Q:

What do you need to take care of an Australian shepherd puppy?

A:

Quick Answer

Basic supplies for caring for an Australian shepherd puppy include bowls for food and water, a leash and collar, bedding, toys and grooming supplies. A puppy also needs puppy food, appropriate shelter, a crate and an identification tag. In addition, Australian shepherds need plenty of the owner's time and attention.

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Full Answer

Australian shepherds are high-energy, highly intelligent herding dogs and become bored and destructive if not given plenty of stimulating activities. Owners should plan on giving an Australian shepherd at least two hours of vigorous exercise daily and should consider obedience classes. Australian shepherds are prone to excessive barking and to trying to herd children, other pets and vehicles; these behaviors require consistent correction, followed by redirection to more appropriate behaviors. Puppies also need plenty of appropriate socialization experiences during the period from two to four months of age to keep them from becoming excessively suspicious of strangers.

All puppies should go to a veterinarian for a checkup shortly after arriving in a new home. During the checkup, the owner can set up a vaccination schedule with the veterinarian and get advice on feeding, parasite control and spaying or neutering. The veterinarian can also teach the owner what signs of illness to watch for during the puppy's first few months.

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