Puppy Neonatal Care


Neonatal puppy losses can range from 10% – 40%, following some basic preventative guidelines and identifying problems early can minimize these loses.

Monitoring neonatal weight gain will allow early recognition of problems and support or treatment can be started early in the course of the disease. You will need a small scale like the ones used to weigh food.

  • Maintain a warm, clean, draft free environment at all times, in a quiet place where there is little traffic.

  • Use a whelping box
    Guard rails can help prevent pups from bing cruched, use materials that are easy to clean and disinfect.
  • insure pups receive adequate colostrum
  • Weigh the puppies daily and record weights for the first 2 weeks then every 3 day

  • Day 1 – pups may have mild weight loss, this is the only day this should occur
    5 – 10 % weight gains should be seen each day
    2 -7 grams / day for every Kg of expected adult weight
    Weight should double by 10 – 14 days
    If the pupies are not gaining weight properly there is a problem, either not getting enough food or they are sick.

  • Well-nourished pups are quiet and sleep when not nursing

  • Deworm all puppies at three weeks of age with a broad spectrum dewormer like pyrantal pamoate, repeat every 2 weeks until 4 months of age.

  • Vaccines should start at 6-7 weeks of age; boosters are given every 3 weeks until older than 16 weeks of age.

Recommended vaccines may vary based on breed and environment.

  • Maintain warm environmental temperature…

Days 1 – 5        85 – 90 degrees F (29 – 32 C)
Days 6 – 20     80F
Days 20 +        Gradually lower to 70 – 75 F

  • Observe puppies often

Every 2 -4 hours for the first 24 hours
Every 6 hours for the next 3 days
Twice daily until weaned
High risk litters need to be observed more often

  • Feed the mother a high quality puppy food until the pups are weaned.
  • Signs of problems:

Continual crying
Continuous restlessness or listlessness
Inability to find or maintain nursing position
Continued flexor position after 4 days
Any sign of infection-bruising, redness
Maternal neglect of one member of the litter

Early intervention can be the differance between successful treatments and failure so never neglect and just see if it gets better.  Call us when you have questions and concerns.

We offer the following services to help insure your puppies get off to a good start:

  • Ultrasound – identify expected date of delivery and viablity of fetuses, best if done between 30 – 45 days of gestation
  • Tails and dew claw should be done at about 3 days of age.  Please do not wait until they are a week or more old.
  • De-worming: we have great dewormers for the mother and puppies and unbeatable prices.  Strat de-worming puppies at 2-3 weeks of age.
  • Puppy vaccines and puppy packages to insure the currect vaccines are taken care of and at the right time.  Start puppy vaccines at 6 – 7 weeks of age.
  • Nutrition: one of the most important elements to create healthy puppies and a long health life for any pet.  We carry Sceince Diet Health Advatage pet foods.

Planning for puppies?  We can help give us a call or stop by.