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Old 01-26-2009, 02:06 AM
Atreyu27 Atreyu27 is offline
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Question 4 week old puppy advice

Hey, I just recieved a 4 week old black lab puppy who's mother died shortly after the birth.
Should I start using a puppy milk/food mix to adjust her to solid food? How often should I feed her?

And any extra advice would be awesome too.

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Old 01-26-2009, 02:24 AM
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ihartgonzo ihartgonzo is offline
and Fozzie B!
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Northern California
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What happened to the rest of the litter? Were all of them given away this young? Where did you get your puppy from?

Honestly, taking a puppy away from her litter at 4 weeks is a HUGE set-back, as far as bite inhibition, social interaction with other dogs, and general manners. Is there any way to get her back to her litter for at least a couple more weeks? Do you have any other dogs?

There are lots of great breeders here, but in general, if you're feeding kibble it must be soaked in replacement puppy milk or warm water and mushed up. A premium canned food (Innova, Natural Balance, California Natural, etc) would be ideal. She should be getting several small meals through out the day, at least 3 or 4.

My advice is to get her back to her litter, if possible. If not, get her around friendly, social, healthy dogs... as many and as often as possible! Make friends with neighbors who you know to have friendly dogs. Call up friends and relatives with friendly dogs. Of course, going to any public parks is a bad idea, until she finishes her shots at 4/5 months. Enroll in puppy play groups ASAP, as well as puppy kindergarten. The next 10 weeks of her life (especially the next 4) are essential in socializing her and teaching her manners, and interaction/play with other dogs and puppies is extremely important. Handle her often and act as a mother dog/littermate would. Yelp loudly or make a growly sound whenever her teeth touch your skin. Between 6-14 weeks, she should meet at least 100 people, and as many friendly dogs as possible, so definitely make an effort to socialize her!

It can be done, but raising a puppy that has been taken away from it's litter so young to be a well-adjusted adult is a lot of work! Good luck.

<3 Erica, Gonzo & Fozzie
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Old 01-26-2009, 10:56 AM
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Izzy's Valkyrie Izzy's Valkyrie is offline
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My first reaction was: Give it back. But with mom dead I agree just getting the puppy back to the litter would be better. The pups will teach each other doggy manners and believe me, even getting my puppy at 7 weeks had bite inhibition drawbacks. If that isn't possible, I wish you the best of luck!
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Old 01-26-2009, 01:26 PM
DaVinci DaVinci is offline
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I would give the pup milk replacer by itself for at least another week then soak a puppy food in the milk and then puree it. The pup should be able to start having just soaked food at 6weeks and dry food at 7weeks. Make sure you spend lots of time with the puppy. You can also start the watch game and having him come to his name. DaVinci was 4weeks old when we found he is a great dog. I got him into puppy class at 8weeks. Do you have anyother dogs?

People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built.

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Old 01-26-2009, 02:30 PM
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bubbatd bubbatd is offline
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It's a shame that they didn't find a nursing female for the litter . Yes , they all should have stayed together until at least 7 weeks .
A light for all who are crossing dark times.
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Old 01-29-2009, 12:22 PM
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At three to three and a half weeks I start mixing dry puppy food and a powdered milk replacer with water in the blender. (Since I live on a farm I usually have some sort of milk replacer, i.e. lamb/kid/piggy, etc. available.)
However, this is for babies are also still nursing and getting those additional milk nutrients.
To start, the puppy mush must be a wet soupy consistency, and gradually add more puppy food. Feed at least three or four times a day as much as she can eat. By 5 wks, the food should be slightly dryer and chewier than canned puppy food.
Puppy should be eating dry food at 6 wks.

Since this baby isn't nursing, I would use regular puppy milk replacer for another week or so, and blend it with the puppy chow.

Ideally, the pup should have stayed with the litter a little longer, but raising an entire litter without a mama can be a lot of work, even for someone who is there all of the time. And, your post did not indicate if there were any others in the litter.
Quite possibly she is better off with you if you are able to give her the adequate attention and care.
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Old 01-29-2009, 01:00 PM
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Dizzy Dizzy is offline
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Nothing to add except GOOD LUCK! Keep us posted, ask anything at ALL even if it sounds silly and POST PICTURES!
"Dogs are our link to paradise. They do not know jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing wasn't boring, it was peace."

Bodhi is the opposite of ignorance, the insight into reality which destroys mental afflictions and brings peace.

Owned by Bodhi Booglaoo and Fredington Holbein

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Old 01-31-2009, 01:23 PM
Atreyu27 Atreyu27 is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2009
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Hey Thank you for the advice everyone. The pup is doin well. I have been feeding her the mix of formula and dry food. She is growing really fast and seems really healthy.

Only thing so far is that she seems to like biting hands and other things shes not supposed to. As most puppies do.

After six weeks she will have her Parvo shots, and I will start socializing her with other dogs.

Thanks again for the great advice!
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