Puppy Care
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Puppy Care


You have just received a bright, new addition to your family, a AKS Labrador puppy. Here are a few pointers to help you care for your puppy and begin to teach him proper manners.


VERY IMPORTANT!!! WHEN YOU COME HERE TO GET YOUR PUPPY, ON YOUR WAY HOME, PLEASE DO NOT STOP TO: REST STOPS, GAS STATIONS, RESTAURANTS, PETSMARTS, ECT; TO LET YOUR PUPPY RELIEVE HIMSELF, THIS IS THE NUMBER ONE PLACE EVERYONE STOPS TO LET THERE DOG USE THE BATHROOM, AND IF YOUR NEW PUPPY STEPS IN THERE CONTAMINATED FECES AND LICKS THERE FEET, YOUR PUP MAY GET VERY SICK, SO PLEASE STOP TO AN EMPTY FIELD, TO LET YOUR PUPPY OUT!


1st, when you first get your new puppy home its totaly normal for some pups to be shy, lethargic, sleep allot and have loose stools, this should last no more than 24-48 hours, this is caused by stress from leaving there litter mates and being in a new environment.


New owners often read that a towel or shirt that has the pups littermates/moms scent on it will help calm the puppy for the first nights there in there new home, this does not work, the puppy is going to cry/wine/stress regardless (TRUST ME) :)


Your puppy has had his first set of vaccinations and TWO health exams by our vets. Please consult your veterinarian for his advice on a vaccination program. We recommend that the pup have at least three boosters and a Rabies vaccine. You should also have the Bordetella vaccination done if you will be kenneling your dog. 


Your new puppy needs to be seen by your vet within three days of purchase.


Your puppy is currently on a diet of Victor Hi-Pro Plus Super Premium Puppy Food. Your puppy is being feed dry kibble with warm water.


There are two choices for feeding schedules. The first is to free feed, making food available at all times. A puppy will not over eat and you can follow this method until 4 to 5 months of age. At that time set out his ration (4-6 cups depending on the size of the pup) and once it’s is gone do not refill until the next day. This method tends to keep the dog from becoming one that chokes his food back in a gulp.


The second method is to give regular meals. At this time the puppy will require 2 meals per day early am,  and evening. Give the puppy about 20 minutes to eat as much as wants. Make sure to increase the amount as he grows. By 8 months at which time once a day is fine.


Fresh drinking water should be available.


You can keep your puppy on the puppy food until about 10 months. At this age the bones of the puppy really grow. In order to help prevent bone and joint problems it is important that this growth period take it’s time.  Once your puppy has reached his full height at about 10-12 months you can start feeding a complete adult diet. It is extremely important that you do not allow your puppy to become overweight.


House training and crate training go hand in hand. Your puppy should learn to sleep in his crate through the night and during daytime naps. Make sure the puppy has done all of his business before bedtime. He should be able to sleep through most of the night. If he wakes at 1 AM you should probably leave him alone, if he messes it can always be cleaned up in the morning. If he starts crying at 5 AM you should take this call seriously and take the puppy outside. If you start getting up at 1 AM it will become a habit for the pup. The pup will probably cry for a while the first few nights but be patient and PLUG your ears. We found the best thing was to cover the crate with a blanket so he feels more secure and to play the radio. It will get better, honestly. Puppies do not want to mess in their bed so if you start with a large crate it is best to block off part of it so they can’t mess in one end and sleep in the other.


When you put the puppy outside to the bathroom you MUST go outside with him. The first reason is in order to praise the pup when he goes; the second is that if he’s out by himself he’ll just want back in with you. Instead of doing his business outside he’ll be at the door crying and when you let him in he’ll remember that he had to go and have an accident.


After his initial trip outside the puppy will want to eat and play. Another trip outside would be appropriate about every 20-30 minutes during his wake period. You will soon learn the signals of a puppy that needs to go and it won’t need to be so often. When the puppy starts to get drowsy put him back in the crate for a nap and start the process all over. At this point it seems like a lot of work but it will be worth it and it’s a lot easier than the old paper method. You will notice that the puppy will go into his crate himself when he’s sleepy before too long.


DO NOT PLAY TUG OF WAR. This is the worst game ever invented to play with a dog. It teaches the animal to struggle against you and that there must be a winner. Labs love to retrieve so play fetch games. A training bumper, tennis ball or old socks are best. Teach your pup to give instead of trying to pull it away. If he doesn’t want to bring it back try running away or hiding but DO NOT chase him. If you start to chase it becomes a game and teaching the pup to COME becomes impossible.


We recommend that between 10 and 12 weeks you have the puppy wear his nylon collar and drag a 6-foot leash wherever he goes. This way when you call him and he turns to scoot the other way you can stomp on the leash and get him back to you. By doing this exercise at this age you will teach the pup respect and the beginnings of coming when he’s called. You cannot do this exercise at a later age because they quickly figure out when the leash is on. You will never be able to have the same effect with this lesson as you will now. Be sure to take the leash off when the pup is in the crate or when the pup is not being supervised.

