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Hi everyone, I'm new here and I have so many questions about our new black Lab pup named Logan...we got him last week from a person who found him and his siblings underneath some garbage out in the woods..its a miracle they survived out in that cold weather! He is approximatley 8 weeks old. Since we've gotten him I've been feeding him Purina Puppy Chow with soft and hard pieces..thats what the lady at Pet Supplies Plus suggested.The main reason for this post today is that I'm noticing Logan is scratching a lot and I see quite a bit of dandruff on him, he is all black so its quite easy to see ( I have looked for fleas but have seen none and none of my other pets have them ) I gave him a bath thinking maybe he was just itching because he was dirty but I'm still seeing the dandruff and he is still itching. He is scheduled to go in for his first set of shots next week and he has taken a dewormer medication already. I need advice on the dandruff as well as any other information you can give me on black labs..how to potty train them to go outside, he is teething and I know the biting is to be expected with that, but he bites really hard on our fingers toes etc..I have 2 rabbits so I want to make sure he does not become agressive towards them or my kids ( 3 boys 13,9 and 6)..he is okay with the cat already..they have had no incidents and are tolerating each other well ( my cat is very laid back and gets along well with the rabbits so I knew there wouldnt be a problem with my cat and the dog..he adjusts very well to the new pets ) I bought Logan a leash and I am trying to teach him to walk on it but he will take a few steps then sit down, so I also need to know what is the best way to teach him to walk on the leash so he can wear off some of his energy with daily walks ( he has so much energy!!) I also need to know at what age he can be neutered..My cat is neutered and my rabbits are also spayed and neutered so thats a must around here in order to control the problems that not spaying/neutering causes.

So basically I need to know everything!! I had dogs as a child but my parents took care of all the stuff like this..and I know I should have done research on all these things before getting him but once my husband and I heard the story behind these puppies we knew he was supposed to be a part of our family and immediatley went and got him ( all of our animals have been saved from bad situations ) All advice is appreciated and I look forward to getting to know all of you and learning all I can from this site!!
 

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It's so great that you are taking him in! Purina is ok, but you can do better! We feed Canidae All Stages, which we love! So does our pup! :)
There are some shampoos to help dandruff, but I would be sure to ask your vet.....your poor guy has been in some pretty bad living conditions, and could have lots of issues because of it! :(
Potty training: a pup this young will have to go out frequently because they have no control. Take him out every hour at least! Every 1/2 hour is better at first! And, give a treat and lots of praise when he pees/poops in the right place! Don't punish accidents or even react negatively! Accidents mean people didn't get the pups outside in time! Learn to recognize the signs that he needs to go, but for now: when he wakes up, after meals, after exercise, and just about every 1/2 hour for the rest of the day.

Biting: pups do this as play. If he was with his littermates or his mommy, they would teach him how hard is too hard by nipping him back, or turning away and not playing anymore. So, you can do the same. If he bites you can yelp or say ouch and then redirect his attention to a chew toy. If he does it again you can yelp or say ouch and then walk away for a minute or two. That way he learns that play time with you stops if he bites. Then, come back and play again. Giving him lots of chew toys can help!

Teething: you can wet a washcloth and twist it into a knot, and freeze it. It gives him something soothing to chew on. Also, Kong toys can be filled with peanut butter and frozen over night. It gives him something cold to chew on, and lick on till that yummy peanut butter's gone! :)
Teach your kids how to approach him, to be calm, and have limits in playing with him.

Walking: Use treats to get him going! Loose leash walking is optimal. Lots of people have different opinions about having dogs walk right next to them or a bit ahead, I think it's really what works for you, but don't let him pull you! If he does, stop and don't go on til he's back to you. Be very careful where you walk him until he's had all his shots! You don't want him to contract an illness!

