Vermilion Kennels                                   Email questions, please.  
Care of your new puppy...........


If you have any questions 
please contact me. As your 
dog’s breeder I am here 
to help you for the life of 
your pet. 

This information is to get you started. There are always other 
ways of doing things but I want you to feel comfortable with 
your new pup from day one.


Do not feed chicken bones or cooked bones of any kind...they can splinter and cause problems.

Bones can be a good way to keep teeth clean but even raw bones can crack teeth.  I feed them only
When I am present to supervise.

I buy knuckle bones and larger shank bones sold in the grocery store as soup or dog bones and they love them.

Raw hides can be swallowed and cause a blockage but the bigger problem is they get in the coat of the dog.  I give them from time to time with direct supervision only.  I prefer raw beef bones.
The First Few Hours  

Your new little one will be frightened.  They are afraid of new things, naturally, but will quickly adapt. Don’t be alarmed if they don’t go potty when or where you think they should or if they don’t eat. Everything is new. 

At first they will likely crouch low to the floor. Nothing is wrong, they are just uncertain. Give them some time to get used to things. Keep things fairly quiet and uncomplicated for them. Visitors should be calm and quiet too. No ruff play or chasing games with kids. Pups are too little for this and it is dangerous for the puppy.

If your pup has been shipped to you by air, he will have made a nice happy home in his crate and will have enjoyed this space and may not want to come out. “Out” means a new space and he likes the one he is in. 

He knows it and is happy with it. He will adapt and won’t have any ill affects from being shipped. I have received many dogs via air and they all have done well. And, I have shipped many and they have all done well.


Dog’s teeth need to be cleaned!  This IS necessary. It has been found that heart and kidney problems can result from the build up of plaque and bacteria on the teeth of not only dogs but also people!

Your pup will be getting new teeth for about 6 months or so. You may or may not notice the baby teeth on the floor as they fall out. New teeth come in to the vacant spot in one day sometimes! It is truly amazing. Most people miss it. There may be a bit of blood that you see in this process but probably not.

As the teeth come out and new ones come in 
you will notice that your pup wants to chew. 
 Chewing helps them feel better. 

Check the dog’s mouth regularly and if teeth 
seem to be coming in and the old one is not 
falling out the vet may want to pull it. 
I find that the jaw grows just about the 
right time to avoid this and most often it 
isn't really necessary.  So stall if need be.

Don’t let them run all over the house. Keep them close to the same area or to you. When they need a nap they will crash. It’s also okay to put them in a crate and leave them in a quiet room. 

If they cry, don’t go back.  If you go back when they are crying, just one time, they will think that their crying brought you!!! ;-)

As they age you can expand their territory in the house but they should never have free run of everything. It’s just too much temptation and trouble for a dog.
We moved to adult food for pups several years ago and we are very happy with the results. Vets haven’t caught up with this thinking yet and the choice is yours.  Pups fed
a quality adult food grow a little slower and this is good.  They do reach their full genetically determined size.  

Dry food is great for crunching young teeth on. If they make a really big mess of this, put water on it for a week and then try again. Dry is best, however. When you get your pup he/she will have been eating dry food. 

There are “people food” or “raw” diets you can very successfully feed your dog and I would be glad to discuss this with you. It is a lot of work and not any cheaper! When I have felt the need to cook for them I have fed this…..but it is WORK.

You can give your dog a few table scraps but you are not necessarily keeping his foods in a good balance. 

It is easier and better for them to feed them just dry dog food. You also run a risk of having a fat dog and diarrhea with table scraps. You will have to cut back on the amount of food he gets if you feed scraps and I would stay away from a lot of meat and go heavier on the fruits, veggies and grains.  

As your pup has been eating as part of a group, and as he/she is growing rapidly I can’t tell you how much to feed. You will get the idea of it in a couple of days. I would put out a bowl of food and keep it 

An xpen as shown on the right is good way to corral a pup so that
they are in the room with you but still can't run off to get in 

When they are older a leash clipped to your belt works too.

Then you know where they are and they get used to staying by you. 
I have also attached a pup with a 6 foot lead to a stable object 
(table leg on a heavy table, door knob, or radiator) so that they 
stay in one room with me. This works well becasue after a few 
weeks of this the dog is more likely to not leave the area. 

