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maxsash

Raising Very Young Puppy

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maxsash   

Hi,

I'm not sure if this is the right topic to be posting in however any advise will be greatly appreciated and I am aware this site is for the intended discussions of Purebred as I am a previous user of this site as I have always owned Pure Bred dogs and found this site very helpful however I have just welcomed a new 4 week old Mastiff X puppy into our family home alongside our 2 year old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel (Max)

Now before all the negative comments; I know 4 weeks is way way to young to take a pup from it's mother, however the Mother did not want the puppies and stooped feeding and neglected them - there were 12 of them and whilst I do not agree with the owner of these dogs letting these pups go before 8-12 weeks, she was anyway and didn't seem to care where they were gong as long as they were gone which is really sad, I know me taking one of them she would be going to a caring and loving home and not someone that would get sick of its crying and dump it 3 days later, now that being said I want as much advise as possible to ensure I am doing the right thing by our new Family member and to ensure the best upbringing for this little girl.

I have raised 2 pups before, My first being a Maltese, I got from the breeder when she was 10 weeks old and 2nd my CKCS and he was 12 weeks old so I have had experience in raising puppies, just not from such a young age.

Large breed is new to me, I grew up with my family owning German Shepherds but I have never raised a large dog from a puppy. 

The owner advised me they had not yet been wormed as she couldn't AFFORD it! which is ridiculous anyway I took her to the vet yesterday, got her worming tablets, booked her in for her 6 week vaccination and they weighed her and trimmed her nails etc, said she seems very healthy and a good weight.

Last night was her first night with us, lets just say I got no sleep, she doesn't want to be put down, and I know she will be missing her mum and brothers/sisters, I had her on the bed with me to keep her nice and warm, but she just layed there and cried the whole night.

I have not used the Crate method before, but would be interested in getting information on this, is she too young to be left alone in a crate all night?, should I bee keeping her with me? 

how should I be approaching the toilet side of things etc, I have used Puppy Pee pads in the past and found them very useful for training.

the vet advised me to feed her 1 tablespoon approx 5 times a day, I have just been giving her soaked Kibble (Advanced) and puppy milk, she wont drink water so I will be buying a syringe today and administer it that way

My CKCS does not want a bar of her, She runs up to Max thinking he is her mum and tries to feed, however he just runs off and doesn't even want to look at her, not impressed at all!!

I don't want to force the new puppy on him and make him uncomfortable, also advise on how I can go about this as well would be great, should I be keeping them separated? He isn't aggressive at all, he is a very gentle dog, but I still don't want to risk leaving them alone.

Thanks :-)

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She doesn't need water yet - just lots of milk especially for puppies ..and a little kibble . she will probably need 6 or so meals a day.

separate milk and kibble meals .Please don't syringe until you really have to ..it can be dangerous . She is old enough to lap , just won't know what water is just now .

I would be offering warm milk at least 5 times a day ..and leaving dry puppy kibble out 24/7 for her.Place a tip proof small bowl of water where she can access it 24/7 ..she will seek it out eventually . large meaty bones are also a great food source - she will suck/chew meat off :) Use meaty beef backbones, or turkey necks ....

Sleeping ?

In a box/crate alongside your bed .

Put a big soft toy or two in there, and a heat source , like one of these .... or a LARGE wheat pak/bag securely wrapped.

at one end of the crate put pee pads - although she is very young to expect any sort of 'training' yet , she should toilet away from her bed/food..and be given plenty of room to do so.

use baby gates or something , let your old dog have his space :)

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RuralPug   

I am not sure of the laws in your state, it might be an offence to rehome puppies and and kittens at that age and if so, you should report the woman to the RSPCA (WA) who can actually assist her and any remaining pups, they are not likely to prosecute if it is a once off.

As soon as you can, get a SnugglePuppy (available online in many sites) so that the bub is not missing her littermates. There is plenty of info on Crate training here if you do a search. I don't think that her bladder will be developed enough to last all night, but if you arrange for a large crate with a bed nest in it as well as a toileting tray then she could be crated all night in that.

Well done on having already had her vet checked. Rearing a giant breed puppy is very different nutrition wise and exercise wise to rearing other size puppies, care must be taken so that their joints grow at the right pace without stress. Search for as much information online as you can find on raising giant breed orphan puppies.

