What to Expect in Your Puppy’s First Year

Puppies Need Daily Care and Interaction

Providing nutritious meals, a comfortable home and veterinary care are fundamental responsibilities of a new dog owner.

In the early days of his life, your puppy’s whole world consisted of his dam’s quiet, nurturing warmth and the close comfort of his littermates. As his eyes opened and his hearing developed at two to three weeks, his world and his experience began to broaden—he learned to get his tiny legs under him, and he began to wrestle with his brothers and sisters.

Bit by bit, play and other interaction with his dam and siblings helped him learn important lessons about how to behave with others (as in “Hey, let go of my ear!”). His breeder was sure to provide loving human interaction as well. Staying with his breeder and his family group and continuing to learn from them for his first eight weeks was crucial in helping your puppy develop a healthy, secure personality.

Now it’s up to you to give him the care he requires every day. There’s a lot involved—he needs nutritious food, plenty of attention, gentle training, safe toys, a comfortable home, and proper veterinary care. He’ll give boundless love in return. This important first year of his life is a fun and exciting time for both of you! As he grows physically, the wonderful bond between you will grow, too.

Understanding your puppy’s needs in the weeks and months ahead will help you give him the right start as your healthy, happy companion for life.