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Puppy Guide

Congratulations on adopting your new Puppy

The following is a guide to assist you with the basics of keeping your new addition happy and healthy. Please also remember that Kellyville Pets, along with Sydney Animal Hospital will be here to advise you every step of the way.


Inside - A bed is very important to help your puppy feel secure in its new home, therefore an appropriate bed should be provided. Pups are more likely to feel secure if they have a snug bed, so a bed with high, soft sides will suit most breeds. Alternatively, there are high sided plastic beds which can be easily cleaned and are good for a pup who is prone to chewing. A flea-resistant cushion placed in the bed makes it comfy.

Outside - If your puppy will eventually sleep outside, he or she will need some sort of shelter to protect them from the elements. If you have a well sheltered, undercover area, there are some weather resistant beds available. Dogs can also benefit from having a “Trampoline” bed, but if you do not have adequate shelter you will need a kennel. These come in many shapes, sizes and materials to suit your puppy and your home.


Toys - For a puppy, one of the most important toys is their comfort toy. This toy should be soft, cuddly and ideally be introduced to the pup before taking him or her home. This may help soothe the puppy as the toy will take on the scent of what was familiar to them. An efficient way to distract pups from naughty habits is to provide them with a variety of toys to help occupy and entertain them. To achieve this, a few basic toys can be used, such as balls, ropes, squeaky toys, rubber toys and treat dispensing toys. Over the space of a few weeks, a collection of toys should be compiled and stored away, with the pup having access to 3 or 4 at a time. Swapping them every few days may help prevent boredom and destructive behaviour.

Teething - Puppies go through a teething stage and chewing will help relieve the pressure on their gums. If you provide them a variety of items that they are allowed to chew, there is less chance that your furniture and new shoes will look like a tasty chew treat. Providing pigs ears, trotters, bones and rawhide will also assist in discouraging naughty behaviour. If the pup found a particular piece of furniture to chew, there are bitter tasting sprays which can be applied to such an area to deter them.


Bath-time - Dogs should not be bathed too often, as it strips the coat of its natural oils, which causes red, itchy and sometimes smelly, skin. As a puppy, a soap-free gentle shampoo should be used, once every 1-2 weeks, whilst as an adult washing should be limited to every 3-4 weeks. There are even shampoos available specifically for dogs with sensitive skin. Every week in between washes, a dry conditioner can be rubbed and brushed through their coat to stimulate the oils and make them smell nice, discouraging you from washing so often. You should make sure that neither an adult nor puppy is bathed in human shampoo, as it contains soap which irritates their skin.

Brushing - There are a variety of brushes available, depending on the breed of dog you own. Most adult dogs will benefit from a good comb, along with nail clippers, to keep their nails as short as possible. For most medium to long-coat dogs, a Slicker brush will be most effective at removing any dead, or excess undercoat. A rubber brush is best for dogs with a short coat, and when used in a massaging motion, it will stimulate the coat and help prevent molting.

Eyes/Ears - Some breeds are prone to getting a weepy discharge from the eyes, which can leave tear stains if not wiped away regularly. It is best to keep the hair under the eyes as short as possible, as well as using an eye cleaning solution on a cotton ball, to gently wipe away any discharge. Dogs (and especially puppies) that have long, floppy ears, tend to get a build up of ear wax, which can cause infections if not cleaned out regularly. It is best to clean their ears out after every bath, more often if it develops as a problem for your dog in particular.


Walking - Most people know that a dog should wear a collar, and this is still the case, but for a different reason. These days, it should not be used to restrain a dog, but instead to hold its name tag or for aesthetic reasons. Many types of harnesses are now available, to suit almost any dog. They comfortably restrain the dog around both the chest and neck, providing more support and giving the owner more control.

Bowls - A non-slip stainless steel bowl is the most hygienic bowl for your dogs food, as you can give it a quick wipe out after every meal. For water, a heavy ceramic bowl will be sturdy enough to prevent the dog from tipping it over, and will also help to keep the water cool. To get the best use out of your bowl, choose something to suit your puppy through adulthood

Jumper - A warm, polar-fleece jumper may be necessary for short-coated or clipped dogs, during cooler periods. Water-proof coats will provide your dog with warmth and keep them dry.


Toilet Training - Toilet training a young pup can be a long process, as they do not have the bladder strength or size to be able to hold themselves for any significant period of time. Using puppy toilet training pads will encourage your pup to seek one particular spot to use as its toilet, in conjunction with constant reward training when he/she goes in the correct place. If they are in the habit of going to the bathroom in the wrong place, such as a certain spot on the carpet, there are cleaning products which eliminates the odour to such a degree that your dog can no longer sniff out his/her regular spot. When using regular household cleaners, the odour is still present to the dogs sense of smell. Pet cleaning products use enzymes to eliminate the pheromone that, to dogs, smells like urine.

Play Pen - Because of your puppy’s small bladder, it is much easier to toilet train while using a much smaller space during periods when the dog is by themselves, such as nighttime or when you cannot supervise them. This is where a puppy play pen comes in handy, you can provide a small space with all the necessities, increasing the chance of the pup going to the toilet in the right spot, as well as keeping your mind at ease that he/she cannot get into any mischief while you are not looking.

Socialisation - Between the ages of 6-16 weeks, your puppy is at a critical socialization period, where it will learn important life skills from other pups and adult dogs. This is why socializing your puppy, with other healthy, vaccinated dogs, is extremely beneficial in the long term. Puppy Pre-School provides a safe, secure environment for your puppy to interact with 7-9 other puppies, who are all healthy and up-to-date with their vaccinations. It also teaches you the basics of obedience training and techniques for discouraging naughty puppy habits.