A good quality large or giant breed puppy kibble is preferable to a standard puppy kibble. Lactose-free milk is just as good as puppy milk and goat's milk is even better. If you can get hold of a decent canine milk replacement formula (Di-Vetelact, Wombaroo, Animalac etc) it would be even better to soak the kibble in that. As long as pup is drinking sufficient quantities of milk, do not worry about water intake, just leave water available and when she is ready she will take it.

Keep the puppy where she cannot annoy your Cav, or where the Cav can easily get away. So a large indoor crate and perhaps tether puppy to a family member for socialisation times. Also allow five or so minutes once or twice a day for the pup and your Cav to be supervised together, then he can help to teach puppy how she should behave with other dogs. Five minutes is not too long and he should survive that without too much stress.

At four weeks, apart from nutrition questions, puppy is going to miss out on a LOT of learning experiences from her dam and littermates on correct behaviour and reaction to new stimuli - so it is your job to make sure that she gets as much of that learning as possible so that she can grow into a well-socialized, happy dog. Again, I urge you to research as much as you can on the subject of puppy socialisation and learning periods etc. Hopefully some DOLers can point you to some helpful web sites.

It is a huge job you've taken on -best of luck and I hope you get more detailed advice from large breed experts here.

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tdierikx   

Important to note that you do NOT want to grow this puppy fast... large breeds need to be grown slowly to avoid issues with joints, etc.

Get yourself a large breed (Dane or Mastiff type) specialised premium kibble - Royal Canin and the like will have large breed selections specifically designed to grow the dog at the correct rate.

Make sure pup has fresh water available at all times - only give milk (puppy milk, not regular cow's milk) at meal times. She will drink the water if she's thirsty enough, and you really do want her weaned off milk sooner rather than later.

Depending on how well her teeth have come through, you can warm the milk and soak the kibble in it a bit to soften it - don't make it too mushy, she has to learn to chew... *grin*

A puppy playpen or cage type crate is a good investment too. I used to put a plastic bucket bed in mine with warm bedding and a teddy bear the same size as the pup to simulate a litter mate to snuggle up to... worked 99% of the time. You can also cover the crate to simulate a den type environment for added comforting.

Don't decide to put pup to bed before you go to bed - they will scream the house down if they know everyone else is up and about. Best place for the night crate is in your bedroom and facing so she can see you sleeping on the bed.

I found that night time snuggles on the couch was great - I'd be watching TV with a pup or two sleeping next to me (or spooning with me). They feel comforted and are getting their sleep, and learning to be settled with humans.

Get a routine happening and stick to it... pup will settle faster that way.

In a week or two I'd be offering her a chicken wing to chew on frequently (one daily or every second day) - great for helping those puppy teeth come through, and for keeping them clean.

Socialisation is paramount also... have friends come over (without their own dogs) and have them interact calmly and gently with the new addition - cuddle time and gentle play with strangers is good for really young pups. No other dogs, or taking her out anywhere until she has had at least her 2nd vaccination... very young pups can get sick and die from nasty diseases very quickly.

Take her to your vet for an introduction and general checkup - she'll need worming at the very least, and your vet will discuss a vaccination schedule for her. Make the vet visit as pleasant an experience as you can - remember that she's going to be a pretty big girl when she grows up, and you want her to love going to the vet, OK?

Plenty of acceptable chew toys will be needed in the next few weeks... start buying them now... lol!

Hope the above helps...

T.

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maxsash   

Thanks for the advise guys

I might give the RSPCA a call tomorrow, as I don't agree with the pups going so young, just caress and shouldn't be breeding, I'm not sure of the laws here I'll look into it.

I have her on Advance puppy kibble for large breeds which I currently am mixing with puppy milk

I went and purchased a large play pen, soft toys and pee mats today she has already used the mat twice. . yay!! .. given her age and since she isn't yet vaccinated, is it ok for her to go out in my back yard on the patio area? I would like to encourage her to use the mats outside asap. She wees every time she wakes up and after play and meals so I'm onto it.

