Puppy Health

Hereditary diseases

If you choose a pedigree puppy make sure you aware of the hereditary diseases that the breed is susceptible to. Check that the sire and dam have been tested for those diseases, which can be done by asking to see the veterinarian's certificate. Although this will reduce the risk of future diseases it won't fully guarantee the pup from developing the disease later in life.

Some hereditary problems such as deafness and Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA) can be tested for in the pups at an early age, usually around 6 or 7 weeks old. Get these checks done and also inquire the age of the sire and the dam, as many hereditary diseases may not show for up to a year, and others won't show until the dog is 2 years old, meaning that dogs should not be bred any younger than one year of age.

Puppy farm puppies & health problems

Unfortunately some dog breeders, who are usually involved in the "puppy-farm" business just for the money, can bring death and misery upon innocent animals that would otherwise be lifelong pets and friends for many.

The following is a simple guideline that, if followed, can help ensure dogs and other animals are looked after and enjoy a happy life, as well as putting such dog breeders out of business.

Trading Standards recommendations for buying a puppy:

  • Be wary of outlets offering more than one or two breeds
  • When visiting the seller note the surroundings
  • Visit the puppy more than once
  • Ask to see the pedigree papers and ensure the breeder's name is on the certificate
  • The breeder should want to know about you too
  • Ask to see the puppy with its Mother - be very suspicious if you can't

Puppies bred commercially, indiscriminately and carelessly are likely to:

  • Develop disease
  • Be difficult to housetrain
  • Find adjusting to family life hard
  • Have temperamental problems
  • Suffer physical defects and have hereditary weaknesses
  • Think carefully before buying and do not buy the puppy because you feel sorry for it

Remember that any dealings made with dishonest dealers or breeders will mean you giving them your support to continue their false trade.

A dog can be a man's best friend so make sure you buy a puppy or dog that is in good health and look out for its well-being.

Importance of vaccination

Vaccination is of the utmost importance. If a dog does not receive proper vaccination it could contract a fatal infectious disease such as leptospirosis or parvovirus, which can also affect humans. Dogs must also be given sufficient protection from distemper, hepatitis, and kennel cough, all of which are lethal.

Worming is vital

Worming is the control of Toxocara (Toxocara can cause blindness in children) egg shedding, which is vital for animal and human welfare. A six-week-old puppy can shed more than 10 million Toxocara eggs in one week if it is not treated.

Puppies are recommended to be wormed at two-weeks of age. The pups' mother should have been wormed regularly throughout her pregnancy.

A second dosage of worming should be given at five-weeks, and eight-weeks, with the mother having the third dosage. Ensure you see the breeder's signature of verification of dose.

Other Veterinary Surgeons suggest:

Puppies bought from recognised Kennel Club registered breeders should come with the following:

  • Proof of six weeks free health insurance
  • Proof of Kennel Club registration
  • Diet sheet and at least four days supply of any dry food that forms part of the diet it would require
  • Vaccination should be at six and 10, or eight and 12 weeks
  • The puppy should not be wormed or subject to flea treatment within three weeks of a vaccination, either before or afterwards
  • If in doubt, ask your vet