Adopting a Puppy from the Street
When you are walking home from the store ,how often have you seen a cute little puppy huddled up in a cozy corner of the road,Or maybe it followed you,wagging it's tail vigorously,asking for a treat,and not letting you through until a biscuit was given.
We call them mongrels or pariah dogs,in some countries they are exterminated mercilessly because of religious beliefs,elsewhere they are caught and sent to be cooked as a part of tradition.If their number increases lots of them end up in dog pounds,and euthanised eventually if no one claims or adopts them.Most perish under the wheels of heavy urban traffic,or from malnutrition.But yet there are quite a lucky few who survive and grow up to be the most intelligent,affectionate and sturdy creatures on this planet,and the best companions a man or a lady can have.
Before bringing in a pet to your home, be it a pedigree or a stray,you should firstly assess whether you are ready to keep one and give it a quality life it deserves.By quality I do not mean expensive dog food,collars/leashes or visits to the grooming parlour for pets,all pets need just certain basic things,love and affection,exercise,food on time,and of course you the master,they need you,so you should be mentally prepared to devote plenty of your time,as they can be very demanding,just like children.
Choosing a healthy puppy from the street,keep two things in mind the coat and the eyes.The eyes should be lively and free from any discharge oozing from them,and the coat or fur should be healthy without any hint of skin infections or foul smell.Pick up one that is playful and lively,and also socially active and responds to your touch.
Giving the pup a lukewarm water bath or sponge is the first thing to do,make sure you clean the ears and the paws thoroughly,preferably with diluted dettol or savlon in the lukewarm water.Secondly deworming is necessary,and you should use the medication as per the body weight of the pup,be careful not to give an overdose,which can be fatal.Consult a vet if you are not sure.I vaccinate and medicate my dogs myself without going to a vet,but then it has taken me years to learn from experience.
Now the pup is clean and smelling nice,give it some food,avoid fried or spicy stuff,go for boiled vegetables and some minced meat or liver mixed in the form of a soup with a liquid consistency,too much of milk is bad for puppies and gives them indigestion.Whatever you teach your pup to eat at this stage will remain with it forever.Any good multivitamin syrup for human children works wonders with pups as well,and can easily be mixed along with the food.
Teach your pup at this stage to answer all calls of nature at a particular place,even though for the first few weeks you will definitely have a tough time cleaning up the piss and poo all over the house,it comes with the package,so be ready for it.With maturity the pup will realise and cooperate ,but make sure you walk the dog regularly,preferably twice in a day,and teach it to piss/poo outside the house,while going for these walks.
All pups are prone to a nerve disorder called distemper and an infection called parvo(virus),which generally occurs between 1 month age to 6 months,so consult a vet for the proper vaccination.Deworming should be properly completed before vaccination.
Anti rabies vaccine should be given at the age of 6 months,and once a year thereafter.Use a good anti tick shampoo for your pup,but avoid getting the liquid into the eyes,spicy food,salty snacks,sweets,candies and chocolates are strictly a no no,but once in a blue moon as a treat is fair enough.
Training and Care
Whatever you teach your pup at an early age,it will follow.Make sure you let it know that you are the boss,be authorative when required,do not spoil the pup by giving too much affection or pampering it.No matter how many toys you give to puppies like chewbones,balls,teddy bears, they will not spare your shoes,slippers,furniture and cushions.It is a birthright for puppies to be destructive for the first three months or so,but be patient and tolerant,because the pup is going through teething problems.
Do maintain a routine for your pup,like walking time,feeding time,grooming time and playtime,they adapt to the routine very fast,and keep reminding you when you fail to maintain their routine.
Temperament varies from dog to dog,some animals are very social and friendly,others may be reserved and one master dogs who generally do not easily adjust to strangers,luckily all the strays I have adopted:4 to be precise are very friendly and love children,none of them are biters or agressive to strangers,but if required they can be deadly,they follow a pack culture and attack together.Obedience comes with time and training.
I find it very silly when people show me how they trained their dog to shake hands,instead of teaching them basic essentials.For me a pet is not a source of entertainment,to impress others,but a companion for life,more than a family member or a human buddy.
Lot of people,keep pedigreed breeds as a status symbol,to exhibit their journey to financial success,but do not know a thing about dogs,and dump the dogs on the streets when they cannot take care of them,or when dogs contract skin infections.I have personally witnessed many pedigreed dogs loitering in the streets.Me and my friend who runs an NGO for welfare of dogs,have treated such abandoned pets and found them good homes where they are happy.
Dog breeding is a lucrative business,but unfortunately many breeders do not follow any ethics and unscrouplously use steroids to make a bitch produce more litter in a year than what is natural for them,resulting in pups born with genetic defects.Such puppies are also dumped in the streets.There are few takers for stray dogs, so they are lucky not to be a part of this ordeal.
My observation about stray dogs has been conclusive on the fact that they are very loyal,immunity to diseases is notable,strong and sturdy,very obedient and affectionate.All they demand is a lot of attention to be given to them.Adaptibility to conditions is also a very remarkable quality they have,and diet or food habits are not very choosy,they never waste food,although they have a bad habit of digging into garbage whenever they get a chance.
Dogs have to be groomed and bathed during regular intervals,their nails break naturally if they go for regular long walks otherwise nails have to be trimmed,brushing and combing the fur or coat keeps it free from ticks,delousing or deworming has to be done in a gap of every three months,to avoid any sort of digestive or endocrine disorders,or skin infections.
Diet is very important for maintaining a healthy animal,it does not have to be luxurious,expensive but it should be nutritious and filling.
Staple diet for dogs
- 500gms chicken/mincedmeat/liver, Doggie soup
- carrots beans, boiled
- tomatoes onions, boiled
- salt turmeric, seasoning
Puppies at Play
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