I Have researched larger breeds and like you have mentioned.. portion control for healthy growth so I will definitely be keeping an eye on that.

my cav is slowly coming around, will walk up and sniff her but then walk off.. baby steps haha.

Raising a large breed is new to me so I really do want to try my best to do everything right, I will put her in puppy school as soon as she go as I have done with all my dogs, but I think training and handling will have to be more in depth as this dog will weigh probably more than me.????

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tdierikx   

I'm pretty sure that in all states of Australia it is illegal to rehome/sell pups under 8 weeks of age.

I'm betting that the "breeder" has decided that feeding and raising a large litter of pups is too much work... between 4 and 8 weeks is pretty messy, and a lot of hard work... personally I find it the most rewarding stage.

Take it from me - who has a large breed dog I didn't do all the right things with while she was still of a manageable size - you want to get things like lead training and general obedience happening while they are still small enough to handle! I was laid up with some intense back issues during my pup's early stages, and now it's all so much harder to do things with her that she might resist... errr!

As for taking outside in your yard - unless you believe there may have been any parvo tracked there in the past couple of years, it should be fine. Just don't take her off your property until she's had some vaccinations... except to the vet - and carry her in there.

T.

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Don't over stress about all the large breed broohaha. People make it out as though feeding large breed dogs need a scientifically controlled environment in order to be healthy. I have raised a healthy, and happy Bullmastiff pup without feeding any supposed large breed foods. Actually I think it's mostly marketing guff, with the only real difference being marginally lower digestible energy.

The important take away message is just not to overfeed your pup. Get yourself a digital scale, and your set. At 4 weeks your pup should be getting into bones. I start pups with chicken necks, and then work up from there. If you do want to feed kibble, then suggest you feed a high quality holistic formula such as stay loyal, ivory coat or canidae.

The pup needs milk until around 8 weeks but avoid supermarket puppy milk which is high in sugar and salt. Wombarroo is easily available and a better alternative. I'd be offering this 5 times a day, and supplementing with raw meaty bones as above every other day, and puppy barf patties.

At 8 weeks the pup can come off the milk and drop back to 3 meals a day. From here, feeding is quite straight forward, as we just feed 4% of body weight per day as a baseline and adjust based off physical condition. Mastiff pups should be lean and muscular, with back ribs either visible, or easily felt.

Do try not to stress!

Edit: agree wholeheartedly with above post about getting on to manners and lead behaviour early. This dog is going to be very strong, so will be much easier to handle/train whilst a pup.

Edited by BullBreedBoy

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Steph M   

Don't over stress about all the large breed broohaha. People make it out as though feeding large breed dogs need a scientifically controlled environment in order to be healthy. I have raised a healthy, and happy Bullmastiff pup without feeding any supposed large breed foods. Actually I think it's mostly marketing guff, with the only real difference being marginally lower digestible energy.

There is a lot of evidence to back up the info given about careful feeding.

Please don't dispense anecdotes as fact, so you got lucky. There are a lot of dogs fed whatever is going around who DO suffer the effects and it is irresponsible to advise otherwise.

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Don't over stress about all the large breed broohaha. People make it out as though feeding large breed dogs need a scientifically controlled environment in order to be healthy. I have raised a healthy, and happy Bullmastiff pup without feeding any supposed large breed foods. Actually I think it's mostly marketing guff, with the only real difference being marginally lower digestible energy.

There is a lot of evidence to back up the info given about careful feeding.

Please don't dispense anecdotes as fact, so you got lucky. There are a lot of dogs fed whatever is going around who DO suffer the effects and it is irresponsible to advise otherwise.

Yeah, I'm not looking for an arguement thanks. :whiteflag: I didn't say that OP shouldn't be careful, I said they don't need to overly stress about it, as I think a 4 week old puppy is stressful enough. That's why I advocate in the next paragragh the OP to get a digital scale to weigh food, because I don't think careul feeding is important. :confused: I stand by my position that you can absolutely raise healthy large and giant breed pups without having to purchase special kibbles if you don't want to.

