Beginning socialization, feeding the correct amount, giving medications, and teaching basic commands.Mental and Physical Development
Beginning Socialization Most puppies begin life fearlessly approaching new things, but many will begin to grow more cautious around five weeks of age. After 12 weeks, caution may outweigh the tendency to approach new things, making it difficult for the puppy to accept new situations. Now is the time for your puppy to interact with a wide range of people, animals and places to prepare them for the rest of their life.
At 10 weeks, your puppy should be experiencing new things every day. But bad experiences are worse than no experiences, so be careful. Introduce new activities gradually, and never push your puppy to the point that they're scared. Your goal is to have them become comfortable around other people and animals, and in unknown places and situations. Introduce them to different floorings, stairs, car rides and things they'll be doing later in life.
It is important for your puppy to have as many good experiences at this time as possible. Bad experiences later in life will leave less of a negative impression on your dog if they have been properly exposed to various situations as a puppy.
Feeding Most 10-week-old puppies are very excited about their food. Puppies expend an enormous amount of energy and, as a result, can develop a large appetite. However, it is important to feed your puppy the right amount of food to avoid unnecessary weight gain and unhealthy eating habits.
How much food your puppy needs depends on their size and the type of food. Puppies should be fed high-quality puppy food that has been certified by the Association of American Feed Control Officials. To improve digestion and ward off hunger, split up the total amount of food your puppy eats each day into three or four smaller feedings.
Talk to your veterinarian if you feel that your puppy is becoming too thin or too heavy.
Health and Veterinary Care: Giving Medication
All dogs will need to take medicine at some point in their lives, so now is the time to make the process easy and painless for both you and your puppy.
For pills, try the standard back-of-the-throat approach: Open your puppy's mouth, place the pill as far back as possible with your index finger, close their mouth and gently rub their throat. You can also buy a piller, a small plunger to use instead of your finger.
You can also try hiding the pill in liverwurst or peanut butter and giving it to your puppy. If they're the suspicious type, make three balls of liverwurst. Offer the first one to convince them that the food is safe to eat, followed by the second with the pill inside it and then the third to get them to swallow the second one quickly.
For liquid medication, pull out one of your puppy's cheeks and squirt it in. Follow with a treat.
Even if your puppy has no reason to take medicine now, this is the period in their life to teach them to be comfortable with the idea. You can practice by opening their mouth and placing part of a treat in it.
Training: Basic Commands
Your puppy is ready to learn basic commands such as sit, stay and come by 10 weeks of age. Your puppy will begin to associate words with actions through the use of treats and positive reinforcement such as petting and praise.
Keep lessons with your puppy short but frequent. Puppies have a hard time focusing on one thing for long periods of time, so they'll need frequent reminders in order to learn a specific word association. To avoid confusion, do not try to teach more than one command per session.
Puppies love rewards, so remember to reward them when they perform the right action. Treats work best at first, and then praise and petting. Always keep the lessons positive and fun because puppies also love games, and fun lessons will help your puppy form a closer, more positive bond with you.