This ban will make it more difficult for younger animals to be sold on third party sites such as Gumtree or in pet shops. Puppy sales will only legally be able to be completed after they are 8 weeks old, in the environment where the animal has been born, and in the presence of the mother and the breeder/owner.
Bringing a puppy into your family can be incredible, but it’s a life-changing decision. We wanted to help out by giving you some tips on what to expect and how to prepare for welcoming a new fur-baby into your life.
Whilst we would always advise adopting a puppy from an animal rescue shelter where possible, we recognise that some people choose not to do this. Regardless of where your new arrival has come from, here at Mayhew we want to provide support for you and your new family member.
Dogs bring so much joy to one’s life, but don’t forget to ask yourself a few simple questions before you commit – can I afford a dog; can I make a lifelong commitment; can I be at home for most of the day with my dog; what happens when I go away?
Lucy’s Law puts a ban on third party sales, meaning that anyone looking to adopt or buy a dog must deal directly with the breeder or visit a registered rehoming centre or shelter. Whilst we strongly recommend adopting your new best friend wherever possible, if you are buying a puppy, here are just a few things to think about:
Meet the puppy in their home – Are they in a similar environment to the one you would bring them home to? It is worth looking for evidence that you are meeting the puppy where it lives (can you see feed bowls or bedding?).
Meet the parents – It is important to meet the mother and any siblings, and the father if possible. Ask about the parents’ health, personalities and backgrounds, and watch the mother’s behaviour with you and with her pups.
Check the puppy’s health – Can you see visible ribs, is the coat scruffy or dull, are there any sore patches, are the eyes runny/crusty is the puppy coughing or are there signs that they have diarrhoea? Once you bring your puppy home, try and take it to the vets as soon as possible for a general health check.
Check the records – If the owner claims that the puppies have been microchipped and had their vaccinations, ask to see the records. The puppies will have vaccination cards, signed by their vet, to record the date and type of vaccinations that they have had.
Ask questions and expect to be asked questions – Owners will want to know that their puppies are off to loving homes, so be prepared to answer any questions owners may have, but also have a bank of questions to ask owners.
Owning a puppy can be immensely rewarding, but don’t let that adorable face and those great big puppy eyes fool you. Taking care of a puppy requires a lot of hard work, long hours, dedication and training. You’re pup will be totally dependent on you, as its parent, so you need to be around the home as it grows and learns to navigate life. Training and socialising a puppy will help them develop into a great dog. Training includes anything from teaching your puppy basic commands and recall, to toilet training and playing games to mentally stimulate them.
“Toilet training is an essential part of looking after your new puppy. Perseverance, patience, repetition and positive training are the crucial qualities needed in teaching any new puppy the basics of toilet training.”
Whilst it is true that there are breed-specific behaviours that can help you decide what type of dog own, how your puppy will act as an adult is also largely dependent on their life experiences, training and socialisation. Though some dogs are more active than others, all dogs, big or small, need several walks a day, and will need to be kept mentally stimulated too.
Another thing to consider is if you have enough space in your home to accommodate the size of dog your puppy will become – they grow up fast after all! Don’t forget the small things either – if you have a long haired pooch, be prepared to groom them frequently, and spend hours whizzing through your house vacuuming up those long hairs that land anywhere from on your sofa to inside your linen drawer.
You also need to think about the times that you are away from home – do you work from home or do you have a long day at the office? Do you go on lots of holidays or weekends away? Can someone look after your dog during your working day? Can you take your dog away with you on holiday?
Puppies can be excellent interior designers (or destroyers), so carefully consider all areas of your home that you would want to protect, from covering plug sockets to protecting that new, clean sofa. Whilst your furniture, socks and shoes may be treasured to you, your pup may just think these make excellent chew toys, so be prepared to miss the odd sock or find a few cushions missing their stuffing.
Dogs young and old love to eat anything they can get their paws on, however lots of food we eat and items we have around the house can be toxic to them, so puppy proof your home by learning which foods can be poisonous to dogs, and make sure small items are out of reach too!
Getting a bouncy, playful puppy is thrilling and rewarding, but in all that excitement, it is sometimes easy to forget that pet ownership is a lifetime commitment, and has financial implications too. Sadly, puppies or young dogs get signed over to us all too often, soon after being bought, as families realise the huge commitment that it really is to own a dog.
If you are serious about getting a puppy, make sure you are prepared, and know that we are here to help.
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