Getting started with your new puppy - Damson House Vets

What age can I get my puppy?

Most puppies are weaned at 5-6 weeks so you are likely to bring them home at
7-9 weeks.

Bringing them home

Prepare for your new arrival by getting food and water bowls, some puppy
food, bedding and consider a puppy crate.
Puppy crates are a great way to make your puppy feel safe in his new home.
Most puppies soon feel at home and will sleep and spend quiet time in the crate. It
can also help toilet training.

Which food?

Your puppy should be fully weaned onto puppy food and has no requirement
for milk or supplements. The breeder will often give you a sample of the food they
have been using and its generally better to use this while your puppy is settling in.
There are many good quality puppy foods, feed a ‘complete’ food appropriate
for the pup’s age. New foods should be introduced slowly over 5-7 days to avoid a
stomach upset.
In the practice we feed and recommend Hill’s pet foods as they use good quality
ingredients and have been designed for health. for more information
and discount vouchers.
Young pups need to be fed @ 4 times a day As they grow they can have larger
meals less frequently. Foods usually have a guide as to how much to feed per day.
This can be confusing so we are always happy to advise you.
The choice to feed dry or wet food is a personal one. Dry food is more economical
so you can feed a better quality diet more cheaply. You need to feed less as
wet food is 80% water and many dry foods will be better for the teeth.


Puppies are vaccinated against distemper, viral hepatitis, parvovirus, leptospirosis,
and parainfluenza virus. They need 2 doses of vaccine starting from 6 weeks of
age with the second injection at 10 weeks (or with a 2 week interval in an older
If your puppy is not due a vaccination when you first get it we are happy to offer
a new animal check FREE OF CHARGE to discuss all aspects of care and to
check for any health problems.
After the puppy course, dogs need an annual booster injection which is a great
opportunity for a thorough health check.
We also offer vaccination against kennel cough (bordetella) especially useful
before going to training classes, and also Rabies and Leishmaniasis for travelling


Microchipping is an important part of pet ownership and gives you peace of
mind for your pet.
From 6th April 2016, microchipping is compulsory for all dogs from 8 weeks if
age so your puppy may already be microchipped.
Each microchip has a unique number linked to a 24 hour database. It is your
responsibility to make sure that the chip is working and that your details are up-todate.
We will scan your dog regularly to help you with this.
Microchipping can be done in an appointment. The chip is implanted under the
skin and most animals don’t react to this injection.

Pet Insurance

We recommend insuring your puppywith Petplan. We can
give you a 4 week free cover note on your first visit and you are covered from the
moment you leave the practice.
If you are comparing insurance policies, we recommend ‘cover for life’ , some
other policies will only cover illnesses and accidents for the first 12 months and
many conditions can need lifelong medication.


Female Dogs come into season every 6 months when they bleed and are attractive
to male dogs. Spaying stops this and also reduces the risk of mammary tumours
and prevents false pregnancies, uterine tumours and pyometra (womb infection)
We recommend spaying before the first season at around 6 months old (from 5
months for small breeds which come on heat earlier).
Male dogs are castrated mainly to reduce unsociable behaviours such as roaming
and aggression. It reduces prostatic disease and prevents testicular cancer.
We neuter male dogs at any age from about 6 months.
Dogs coming in to be neutered come to the practice in the morning and go
home the same day.

Parasite Control

Good parasite control is essential if you want to keep your dog healthy and
avoid him bringing fleas into your home.
Most puppies come with roundworms from their mother and can pick up tapeworms
from fleas or hunting.
Fleas will hop on your pet and once they are brought in to the house, they
breed and the eggs and larvae produced survive for long periods in the house.
On your first visit we will provide your puppy with a free dose of Prinovox to
protect him from fleas, roundworms lungworm and tapeworms, and discuss long term parasite