                                             

 

Training:

 
Training your new puppy should start at day one, letting him know his boundaries, house breaking, learning what "NO" means, starting on easy obedience commands (Sit, Here, Down, Kennel) using praise and a small treat occasionally, Once your puppy has mastered these commands, treats should be taken away. Your puppy needs to work for you, The Master, NOT A TREAT! 

 I'm not saying never to give your pup treats, just give on special occasions or during training sessions from 7-12 weeks of age!

 

Using Treats + Extreme Spoiling = A Half Trained Dog

 

Contrary to popular belief, relying heavily on treats gets you quick, but short-lived results. Not thousands, but millions around the world have fallen for this theory. 


                Would you rather train your dog by your Praise, Leadership, Technique and Psychology or bribe it nonstop with cheese, hot dogs, bacon strips and beef jerky?

 

Flaws of Using Treats with Your Dog:


* Your dog will only listen to you when you are actually “holding” a treat.


* You will gain your dog’s love, but rarely his respect. Hint: You need both.


                * You are asked to literally starve your poor dog so he obeys the commands while training.


* You will spoil your dog. Spoiled dogs often turn on other dogs and people.


* You won’t always have a pouch of hot dogs or your clicker with you 24/7.


* You are unknowingly making your dog bossy, feisty and demanding.


 * You’ll end up holding your fingers together hoping to trick your smart dog.


* Your dog will ignore even his favorite treats around cats, dogs or your guests.


* Your dog could get sick, fat, or have explosive diarrhea from so many tidbits.


* You’ll confuse and disappoint your doggie when you finally STOP using treats.


* Your dog will figure out that he HAS a choice and take his sweet time responding.


* You are told to have your dog look at you first. This always stalls the training.


* Your dog may get worse or even go nuts as soon as he sees or smells any treat.


* Your dog will obey based on what type of treats you have in your hand/pouch.


* Your dog might start to beg at the table or even worse, get in the habit of counter-surfing and literally stealing food of your plate.


* Your book/trainer tells you to make sure you never run out of treats; but as soon as your dog gets full, he could stop responding to you altogether. (This usually happens in group classes or with dogs that have little or no appetite. And it doesn't even matter even if you made sure to cut those yummy treats in small pieces.)


* You’ll make your dog so demanding that he’ll keep on barking, jumping, whimpering and nudging at your hands until you toss him some yummy treats or whatever you happen to be munching on.

 
REALITY CHECK: Would you still work for your company if they stopped paying you? Then how can you expect the same from your dog? And when you really think about it, your dog should sit, stay or lie down because of your love and leadership, not because of cut-up hot dogs. It’s the same mentality and principle of how we were raised. We followed directions because of the respect we had for our parents and the fact that they were the "providers." Again, I said the provider—NOT the "briber."

 

Alternatives to food rewards - Dogs respond well to many rewards that do not include food. They are social animals and openly seek our attention and approval. That being the case, why not substitute non-food rewards instead of the doggie treats when training your dog? Here are some things to try.

  • Play - Instead of keeping the treat jar close at hand, keep a toy or a stick. Most dogs love to play fetch, and it gives them much needed exercise in the process.
  • Touch - Petting your dog, scratching him behind the ears, or giving him an energetic belly rub will be appreciated well beyond a quick treat. It also helps you bond with your dog and create that special relationship that we all value so dearly.
  • Praise - Dogs love to please us, and when we praise them, they know they have done well. Sometimes all it takes is an enthusiastic "atta-boy" to get their eyes shining and tails wagging.
  • Grab the leash - Most dogs love to go on walks. Mine get hyper-excited anytime they see me touch their leashes. Reward good behavior with a walk around the block or trip to the dog park.
  • Customize the reward to your dog - Every dog is different and each has his favorite things. Capitalize on what makes him happiest and use that activity as his reward for good behavior.




 
Amy Avery ~ Owner, Breeder & Trainer
Newport, North Carolina
 
 Started Dogs, Finished Dogs, Duck Hunting Dogs, Water Dogs, Hunting Retrievers, Working Retrievers, Master Hunters, Field Champion, Sporting Dogs, Upland Dogs, Hunt Test Dogs, Field Trial Dogs, Duck Dogs, Gun Dogs, Waterfowl Retrievers, Bird Dogs, Labrador Retrievers, Competition Dogs, American Labs, Field Dogs, Hunting Labrador Retrievers, Junior Hunters, Senior Hunters, Master Hunters,  specialize in Labrador retrievers in North carolina, Field Trial Lab puppies, Hunt Test Lab pups, Gundog pups, Hunting Retriever puppies, Labrador dog training pups, Labrador puppy training, Obedience Training, Hunting Dog Retriever Trainer, Retriever Trainers in North Carolina, NC. We specialize in breeding Labrador puppies which also are referred to as Lab Puppies, Labrador Puppies, Lab puppy, Labrador retriever puppies for sale, Hunting Dogs for sale, Labrador breeders in NC, Labrador puppies for sale, Labrador puppy, Black lab puppies, yellow lab puppies, chocolate lab puppies and fox red lab puppies. Lab puppies for sale in NC, NC Labrador breeder, North Carolina Black, Chocolate, Yellow pups, Labrador Retriever pups for sale, NC breeder of Labrador Retrievers, Hunting Retriever in NC, Hunting Lab Puppies.