Nothing like a Puppy for your Birthday

Nothing like a Puppy for your Birthday

Allie Kelsey , Viewpoints Editor

It was my birthday on November 27 and I have been asking for a puppy ever since I can remember, but I never thought that I would get one. Finally, I got a teddy bear puppy, which is a mix between a Shihtzu and a Bichon. The combination is what makes the puppy have a teddy bear face! He is two pounds and my mom brought him home in a box with a blue bow. I thought it was a joke. He is tiny and white with some shades of light brown around his face. We sent a picture to everyone and they thought he was a stuffed animal.

Although I promised my mother that I would take care of the puppy constantly and that I would be the only one doing all the work, I realized that I could not do all the work alone. A nine-week-old puppy is a lot of work. I do not think my mom even knew how much work he would be because we always had cats and they are easier. We learned quickly that everyone has to help.

It took me a day but then I decided to name him Casey. He learned his name quickly and began sleeping through the night after only three nights, which is really good. He is too little and too young to go outside, so we have to train him to go to the bathroom on these special pads. He gets it right about 50% of the time, which leaves a lot of clean up the other 50% of the time. He has to eat three times a day and get fresh water. He also needs special medicine. My puppy is hypoglycemic, which means he has low blood sugar. To treat the low blood sugar, twice a day you give him a special, thick syrup.

He also had kennel cough from being with the other dogs so he needs medicine. He also takes a Chinese Herb by syringe to help boost his immune system. Casey also needs ear drops and his ears cleaned every other day. He is teething so he needs a lot of chew toys. He bites us and the furniture very frequently.

All of this costs money. A dog needs to see a vet for shots and for good health; and lots of supplies including wet food, dry food, a pen, a crate, bowls, bones, treats, beds, training pads, chew toys, medicine, cleaning products, grooming items and trips to the groomer, and if you really want to go all out little outfits, too!

In the book, Dog Health and Wellness for Dummies, chapter five is very helpful. It mentions that to keep your dog healthy: vaccinate him,take him to the vet regularly, don’t let him get too fat, spay or neuter your dog, exercise him, take care of his teeth, doing routine maintenance on your like trimming toenails, cleaning ears, feel his body for any lumps or bumps, and giving baths, protecting his joints.

Dog Health and Wellness for Dummies also mentions tips for creating a stress-free environment and decreasing anxiety for a dog. This was important to me because when researching about the teddy bear dog, we discovered that they are quite needy for attention. Setting up a predictable routine is helpful.

Even though having a puppy is a lot of work and can be quite costly, a puppy can bring so much joy to your family. Since Casey has been in my house for the past three weeks, he has made us smile many times by being silly, playing fetch, looking adorable in his outfits, or while sleeping curled up in his bed. He is also definitely a good way to teach responsibility. He has to be supervised at all times. I am responsible for his afternoon feeding. He also sleeps in my room in a bed inside a pen, which I like unless he wakes me too early! He has to go in his pen all day while we are at work and school for his safety, but we leave on a radio or TV so that he hears voices and does not feel alone. We are learning as we go, getting advice from others, and reading up on how to train a puppy and care for a puppy. We are glad he is a new addition to our family because despite all the hard work, he is a playful, adorable, little fur ball of fun!