Best time to get a puppy
Of course the simple answer is, when you have time. However, if you are reading this article, you are seeking thoughts on the best timing to bring a little fur ball full of ambition, devotion, and joy into your home. Here are some thoughts as I think over my experiences over the years.
- Look for a 3-4 week window that you can give a little extra time to improve the transition. A puppy that first comes into his or her new home needs a little more attention as they adapt to their new environments. As a caretaker, I often recommend frequent trips outside. The first day, the frequency should be once an hour. Over the next couple weeks as you have success with potty training, I follow this rule of thumb on outside breaks: An hour per month of age. For example a puppy that is 6 months old, should be permitted to go outside at least every 6 hours, a puppy that is 3 months old would require every three hours. As you gain the initial successes, you are setting the pace for long term success!
- Season of the year. This is dependent on location and personal preference. I have sent puppies home to Alaska in all the seasons with good result. My personal preference is when we experience a dry season. For the midwest, that perfect timing is mid summer to early winter before the snow begins to accumulate. The northeast is really very similar to the midwest. The northwest is rainy during the winter, so I would choose any other time. The south and southwest is too hot during the summer, but Fall through Spring is a perfect time.
- Other pets. Many times as families come to pick puppies, the comment is made that maybe they should take two. When I first started raising puppies, I allowed this to happen. However, I quickly learned that two puppies the same age is not half the work, it’s not double the work, it is at least three times the work. Just think if you had twin children without diapers that were just starting to walk and really move about. While one was going poop behind your couch in the living room and you were cleaning that mess up, the other would be going pee under the kitchen table. I guess the take home message is to stair step pets. While one dog is in mid life, get another puppy and enjoy both immensely. If you are at a point where you have an elderly dog or other pet that is not long for this world, I would recommend waiting. However, if you have an elderly pet that is just starting to show signs of age, it is amazing the energy a puppy brings to an older dog.
- We have found our Irish Goldendoodles from Sunshine Acres really are adaptable to most any time of year or environment where they are placed. However, as you consider your next puppy and you are thinking through your own situation, please send us any questions or concerns so we can help you in your choice.