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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,
A friend was left with a pregnant dog by a disappearing room-mate, and she birthed 9 puppies about two weeks ago. The friend wants to do the best he can for the dog and the puppies, but he's never even had a dog before so this is all new to him. He intends to find good homes for the puppies, at 10 weeks of age, keep the mother and spay her. He's got some books from the library, but there are great holes in his/my knowledge, so I'm hoping to get scads of advice here to pass on to him. And at this time, he's not able to access the internet.

The things we'd like information on are signs of ill-health, what are 'normal' developmental signs, when they can start being socialized, when they can be weaned, and suggestions on how to wean them properly. Also, when are shots started? When can he start preliminary house-training? What would be a good way to find them good homes, since advertising on Craigslist seems pretty risky. Any other information gratefully appreciated.

Thanks. Pictures on the weekend maybe. :)
 

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Wow, that's really awful of whoever dumped them on you but they got extremely lucky they got dumped on a couple people dedicated to getting some information to give these puppies the best outcome possible!

First, the puppies we socialized at the shelter I work at were socialized immediately if their eyes were open. If they came with their mother they were left with her until their eyes opened, and then we began handling them and subjecting them to different noises environments and people.

There are several signs of ill health in puppies but the most common ones are wet crusty eyes, snotty drippy nose, coughing or hacking noises, little or no weight gain, weight loss, and when they're old enough to be playing and running around - lethargy. (Although puppies do sleep a lot)

Shots are started generally at 6 weeks, or a month and a half. Make sure to get them a puppy well check to make sure they're all healthy so you aren't rehoming sick puppies.

House training can be started any time the puppies are walking around. Some people like when puppies come pad trained, just to give some sort of starting grounds. Since they won't be able to go outside until their second set I think this is a good way to start, but I would also encourage future owners to begin outdoor house training after the second set of shots.

Do not advertise on Craigslist! I would personally go by word of mouth, and have people come meet the puppies first. Tell friends you trust to get the word around, and who knows maybe one of them is searching for a puppy! Don't ever let them guilt adopt though, make sure the person is ready. I personally would visit each persons house to make sure it's clean and there aren't other sick animals walking around, and to also make sure everyone in the house is ready for a puppy. House visits are a little extensive for most people though, but it's what i would do.

Offer to take them back within a few months if it doesn't work out, that way if they just impulse adopted and don't want them the puppy won't end up in a shelter or the wrong hands
 

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Also, I would put a small fee up of 50-100 dollars just to weed out the people looking for a free puppy. You at least need to be sure they have some money for food toys and potential future vet bills, and are committed.
 

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A dog rescue might be able to help with the process of finding/vetting owners as well as provide some puppy supplies. I believe Turtle Gardens Spay/Neuter society is on your side of the bridge and I hear nothing but good things about them. They might also know someone experienced with whelping litters who could help you guys and give you a few pointers.

The ASPCA website might also have some good resources to print out.
 

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I'd ask the local shelter to help him.
tell them what happen and let them help you with socialisation, medical information and adopting out the puppies.
perhaps there's even the possibility to get financial support for the medical care of of puppies and mother with donations.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks you guys, I'll pass on the info. Also, if you happen to know anyone in the Metro Vancouver area or Fraser Valley who wants puppies who will be vetted and socialized as much as possible, please let me know. He really wants to be sure they go to good homes.

It's really sad but the original owner is trying to get the puppies to sell them; they abandoned the dog, this guy has been caring for mom for three months, now is taking care of the puppies, and the ex-owner thinks they're "entitled" to make money off the puppies and have threatened to bring the cops around. My friend has licensed the mom, so I think he's got a legal claim with that, along with the fact that he's been feeding/housing her and the puppies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The tiniest puppy died yesterday. :( One died within a few days of birth, but this is two weeks later, so it's sad. But I guess not too unusual? None of the other puppies appear sick or anything.
 

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The tiniest puppy died yesterday. :( One died within a few days of birth, but this is two weeks later, so it's sad. But I guess not too unusual? None of the other puppies appear sick or anything.
Err if you have puppies dying from the litter two weeks into their life something is wrong. Have a vet check them over ASAP.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Err if you have puppies dying from the litter two weeks into their life something is wrong. Have a vet check them over ASAP.
Really? This one has been smaller since birth, and more lethargic and mom began pushing him away a couple days ago so it wasn't entirely a surprise. The rest all seem healthy though. Still, your comment has me worried so I'll definitely pass along your recommendation to the puppy-papa.

We three who are caring for them know so little about puppies! :(
 

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Really? This one has been smaller since birth, and more lethargic and mom began pushing him away a couple days ago so it wasn't entirely a surprise. The rest all seem healthy though. Still, your comment has me worried so I'll definitely pass along your recommendation to the puppy-papa.

We three who are caring for them know so little about puppies! :(
Ah, well if the puppy has a history of being weak then that sounds a litter more normal, however it could be contagious or be an issue you will start seeing in other puppies later so I'd still have them checked out.

That's okay, at least you care! Someone who just wants a profit doesn't care, and they're better off with you. Just make sure to keep in touch with your vet, you could even just call the vet and see what he or she says. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Just wanted to provide an update. All the remaining puppies are doing great, and will be going to the vet for first shots this week. We've been taking them out to show them the world this past week, and have had a few people express interest in adopting them. The pups owner has at least one confirmed home and two or three other possibilities. We've contacted a rescue who will help if we can't find homes for all of them.

Anyone have any info on how to paper train very young puppies?
 

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Seriously, I would go through a reputable rescue to find homes for these pups. With all due respect, your friend sounds inexperienced & in need of guidance. People can seem nice on the surface, but who knows, there are people out there who would use these pups as bait dogs or breeding machines. A rescue group will have measures in hand for a thorough home check. Please persuade your friend to hand them over to a reputable rescue, puppies find homes very quickly, so they won't be there long.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Seriously, I would go through a reputable rescue to find homes for these pups. With all due respect, your friend sounds inexperienced & in need of guidance. People can seem nice on the surface, but who knows, there are people out there who would use these pups as bait dogs or breeding machines. A rescue group will have measures in hand for a thorough home check. Please persuade your friend to hand them over to a reputable rescue, puppies find homes very quickly, so they won't be there long.
I agree with you, and have pointed out to him the advantages of going through a rescue. But he does want to do it this way, so we're helping as much as we can to ensure the puppies are started out as well as possible, and that potential homes are screened.
 

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I got Cosmo from a lady who bought him for 800 smackaroonis and two weeks later decided he was too much and advertised him on craigslist so really, be careful. Anyone could have picked him up. I just came across a post on Facebook from this woman who rehomed her kitten and the kitten was found dead with a zip tie around her legs and her feet cut off.

So really, be careful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I got Cosmo from a lady who bought him for 800 smackaroonis and two weeks later decided he was too much and advertised him on craigslist so really, be careful. Anyone could have picked him up. I just came across a post on Facebook from this woman who rehomed her kitten and the kitten was found dead with a zip tie around her legs and her feet cut off.

So really, be careful.
We are doing our best to help the guy find good homes for the pups. So far the people have been more 'friends of friends' than absolute strangers, he's charging $250 per pup, and I've made him a questionnaire for potential adopters. I'd like to do home checks as well, but ultimately its not up to me. I've also encouraged him to offer to take the pups back if things don't work out.

I know he's doing his best, within his means and knowledge, and it does worry me that the puppies might not all end up in wonderful homes. But then, I recently saw a very well bred dog up for random adoption because the original breeder wasn't able to take the dog back 10 years later, though I'm not sure why.

Can only do our best, I guess.
 
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