Mental and Physical Development
Exercise Playing with a ball or chew toy and fetch games of any kind are great exercises for a 13-week-old puppy. However, this exercise should take place in a controlled environment such as a fenced-in backyard, screened-in porch or living room. If you live in a high-traffic area, try to find a quiet area nearby where you can walk your puppy.
Do not exercise your puppy in an area near traffic or a place where they could come into contact with other animals, such as public parks and dog parks. At 13 weeks, your puppy's vaccines may not have taken full effect, and a curious puppy could come into contact with animal feces contaminated with diseases.
Homemade Diets Many people create homemade meals for their pets. But even if the ingredients you're using are safe for your puppy, there are several things to keep in mind.
Although most veterinarians don't discourage homemade foods, they caution that it requires careful research and consistency with ingredients. Just as people can't survive on only protein or carbohydrates, neither can puppies.
Your puppy's meals need to be well-balanced, including all required vitamins and minerals. Home-prepared puppy foods are frequently deficient in vitamin A, copper and calcium.
Consult with a veterinary nutritionist and your own vet before feeding your puppy homemade food.
Health and Veterinary Care: Rabies
Although local laws vary, all 50 states require rabies vaccinations. Puppies should get their vaccinations around 12 or 13 weeks, and receive yearly boosters thereafter.
Rabies, most commonly spread in the United States through the saliva of bats, skunks, raccoons, foxes and coyotes, is almost always fatal if untreated. If your puppy is bitten or scratched by a strange animal, it is best to consult your veterinarian immediately. Don't wait until symptoms appear.
Symptoms of the disease include lethargy, weakness in the limbs, paralysis of the throat and neck muscles, aggression and heightened sensitivity to stimulation. Although mandatory vaccinations have virtually eliminated canine rabies in North America, you must still be careful when taking your puppy outdoors.
A 13-week-old puppy that barks excessively is a lot like a baby that is constantly trying out new sounds and words. Barking is a form of communication, and now is the time to teach your puppy the right way to communicate.
Puppies bark for many reasons: to alert you to something out of the ordinary, to get attention, because they're bored or lonely, or because they're excited or scared. Barking for any reason should never be rewarded, because it gives your puppy mixed signals.
It is important to be consistent both with your reaction to barking and with the commands you give to stop it. If you ignore barking one time, reward it the next and punish it the next, your puppy will be confused and won't learn. Once a puppy forms an undesirable barking habit, it is very difficult to break.
The best way to teach your puppy not to bark is to ignore them whenever they do it. If that doesn't work, there are alternatives. Whenever your puppy starts to bark, make a loud noise near them to startle them into not barking. A soda can with a few pennies or pebbles inside usually does the trick (or you could lightly spray them with a water bottle).
As soon as the puppy stops barking, give a stern "Quiet!" or "Stop barking!" command, followed immediately by praise and petting. Continue this every time your puppy barks until they learn the command or stop barking altogether.