And as for the lucky bit, yeah maybe I did get lucky, and maybe Baxter's breeder has got lucky for the last 30 years too. I guess it's also possible that my breeder knows what he is talking about, hell maybe it's possible I have a clue too :eek: You know I am actually an extremely passionate Bullmastiff and Bull Terrier owner and breeder. I love the breeds and love my dogs fiercely. So I kind of take offence tou your suggestion that I'm irresponsible and only raised a healthy pup because I was lucky. But hey, I guess that was your intent...

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No advice, just want to say good luck with your new little dog. You sound super caring and committed and well on top of all that is necessary. No dog could ask for more. :thumbsup:

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Steph M   

You could hop.on Google Scholar and have a look.at some.studies on large breed puppy diet and development before saying its not important to have a scientifically controlled diet. There's lots there and easy found.

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maxsash   

No advice, just want to say good luck with your new little dog. You sound super caring and committed and well on top of all that is necessary. No dog could ask for more. :thumbsup:

thank you ????

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Rebanne   

there is no reason to give your puppy milk unless you want to. Just a small amount with her dry food is all she needs. Have water available at all times. None of my pups had milk once the bitch closed up shop. I usually don't bother with puppy food beyond 12 weeks. Nothing wrong with the Advance you are feeding. Your pup should be able to handle raw chicken necks at this age so I would be making one meal of them. Try for about 5 - 6 little feeds per day now and ease off to 4 by 6 weeks, then 3 until around 10/12 weeks. I feed my dogs twice a day from then on. But I can be pretty flexible with meals until they are around 6 months. Keep it fairly simple and not too many changes for now. Slowly add in extra's that you want like eggs, sardines etc but not yet. Upset tummies can be the death of pups and your won't have had a good start. Good luck! My very first pup was a 4 week old pup and I was a first time dog owner and there was no internet or special foods around back then and she lived to 13 :)

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HazyWal   

Don't over stress about all the large breed broohaha. People make it out as though feeding large breed dogs need a scientifically controlled environment in order to be healthy. I have raised a healthy, and happy Bullmastiff pup without feeding any supposed large breed foods. Actually I think it's mostly marketing guff, with the only real difference being marginally lower digestible energy.

There is a lot of evidence to back up the info given about careful feeding.

Please don't dispense anecdotes as fact, so you got lucky. There are a lot of dogs fed whatever is going around who DO suffer the effects and it is irresponsible to advise otherwise.

Yeah, I'm not looking for an arguement thanks. :whiteflag: I didn't say that OP shouldn't be careful, I said they don't need to overly stress about it, as I think a 4 week old puppy is stressful enough. That's why I advocate in the next paragragh the OP to get a digital scale to weigh food, because I don't think careul feeding is important. :confused: I stand by my position that you can absolutely raise healthy large and giant breed pups without having to purchase special kibbles if you don't want to.

And as for the lucky bit, yeah maybe I did get lucky, and maybe Baxter's breeder has got lucky for the last 30 years too. I guess it's also possible that my breeder knows what he is talking about, hell maybe it's possible I have a clue too :eek: You know I am actually an extremely passionate Bullmastiff and Bull Terrier owner and breeder. I love the breeds and love my dogs fiercely. So I kind of take offence tou your suggestion that I'm irresponsible and only raised a healthy pup because I was lucky. But hey, I guess that was your intent...

I didn't see Steph's post as argumentative at all, the OP has come here asking for advice and yours WAS irresponsible IMO. I'm sure people here with large breeds don't think it's all "broohaha"

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maxsash   

there is no reason to give your puppy milk unless you want to. Just a small amount with her dry food is all she needs. Have water available at all times. None of my pups had milk once the bitch closed up shop. I usually don't bother with puppy food beyond 12 weeks. Nothing wrong with the Advance you are feeding. Your pup should be able to handle raw chicken necks at this age so I would be making one meal of them. Try for about 5 - 6 little feeds per day now and ease off to 4 by 6 weeks, then 3 until around 10/12 weeks. I feed my dogs twice a day from then on. But I can be pretty flexible with meals until they are around 6 months. Keep it fairly simple and not too many changes for now. Slowly add in extra's that you want like eggs, sardines etc but not yet. Upset tummies can be the death of pups and your won't have had a good start. Good luck! My very first pup was a 4 week old pup and I was a first time dog owner and there was no internet or special foods around back then and she lived to 13 :)

Thankyou!

