How to Choose a Puppy

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How to Choose a Puppy

by Jason Beachy

When you have found a reputable breeder you feel comfortable dealing with, now is the time to pick out your puppy. Generally it's a good idea to stay away from extreme puppies. If a puppy is extremely shy or submissive, or overly friendly and dominate, stay away from him.

Excessive barking, biting, toy guarding and food protection are bad signs in young puppies. Puppies should be curious, playful and confident. Although it's very cute and endearing, a puppy that charges at you and dances around your feet when you're in the kennel is going to be hard to train. He's used to getting what he wants and dominate others. On the other hand an extremely submissive puppy will be hard to train also. They are content to sit in a corner and let the world go on without them.

The sex of the puppy may affect their temperaments as well. A male is often larger, more curious, adventurous, and needs to be dominant. They have a tendency to roam and fight but they do not come into season and are cheaper to alter. Most of the time an altered male will have the same temperament as a female. On the other hand females are usually smaller, not as dominating and defiant, and can be sensitive and moody. As a general rule females are less likely to fight and roam but that doesn't guarantee that if you choose a female you won't have to train her to stay at home. You may want to choose a male or female based on the type of breed you choose. A dominate breed and you may be wise to choose a female. A calm, quiet breed, it may be better to choose a male.

If you want two dogs, don't get two of the same age or two from the same litter. First get one and raise the dog properly and then get another pet. Your older pet will be a role model to your puppy and make it much easier to train him. It is much easier to train a puppy with the influence of an older well trained dog, than try to train two puppies at once. Most of the time a male dog and a female dog can live together without trouble. You should ask your breeder whether your specific breed has any problems with male and female dogs living in the same house.

Before you go into the kennel to interact with the puppies, stand back and observe each puppy. Make a note of the size, the temperaments, and is any vomit or loose stool present. Often a breeder will class some puppies out of a litter as show quality and others as pet quality. Ask why and discuss whether this relates to temperament, body size or features. Ask which ones are male and female, you may be wise to remember to observe all of the puppies for the temperament you want, rather than picking from either males or females. A puppy that has no litter mates or is the only one left out of the litter may have missed out on crucial social development that happens within a litter.

Then you should go into the kennel and interact with the puppies. Make note of how they react to you. Does the puppy run away or cower in a corner, bark and run around wildly, or is he playfully curious? A puppy with a healthy amount of curiosity but not a dominating personality will be friendly but not demand attention. Look for any obvious health problems such as bloodshot eyes, dry skin or coat, fleas and eye or nose discharge. If the puppy has a bloated belly it may indicate worms and needs to be taken care of immediately.

You can view videos and other information on Jason's favorite breed of dog - Japanese chins at

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