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Doxie Tips
- About Doxies
- Puppy Care
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Puppy Care

Puppies are members of the family. Just as we do our best to look out for our children, we need to practice safety precautions for our faithful, fun-loving dogs. Here are tips to reduce the risk of harm to your puppy.

  1. Treat your puppy like a toddler. Both are naturally curious and need your guidance to keep them out of harm's way.
  2. Demonstrate just how much you love your puppy by enrolling in a pet first-aid class. Contact your local humane society or ASPCA shelter for a class in your area.
  3. Resist the temptation to share chocolate chip cookies and milk with your puppy. Chocolate contains theobromine, a stimulant related to caffeine that can create a dangerous reaction in your dog. (Carob is a safe treat.) As for milk, shy away from serving it, especially to puppies. Their immature digestive systems cannot always properly break down the ingredients.
  4. Provide your puppy with an expandable collar so it doesn't cut into his skin as he grows. Harnesses can be a better choice for small-necked dogs.
  5. Memorize this number: (900) 680-0000. It's the hot line for the National Animal Poison Control Center. You will be billed per call directly to your phone number, but there is no time limit, or dial (888) 426-4435 to charge the fee to a major credit card. Whichever phone option you choose, rest assured that this hot line is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Call (888) PETS-911 toll free to contact the national pet emergency hot line, which is staffed by trained professionals.
  6. Keep poisonous houseplants safely out of your dog's reach. Poisonous household plants include azalea, geraniums, dieffenbachia (dumb cane), lilies, mistletoe, and philodendron, among others. For a complete list of plants poisonous to pets, check the Web site of the Humane Society of the United States.
  7. Elevate your shampoo, conditioner, soap, and razor out of paw and nose reach in your shower.
  8. Keep the lid down to prevent your puppy from using the toilet as a drinking bowl. The water may look clean, but it can harbor disease-causing bacteria.
  9. Use safety electrical cords that prevent shocks or sparks if gnawed on.
  10. Wipe up and flush away any automotive spills immediately. Keep your puppy indoors when you are changing antifreeze or oil. Bring used antifreeze and oil to recycling centers for proper disposal. Make sure your car has no coolant leaks as the sweet smell and taste may attract your puppy.
  11. Chemicals used on lawns and gardens, such as fertilizer and plant food, can be easily accessible and fatal to a pet allowed in the yard unsupervised.
  12. Insect control products, such as the insecticides used in many over-the-counter flea and tick remedies, may be toxic. Prescription flea and tick control products are much safer and more effective. Pet owners should never use any product without first consulting a veterinarian.
  13. Human medications such as pain killers (including aspirin, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen), cold medicines, anti-cancer drugs, anti-depressants, vitamins, and diet pills can all be toxic to animals. Keep medication containers and tubes of ointments and creams away from pets who could chew through them, and be vigilant about finding and disposing of any dropped pills.
  14. Leftovers such as chicken bones easily shatter and can choke your dog. Other human foods to avoid include onions and onion powder, alcoholic beverages, yeast dough, coffee grounds and beans, salt, macadamia nuts, leaves and stems from tomatos, potatoes, and rhubarb. Anything with mold growing on it should never be given to your puppy.
  15. Rawhide doggie chews may be contaminated with Salmonella, which can infect pets and humans who come in contact with the chews. These kinds of chews should be offered to a pet only with supervision, as they can pose a choking hazard as well.
  16. String, yarn, rubber bands, and even dental floss are easy to swallow and can cause intestinal blockages or strangulation.
  17. Toys with removable parts—like squeaky toys or stuffed animals with plastic eyes—can pose a choking hazard to animals. Take the same precautions with pets as you would with a small child.
  18. Traveling - If you decide to take your puppy with you, you'll need to have all of the supplies necessary to keep your puppy comfortable while he's away from home, and you'll need to familiarize yourself with any pet-related restrictions or requirements imposed by airlines, destination countries or states, hotels, etc.

    If a friend or relative is going to take care of your puppy, be sure that your pet is comfortable with the temporary caretaker, not to mention any pets that person has.

    If you choose to board your pet, get references and inspect the kennel. Your veterinarian or local shelter can help you select a facility.

    If you are hiring a pet sitter, interview the candidates and check their references.

    Be sure to provide the caretaker with the telephone number where you can be reached, the name and telephone number of your veterinarian, and your puppy's medical or dietary needs.
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