Thats all I am doing is puppy milk mixed with her feeds.

Im doing one tablespoon of soaked kibble and then 1-2 table spoons of milk.. is that enough or too much. . I don't want to under feed her

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Rebanne   

there is no reason to give your puppy milk unless you want to. Just a small amount with her dry food is all she needs. Have water available at all times. None of my pups had milk once the bitch closed up shop. I usually don't bother with puppy food beyond 12 weeks. Nothing wrong with the Advance you are feeding. Your pup should be able to handle raw chicken necks at this age so I would be making one meal of them. Try for about 5 - 6 little feeds per day now and ease off to 4 by 6 weeks, then 3 until around 10/12 weeks. I feed my dogs twice a day from then on. But I can be pretty flexible with meals until they are around 6 months. Keep it fairly simple and not too many changes for now. Slowly add in extra's that you want like eggs, sardines etc but not yet. Upset tummies can be the death of pups and your won't have had a good start. Good luck! My very first pup was a 4 week old pup and I was a first time dog owner and there was no internet or special foods around back then and she lived to 13 :)

Thankyou!

Thats all I am doing is puppy milk mixed with her feeds.

Im doing one tablespoon of soaked kibble and then 1-2 table spoons of milk.. is that enough or too much. . I don't want to under feed her

How much does she weigh? And is she ravenous? And underfeeding her for a day or two won't be harmful. The food you are giving her will be vastly different to what she is used to anyway. And her name? We need a name :D

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maxsash   

there is no reason to give your puppy milk unless you want to. Just a small amount with her dry food is all she needs. Have water available at all times. None of my pups had milk once the bitch closed up shop. I usually don't bother with puppy food beyond 12 weeks. Nothing wrong with the Advance you are feeding. Your pup should be able to handle raw chicken necks at this age so I would be making one meal of them. Try for about 5 - 6 little feeds per day now and ease off to 4 by 6 weeks, then 3 until around 10/12 weeks. I feed my dogs twice a day from then on. But I can be pretty flexible with meals until they are around 6 months. Keep it fairly simple and not too many changes for now. Slowly add in extra's that you want like eggs, sardines etc but not yet. Upset tummies can be the death of pups and your won't have had a good start. Good luck! My very first pup was a 4 week old pup and I was a first time dog owner and there was no internet or special foods around back then and she lived to 13 :)

Thankyou!

Thats all I am doing is puppy milk mixed with her feeds.

Im doing one tablespoon of soaked kibble and then 1-2 table spoons of milk.. is that enough or too much. . I don't want to under feed her

How much does she weigh? And is she ravenous? And underfeeding her for a day or two won't be harmful. The food you are giving her will be vastly different to what she is used to anyway. And her name? We need a name :D

She will eat all day long if I let her

So its just the it . probably works out to be half cup a day roughly

she is 2 kilos

She is nameless wt the moment I can't decide.

:-(

any suggestions haha

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Rebanne   

ok she needs more then you are giving her. I'd be looking at 2 cups a day of your advance, 4 feeds of 1/2 a cup and 2 feeds of the chicken necks maybe 3 at each meal. My youngest is only 14 months old but I was feeding a litter so am struggling with individual amounts.

Now we know she is 2 kilos other's maybe able to help with actual amounts?

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Nekhbet   

Get goats milk from the supermarket and start that pup chewing on raw bones like brisket bones. Nothing swallowable at this age until she learns to chew and swallow properly but she needs to cut her teeth and be introduced properly to fresh foods. 2kg?!! That is going to need a lot more then a couple of tablespoons at a time! I was adding some nice fatty mince to my pups feeds of milk too. I got a dobermann pup at 3 days old and she's almost 6 months old now.

A 4 week old puppy cannot be left alone and despite the fact they can regulate their own temperature it's not brilliant particularly in a short coated breed. I would be getting a little jumper for her so she can be outside. Also start socialising this dog A LOT to loud noises. I put my pup next to the sub woofer of the TV stereo as she was growing up, and handle this puppy very very firmly every day. You have the opportunity to raise a pup that will not mouthe you so no allowing to chew on you or anything else.

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