Getting a puppy can be a daunting task, especially for a first-time dog owner. You are unsure of what to get for your puppy and the measures you need to put in place for it to adapt well to the new environment. Read on to learn how to take care of a Jack Rusell terrier puppy.
How to Take Care of a Jack Rusell Terrier Puppy
Taking care of a Jack Rusell terrier puppy involves commitment and dedication. You have to put in work to ensure your dog is safe, loved, and grows up to be a well-behaved and adjusted dog.
Give Age Appropriate Food and Drinks
Feeding a puppy is different from feeding a fully grown Jack Rusell terrier. You must ensure you are feeding them age-appropriate food in the right portions. As their bodies are growing, they need higher protein and fat content.
They need an average of 800-900 calories a day. The calories should be divided into four feedings. When they reach three months old, you can change the number of times you feed it to three.
When choosing whether to feed your puppy homemade meals or commercial dog food, you must consider the nutrients your pup will gain.
Most commercial food is in kibble form, making it convenient for your puppy’s teeth. However, if you choose to make the food yourself, use fresh, high-quality ingredients. Examples of food you can make include:
- Lamb and brown rice
- Beef and barley
- Chicken and quinoa
Find a Good Place to Sleep
Jack Russell terrier puppies tend to sleep a lot. From the time they are around two to five months old, they sleep for an average of 18-20 hours a day. Older pups, 6-12 months old, get approximately 16-18 hours of sleep a day. Enough sleep helps them recharge their growing bodies.
Selecting the best bed for your puppy can be quite a task. There are many factors to take into consideration, including:
- Size: A bed that is big enough so their head and legs don’t hang off the edge
- Bedding: Get one that is easy to wash (if it can be machine washed, that is a plus)
- Absorbent Pads: Some puppies wet the bed and absorbent pads come in handy for such situations
- Eco-Friendly: Depending on how you feel about the environment, you can get an eco-friendly dog bed
- Bed Filling: Look for foam or polyester fiberfill
When choosing a place to set up their bed, choose a quiet and warm place. Avoid putting the bed near doors or windows as they can be cold and windy. Do not put their sleeping place too far away from the rest of the family, as your puppy will feel left out.
Buy Collars, Leashes and Harnesses
When it comes to training your puppy, a collar or a harness can make a huge difference. While they are still young, you can avoid neck collars. This is because your puppy’s neck is delicate, and with sudden jerks, its trachea can get damaged, and its breathing can become restricted.
A harness distributes pressure around your dog’s torso such that when it lunges in a certain direction, and you are forced to pull the leash, the effect is not as traumatic on its body compared to if it had a collar on. A harness is adjusted as the puppy grows older, so it is better to invest in high-quality ones.
Leather collars are hard and stiff, making them uncomfortable, especially for puppies. They may even end up causing injuries to the neck. Ensure you get a padded collar on the front that can be easily adjusted. For leashes, get one that is soft, durable, and lightweight.
Grooming and Personal Hygiene
One of the most important skills you will have to teach your puppy is potty training. It requires time and patience on your part; however, the reward outweighs all the effort. You may also have to get absorbent pads to have a place to do their business indoors without you having to scrub the floor after they are done.
When it comes to grooming, you have to do the following:
- Body: Bathing your puppy at least once a week with dog shampoo and warm water. After thorough rinsing with lots of water, use a towel to dry it.
- Nails: Clipping its nails with a dog nail clipper. File the edges when you are done. If you accidentally cut your pup, put cornstarch on it to stop bleeding.
- Ears: Cleaning its ears with a special solution and a cotton ball. If it has hair on its ear canal, carefully pluck them out using your fingers.
- Fur: Brushing the fur to get rid of dirt and grime. Learn to do this correctly at home, so you do not have to pay a groomer to do it for you.
- Teeth: Brushing its teeth using a doggie toothbrush and toothpaste. Under no circumstance should you use a regular toothbrush for this, as it may end up causing harm to the gums.
- Eyes: If you Terrier is prone to tear stains keep these areas clean to prevent this from reoccurring in the future.
Grooming does not always have to be done by a professional. Learn what your dog likes and improvise when you need to. Make grooming a fun time with your puppy and bond with it during the process. You will both begin to look forward to grooming time.
Buy Dog Tags
In the unfortunate event that your puppy gets lost, or it wanders off and you cannot find it, you would want whoever finds it to have a way of getting it back to you. Dog tags are easy to read, inexpensive, and you can customize them to have the kind of information you want them to pass. You can include:
- Name of the pet
- Your phone number
- Medical needs
- Your address
- A personal message
You will have limited space to work with, so you must make it count. Some dogs do not like wearing tags because they are noisy, and some are a little heavy. Introduce the tag to them gradually, get a tag silencer and ensure the tag you get is light enough for your dog to forget it is there.
When choosing a collar for your dog, choose one that is well-fitting, and after you have placed the tag, ensure you can fit two fingers underneath. You do not want to expose your puppy to a potential choking hazard. At the same time, do not get one that is too loose.
Give Treats and Toys
Puppies love toys and getting treats. You may want to spoil your Jack Russell terrier puppy with all the toys you can afford; however, this is not a good idea. They should have a limited number of toys at a given point so they do not get tired.
Reserve toys as a big reward for doing something good; do the same with treats if you do not want to end up with a spoiled puppy.
The toys should be age-appropriate. When they are teething, the toys should be squeaky to get them to avoid chewing on other things around the house. Versatile toys are great as they can play fetch and use them as a chew toy.
When it comes to treats, you may ask the person who had your puppy previously what kind of treats they liked and which ones they did not. However, if you do not have access to this information, you can get it different treats in small sizes and see which ones they prefer and which ones they steer clear of.
Taking care of a puppy requires some work; you have to be patient and be ready to learn some things as you go along. Join a group of new pet parents, bombard your vet with questions or a friend with a dog, and you will be able to take good care of your Jack Russell terrier puppy.