Neutering: differing opinions also. Check with your vet when you go to get shots. Six months is generally ok.......
Mostly, have fun, and lots of patience!! :)
 

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Hi everyone, I'm new here and I have so many questions about our new black Lab pup named Logan...we got him last week from a person who found him and his siblings underneath some garbage out in the woods..its a miracle they survived out in that cold weather! He is approximatley 8 weeks old. Since we've gotten him I've been feeding him Purina Puppy Chow with soft and hard pieces..thats what the lady at Pet Supplies Plus suggested.The main reason for this post today is that I'm noticing Logan is scratching a lot and I see quite a bit of dandruff on him, he is all black so its quite easy to see ( I have looked for fleas but have seen none and none of my other pets have them ) I gave him a bath thinking maybe he was just itching because he was dirty but I'm still seeing the dandruff and he is still itching. He is scheduled to go in for his first set of shots next week and he has taken a dewormer medication already. I need advice on the dandruff as well as any other information you can give me on black labs..how to potty train them to go outside, he is teething and I know the biting is to be expected with that, but he bites really hard on our fingers toes etc..I have 2 rabbits so I want to make sure he does not become agressive towards them or my kids ( 3 boys 13,9 and 6)..he is okay with the cat already..they have had no incidents and are tolerating each other well ( my cat is very laid back and gets along well with the rabbits so I knew there wouldnt be a problem with my cat and the dog..he adjusts very well to the new pets ) I bought Logan a leash and I am trying to teach him to walk on it but he will take a few steps then sit down, so I also need to know what is the best way to teach him to walk on the leash so he can wear off some of his energy with daily walks ( he has so much energy!!) I also need to know at what age he can be neutered..My cat is neutered and my rabbits are also spayed and neutered so thats a must around here in order to control the problems that not spaying/neutering causes.

So basically I need to know everything!! I had dogs as a child but my parents took care of all the stuff like this..and I know I should have done research on all these things before getting him but once my husband and I heard the story behind these puppies we knew he was supposed to be a part of our family and immediatley went and got him ( all of our animals have been saved from bad situations ) All advice is appreciated and I look forward to getting to know all of you and learning all I can from this site!!
I would start by changing his food. Purina puppy chow isn't a good food in general, and in a larger breed dog such as a lab, it can be detrimental to their bone/joint developement because it causes rapid growth spurts, and is most likely the cause of the dandruff and scratching. We started our GSD on purnia puppy chow, and he developed corn and chicken allergies to it and had terrible skin issues. We switched him to RAW and now he's doing great. I realize raw is not possible for everybody, so some good foods to try out would be Innova, EVO, Merrick, Blue Buffalo, Canidae, Wellness, Wellness Core, California Natural, Solid Gold, and Orijen.

Houstraining is pretty easy; take him out every hour, after he drinks a lot, eats, plays, and wakes up. Those are times when he'll have to go the most. When he goes outside, praise verbally and give him a treat. Throw a friggin party if you have to so that he learns going outside=good. If he has an accident inside, clean it up with enzymatic cleaner for pets and ignore him. If you catch him going inside, interupt with an AH AH noise and carry him outside to finish his business. Do NOT rub his nose in it, no matter what people might say to you.

Do you have a crate? He'll need to be crate trained or kept in a puppy proof room when you're gone or can't supervise so that he cannot chew things and will be less likely to go potty. Don't leave him crated for more than 2 or 3 hours at a time as a young pup.

For leash training; when you can supervise him inside, attach the leash to him and just let him drag it around so that he gets used to the feeling and everything. When he starts moving around, lure him around with treats to encourage the movement. You can try picking it up and luring him with treats inside while you're holding the leash.

For biting; whenever he starts biting you or your family, have whomever he's biting give a firm "No bite" command and get up and leave. Don't look at him or talk to him for a few minutes, then resume play. He'll learn that if he bites you, he doesn't get anything and you'll stop playing. This may take weeks with a lab, but it will pay off.

