Choosing the perfect puppy is an exciting but stressful time. The puppy you choose will be a part of your family for the rest of its life.
You will want to be sure you are working with a responsible breeder or rescue organization. The following tips can help you make the right choice:
Test the Pups
Your breeder, like those Mini Goldendoodle for sale, should have a vet check the puppies and mother at least once since birth, and the puppies should be weighed regularly to ensure they are growing and putting on weight according to schedule. They should also have had worming treatments and vaccines as recommended by the vet. Ask your breeder to provide an official pedigree of the pups, showing their parents and grandparents (and their health history).
The breeder should have started general socialization, which means getting the puppies used to household noises, smells, and people. This will be a big help for the puppies in their new homes.
You can also ask your breeder about their health screening program, which involves the mother and her littermates being screened for genetic conditions that may affect them in their adult life. This helps the breeder avoid breeding animals with hereditary illnesses and prevents these problems from being passed on to the next generation of puppies.
Appearance isn’t everything but indicates whether a puppy has been well cared for and is in tip-top condition. Look for healthy, shiny coats free from bald spots or other signs of irritation. Please pay attention to the mother; she will set a significant example for her puppies. Also, watch how the puppies interact with each other and their mothers – are they energetic or docile?
Visit the Breeder in Person
It would help if you only worked with a responsible breeder who wants to meet you in person and see your home set-up, family members, and dog experience. This is one of the best ways to determine if you are a good match for their puppies.
Be aware that it may be necessary to visit the breeder multiple times before you find the right puppy for your lifestyle. A responsible breeder is a dedicated animal lover and will be very concerned with the health of their animals and ensuring that the potential puppy buyers are a good fit.
During your visits, ask the breeder to show you the puppies, their mother, and their father (if applicable). Ask to interact with them all and discuss how they have been socialized. It is also a good idea to request to see the pedigree and registration papers for the parents.
Be sure to take the time to examine the puppies from head to toe. Look for any physical abnormalities that could lead to serious medical issues later in life, such as a heart murmur or a dislocated knee. Once you have narrowed down the two or three pups most likely to suit your needs, test their hearing and vision by clicking, clapping, and dropping something behind them.
Look at the Litter
After getting past the cuteness overload:
- Take your time observing the litter and narrowing down your selection.
- Look for well-rounded puppies with healthy coats and bright eyes free from crust and discharge.
- Look at the pup’s genitals to see if they have a small or large lump or protrusion, and ensure their ears and genitalia are clean.
If you’re interested in the dog pack behavior of a particular breed, observe which pups are at the front (assertive) or back (workers), as these character traits will affect their energy levels and how much they play with you and other dogs once you bring them home. You should also watch how the puppies interact – if the pups are fighting or playing too rough, training them to get along with other pets and humans may be more difficult.
Avoid choosing a shy puppy unless you have the time and patience to help them overcome this trait. This can lead to them hiding or becoming reluctant to interact with you, which will not make them a good family pet. Instead, choose a puppy that investigates you and others while still being interested in their littermates. You can test a puppy’s interest by standing away from them, crouching down, calling them, and making clucking sounds to see which pup approaches you.
Look at the Parents
The adage, “You get what you pay for,” certainly applies to puppies. A puppy from a responsible breeder is worth the investment, particularly considering it will ultimately be a lifelong companion for your family.
When selecting your next best friend, meet the pups’ parents to understand their temperaments and physical attributes. This will help you to predict what the puppy will be like as an adult dog. If the puppies are from show lines, for example, they may be calmer and more trusting of strangers than those from field lines. Also, the parents’ size and color may be a factor in your selection of a puppy.
Watch how the puppies interact with each other. For example, if one puppy nudges another too hard and causes a play fight, the nudger will likely continue this behavior as an adult dog. On the other hand, a pup that licks his littermates and adjusts his play to stay within appropriate social boundaries is more likely to be a well-mannered companion. It’s essential to examine the puppies from head to toe to ensure they are in good health and do not have any visible defects or injuries that could become serious medical issues. A responsible breeder will happily let you hold the puppies and examine them closely in this way.