While some prefer a barrelful of monkeys, we at LovePets enjoy the fun provided by a new litter of puppies. Nonetheless, when you’re considering taking one home, it can be difficult to make your pick. How do you choose the newest member of your family when they’re all so cute and cuddly?
When puppies are so young, many pet parents wonder how they will know which dog is right for them. Fortunately, there are a few surefire ways to ensure that you make a careful puppy pick that translates into years of happy, healthy relationships for both of you. Ask yourself the following questions to ensure you pick the right puppy for you and your family:
Is the Puppy Excited to See Me?
When puppies like people and display an obvious interest in human interaction, there is a solid chance that the dog will grow up to be sociable and friendly. It is valuable to visit the litter with several people in order to see how the dog reacts to each.
Notice any apparent fear or aggression toward one person as this may indicate abuse (a puppy that is fearful of humans may have been abused by a human), neglect or a personality deficit.
Is the Puppy Healthy?
It’s likely that, if you purchase a sick puppy, you will wind up with a sick adult dog. In order to avoid this, it is important to do a quick evaluation of a puppy’s health.
The dog should be alert, sleek and clean and should have clear eyes, normal breathing, a regular gait and no obvious sores, wounds or swelling anywhere on the body. Watch out for dogs that seem overly lethargic or sore, as this may indicate injury or illness.
Does the Puppy Have Good Social Skills?
Puppies will be puppies, but there are certain behaviors that pet parents want to do their best to avoid. Puppies that are overly aggressive, standoffish or scared may carry these traits into adulthood with them and are generally best avoided.
How Does the Puppy React to Stimulus?
Puppies live in a world of unfamiliar sights and sounds. Well-adjusted puppies should seem curious but not overwhelmed and should recover from being startled easily. If a door slams, for example, the puppy should be alert enough to take note but not overwhelmed enough that he retreats to a corner and doesn’t come out.
Additionally, dogs should not be excessively reactive to light or sound. Dogs that are spooked by everyday noises like coffee grinders, doors shutting or ringing phones will make difficult house pets while dogs that are too reactive to light may have health problems that need to be addressed.
Is the Puppy Confident?
Confidence is one specific behavior pet parents should look for in potential pups. The dog should be willing to explore his surroundings while also being excited to play with humans and other puppies. Confident dogs make great pets and are typically alert and easy to train in adulthood.
Making the Perfect Pick
Picking the perfect puppy is not quite as simple as love at first sight. Look for specific traits such as confidence, approachability and a desire for human interaction. Doing this ensures that you will wind up with a long-term companion that is well suited to your personality and lifestyle.