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Puppy's First Week in New Home

Maria is a master of public health, and a master gardener. She & husband Bo, known online as The Gardener & The Cook are in coastal Alabama.

This is me in the car on the way to my new home.

This is me in the car on the way to my new home.

Hi, I’m Max. I’m a 10-week-old Maltese puppy. I just came to live with my new humans about a week ago. Since I got here, their lives have changed dramatically. Fortunately, they are dog people, and they’ve had a Maltese before. You may remember her, Mademoiselle Coco Chanel – you probably know her by her initials, “C.C.”, but back to me. This is my story.

My First Full Day With My New Humans

I think I’m really going to love my new mom and dad. The first thing they did was to take me to the pet store for food, new toys, etc. Then they took me to a very nice vet who looked me over, and declared me to be completely healthy.

She said I didn’t need any more shots that day – hallelujah! My next visit is in two more weeks when I will be twelve weeks old, and I will be jabbed with needles once again, including my rabies vaccine. Yuck.

Clean Bill of Health

Mom was worried I might have the luxating patella, like C.C. had, because it’s common in us Maltese dogs. The vet, Dr. Julie, said my knees were solid. I could have told them that, but, well, you know I can’t talk. Mom and Dad were really glad to hear I have good strong knees.

I'm Learning

I admit I’ve pee-peed in their floor a few times, but they always give me these delicious tiny training treats whenever I do my business outdoors. So, I’m getting the hang of it. Keep in mind, though, I’m still an infant, so it will take me a while. I’m also a fast learner, and I’m going to amaze them with how smart I am.

Crate Training

They are doing what I’m told is called “crate training”. That means I am in my crate except to eat, potty, play a little bit; and I'm asleep when I'm in there. That's supposed to help me understand that I should do my business outdoors only. Sometimes I just can’t hold it long enough, but I’m working on it, already!

Some humans seem to feel guilty about putting their dogs in crates, but believe me when I tell you, don’t feel bad. To you humans, it looks like I can’t get out (which I can’t), but to us canines, it means nothing scary can get in. This is our safe place. I already love my crate. It is my house, even if it is a hand-me-down from C.C. She would go in and out of her crate whenever she wanted. Mom said she even pulled the door closed behind her one time! I may do that someday. I'll wish I could tell them to hold my calls while I take a nap.

My favorite place to take a nap.

My favorite place to take a nap.

My Safe Space

You may wonder about that board behind me inside the crate. The piece that came with the crate was missing, so Dad made this for me.

I’ll let you in on a little secret. Puppies won’t do their private business where they sleep, but I’m so little, if I had the full crate open to me, I could go to a corner of it, do my business, then move to another corner to sleep. Easy, peasy. This divider allows me just enough space to stretch out and sleep comfortably, but not enough space to potty.

They take me out of my crate every two hours, and we go outside. Going outside is the highlight of my day, anyway, so I’m happy to take care of business out there. While I’m out of the crate, I get water, and we play for a while, then I take another nap. Remember, I’m a baby, and babies sleep a lot.

The Pack Mentality

Mom already knows about the pack mentality of dogs. So she makes sure that whenever we go outside or come back inside, the humans go through the door first. That’s supposed to show me my place in the pack; in other words, I am not the pack leader. Bummer.

Dr. Julie, the Really Nice Vet

Oh, yeah, the new vet, Dr. Julie (I really liked her, by the way) gave us a free package of food (about a month’s worth) and one month’s worth of Sentinel Flavor Tabs ™ to protect me from heart worms, hookworms, roundworms, whipworms, and those pesky fleas.

She said I am too young for tick prevention yet. That’s okay, because I don’t go outside except to do my business, run around a bit, and go right back indoors.

The package didn’t say what flavor I got, and I’m not telling because, again, I can’t talk. I do know the one I got was for dogs over four weeks old (that’s me) and over two pounds (me again). I’m proud to say I weighed a whopping three pounds.

It’s important that this and all medications be kept out of the reach of children, both human and canine. We really need you to protect us from ourselves and our innate curiosity.

Feeding Time, Play Time

Mom and Dad think I’m funny because I play with my food. I already have some of my teeth, so I think they are trying to transition me over from canned food to kibble. Why do I think that? Well, because they have started mixing a few pieces of kibble in with the wet food.

I like entertaining them by taking a bite of kibble, and sending it skittering across the floor. Then I run after it, pounce on it, and then and only then, I eat it.

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I Am Still Teething, So…

Some of my baby teeth have come in, but I still don’t have those four front teeth that human babies get first. My gums are itchy, and if feels so very good to gnaw on things including Mom and Dad’s fingers. Sometimes my teeth get in the way, and I’m sure it hurts them. I try to tell them I’m sorry by licking them, but they still don’t like it.

They bought me some nice chew toys, but I keep dropping them. One of the best ones fell down into Dad’s recliner, and didn’t surface for several days. I heard them talking about buying another one, but then it appeared under that chair. I was really glad to see it. There’s a picture of it down below. It was one of the few toys at the pet store that was small enough to fit in my tiny mouth.

Here it is: my little chew toy that fits my tiny puppy-sized mouth perfectly.

Here it is: my little chew toy that fits my tiny puppy-sized mouth perfectly.

My First Week is Now History

That’s about it for my first week in my new forever home. Mom, Dad, and I are ready for this new adventure in all our lives. I’ll keep you posted on how well I’m doing at training my new people.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 MariaMontgomery

Thank You For Visiting. We Puppies Love Visitors. I Can't Wait to See Your Comments

MariaMontgomery (author) from Coastal Alabama, USA on September 06, 2021:

Hi, Dr. Mark! Thank you for the good wishes and for reading Max's story. I promise to take lots of pics. Stay tuned for more news from Max.

Dr Mark from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on September 05, 2021:

Congratulations on your excellent new puppy. Best of luck to both of you, and remember to take lots and lots of pictures.

MariaMontgomery (author) from Coastal Alabama, USA on September 03, 2021:

Crate training is for only 2 weeks. Even then, as he said, he gets to play for a while before going back into his house. As all infants (both human & canine) do, he sleeps most of the time. That's when he's in the crate. Maybe I should make that more clear in the article.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on September 03, 2021:

Maria, I love this expose as told from your new puppy's perspective. He's destined to be a writer!

One thing I don't like is the crate training. Personally, I think it's cruel to keep any animal cooped up in a cage. I grew up with a Great Dane. He had the run of the house, but was taught the rules, and learned them without being confined. I wouldn't want to be kept in a cage only to be let out to eat, pee and enjoy the occasional interaction time, would you?

Our pets are our companions/kids. We all have to be potty-trained and we all go through the ropes of learning the rules of the house. Give your puppy the same respect. Let him be a member of the family. He'll reward you tenfold.

MariaMontgomery (author) from Coastal Alabama, USA on September 03, 2021:

Thanks, Jess. They really do. They are so sweet & cuddly.

Jess H from Oregon on September 03, 2021:

How adorable! My first dog was a Maltese. They steal your heart!

MariaMontgomery (author) from Coastal Alabama, USA on September 03, 2021:

You're welcome. Thanks for reading my article. Of course, go please them. They have us well-trained, don't they?

MariaMontgomery (author) from Coastal Alabama, USA on September 03, 2021:

Thank you, Teodora. We love him.

Teodora Gheorghe on September 02, 2021:

Heart-warming! I am so happy for Max

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on September 02, 2021:

Adorable dog! We are dog people, love our pets, and I know you do too. Thank you for the smile you put on my face. Now, if you'll excuse me, my two want a walk, and I try to always please them. :)

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