When bringing a new puppy into a family, most of the time a puppy is selected that is around 8 weeks of age. As a result of this stage in his life, he is in the ideal situation to accept a new home. The adjustment process will be simpler and quicker due to the fact that he will be more open to training and conditioning.
There are also many situations where a family selects an older puppy over a younger one. The biggest drawback here is that the ideal training stage for the puppy has already passed. Therefore, you will need to be more lenient and patient with your training routines if you bring home an older puppy.
There are many aspects to consider when you’re thinking about getting an older puppy. When compared to younger puppies, the older ones are usually calmer and less energetic. Also, he may have already received some basic training so housetraining might be a little simpler. He could be familiar with people, children, and other pets. However, there is also just as good of a possibility that he was not properly socialized or taught any commands which is why it is imperitive to find out his background.
Be very careful with a puppy that has been abused or neglected by his previous owner. These puppies are typically harder to train and to live with as they are more prone to stress, fear, and anxiety towards people. Sometimes, they can even develop aggressive behavior. This isn’t to say that all abused or neglected puppies are like this, in fact some are the sweetest puppies you will ever meet, but it’s important to be aware of the possibility.
Make sure the entire family meets the puppy once you have chosen him. This is important because it will allow you to see how the puppy reacts to different people. You’ll be able to find out if the puppy dislikes children, women, or other pets. Observe closely and note his overall behavior.
Also take notice to how he reacts to different circumstances. Try dropping your keys on the floor and see his reaction. A normal response would be to go sniff the keys out of curiousity or to simply ignore the noise. If he begins barking, biting, and jumping you may have some problems fix down the road.
Ask a staff member to carry around the puppy for some time if you can. Watch the reaction of the puppy to being picked up and moved. If you notice any signs of anger or frustration, you will need to deal with them through training routines in the future.
Remember, the most important aspect to bringing home an older puppy is knowledge. Ask as many questions as you can in respect to behavior, vaccinations, training, health, and overall mentality to the staff or breeder. Also, make sure to investigate the reason why the previous owner left the puppy or why he has not been adopted yet. All of this information can help you better prepare for living with and training your new puppy.
Realize that, whatever puppy you decide to adopt, having a puppy is like a journey between your family, yourself, and your puppy. No matter what age you bring that little guy home at, he will be a huge part of your life for a long time to come. Older puppy training takes time, patience, and energy but by arming yourself with knowledge you will set yourself up for success.