How to Take Care of a Bichon Frise Puppy

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How to Take Care of a Bichon Frise PuppyWhether you get your new puppy through adoption, buying, or your existing bichon frise’s pregnancy, caring for one can be extremely exciting. It may come with a few challenges but, with proper preparation, it will be a thriving period for you and your pup alike.

To give you a head start, we’ve put together several tips to guide you on raising your bichon frise puppy.

Taking Care of Bichon Frise Puppy vs. Adult: Key Differences

Taking care of an adult dog versus a puppy is extremely different. Different ages mean different needs, so here are the main discrepancies between owning an adult bichon frise and a puppy.

1. Immune System

The most important difference is health, which is in turn determined by your dog’s immune system. Unlike adult dogs, puppies are extremely vulnerable to sickness and disease. For instance, if your puppy is not fully vaccinated, it can easily get the canine parvovirus, among others. This disease affects the stomach and the small intestine and can be deadly.

To avoid such diseases until your bichon frise is fully vaccinated, you must keep your pup away from dog parks or other public areas where it may get in contact with unknown (potentially contagious) dogs or cats. You should also take extra care whenever you go to the vet, too, as this may be another place where your puppy can get infected.

2. Food and Exercise

Although food quality is extremely important for both puppies and adult dogs, your puppy will require extra care. You need to invest in high-quality food that supports your puppy’s growth and provides all the necessary nutrients. There are lots of choices on the market, so it’s best to consult your vet to pick the best natural, raw food, or premium food for your bichon puppy.

In terms of exercise, puppies require some activity, but not as much as an adult dog. You may want to take your adult bichon out for about an hour, but your bichon puppy will require much less. As you should not take your unvaccinated puppy to dog parks, you need access to a confined, safe place outdoors for it to play and explore.

In general, you should multiply your puppy’s age in months by five to find out how much playtime they need. For instance, a puppy that is 2 months old will only need 10 minutes a day.

3. Bladder Control

Unlike trained adult bichons frises, your puppy’s bladder and bowel are not fully developed yet. This means frequent urination. To help your pup get potty trained, you will have to anticipate their needs and take them outdoors every two hours, which is not the case for adult dogs that need to go potty twice per day.

Also, your bichon puppy will start to be anxious, looking for a place to go potty. To avoid going potty all over your yard as an adult, you should pick up the puppy and place it where you want it to go. Make sure you are consistent and take it to the same area every time.

How to Take Care of a Bichon Frise Puppy: 3 Tips

There are several aspects you should consider when taking care of a bichon frise puppy. Some of these may depend on whether your puppy was adopted or you bred your adult bichon frise, so the mother is also with the pups.

1. Adoption Age

If you plan to adopt your bichon puppy, make sure they are older than seven weeks. Although many breeders claim that puppies are ready for adoption as soon as they eat solid food, this is not true and is also a common mistake made by many people.

When the puppy is weaned, it does not rely on its mother for survival anymore. However, survival chances are not the only thing you should consider when caring for a bichon puppy.

During the first seven weeks, the puppy’s mother teaches it basic life skills that will, later on, determine its behavior towards people and other animals. Some key lessons include bite inhibition, which means how to control the biting intensity. For instance, when it bites too hard, the mother disciplines the puppy, so it learns to restrain itself.

This also teaches the puppy to accept discipline, which is key for a happy, healthy, and well-behaved adult.

2. Prepare the New Home

You need to consider all the items and the environment your puppy requires to ensure its safety and well-being. For instance, you may want to buy toys or create a play-friendly area in your home, organize a resting place (like a bed or crate where they can sleep away from noises), and puppy-proof your home by removing any dangerous items or things you don’t want your puppy to chew (or pee) on.

If you adopt your puppy, consider asking for a blanket or any familiar item from the previous home, so your puppy will adapt quicker and feel safer in the new one.

3. Socialization and Attention

To take care of your bichon frise puppy, you need lots of free time. This is an important time for your pup to build key skills and develop good behaviors and routines. Make sure you play with it every day and do not leave it alone at home for a long time – this can lead to destructive behaviors and separation anxiety.

You can start with very short periods and make sure your pup has plenty of fun while you are away – by providing toys, treats, or even leaving the TV or music on, so it won’t feel alone.

If your puppy is not fully vaccinated yet, you cannot fulfill their socialization needs by taking them to a dog park or for a walk outdoors. However, socialization is extremely important for your puppy.

To ensure their harmonious development, you need to provide bichon frise puppies with different experiences. You can introduce your pup to other adult dogs or cats as long as they are fully vaccinated – so, you may want to invite or visit a friend with a healthy, vaccinated pet and introduce them both to your pup. You may also start familiarizing your puppy with car travel, going to a professional groomer, and the vet.

During these experiences, you need to be consistent and establish rigid routines. If your puppy has bad behaviors, ignore them, but make sure you reward the good behaviors (i.e., providing rewards when going potty to the designated area).

Summary

All in all, taking care of a bichon frise puppy is mostly about ensuring that they grow into healthy and well-behaved adults.

You should prioritize your puppy’s health by taking it to the vet as soon as possible, providing high-quality food, and rewarding all the good behaviors.