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Everything Puppy


Are you thinking about getting a puppy?
Are you worried about picking the right breeder?
How do you make the right decision when choosing your puppy?
Would it be helpful to have someone on your side to give you professional guidance and help you choose the right puppy for you and your family?
Please get in touch to discuss your needs.


Bringing Up a Puppy

Before you buy a puppy, have you thought about adopting a rescue dog? There are many many beautiful dogs of all shapes, sizes, ages and characters waiting in rehoming centres for to meet someone like you. Puppies are expensive and they don’t come with guarantees. Rescue dogs are health checked and assessed by expert dog behaviourists before being matched with their new families. It’s a very careful process and usually results in a happy ever after story.

If you have any misgivings about adopting an adult dog, please talk to Gary, our behaviour expert. He has many years of experience working with rescue dogs and can answer any questions you may have. He’d also be honoured to help you find your ideal canine companion.

To book your puppy home visit

pre-puppy home vists


If a rescue dog isn’t for you, expert advice is on hand to help you choose your puppy carefully

Your lifetime adventure with a new puppy starts even before you bring him home. At K9 Connection NI we can help you along every step of the way. From helping you to pick your perfect pup, through housetraining, simple obedience training, the adolescent months and right into adulthood.

Dog trainer Gary Holloway has spent a lot of time working in dog rescue shelters. He has seen first-hand the result of mistakes made in choosing the wrong puppy or dog for that matter. And he wants to help you to avoid making those same mistakes.

What breed of dog is right for you?

There were almost 200 different breeds of dog exhibited at Crufts in 2018. And those are just the pedigrees, there are a lot of popular new breeds available to buy in Northern Ireland. So which one is right for your family and your lifestyle? You not only need to consider breed temperament but the individual’s temperament as well. What if you have a crossbreed of unknown origin?

At K9 Connection NI we meet a lot of dogs every year and we regularly chat with dog trainers and dog owners. How big your puppy will grow and what he or she will look like as an adult are only two important considerations. You also need to think about how active the adult will be, how much grooming he will need, whether the breed has a high risk of inherited health problems and how long they might live.

Don’t forget too that your lifestyle may well change during your dog’s lifetime.  What might your future hold and what sort of dog will weather the changes with you.
Before you make a firm decision about the type of puppy you’d like, why not chat with a dog behavioural expert? You and your pet-to-be will benefit enormously from honest, unbiased advice on choosing a dog who can live his whole life as a member of your family.

Choosing the right breeder

So many behavioural problems in adult dogs stem from poor socialisation when the puppy is still with his mother and his littermates. A responsible breeder will make sure your puppy is exposed to as many new experiences as possible while still at a very young age. Young puppies are very receptive and the sooner they learn that new things are not necessarily scary, the easier they will adapt to living in the human world as they grow.

When you visit your baby puppy for the first time, if you are not happy with the conditions he’s living in. Don’t commit to buy him or her until you have taken expert advice. It’s easy to feel as though you are saving a cute puppy from a horrible life. In actual fact you may be making irresponsible breeding profitable whist buying yourself 10-15 years-worth of problems. There are lots of puppies out there and lots of breeders. One of them is exactly right for your family – be patient and be fussy. 

Bear in mind that two dogs of the same breed are not clones of each other. Just because the mother is calm, there are no guarantees that the pup will follow in her footsteps. Nature AND nurture work together to help shape your ideal pet.

For expert advice and worry-free puppy picking

K9 Connections NI cannot choose your puppy for you. But we can help you at any stage in the decision making process. Gary, our dog behaviourist is on hand to answer any questions you have about breeds and personalities. He’ll even come with you to the breeder and act as matchmaker.
Having impartial advice will help you to see through the cuteness to the character beneath that furry exterior.

When to start puppy training

Socialising and training your new puppy starts from the second you collect him from the breeder. Within a very short space of time your puppy will leave his family, take his first car ride and meet his new family. He’ll start learning how to live amongst humans. For a puppy, human behaviour is strange, complex and sometimes confusing. Remember, he’s spent the last 8 weeks or more learning about doggy body language – which is very different indeed.  His little brain has a lot to take in.

From the moment you drive away from the breeder with your new pup in your car, you are responsible for moulding this wiggly, cuddly, cute-smelling fur baby into a well-balanced and well socialised adult dog.  You must provide him with food, shelter, healthcare, protection and education. It’s the education that will build the bond between you.

When you understand the way a dog learns, you’ll be able to introduce basic commands without being unkind in any way whatsoever. And we’re here to teach you how reinforcing good behaviour in the right way, will negate the need for punishment. That way, your relationship with your dog will be based on trust, not on fear.

As soon as your new dog has settled, you can start introducing him to the outside world. He needs to experience sights, sounds, smells and become accustomed to meeting new people. And there’s no better way to do that safely and effectively than working with an experienced dog trainer.

Working at the puppy’s speed and tailoring his socialisation and training to his unique character, a dog trainer can show you how to introduce your puppy to new experiences in a way that boosts his confidence.

Young puppies should not walk or play where other dogs may have been until they are fully vaccinated. But there’s no reason why you shouldn’t carry them while they get to experience everything life has to offer. It’s extra cuddle time for you both!

Find out about 1-2-1 learning for puppies

Leaving puppy alone for the first time

No matter how much you dream of having a dog who can be beside you for every minute of every day, there will come a time when the two of you have to be apart for a short while.  Going to work, going to the supermarket, doctor’s appointments – sometimes Fido needs to stay home alone. This can be a stressful time for the poor little mite. We can show you how to help them to be left alone so that it isn't traumatic for them.

Have you or are you about to bring your puppy home

Find out more about our puppy services click the link below

Basic Puppy Training