There are obvious problems of becoming tangled and make sure they 
can’t hang themselves when ever they are tied up. 

​​House training

Puppies can sometimes seem downright dense about alerting you to their “potty” needs. The more people involved in this process the harder it is for everyone as three people need to learn what the dog is telling you and the dog needs to learn how to get the proper attention from three different people.

Your dog may stand and look at you beseechingly and not
 bark to go out. You will learn to read subtle signs. A 
consistent program (and an intensive one) will pay off.

Feed, then out, drink, then out,  wake up, then out and so
 on will pay off. And praise the dog as he/she is actually 
going potty in the proper spot along with giving the agreed 
upon command they actually go.  

I say, “Molly, go potty ” JUST ONCE….don’t nag! When she goes I say, “good, Molly go potty, good girl, good girl”. You could use anything as the command. Soon, your pup will go potty on command.  It doesn’t take too long at all because they are born to please and see approval from you.

When your pup goes potty in the house.....pick it up and resolve to mend your lazy ways. 

If your pup squats in the house don’t punish the dog just pick them up and carry them outside. Give the command and praise when they do go. As you are whisking them out the door say, “Molly out” so the dog associates command with what is happening. Try very hard to refrain from even a subtle groan……;-) They read that as praise! And screams to NOT do it in the house are readily seen as wonderful praise for going on the living room floor! So be careful what you praise and think in dog terms not your words.

If you find a puddle or pile, just clean it up. Don’t scold. Scolding becomes “attention” and “reinforcement” even though it is negative. They don’t really care if it’s negative….it’s attention! They also don’t know what they have done unless you catch them doing it. That is why you praise as they are going.

Don’t expect them to be dry or clean in the
 crate for a while. Just clean it up. I shred 
newspaper the long way and place it in the 
crate. It cleans up easiest.  

Dogs also what to go where they smell that others have gone. It is nature! So take them to the part of the yard you want them to eventually go in from day one. If you take them 5 feet from the front door you may end up with a 5 year old dog who only wants to go there!!!! Cute for a pup but not for an adult!

A crate that is too large will invite your dog to use one corner for a bed and the other for a bathroom. That’s why we use smaller crates. If you use a larger crate you may want to put something in there that the dog can’t eat, to take up room. I use an old toddler booster seat or an old plastic cooler. Then the dog thinks twice about messing where he must sleep. On the other hand, this is NOT necessary and the pup will figure it all out. If you have a small crate it’s fine but I wouldn’t go out and purchase one just for a couple of months.

other preventatives for your geographic area. I will give you a record to give to your vet concerning the exact vaccinations your pup received and the dates.  

Your pup will have been seen by my vet prior to leaving here and will be in excellent health.  

You should take your pup to the vet as soon as you get your pup to assure that it is healthy in YOUR eyes and fulfill the contract.  

The information the vet must know in 
case of problems can also be found at 


The reasoning behind this is that too much of
 an attack on the immune system does not benefit the dog in the long run. The immunizations are okay but you don’t know what other autoimmune problems you may trigger by giving the shots together. 

Vets will want to as it makes money for them and assures that you will get all the shots....but it isn’t doing your dog a favor. To give more than one vaccine at a visit will negate your health contract. 
Vaccinations & Vet Visits
Your pup will have had his/her first set(s) of immunizations and will need to continue these every FOUR weeks until he reaches 20 weeks at which time your pup will have rabies vaccine.  You should discuss with your vet the need for lymes, heartworm, and any 

Your pup has been eating Fromms dog food         
in the purple bag for ADULT DOGS. I would suggest you continue with this for at least a small bag’s worth of it. If for some reason you wish to change, make the change gradually. Goggle the company for the nearest dealer. It is an excellent food and my dogs have done very well on it. Dogs often get digestive upsets with abrupt changes in water and /or food and they will be changing water sources so keep the food source constant. 

full most of the day. This is called free feeding and a dog less than 6 months of age will not gain too much weight free feeding. 

When your dog is 6 months of age or so I would give the dog food once or twice a day. 

Naturally, if you ended up with the chow hound, you might want to cut back earlier. If you feed twice a day you would give them half a daily ration. An adult will eat about 2 cups of dog food per day.

