Puppies are adorable. Many new parents envision small, cute puppies when they bring a new baby home. Unfortunately, some people mistake tiny puppies for tiny adults. Because puppies are growing rapidly before their eyes, they can look very different from their adult counterparts. The best time to get a puppy is when you already have children because puppies that arrive too early (before seven weeks of age) will be underweight, ill, and not able to grow properly.
Parvo is often fatal in puppies. When dogs suffer from parvo, they stop eating, become weak, and generally do not function properly. This disease usually occurs because the puppies’ immune system is not prepared to fight off the virus. In humans, parts can cause death within just a few hours. Because puppies cannot eat and become weak, they are even more susceptible to complications brought on by parvo virus than are adult dogs.
There is no specific time frame in which puppies need to be separated from each other, but the best time to avoid parvo altogether is from eight to ten weeks after the pet was born. Before that, though, puppies should be vaccinated against parvo so that the infection cannot spread to the puppies. The first symptoms of parvo are extremely mild and easily ignored. However, they quickly turn into serious issues. If a puppy contracts parvo, he or she will experience severe vomiting, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and fever within a matter of hours.
Even if a puppy does not contract the disease itself, he or she can be contaminated with the remains of the disease when another dog in the litter contracts it. It is important, therefore, to keep puppies in separate rooms, even before they reach six months of age. This will ensure that any puppies that receive part will not be infected by it. If a live dog contracts the disease, there is usually no treatment because the disease is generally fatal. To treat it, however, veterinarians often recommend giving immune-boosting medications to puppies. Unfortunately, these medications must be continued for the rest of the dog’s life.
The cost of treating parvo varies greatly depending on the type of treatment used and the location of the infection. If the puppy has only a mild case of parvo, the vet may prescribe an anti-parvo diet or vitamin supplements. These will usually bring down the affected animals’ appetites but will not prevent them from eating in large amounts or result in their death. However, if a puppy has a more serious case, his or her immune system may not be as strong, and the vet may recommend giving the dog an antibiotic to fight the infection.
After the puppies have been separated from each other at least twelve weeks before the start of the litter, the owner should begin socializing the puppies to foster acceptance among all of the new puppies. It is important to get to know other members of the litter, since they will form a pack with each other and the mother. By socializing the puppies early, the owner can help the animals adapt easily to new situations in their new homes. The owner should also be sure to provide his or her puppies with plenty of love and attention and to avoid punishing them when they make mistakes.