Congratulations on your new family member! We are pleased and honored that you have chosen Shake A Paw for what we feel may be one of the most important purchases in your life. So what’s the next step? Check out the topics we have listed below for more of the information you need to get off on the right foot with your new friend. Feel free to stop by your local Shake A Paw at any time for further questions.

The Ride Home
Puppies may become car sick during the first couple of trips. Consider taking another person along to hold your new puppy. Your passenger should wear a seat belt and open the window about 3" to 4" from the top. Slowly, but consistently, rub the underneath of the puppy's neck. This proves to be effective most of the time. Take a towel along just in case your puppy does get sick. Upon your arrival home, you can do any needed cleanup. Give your puppy about 45 minutes to an hour to settle down, and his little tummy will do just fine.

At Shake A Paw, we have more than 30 years of experience in providing beautiful, healthy puppies to the public. We carry an extensive selection of all breeds and can even fulfill special requests for rare breeds not readily available. We opened in our Hicksville, N.Y. location in 1994 and our newest location in Lynbrook, N.Y. in the spring of 2003.

Things to Remember
Your puppy may be a bit nervous at first (it is no longer experiencing familiar sounds and smells). This unsettling feeling will pass shortly.

Nervousness or change of diet may cause diarrhea. If it lasts for more than two days, please contact a veterinarian.

Not eating for the first day or day and a half - this can happen. Things are different for the puppy in an entirely new environment. In our care, puppies generally do as other puppies do; when one eats, they all eat. The adjustment period should last a day or so.

Note: This does not pertain to small breed like Chihuahuas, Yorkies, Maltese, and Toy Poodles. If your puppy refuses to eat after a day and a half, please call your veterinarian for further instruction and suggestions about what to do.

After putting your puppy down for the first time, he or she may just stand there in fright. Back away slightly and talk soothingly, using reassuring and calming language. If you’d like, you can even try whistling very softly. Soon, your new puppy will come over for a sniff. When this happens, offer a pat on the head and ease into the interaction. Your puppy should be just fine after this initial encounter with a new home.

Symptoms and Signs
Blood or mucus in your puppy's stool – Generally, this indicates the presence of intestinal parasites. This is a common occurrence with puppies and is very easily treated. Parasites are normally found in the stool of young puppies, and can be easily diagnosed by your vet, who can complete a fecal test to determine this. Medication should clear out the parasites within a week.

Worms in your puppy's stool - Like parasites, worms are commonly found in young puppies. There are several types of worms, but the most common types are roundworms and tapeworms. These are visible sometimes when the pup defecates, but you should not be alarmed as this is an easily treated problem. A de-worming can be given by your veterinarian, once he or she has determined what type of worms are present.

Kennel cough - Symptoms of kennel cough are a dry hacking cough, watery eyes, runny nose and congestion. Kennel cough is an airborne virus and is almost impossible to prevent in a kennel environment. Kennel cough is also called upper respiratory infection and tracheal bronchitis. Although it can sometimes sound very bad, it is not a life-threatening problem. This condition is usually treated with proper antibiotics given by your vet, but ultimately it has to run its course. Kennel cough can last from a few days to several weeks, so don't be concerned if it doesn't clear up immediately. Consult your vet if your puppy shows signs of kennel cough.

Hypoglycemia - This condition can occur from time to time, but will usually occur in small breeds like Yorkies, Maltese, Poodles, etc., more often than larger breeds. Hypoglycemia occurs when a puppy's blood sugar level drops below normal. This can occur for several reasons, but usually it happens when a puppy is not eating properly, due to the stress of going to an unfamiliar environment. Symptoms of hypoglycemia are white gums, low body temperatures, lethargy, inability to stand up, and even possibly seizures. It is important that small breeds receive three to five feedings per day, as well as supplements like Nutri-Cal, so blood sugar levels remain adequate. If you see symptoms of hypoglycemia, immediately give the puppy sugar, keep it warm, and consult a veterinarian.


Precautionary Measures for Small Breeds

Make sure that you are not constantly handling the puppy or passing it around from hand to hand. In the beginning, give the puppy a little time to rest.

For the first month, we recommend putting light Karo syrup in the puppy's water.

Your new puppy should have at least three to five feedings during the course of a twelve-hour day, and make sure your puppy eats when you place the food in front of him.

Most importantly, use Nutri-Cal, a pet vitamin supplement, at least three to four times daily. This will ensure that your new puppy is getting the necessary amount of sugar and nutrients. To prevent your puppy from becoming hypoglycemic, the Nutri-Cal should be given consistently for the first two weeks.

Most Importantly
Remember, it doesn't matter if your puppy is a two-pound Yorkie or a twenty-pound Rottweiler, he or she is extremely fragile and must be treated like a baby. Do not roughhouse with your new puppy and remain vigilant when going outside. Until fully vaccinated, keep your puppy away from public parks where other dogs defecate. Avoid contact with any dog that you are not certain is fully vaccinated and healthy. Make sure that your puppy is given his rabies vaccination when it is due.

And of course, remember that your new puppy is yours, not your neighbor’s, not your friend’s, not another dog owner’s pup. It’s your responsibility to care for it and make the right, informed decisions. You will get to know your puppy best, and, in turn, your puppy will grow to be your best friend.