View Full Version : Puppy arriving Sunday - need advice

12th December 2007, 11:22 PM
I am probably posting this in the wrong place but need some advice as we are taking possession of our longed for puppy on Sunday. He will be 7 weeks old. What should we expect and how should we prepare ourselves besides buying all the necessary bits and pieces.

My children are 11, 9 and 6 and a half (the half being v important).

Any advice greatly received.


13th December 2007, 02:24 AM
Be prepared to take him or her outside ALOT! If you have carpet be sure to buy some carpet stain remover.

Oh and congrats!

13th December 2007, 02:43 AM
Wow, 7 weeks seems young to be leaving the breeder. I think they usually don't get sent to their new owners until they are minimum 8 weeks old. I know a week doesn't sound like much, but in the life of a puppy that is 1/8th of his entire life and that extra week can make a huge difference to the wellbeing & socialisation of the puppy. I know you are probably really eager to get him, but I'd be tempted to ask the breeder to keep him an extra week if he still has litter mates there.

Ok, as you have very young children, the most important thing is to provide a safe place for the puppy where the children can not get at him. A Cavalier puppy is very tiny & fragile & the enthusiasm of a child can be traumatic for the puppy & in some cases spell disaster. Is this your first puppy?

Anyway, my recommendations for your shopping list are:

A book on caring for your puppy
warm bedding
food & water dishes (small - don't buy a big one for your puppy to grow into)
the same foods that the breeder is currently feeding
safe toys
dog shampoo & conditioner
a mop & bucket
enzymatic cleaner for cleaning up & removing the smell of piddles

When you get your puppy home, book him in for a vet check early. Your vet may ask you to purchase other things like worming medication, heartworm preventative etc. Do not just buy these things from the pet shop or supermarket, as those products can be inferior. It is best to get the brands that your vet advises.

It is very exciting. Good luck :)

Bruce H
13th December 2007, 12:12 PM
Here is a link http://board.cavaliertalk.com/showthread.php?t=8745 to a thread on this forum that has a good list of things you will need.

You will need to keep a close eye on not just your new puppy, but the kids as well. Sometimes kids, especially the younger ones, do not understand that a puppy is a living thing, not a toy. So have some conversations with your kids about being very careful with their new puppy. And remember that a puppy that young is going to need a lot of sleep; probably more than the kids would like it to have. I'm thinking back and I'm guessing a puppy that age will need to sleep at least 6 to 8 hours during the day, in addition to what it sleeps at night.

I'm a little concerned about a breeder that would let a puppy go that young. The CKCSC (Old Club) Code of Ethics says minimum 8 weeks (10 to 12 weeks prefered) before a puppy goes to a new home. At any rate, talk to your breeder about puppy care, advice on raising the puppy with children, etc. Also be sure to find out what vaccinations the puppy has had so your vet knows what to give or what not to give. And be sure to bring the puppy to your vet as soon as possible for a checkup.

Good luck with your new puppy!!

Cathy Moon
13th December 2007, 12:20 PM
Congrats on your new puppy! I have the same concerns that others have stated regarding the age of the puppy. I question the ethics of a breeder who would let such a young puppy go.

Would it be possible to let the puppy stay with the mom and littermates for 3-4 more weeks? If the breeder is insisting that the puppy leave at such a young age, I personally would look for a different breeder.

It is just so important that puppies have a good start in life.

13th December 2007, 04:00 PM
Please, please ask your breeder to hang on to that puppy for at least another week -- that is really way too young for a cavalier. Your new puppy will benefit enormously from even that extra week. However, a big concern would be that reputable breeders would not be homing a pup at that age -- are you committed to taking one from this person? Did you check to make sure this is someone following correct health protocols when breeding? IKC registration is NOT proof of a quality breeder (often far from it!). There are so many really horrible breeders in Ireland and to be honest, I am sorry to say this sounds like you are either dealing with a casual backyard (trash) breeder who isn't even aware of the risks to this pup by homing so young (lifetime behaviour issues due to poor early socialisation from parent and siblings being and anxiety being one of the main things -- with children, I would not run this risk) -- and therefore isn't also going to have done a single proper health check on breeding stock -- or are being sold a pup from a broker for a puppy farm or directly from a puppy farm. You are based in a region that is absolutely full of puppy farms so extra precautions are needed too. :(

I'd really, seriously consider backing out of this if you can. I hate to say this to people but when there are such worrying signs about the breeder you may save many years of high costs and heartache by waiting for a reputable breeder and a healthy puppy of a proper age to be homed. If you are committed to taking this puppy get the breeder to hang on to it for another week or two (come up with an excuse!) and IMMEDIATELY get health insurance through Petcare when you take possession. But do be fully aware you will be getting a puppy at far higher risk of some early onset, serious illnesses like mitral valve disease and syringomyelia.

Please PM me if you can get out of this arrangement, and want some private suggestions as to where to go. I know we have been in contact in the past and I wish I'd known you were considering a puppy as I could have referred you to some reputable breeders who do breed for health and would give your family a much better chance of a healthy, temperamentally sound, long-lived puppy.

Cathy T
13th December 2007, 04:03 PM
Just wanted to chime in that I'm in agreement with everything above. In my opinion 7 weeks is much too young to bring home a new Cavalier. Your puppy will benefit so much more if he has a few more weeks with his mom and littermates. Please heed the advice given above. I know it's hard...but you really need to think with your head on this rather than your heart.

