What to expect when you’re pet-specting

Laura, a veterinary nurse at our Mickleover practice, provides advice on what to expect when you’re petspecting. Laura has been part of the veterinary industry for almost 20 years so, over time, she has seen how things have changed with regards to getting a puppy. Read Laura’s helpful advice which outlines some important considerations to think about before getting a puppy. 

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Becoming a first-time dog parent is one of life’s joys so what can you expect when you’re pet-specting?

Being in the veterinary industry for almost 20 years, I’ve got to see how things have changed with regards to getting a puppy and I believe that there are some aspects that you should consider if you are thinking of acquiring a new puppy.

Below is a list of important considerations to think about before getting a puppy.

The environment

Ask the breeder if you can see the mum and dad. You should be able to at least see the mum if the puppies are there. Dad may have been a stud from elsewhere, however mum should be present and appear comfortable around her pups.

You should also ask to see the place where the puppies are being raised. Always ask to meet them in their environment. COVID-19 restrictions should still allow you to see them in a garden or an outside area.

Vaccination records and flea/worm treatment status

Ask for vaccination records and flea/worm treatment status. Pups are usually wormed at 2, 5 and 8 weeks of age before leaving mum. A vet health check should be done before you acquire your pup and even the first vaccination given. A vaccination record should be given to you for your records. Ideally a date of birth should be known to help with any further vaccinations to complete the primary vaccination course. Remember, a pup shouldn’t be leaving mum before 8 weeks of age.


It is the breeders responsibility to have the pup microchipped. The chip should be in the breeders details, but they will provide you with the information to update to your details. Microchipping prior to going to a new home is a legal requirement.

Health issues

A breeder should be prepared to take your pup back and give you a refund if you notice any discrepancies or health issues that you were unaware of at the time of purchase. Ensure that a ‘purchase contract’ is drafted and signed by both parties.


Ask the breeder what food they have been feeding the puppy. A good breeder will be prepared and provide you with information on feeding so you are prepared to continue the same diet or even give you some to go home with. A sudden change in diet and a change of home is enough stress to cause an upset tummy.


A puppy usually comes with 4 weeks free insurance from the breeder. If not, make sure that you have this prepared/looked into for the time they come home with you.

The cost of puppies has increased considerably over the years so you have every right to ask as many questions as you would like to ensure that the puppy chosen is right for you and your family.

A more in-depth list of questions can be asked, therefore if you would like more advice on what to expect when you’re pet-specting, please contact your local practice and ask to speak to one of our nursing team.

Remember, your new puppy is for life.

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