The first day you take me home, it is advisable to show me all the home, all the corners giving me enough time to sniff and feel around. I should be familiar with the smell so that I can recognize later on which areas are open to me and which are not. This is just to let me feel the surroundings and recognize my new home.
If you have got home by just separating from my mother (32 days to be precise), the initial one or two days, you might feel that I am not responding to any of your comments, any sounds or anything around me, which you might feel would be very unlike a dog. When you have got me home, you expect a lot from me instantly and so you might be a little surprised on my non-responsiveness. But remember, I am just a small baby and I also need some time to see you, feel you and the surroundings, and recognize patterns.
It would take a lot of time and energy and effort to understand me as a little one, especially if I am the first pet you have adopted. But this time, energy, effort that you put in, in these 2-3 months would be worth much more that you would get in the so many years to come – I promise!
The main problem in these initial months would be training and understanding what I like to eat and what all you can feed me. The routine would be:
1. 4 meals a day (every 4-5 hours) for the first 2 months, then 3 meals a day for the next 3-4 months and then onwards just 2 meals a day (mornings and evenings)
2. Training me to attend my natural calls outside when I am taken for a walk. This is not too tough because the areas where I am taken for a walk generally stimulate me much more than anything inside the house. So I would actually enjoy attending the calls outside, so just taking me out in the initial months is enough for me to develop the interest. This again would be 4 times a day (after every meal) in the initial 2-3 months, there after 3 times a day (after every meal) in the next 3-4 months and twice after that.
3. Cleaning my paws after every walk, generally with dettol water is good for me as well as hygienic for you. About 750 ml to 1 litre of water can be taken in a mug and a cap of dettol. Dip a cloth in the mixture and wipe the paws and the whole body gently. This should be enough. At times when the paws are really dirty and carry sticky dirt (usually happens when I go into mud or you take me out for a walk in the rainy season), it would be good to dip all the paws one by one in the water and squeeze them to remove the dirt along with the excess water.
4. It is good to check the ears regularly for dirt. You may just wipe the inside of the ear (to the extent visible) using a bud without inserting the bud too much. The full cleaning can happen in the visit to the vet. If you are comfortable, however, you may do it yourself. If the dirt is too much and you think I am not allowing you to clean my ears, you can buy some lotions available at the vet and pour a few drops into my ears as recommended by the vet.
5. It is important that you don’t give me chilled water, it would give me a chest congestion almost immediately. In such a case, please take me to a vet as soon as possible.
Please keep a check of any uncommon behaviour like if I am a playful dog & am not playing actively, not eating properly for more than 2 days etc. In any such cases, you may try different things and one of them is very likely to work. If nothing works, take me to a vet.
Normally during the initial 2 months, the vet insists that you take it to him for regular check-up once in every 10-15 days but after that you may need to take him for regular ear/gland cleaning, de-worming as and when necessary as per the vet’s suggestions.
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