ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

What to look for and what to look out for in buying a dog

Updated on February 21, 2011

In buying a young puppy, it's impossible to pre­dict with any accuracy, or even with a crystal ball, what kind of looking dog he's going to be when he grows up. His mother and father may have been championship beauties and grandma and grandpa knockouts, but it might just be your luck to have your puppy take after his old Uncle Rover, his mother's brother, who was never considered much in the way of looks. Such minor disappointments occur every now and then and it's nobody's fault but Nature's.

However, when you've raised a dog from puppyhood, I don't think it's going to make any difference whatever to you if it turns out that his ears are a trifle short or his hind legs a little long or whether he sprouts a fashionable crop of feathers or not. I doubt if the average dog owner would care even if his dog grew up to look like an anteater. If you want perfection, you'd better not gamble on a puppy. Buy a grown dog.

In buying a young puppy, it's likewise hard to tell what his health is going to be like. He may be constitutionally sturdy or delicate and only time and development will determine which. By close examination it is possible, however, to tell some­thing about the dog's immediate health and his general condition at the time of purchase. There are several symptoms that even the amateur should be able to recognize and be on the lookout for.

First of all, insist on having the dog's temperature taken in your presence and look at the thermome­ter yourself. The normal temperature for a dog is from 101 to 102 degrees. In dogs, as in humans, this point varies slightly in different individuals. But anything over 102 should be regarded with suspicion. It may be excitement and it may be fever. If a puppy's eyes and nose are discharging a mucous matter, or if he has a cough, or if he has diarrhea, and if he is running a temperature, whether you are buying a dog from a pet shop, from a kennel, or from your own mother, don't let anybody tell you that the dog is suffering only from a slight cold.

He probably has distemper. If a dog is generally listless and dull-eyed, don't fall for him out of pity, and don't accept the explana­tion that he has been playing hard and is tired out. If the dog has patches on his coat, it may mean mange, ringworm, or eczema. If his legs are crooked and the joints quite enlarged he probably has rickets. Examine the inside of his ears. They should be pink and smooth and free from inflammation. Look at his teeth. They should be white and the gums pink and firm. Discolored teeth in a young dog mean, as a rule, that he has had some former sickness, notably distemper. Look at his abdomen.

If it's abnormally distended, it may merely indi­cate worms or improper feeding, or it may indicate some malformation. Watch out for hernias. They are small swellings, usually protruding from the navel. Also examine the skin of the abdomen and the insides of the legs for possible rash which may be eczema or skin distemper. Always test a dog for deafness. Congenital deafness is fairly common, and it can be detected at a very early age. Stand back of the dog and snap your finger, whistle, or make some kind of noise to attract his attention.

If you fail to get his attention after two or three efforts, the dog is probably deaf. It is not likely that he just doesn't care. Another thing. Almost all dealers will tell you nowadays that all of their dogs have been inocu­lated against distemper. This may or may not be true and there's no way of proving it, so the safest assumption to go on is that the dog has not been inoculated. Have him inoculated again. It won't hurt him.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • bmukherjii profile image

      bmukherjii 

      6 years ago

      You have written a nice and informative article. However, after buying a dog you need to learn so many things including its training process, food habits etc. Hope people will find this useful

    • perfumer profile imageAUTHOR

      perfumer 

      7 years ago from California

      Hi RJ, - thanks for stopping by. I am glad you enjoyed my hub. I really appreciate your positive feedback.

    • Reynold Jay profile image

      Reynold Jay 

      7 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      I enjoyed your artcle very much. Up 1 and Useful. Yep I'd fall for the dog that needed all kinds of up keep too. Thanks for good advice. RJ

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)