Breeders should feel free to download and adapt these simple instructions for their new puppy buyers. To provide more information to new owners, see Puppy Buyer Information Packet.
If you are a puppy buyer, and your breeder has not provided you with this form, please print out this and ask her to fill in the blanks.
Congratulations on your decision to purchase a Kerry Blue Terrier puppy. I am personally pleased that my puppy is going to such a wonderful home as yours. Your life will never be the same again!
Integrating this little bundle of joy into your family will take patience and commitment (and a good sense of humor!). There is so much a puppy needs to learn and discover--and how successful he/she is at adapting to your lifestyle and a new environment will depend on you. Here are a few things that I hope will help you along the way.
Your puppy has been raised on [name of food] _____________________________________ .
Feed her three meals a day until 6 months old, two meals a day from 6 to 9 months old, and after that, one regular meal or two smaller meals a day.
For now, try these quantities:
- 1 cup of puppy kibble
- 1 tbsp canned puppy food
- 1/2 cup of hot water
If you like, you can substitute or supplement either of the following for the canned food:
- cooked hamburger (remove fat) mixed with cottage cheese or rice
- deboned cooked chicken (thighs are the easiest to debone) with some of the skins removed
Small milkbones are fine for treats, but be sure not to overfeed your puppy. Overfed puppies can develop serious medical problems later on. And never give milk, real bones of any kind, chocolate, or onions.
Your puppy's next shots are due on [date] ________ , ________ and ________
(unless your vet advises otherwise).
The ears need to be set every 3 to 4 weeks, and are next due on [date] ________. [Name of ear-setter you've line up] ______________________ has agreed to help you with this--and he/she is an expert! Please arrange for an appointment in advance.
To maintain healthy coat and skin, your Kerry should be brushed and combed out at least every 2-3 days. I bathe mine every week or two with [recommended shampoo] __________________________. When you bathe, clean the ears and eyes. Remove hair from the ear canals and clip the toenails if needed (or ask your vet to do this).
Kerries should be trimmed every 4-6 weeks--clippered and scissored. I recommend the following groomer [name of groomer] __________________________ . (You don't want a Schnauzer clip!)
There are as many ways to housetrain a puppy as there are books on the subject. But in my opinion, your success depends solely on your ability to predict the call of nature. Watch your pup. She will tell you when it's time. After playtime, when she awakens, and after mealtime (about every 2-3 hours), look for sniffing, circling behavior, and wide-legged stances. Then take her outside immediately. The more times she eliminates outside, the fewer accidents you'll have in the house. Simple, really.
To be a good canine citizen and an ideal pet, your pup needs to meet new people, dogs, and other animals. This gives her self-confidence. Puppy kindergarten is wonderful. I recommend socializing her in earnest after her last puppy shots at 18 weeks old. New experiences are stimulating to the dog and can be quite educational for you. It's a good way to get to know your pup.
As you probably know, Kerries sometimes get overly excited when meeting other dogs, may show a streak of stubbornness (the Irishman in them), and have devious ideas on getting their own way (the leprechaun in them). Kerries are intelligent, independent dogs (which is why we love them so much), but that means they need to learn very early on who's boss. Simply learning the sit, stay, come commands teaches them that you are in control.
I urge you to enroll in a basic obedience class. Not only will your Kerry be better behaved, she will develop a special bond with you and her self-esteem will soar. Choose an instructor who's big on positive reinforcement and respects a dog's sensitivity. The time you invest in training your Kerry should be enjoyable for both of you.
Things to Know
Your puppy is crate-trained and happily sleeps there at night. Use a crate when you are unable to watch your puppy, but never use it as a punishment.
Never use a flea collar on a Kerry. Instead, consult with your vet about various monthly flea preventatives now available.
If you find any stiff, bristlelike hairs in your puppy's whiskers, pull them out. They are common in Kerry puppies.
To soothe the gums (and save your furniture) during teething, try a cold carrot, ice cubes, or a frozen washcloth.
Keep an open mind on showing your puppy. She shows much promise now. And a beautiful Kerry deserves to be seen. A Championship title is a wonderful thing to have.
If you will not be showing your puppy, he/she will need to be neutered or spayed. The best time to spay a female is before her first heat at about 6 months old. A male can be neutered at any time, though I recommend between 6-9 months old. When you provide me with proof of sterilization, I will remove the Limited Registration on your puppy.
Sure as the shamrock's a beautiful green
And Irish skies are blue-
Sure it is this Kerry Blue
Will always be true to you.
Breeder's name: _______________________________
Breeder's address: _____________________________
Breeders telephone number: ______________________
Breeder's email address: _________________________