If you are a dog owner, and your pet just gave birth, you are probably excited to give one or two of the puppies as gifts to your friends or relatives who are animal lovers like yourself. Or, if you have decided to earn money by breeding as well as selling puppies, for sure, you want to get the return of investment as fast as possible. But the question is, when is the right time to do this?
When you take puppies from their litter too soon, separation anxiety may occur, and this could lead to some issues. It is not just the new-born pups that will be affected, but also the mother. Therefore, it is crucial for you to know when the right time is. You should also learn how to prepare the little dogs for separating them from their mom as well as siblings. Keep on reading to find out more about puppy separation anxiety from litter.
What are the needs of new-born pups?
Puppies are just like human babies. When they are newly born, they tend to be too dependent on their mother. This is one of the biggest reasons why you just can’t separate the little dogs from their mom right after birth. You also have to take note that puppies need their mother’s milk for about 6 to 8 weeks in order for them to survive.
The first few weeks of their lives are crucial, because this is the period wherein these little pups require attention, physical contact as well as proper nourishment so they will grow healthy. They need a clean and safe environment, warmth from their mom and littermates, nursing and nutrition, including socialization.
In their litter, they get to learn how to socialize. Here is where they begin to mingle and play with their mother, brothers, and sisters. They will also learn some good traits. They will start to know when playing with other puppies become too much that it is hurting one of them.
During this period, it would be best to allow human contact as this will help prepare them for separation later on. Once you distribute the puppies to their new parents, they won’t be shocked anymore. This, of course, still depends on when you are going to do it.
When is the right time to separate puppies from the litter?
Like what we have said earlier, new-born dogs need to be nursed for about 8 weeks or 2 months. This is when you can start separating them from their litter. Experts, however, strongly recommend to do this only when the puppies have already reached the age of 12 weeks. By then, they are already accustomed to feeding and grooming themselves. They would have also known how to socialize and act around other dogs as well as human beings at this time.
Furthermore, once little pups are already three months old, they should have had their initial vaccines too. This is another reason why you have to wait before handing them out to other people.
What happens when puppies are separated from the litter too soon?
If you don’t wait for the right time to take the puppies away from the litter, it is not only them that may suffer from separation anxiety. The mother may also be affected. Her mammary glands may get congested and inflamed, which could cause too much pain, and may lead to other health issues too.
As for the pups, several health problems may arise. They may also have behavioral issues later on if you separate them from the litter too soon.
Other things that may happen include:
Since the puppies did not spend enough time with their mother, they may get traumatized. They will feel nervous with their new environment, and this could significantly affect their overall behavior around human beings as well as other dogs even when they grow up.
· Decreased Learning Ability
Little dogs learn a lot of important things during their time in the litter. If you don’t follow the right time to give them away, their learning ability could be affected. The new owners may have a hard time training or giving commands to them later on.
· Poor physical health
The amount of time spent by puppies in the litter is critical because this is the period when they still depend on their mom’s milk. And so, if you separate them too fast, it could result in poor physical health. This, in turn, may lead to serious health conditions.
· Prone to illnesses
Puppies that were not given enough time to get their mother’s milk will, of course, be susceptible to illnesses. They may even develop diseases that they will have to deal with for the rest of their lives.
· Separation anxiety
Separation anxiety may also happen in dogs that were separated too early from their litter. As a result, they tend to be stubborn and won’t follow any command. They might not even eat or do anything. This behavioral problem may progress even when they become adults.
How can you avoid separation anxiety in puppies?
For some people, separation anxiety in dogs due to the fact that they were taken away too soon from their litter, may seem to be a simple issue. They might think that the puppies will outgrow that. In some cases, yes, that is true. However, this issue may also lead to more problems, and it could affect the puppies’ life even when they grow old.
As the original owner, the best thing that you can do to avoid separation anxiety is to make sure that you allow the new-born puppies to spend enough time with their mother and siblings. You should never rush in distributing them to other people. Instead, wait for the time when you know for a fact that the puppies have already gotten the nourishment that they need. And to be on the safe side, do this when they have already reached, at least, 3 months of age.
How can you help puppies suffering from separation anxiety?
If you have just brought home a new puppy, and you noticed that it is nervous, that is normal. However, if the behavior does not change even after a few days or weeks, then that is a completely different story. More so if he does not want to eat, do anything, or even respond to you. These are signs that your new pet is suffering from separation anxiety. Most likely, it was separated too soon from his mother. So what should you do?
As the new parent, it is now your responsibility to take care of the puppy and make sure that it does well. Just so you know, a little dog that was separated too early from the litter may be quite challenging to deal with. Therefore, you need to be very patient and considerate.
Here are things that you can do to help your puppy cope up:
· Give attention
Since the puppy is now in a new environment, you have to help him become comfortable in it. A great way to do this is to give as much attention as you can. Remember that your young pup is still longing for his mother, so this is something that you need to replace. If you spend time with your pet often, he will get used to you and this will significantly help him adjust.
· Provide warmth
Little puppies also crave for their mother’s warmth, especially when they sleep. So for the first few nights, you can take your pet with you to bed. This will make him get used to your warmth as well as your smell. He will then start to recognize you as his new parent.
· Ensure proper nutrition
Your pet is still in a critical stage when it comes to nourishment, so you have to ensure that he is getting healthy food to make him strong as he grows. Providing your dog with proper nutrition is also an excellent way to prevent illnesses. To be safe, you can also seek the advice of a vet.
· Allow socialization
Allowing your new puppy to be around other dogs will help him cope up as well. So when you get a chance, take him out and let him socialize with other puppies. But if you have other pups at home, then that would be better.
Dogs are just like human beings in so many ways. When they are born, their mother attends to their needs. They depend on her for a lot of things, especially when it comes to nourishment. And so, if they are separated too early, there is a huge tendency of them suffering from separation anxiety. That is why it is not advisable that puppies are given away only a few weeks after they are born.
Puppy separation anxiety from litter is something that should not be neglected because it could lead to more problems. For new parents, there are several things that could be done to help puppies cope up with this particular issue.