Not only do very young puppies need to be fed every two or three hours but they also need to understand social cues and proper behavior. From the moment of birth, a puppy's mother teaches her baby how to get along with litter-mates, how to be assertive, and the importance of hierarchy. A dog that is removed from the litter may suffer life-long emotional and social damage. He may be unable to read other dogs' cues and will be attacked or be unwelcome in a group of dogs, resulting in him responding with aggression in social situations.
The dog may also suffer physically, attempting to 'mother' or mouth his toys or other inanimate objects. He may soil his bedding because he was not allowed to stay with his mother long enough to learn that that behavior is unacceptable.
If you are thinking of purchasing a puppy ask questions about the length of time he or she was allowed to stay with his mother. At the age of eight or nine weeks a dog will have learned valuable lessons that will last a lifetime.
If you are thinking of approaching a rescue or shelter about adopting a puppy, try to find out at what age the dog was introduced to the rescue situation so you can best judge his emotional and physical needs. While a very young puppy may require more care and training at least you will understand his needs and work to improve his quality of life.
If you have questions about this or any other dog-related issue please call or text 856.981.8957. There is never a fee for phone consultations.
Wado udohiyu, (thank you very much in the Cherokee language)
Owner, Brother of the Wolf, LLC
Pictured: Atah Cookie Watson as a puppy. R.I.P. my baby.