Start introducing him to the rabbits from a young age, and teach him a command like "OFF" which I use for my pup on any animal. If they're getting too close for comfort, clap for distraction, say OFF, then with toys and treat in hand call him over waving his toy or squeaking it and praise and treat then play with him once he comes. It's a good distraction and gives praise at the same time.

Neutering is usually not recommended until after 6 months, sometimes longer for bigger dogs because taking the testosterone away early can cause growth to change, and they may not fill out all the way, and instead will become lanky and tall. This is your choice of course, and if you're having roaming issues, marking issues, humping issues, etc once he starts maturing, I'd get him neutered at the first sign to nip that in the bud.

Congrats on your new pup! We MUST see pictures!
 

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Advice for owners of Lab puppies: Save yourself! Get out while you still can!

Kidding. Lab pups are one of the world's natural wonders. They have so much energy and mischief inside them that it's a wonder they are not all murdered before they reach adulthood. Kidding again.

Most vets are not the best resource on nutrition or training pups, so don't get too wound up if you hear something that sounds a little bit off.

Start training right now. This minute. Look at the stickies at the top of the page for specific techniques, and get to work. Labs are highly trainable, but the sooner you start teaching manners, the better off you'll all be. They are normally extremely mouthy pups and the chewing and biting will typically last considerably longer than with other breeds. If your pup acts like most Lab/Lab mix pups, expect a tough year ahead. They mature slowly--some would say they never actually do--and can be a total pain for the first year...or two..or even three. But they are thoroughly fantastic dogs when trained properly. Really, you can train a Lab to do damned near anything.

As soon as he's had all his shots, you should enroll in a puppy class. It's a great way to get a dog comfortable around lots of people and other dogs.

Most people on this forum would recommend you wait 'til he's fully grown to neuter, but there is no medical reason to wait. You can have it done now. If you plan to train him up to be a working retriever--or get into flyball or suchlike--you'd probably be better of waiting until he's 18 months.

You'll probably want to put him on a better food. Purina High Pro has been very good to my dog, but Purina One is pretty close and a bit less expensive. You'll see significantly less poop coming out the other end. The dandruff may be nothing more than the result of the very dry indoor air in heated homes. Outdoor air is normally pretty dry in the northern climes, at this time of year, too. I have forced hot air heat, and my dog gets a little dandruffy in Jan. and Feb.. I put a fish oil capsule in his food once a day, and it takes care of it nicely.
 

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Lots of other advise so far...but until he has had a full vet check I wouldn't chalk anything up to food or normal behaviors...the scratching could be any type of parasite, worm, or other skin problem. Every dog should see the vet within 48 hours of coming home, and quarrantined until then. Lots of things are contagious to humans like ringworm.
 

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Labs are mouthy and will chew everything. Have plenty of chew toys and teach the command 'leave it'. I use that command more than any other. Labs are slow to mature, they act like puppies until about two. Whoever says they make good first time pets obviously never raised a lab puppy. I never met someone who regretted owning one. Good luck!
 

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The only advice that I could give is that walking on a leash will not alone satisfy the exercise needs of a puppy. It could even be super stressful for an 8 wk old. I would keep the training in short sessions in order to not lose it's attention and make the treats really really good. Like small pieces of hot dog or something. For the exercise needs I would say just play with him until he's tired. Run around outside with him in a fenced in area.. Walking/leash training won't wear him out too much.
 

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Congrats on Logan! I have two Labs :) We feed them Purina One Adult Large Breed. Not sure what to say about the dry skin, you could ask your vet when you bring him in :) Do you plan on using a crate? I'd recommend it.
 

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I have a black Lab and im still learning- she is more than i thought shed be but i LOVE her :)
Id recommend going to the library and getting a a book all about labs. I picked one up last night and although its from 1995 i learned a bit about Labs in general.
Your puppy will need lots to chew on and something more than a walk for getting the energy out. I know my Hope is like the energizer bunny some days.

Welcome to the Lab world. :D
 
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