a non-skid cover on it i.e. a piece of rug or a mat. Brush the coat thru well. A rubber brush or a brush with rubber ends will be good for pulling out dead hair. When it sheds it's also a good idea to bathe the dog. You can bathe your pup as often as you please. Remember to keep an eye on Your Farmdog's nails. They grow very fast and needs trimming quite often - some dogs need it every 2 weeks, others maybe only every second month, depending on how it wears them, and on what surfaces it mostly walks.
While the puppy is on the table, check its ears, eyes and mouth. The eyes can be cleaned with a little lukewarm water or Chamomile tea - remember to use a new, clean piece of cotton for each eye.
Should there be some brown wax in the ears, you wipe it away with a piece of cotton. You can use a little oil on the cotton too. Remember!!! NEVER let water in dog's ears. Put water-repellant cotton in the ears, when You wash the dog.
Keep an eye on, that the puppy-teeth fall out, before the new teeth grow too big, otherwise it might get crooked teeth.
A good way, to keep a dog's teeth clean, is to once in a while give it a good chew-bone. Should the teeth turn yellow anyways, and the dog smells from the mouth, brush its teeth. Use only special products for dogs, when doing this - never "people-tooth-paste". If the smell is not due to the teeth, try to give a spoon of sour-cream on top of the food, it can help.
To feed a puppy, used to be somewhat of a science - this is no longer the case with the quality-products we have on the market now. When the puppy was 8 weeks old, it was used to be fed 4 times a day. If your pup is more than 10 weeks old, it might be used to being fed 3 times a day. Some people think they need to continue the pup's habits until it's around 4 months old, but You can get Your puppy used to "Your cycle" right away, it will be ok.
It is used to half and half of puppy-food and adult food - either half of each, each time, or only one or the other every second time. The dry-food has been diluted in water - use ONLY water, nothing else - besides maybe a little cooking-oil.
If you prefer to cook partly yourself, or completely Yourself, You can give Chicken, Tuna, Fish-balls, boiled fish or ground meat. It should have 1:2 meat and veggies as long as it is a puppy. For veggies You can use a mixed frozen veggie-product, or You can cook rice, potatoes or carrots Yourself.
If you cook and mix the food Yourself, You need to add calcium and vitamins. This can be purchased as a powder in most pet-stores, or at the vet, and is important for the development of the bones and muscle.
From the dog is around 3, max 4 months, old it should be fed only adult food, or 1:3 meat and vegetables. This is regardless of what vets and dog-food manufacturers tell You, based on decades of breeders' experience with this particular breed.
The dog ALWAYS must have access to fresh water.
Right as you get your puppy it might not want to eat, because it is missing the "competition" from its siblings. If you very much need it to eat, you can smack you lips by its food dish, as if you are eating the food that usually works pretty well. Otherwise, remove the food within 20 minutes from serving it, and don't put it back out until next meal-time.
How much the puppy needs at a time, you judge best by looking at its belly, and trying to imagine how big its stomach is. It doesn't need more than that. It should finish eating within around 15-20 minutes. If it leaves food, remove the leftovers, so old food is not left in the bowl. Do not let the dog have dry-food in its bowl all day long. It gives the dog bad food-habits, so it either won’t eat and/or becomes too skinny, or it eats too much, and becomes too fat. Remember to always leave the dog alone, when it is eating.
When the dog is grown up you regulate the food amount by the dog's size. If the dog is too fat, it's getting to much food - it's as simple as that. Remember a Farmdog is a small dog, and one or two pounds over- or underweight can be devastating for the dog's health….one pound overweight can strain the dog's muscle and bones and shorten it's life, or cause problems in later years of life. One pound under-weight can do the same, as a Farmdog is very active, and will "use up" muscle, to keep busy.
When Your dog is around 7 months old, it only needs to be fed twice a day, and from it's around 1 ½ year old, it really only needs to be fed once a day.
Do not get the dog used to sweets of any kind, it will get bad teeth and get too fat. Use the good products, made for the purpose, that are on the market, for treats.
A puppy should be "stocky". Not until the dog gets near 1 year of age, should it be lean. A fat dog is a sad sight to see, and is close to in-humane. The dog will miss a lot of fun and experiences in life, because it's too heavy to move fast. It will be more prone to diseases, and often, over-weight dogs, die way too early. So keep the adult dog lean, You should with ease, be able to feel the ribs.
If you always watch your dog's weight, it will never be more than 2 pounds over-weight, and it will easily loose that again, either by feeding it only vegetables (if it doesn't like it and won't eat it, it will just loose the weight faster) or by giving it more exercise. Once it has lost the excess weight it should, of course, be allowed less food daily, than before, otherwise it will just gain again.
When the Puppy is 12 weeks of age it must have rabies-shots, and all other shots should be given and boosted around 3 weeks later. Talk to the vet about what shots Your dog needs, how many and when.
finally, congratulations on your new dog, take well care of it, and it will take well care of you!!!
If there are ANY questions at all, you are always welcome to contact me - it may be training, illness or anything else, please call. I'm always happy to hear from my "babies" and would like to follow them in how they are doing.
Origin: Lisbeth Staunsholt Nilsson, Kennel Agerhoenen.
Copied and used by:
"Kennel Javika"/Hella Lizette Larsen
and "Kennel My Bonnie"/Marianne Schluter.
Translated and edited by: Helene R Pedersen, for use by
Kennel Little Denmark.