Vaccinations - Puppies require regular boosters to protect against Canine Parvovirus, Corona virus, Hepatitis, Kennel Cough (Bordatella) , Leptospirosis, Parainfluenza and Distemper. Initially they should have been done at 6-8 weeks and followup vaccines are required at the ages of 10-12 weeks, 14-16 weeks, along with yearly boosters. Until the puppy has had its 14-16 weeks vaccination, you should not let him/her come in contact with dogs that could possibly be carrying any diseases, which includes walks on the street or to the dog park.

Worm/Flea Prevention - An intestinal worming product needs to be administered on a strict routine for puppies, which includes being treated at 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 12 weeks, and every month following this, until they reach 6 months of age, at which time it needs only be done every 3 months. Dogs should be on a monthly flea control program, which will kill and prevent fleas from infesting your dog. Heartworm treatment should start before 12 weeks of age and needs to be continued monthly, unless, as an adult, you choose to give your dog the yearly injection.

De-sexing - It is highly recommended that, at 5-6 months of age, you get your dog spayed/neutered. Not only does it prevent unwanted pregnancy, but it also significantly decreases the risk of prostrate (male dogs) and ovarian (female dogs) cancer later in life.


A well balanced diet is essential for any dog, and even more vital for the needs of a growing puppy. Your puppy has been fed Ivory Coat Puppy dry food, which is a Premium ‘Complete’ Diet, this means it provides the daily intake of all essential nutrients and vitamins a dog needs. Dogs require different levels of fat and other nutrients in the various stages of their life, therefore

Ivory Coat provides you with a range of diets to suit your dogs needs. Up until 12 months (for smaller breeds) or 18 months (for large breeds) of age, pups need to be fed a higher fat diet, and other extra nutrients, that assist in growth. After 4 months of age, if you choose to, you can mix in small amounts of fish, mince, vegetables or egg, with the dry food. This is not necessary, and in large amounts will be detrimental rather than beneficial, however a small amount of variety is acceptable. Puppies from 6-12 weeks should be provided with 3 meals a day, from 3-10 (approx) months should be fed 2 meals a day, and 1 or 2 meals a day after 10 months of age.

No dogs should be provided a constant ‘grazing’ type diet, where food is left out for an extended period of time, the food will settle in the gut and become a problem for digestion. As an adult, the dog can move onto a variety of diets available, including a basic adult food, ‘light’ formulas or even one of the specialty range targeting sensitive skin or healthy joints.

At 5 years (for medium to large breeds) or 7 years (for small breeds) of age, you should provide your dog with a ‘senior’ diet, as he/she now needs higher digestible fibre, and more glucosamine and chondroitin to help prevent arthritis, hip dysplasia or any other joint problems. Remember that dogs are lactose intolerant, so should never be fed any dairy products, including cows milk, even as a puppy. Pups do not need any cereals, porridge or anything other than the Ivory Coat dry food, unless otherwise recommended by one of our Small Animals staff or a Veterinarian.

My Puppy won’t eat

If your puppy goes off its food, he or she may have an upset stomach from the stress of entering a new environment. If there is anything else that seems of concern then please call Kellyville Pets or Sydney Animal Hospital immediately.

Ultimately, your pup should be eating the Ivory Coat Puppy Dry food exclusively, however in very few instances it is necessary to place the puppy on a temporary chicken diet to build up its weight before once again trying it on the dry food. If this is the case, the first two meals should be solely warm boiled chicken. For every meal after this, a very small amount of Ivory Coat should be mixed in with the chicken, and if necessary soaked in warm water, until finally, after 4-5 days the puppy should be back on 100% Ivory coat dry food. If being fussy, do not offer any other options to the puppy, otherwise he/she will then realize if they do not eat the healthy food, mummy or daddy will give them treats instead. Be strict, and eventually the dog will eat it with no problem, which is more beneficial for the long term health of your dog.

My puppy won’t sleep

If you set up your puppy in comfortable surroundings for nighttime, and any other time when you are not able to supervise him/her adequately, you will limit the anxiety of the puppy being left alone.

You have a few options as to where to set up your puppy’s new home.

  • A small room of the house, such as laundry or bathroom Puppy Play pen
  • Training Crate
  • Regardless of the place you choose, the following should be available for the pup within that area.
  • Bed
  • Water Bowl
  • Comfort toy
  • Chew (Pigs ear etc)
  • Paper covering majority of floor space
  • Puppy Training pad in one spot
  • Heat pad (during cooler periods)

In the evening, play with your puppy, to tire him/her out, before putting them to bed, as late as possible. This will hopefully result in them going straight to sleep, rather than crying. The pigs ear, or something similar, will assist in giving them something to do if they wake during the night.

Regardless of what you provide, you will get a small amount of crying during the first few nights, however if you react appropriately it will soon cease. When you hear your puppy cry, do NOT call out, or go to him/her, as this will only encourage the crying next time. The best thing to do is just ignore it, and let the pup put itself back to sleep, which WILL happen, do not be concerned.

If you are concerned about anything, please do not hesitate to call Kellyville Pets or Sydney Animal Hospital. We are more than happy to answer any queries.

Sydney Animal Hospital 106 Windsor Rd, Kellyville NSW 2155 Ph. 8883 0533

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FACT SHEET © Copyright 2014 Kellyville Pets - The information in this brochure is meant as a guide only. Kellyville Pets take no responsibility of any description for any consequence and or result that may eventuate as a consequence of any information obtained from this brochure.