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Housebreaking...

Potty Pen
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Now at about 4 weeks I will be starting to get them used to pottying in a puppy potty pen. It looks like a mini corral and once the dog learns to go in this pen it makes it easy for clean up and saves the lawn.  Full potty pen and house training instructions will be included in the package that comes with each puppy.

It's all about consistency. In the first few days it will be hard, the pup is a little off schedule due to transition and you don’t have the eat-poop drink-pee rhythm. At 8 weeks pup will pee a lot during play & exploration. Once per 1 to 1&1/2 hours. But can be expected to sleep all night in a crate without pottying. At 8 weeks I crate a pup from approx. 11:30 pm till 7 am. You must be aware of puppy at all times unless he is outdoors or crated. If caught pottying, a firm no and straight outdoors. If you find a mess don’t bother rubbing pups face in it, he forgot he did it 1 second after completion. It only works when you catch him in the act or starting to do it.  Consistency. There will be the occasional accident, deal with it with love. If you can't, dogs are not for you. You can expect most pups to poop relatively soon after food. Definitely expect a potty after a nap FAST! If you stick with it diligently for a month your dog will learn it easily.

 

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CRATES, A GOOD THING

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Dogs are descended from wolves. White Shepherds especially have carried over much of their pack behavior from their origins. Dogs are den animals. Just like wolf packs. They LIKE to have a space of their own. Dark & small & secure. It’s a place to sleep, rest & relax. When your dog is about a year and a half old you don't even need to shut the door anymore. He will go there often. When your puppy comes home it will be used to going outside & pottying there. It will not however be completely housebroken. One sad way to become disillusioned with your puppy is to wake up every morning to pee & poop on your floors & carpets. Stepping in it, or even just having to clean it right out of bed is a ticket to puppy failure. This is YOUR failure, not your puppy's. He is a baby and as such must be contained at night.  Also periodically through the day for naps, and when he is not under your direct care. It teaches discipline & self-control. Never remove the pup when he is howling, remove him when he is quiet. Some people feed in their crates. This is a personal choice. Believe me a puppy is work, & boundless energy. You will need those breaks. Of course most likely you work as well, or go shopping or to a movie, right? What’s to keep young fido from eating your couch? Eating garbage or chewing on a wire? A very dangerous & messy pastime. These are the things that ruin relationships with puppies. I want to reiterate that it’s not his fault; it’s your fault for not providing proper care. Your puppy will need a squeaky toy of its own. Let him play with it but more importantly it should always accompany him to bed in the crate. A crate should be big enough for your adult dog to stand without touching his head and be able to turn around completely. NO SMALLER. I suggest buying a 700 model and blocking it off with milk crates till they grow into it. That saves buying a crate for each stage. For you who have a pup being shipped he will come in a crate that will work for a few weeks. Then use it to block the bigger one. I will be sleeping these pups in crates for a week before the transition. This way they are used to it and can still smell & hear their littermates. They will also be making their own scent in there so it will be familiar. Any pups being shipped I like the family to send a garment or blanket they have worn or slept in to familiarize the pup with their scent.

NUTRITION

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Your priority for the next 16 months after receiving Your Puppy the most important thing is his nutrition. White Shepherds can have hip issues. Osteo issues in general. It can be vastly avoided in many ways. First, NEVER let your puppy be fat. You should see the first 2 ribs somewhat. A lean puppy is a healthier one. Bones are soft and growing, if allowed to carry even a bit too much weight it will stress them and is a bad thing. NEVER feed your White Shepherd puppy chow, or puppy formula at all. It is high in fat, calories, and cereals. Use an adult formula food that won't encourage RAPID growth. When they grow up switch to large breed adult food. I use "Blue Buffalo Wilderness Salmon" for pups. Here is a link where you can read about it and see the list of ingreidients in it:

http://bluebuffalo.com/dog-food/grain-free-wilderness

The intake is minimal, and the excrement is SMALL & FIRM.  Cheaper Wal-Mart brand dog foods, like "OL ROY" & others reach their protein levels using things like ground chicken feathers, which passes through the dog never having been digested, because they CAN'T digest it. It gives zero, NADA nutrition!! Then lands in large loose piles of POOP in your back yard!! Plus on these awful & cheap foods the dog is always hungry, not to mention the dyes & chemical preservatives & fillers.  If you can not get Innova here is a great site to help you learn about and choose a food.  It lists the different types of foods, ingreidents in each and then gives it a star rating.  The more stars the better the food.  The top foods are listed at 6 stars.  Innova comes close with 5 stars.  So if you can't get Innova I suggest you check out the other 5 star foods and see if you can get one of those:

http://www.dogfoodanalysis.com/

Human food...Dogs are omnivores not carnivores. They love vegetables. I give mine usually the left over veggies from out meal that day.  This way they get the added vitamines and some extra flavoring to their evening meal. Meat scrap too, NOT PORK. I only give these leftovers with their kibble at their mealtimes, not ever from the table. Variety is GOOD. Keep away from BBQ sauces and overly spicy and salted stuff. No cooked chicken bones of any kind ever. Raw is just find and actually very healthy for them.  Mine also love to get a raw frozen deer bone once a week.  This is great for cleaning their teeth along with the nutirnets they get form it.   When your puppy arrives it will be on 3 meals a day non-moistened. I will advise as to portion. About 3/4 of a cup per meal. AND FOR HEAVENS SAKE, NO CHOCOLATE...Or sugary deserts at all.

Toys
 
Toys are very important in the life of a pup.  They need all different kinds but they also have to be geared for the size and age of the pup.  For example a tennis ball might be safe for a pup under 6 months but after 6 months it could become a choking hazard.  Some of the toys I prefer is the knotted rope(great tug toy), kongs, large sized balls, frizbees, some squeker toys, a feed ball is great for treats and keeps the pup busy for a while, bones and chews are also very important.  Also never get a toy that is in the shape of a household object that you don't want chewed, ie shoes.  All it does is teach them to chew things in teh shapes of shoes.
 
Think of it this way.  The more toys the pup has the less likely hood they will want to have your shoes.

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