Caring for your puppy: The top 5 things you need to know

Introducing a puppy into your family is an exciting time. Caring for a puppy can require a fair amount of effort and attention, however, the joy and love they bring into your life is well worth it.

Whether you’re thinking about getting a puppy, or have just picked up your pup, read on to find out all the essential information when it comes to caring for your new pet.


Did you know that the food your puppy eats in their first year affects their development, growth and immune health for the rest of their life?

That’s why we recommend you feed your pup high-quality puppy food, specifically made for young dogs.

Puppy-specific pet foods are easily digestible, which makes them gentle on young tummies. They also have a measured balance of protein, fat, phosphorus and calcium to support your pup’s increased nutritional needs as they grow.

When it comes to choosing between wet and dry food, some families find dry food more convenient and a little cheaper, while others prefer wet. Either choice is fine. Remember to follow the feeding guidelines on the packaging or consult with our veterinarians to find the right portion sizes for your puppy’s age, breed, and activity level.

Early socialisation and training

Puppy preschool provides your puppy with early socialisation and basic training in a safe and controlled environment.

Our team at Cameron Veterinary Services are passionate about helping families welcome their new four-legged companions. If you’re a Gawler local, we’d love you to join us at our puppy preschool. Your puppy can mingle with other furry friends, learn basic skills and meet new people.

Our puppy preschool is run regularly throughout the year and is open to puppies aged 8 to 16 weeks. Click here to learn more.

Toilet training

Achieving toilet training success depends on one key factor: consistency.

First, pick a designated area where you’d like your pup to do their business, whether it’s a patch of grass beside your house or an indoor puppy pad. Choose what suits your situation best.

Next, take your puppy to the chosen toilet area at regular intervals. Take them after naps and meals, and whenever you spot those telltale signs that they need to go, like circling and sniffing the ground.

When your pup does their business in the right spot, shower them with praise! Positive reinforcement goes a long way in supporting good habits.

Now, let’s talk about accidents. It’s not a matter of “if” but “when” your puppy has an indoor mishap. Avoid scolding them. You don’t want to instil fear or anxiety related to toileting. Instead, quickly clean up the mess using an enzymatic cleaner. This helps eliminate any lingering scents that might draw your pup back to the same spot next time.

With consistency and patience, you’ll guide your pup toward mastering their bathroom etiquette.

Puppy lying on grass


Puppies are vulnerable to a range of infectious conditions, some of which can be very serious. Fortunately, there are vaccinations available to help protect them.

At our small animal vet clinic we offer puppy vaccination packs, making it easy and affordable to protect your furry family member. Your pup should receive their first vaccination between 6 to 8 weeks of age, their second between 10 to 12 weeks and their third between 14 to 16 weeks. Pup will then have a yearly booster.

Click here to learn more about our puppy vaccination packs.


Did you know, in South Australia, it’s a legal requirement for cats and dogs born after July 2018, to be desexed? While the thought of surgery for your puppy may be daunting, desexing is a common and safe procedure with minimal risks involved.

Desexing your dog not only helps reduce the risk of unwanted puppies, which, in turn, reduces the number of animals in shelters, but it also offers health benefits for your pup.

For female dogs, desexing lowers the chances of developing uterine infections and certain cancers. In male dogs, it lowers the risk of prostate cancer and may even help in reducing aggressive behaviour. Additionally, desexing helps minimise nuisance behaviours like roaming and fighting.

Our highly qualified veterinarians offer desexing services at our small animal vet clinic. Click here to learn more.

Cameron Veterinary Services and your puppy

Our team at Cameron Veterinary Services take great joy in being part of your puppy parenting journey.

We’d love to welcome you and your new pooch at our small animal vet clinic for puppy preschool, and we’re here to provide support, advice and care through desexing, vaccination and beyond.

To make an appointment at our Gawler East vet clinic, you can book online or call us on 08 8318 1801.