Your pup has been wormed and that will be noted in your health summary.

Hips and eyes

Wheatens have few if any problems with hips. It is standard procedure for Wheatens to have their hips certified as being sound prior to breeding. This has been done with the parents of these dogs and with the earlier generations as well.  

Basically it is not necessary to do this for a pet. If there were a problem, however, your vet could direct you in these matters.

RD, PLE and PLN ~~ Wheatens only!

These problems are best explained at the SCWTCA website.  

If you suspect a problem please contact me. This will not only help in my breeding decisions in the future but I will be able to direct you in your dog’s care.

It is my hope that we will all avoid these problems and have gone to great lengths in my breeding program to eliminate these health issues.  

The dogs behind your pup going back a number of generations have been screened for these issues and we have found none. 

Your pup should have regular baths. While the pup is young it is best to take it to the bath tub, be deliberate yet gentle, and make the experience rather fun. But YOU should be in charge!

First, make sure there is good footing. A rubber bath mat is best. Nothing scares the dog more than slipping and falling…although pups are more resilient than adults and humans!

A hand held shower is ideal but a plastic pitcher will do to wet the dog down. I usually run a little water into the tub (half and inch) and splash and play a bit. Pour small amounts of water on the dog or spray it gently. Basically don't make too many surprises for the dog and praise the dog’s standing still and cooperating.  

Keep one hand on the dog’s neck or head to assure him/her at all times. This also controls them very well. You control a horse the same way…so a dog is no real problem.

I use dog shampoo that is cheap. I buy it by the gallon and it mixes 16:1. I put it in a smaller squeeze bottle and the $30.00 investment lasts a year or more! It only takes about 8 to 12 oz of dilute shampoo to generously do a dog! Don’t buy it in a premixed bottle…you’ll go broke.  

TIP: Saw off all except an inch or two of a cheap sink plunger ( the kind without the inner ring) and put an eye screw in the remaining wood part. Attach a thin lead to that and you can “plunge” it to the side of the bath tub for a great dog holder!

Grooming Wheatens Only

An excellent source for grooming your Wheaten  now exists at  


Wheaten ears hang down, therefore, they are dark, 
moist and warm inside. A perfect breeding spot for all 
kinds of problems. I don’t do anything with ears unless 
I find a problem. Some dogs seldom need ear care while 
others need it weekly. It all depends on how much hair 
grows in there and what other little organisms take up 

If it is necessary to pull hair the best thing to use is a 
hemostat so that you can get down in and get it all out. 
Groomers will do this for you if you don’t care to. Once 
the hair has been pulled I use and ear cleaner that you 
can purchase at the pet store or peroxide to clean the 
ears daily for about a week. This keeps the open spots clean and allows them to heal nicely.  

If warmth, redness, or smell persists you will need to contact your vet. Don’t neglect bad ears. It can in its worst case lead to deafness. Another sign of trouble is dark hair growing from the ears. Have it checked!

Cardigan ears may need taping if they aren't coming up by about 10 weeks or so.  Some people are able to accomplish this in a neat and tidy manner but not me!  I cover the ear with duck tape making sure the ear is flat inside the tape.  Then bridge the ears together.  It works.


                                       As much as I hate to do it, we need to keep the nails cut                                            short. Again, a trip to the groomer every 6 weeks can take                                          care of this. Or you can do it yourself. Get a nail cutter at                                          the pet store and some powder to stop the bleeding. 
                                       Clip the nails back a little at a time until you get the hang
                                       of it. If you draw blood use the powder and then let them 
sit in their crate. Look at this diagram and cut on the "c" line and the lower portion will wear away. 

It works best to make sure the dog’s coat is out of the way and even if you don’t do the 
clipping your self you should frequently examine the feet and hold each toe while the pup 
is young so they get used to it. I often use a nylon stocking pulled over the foot to hold 
the coat back while I trim on Wheatens.

IF the pup screams (some sound like they are dying) ignore it and insist on gently but very 
firmly looking or clipping. They need to get used to it. Praise the calm moments even if they 
are a split second long!!!!

In the winter it’s nice to make sure the pads don’t have too much hair between them to 
catch ice and trim the Wheaten's hair between the pads.  Cardigans don't need this.