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Any advice, first time small dog owner.....

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  • Any advice, first time small dog owner.....

    I have always had big or medium dogs. I love standard schnauzers, and that is the smallest I have ever had. (My present standard schnauzer is 19" tall.) I have become the owner of a small dog. He is a puppy, 9-10 weeks old supper cute chineses crested (mix??) not hairless, but the same pattern as a hairless with a very short coat where he would be skin. Sweet, smart pup. Is there anything I need to different for a toy? Do they need to eat more often or anything special (after the puppy stage)? I walk my dogs 1-3 miles a day, as an adult would the longer walk be too far? Any tips? Thanks

  • #2
    Smaller puppies have smaller bladders and may need to go out more. Small breeds can become hypoglycemic more easily if they don't eat regularly.


    • #3
      Chinese Cresteds come in two varieties, a hairless ad powderpuff. The powderpuff grows hair on the whole body. A lot of the time they're shaved to look like the hairless ones for showing though.

      I don't think they need to be treated as a 'toy' breed. I'd be a little more careful about jumping off of beds if they're high and you'll need to be more careful about cold if outdoors, but they're not really a toy for needing to eat more frequently or something like that.

      The puppy will have to potty more frequently, but once grown, they should be okay for a work day like your bigger dogs.


      • #4
        Many small dogs think they are actually Dobermans in disguise. Don't expect a small dog to act as if its small. And depending on where you live, you might need a nice sweater or two for the pup. And when you take the bigger dogs for a walk, you can take the pup (after it's had shots and the vet says OK), but you'll probably have to carry the puppy home. And if you live where there are hawks and other predatory birds, then don't let the pup out in the backyard alone. When I lived in NM, a friend with Papillons also fostered rescue dogs, and when they walked the entire pack the hawks would circle overhead. Their dogs only went out with them right there. And you might need to watch the sun exposure where the dog has bare skin.
        You can't fix stupid-Ron White


        • #5
          In his youth, my now 16 year old toy fox terrier hiked almost all of the white mountains in new Hampshire. An average day was 16+ miles and he is all of 8 #. Once grown the little guys can be unstoppable.

          As a small pup, 3-4 feeding daily, weaned to 2 meals by 4-5 monts of age.

          Oh yeah, little dogs have little poops.. What's not to love


          • #6
            Teach him obedience training; so many small dogs aren't taught basic commands and it makes life dangerous for them!
            “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Stephen R. Covey


            • #7
              Originally posted by cowboymom View Post
              Teach him obedience training; so many small dogs aren't taught basic commands and it makes life dangerous for them!
              Very true. Size has nothing to do with ability to learn rules and follow commands. Treat the small dog like you would a bigger dog. Expect the same manners.


              • Original Poster

                Thanks all. Yes, he will be trained. I compete in rally o and agility, so he will be trained and hopefully compete. I will try to post a picture of him. He has the pattern of the hairless, but where he should be skin he has a very, very short soft coat.


                • #9
                  I just acquired my first small dog about a week ago - he's about 20 lbs, the concensus is that he may be dachshund - border collie. BIG change from an assortment of shepherd mixes, all 60 lbs or more, over the years.
                  One thing I discovered is that small dogs can have very delicate trachea areas, and thus a harness that does not pull against the neck may be better than a collar. Ours is a rescue, somewhere around 1.5 yrs, and he's just learning to walk nicely - but when he sees a squirrel, he'd as soon hang himself as miss it!

                  I wouldn't worry too much about the walking - you can always carry him if he gets tired............
                  We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........


                  • Original Poster

                    Hmm, thanks. I never thought of that. I look into a harness.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by cowboymom View Post
                      Teach him obedience training; so many small dogs aren't taught basic commands and it makes life dangerous for them!
                      Yes! This! I have big dogs myself, but most of my neighbors have little 6-8 pound things. With a few exceptions, they are not very pleasant to be around as they've had no training at all and are allowed to do whatever they please. I think some folks with very small dogs don't worry about making them into good canine citizens, since they are so small, how much damage could they do? Well, they do...both DH and I have been bitten by some of the little fluff balls, some of them are inveterate barkers, aggressive, running loose, some still pee in the house in adulthood, etc...

                      I don't believe small dogs are "bad" or harder to train, I just think a lot of small dog owners don't put the same effort into it that owners of large dogs HAVE to.

                      Since you are a medium/large dog person, I'm sure you have plenty of experience managing dogs and won't fall prey to "small dog owner complacency" .


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by bcody View Post
                        Hmm, thanks. I never thought of that. I look into a harness.
                        FWIW, not an issue if you don't allow pulling...

                        My miniature poodles both walk on cat collars (they come in cooler patterns and are cheaper than the small dog collars! - just make sure they're the buckle not breakaway kind and pull the bells off). Neither wears a harness and both walk like sane beasts.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by bcody View Post
                          Do they need to eat more often or anything special (after the puppy stage)?
                          Cresties, as a breed, have the worst teeth. The hairless gene also effects teeth. Many have few teeth. Start tooth brushing now so your new pup can keep every single tooth in his wee head.

                          They can also have acne, dry skin, sunburn easily, etc. Even the powder puffs. A quality diet and maybe additional fish oil will help. Sunblock on his nose and any pale, thinly coated areas when out in the sun.

                          Many owners bathe frequently. The hairless owners bathe, sugar scrub, oil, lotion, exfoliate some more, ad nauseum.

                          The best thing about them is they are supposed to look like Hackneys. Squeee! If I got a powder puff, I'd clip the body short and keep mane, legs, and tail long to accentuate the horse look.

                          In my neck of the woods, there is a guy with several Cresties competing in AKC agility.


                          • Original Poster

                            He does prance!! It is very cute. Thank you for all your advice. I need to upload a picture and post it today. He has no choice but to have manners, be able to walk (I hate seeing small dogs carried everywhere) and know commands. But he will still be cuddled and loved!


                            • Original Poster

                              This is Eli,


                              And Eli with my Standard Schnauzer Kaycee


                              • #16
                                That's a lion not a puppy He is super cute! My only advice is....don't step on him. That is my biggest fear with small dogs. I have been firmly in the big dog camp for most of my life that and I am a huge klutz.


                                • #17
                                  Congratulations, he's a cutie. I can't add much to what the above folks say other than that of remembering since he's little, you need to be the one watching out for him around bigger dogs and things, particularly horses. As one poster said, the small dogs don't realize they are small.