13th December 2007, 04:17 PM
Have to agree with the others too, 7 weeks is way too young, I don't let mine go until 10 weeks old minimum and fully vaccinated and health checked too!

13th December 2007, 07:48 PM
we got both our youngiest pups willow is now 2 bailey is 1 we got them both from the age of 7 weeks and both from very very good breeders who both know there dogs and the breed
and both settled in just like any other puppys
with no problems then or now

13th December 2007, 11:44 PM
If you can postpone it, I would. You have very young children and a seven week old Cav pup is very small, very fragile.... and a lot of work, even with all that sleeping. You would spend nearly all your time on potty trips, but during the day and overnight... much better to give the pup extra time to mature, and then you can enjoy it without having to spend all your time cleaning up after accidents in the house! Also, I don't know about the Republic, but here in the North I don't think insurance starts until the pup is 8 weeks old. I'm sure someone else can verify that, if need be. I got both of mine at 10 plus weeks, and that was a lot of work... I hate to think how much more it would have been at 8 weeks, let alone 7!

15th December 2007, 12:50 PM
It very definitely would not be acceptable practice among respected cavalier club breeders in the UK (or the US or Canada) to home cavalier puppies at under 8 weeks and is actually BREAKING THE UK CKCS CLUB CODE OF ETHICS which is grounds for being removed from the club. As noted, for some now well documented reasons of behaviour problems which cause such dogs to end up dumped in shelters at a higher ratio than those allowed to be better socialised, in many parts of the world homing under 8 weeks is actually illegal.

Of course not every puppy has problems, but exceptions do not counter documented research that shows there are significantly greater odds of problems in puppies homed at under 8 weeks, compared to 8 weeks and older. Formal dog trainer and behaviouralist programmes cover this within their coursework.

I have no idea why some places continue to advocate homing puppies even as young as 6 weeks in the face of long time evidence that this in particular would be a shockingly young age and I have directly dealt with problem animals -- cats and dogs -- affected by being homed too young. Shockingly, Burns nutrition recommends this -- one reason I will write to complain to them and will no longer recommend this food -- because as someone running a rescue, such advice DOES directly cause people like me to have more problems to deal with!

The optimum time for socialisation is between 6 - 8 weeks when the puppy's instinct to make friends with strangers overcomes its natural wariness and is why it is advocated the ideal time to remove the puppy from its mother and litter mates to a new home. :yikes


I encourage anyone concerned about this to write to them. Must breed clubs like the CKCSC and ACKCSC have a code of ethics that would state under 8 weeks is not acceptable for cavaliers, so how they can make a statement like this is beyond me.

I might have Tara take a look at this thread as she is a certified trainer with a UK certification through the internationally respected APDT.

15th December 2007, 01:00 PM
CKCSC code of ethics:

I will not allow any puppy to leave for its new home before the age of eight weeks. The CKCSC recommends ten to twelve weeks as the appropriate age for transfer.

ACKCSC code of ethics:

E. I will not allow any puppy to leave for its new home before the age of eight weeks although twelve weeks is suggested.


Not part with a puppy under the age of eight weeks to a new owner.

Members are expected to abide by this Code of Ethics, as adopted by the membership, together with the General Code of Ethics of the Kennel Club (see Appendix a) and accept that any breach may result in action being taken in accordance with Club rules resulting in expulsion from the Club.


Simon and Shirley, your breeders are both clearly breaking the club code of ethics homing puppies at 7 weeks. I'd consider reporting that to their regional and/or the national club; it is a key element of the code and they should both know that.

16th December 2007, 03:46 PM
I just wanted to say Good Luck with your new puppy. There is lots of good information on the board. Hopefully, you will stop back in and show us a picture of the new addition.

18th December 2007, 07:44 PM
Thank you and sorry for not coming back before this.

The puppy was actually 8 weeks old. We got him on Sunday night and he seems quite contented at the moment.

He is currently in a travel cot and doesn't seem to mind spending time in it. He whines a little bit but quietens down quickly again. Although he is having great fun scratching at the mesh on the cot so will invest in a crate in next few days.

The children have been very good with him so far - a few of enthusiastic friends arrived the other day to see him but only allowed stay for a few minutes.

He is very lovable and is enjoying his comfortable bed and hasn't been pining for his mum too much.

Feeding wise I am currently feeding him Arden Grange Puppy, breeder also recommended scrambled egg, chopped up ham and cheese as good starters for him too.

He has been vaccinated and due to have his second vaccinations in 4 weeks time. My sister has said he shouldn't come into contact with other dogs until he has had his next lot - is this correct. My mum has a Bichon and is coming for Christmas.

Thanks for all the advice so far.

Barbara Nixon
18th December 2007, 08:16 PM
They shouldn't really come in contact with other dogs, until the vaccination has time to be effective, but this is not possible in homes where there is already another dog, so you just have to be as sure as you can be that the other dog is healthy. When I've added a puppy, I've tended to keep the others at home, until the puppy is safe to go out, so no disease is carried to him.

18th December 2007, 08:26 PM
Thanks Barbara - the Bichon is very healthy and well looked after, however will take your advice and allow as little contact as possible.

I really want to do everything right for this gorgeous little guy.

19th December 2007, 03:11 AM
Sounds like you are off to a great start! Congrats and can't wait to see some pictures.