Your new puppy should come to Parkside for a free first check as soon as you have the pup. Your pup will receive a full clinical examination and this ensures all is well with the new family member.  You will receive good guidance on general care, feeding, deworming, fleas and lots more. Also, pick up a free Puppy Pack, with food sample and lots more. For unbiased advice, see this video puppy care and training.

We recommend the Parkside VIP pet health plan for dogs, to allow you spread over 12 months, the cost of vaccinations, flea prevention and worming. Your dog will receive 2 Vet examinations per year, extra special offers for VIP dogs as well as 10% OFF neutering, dentals, acupuncture, 25% off kennel cough vaccine and half-price microchips. Pick up a brochure, with costs at any surgery. If you start this at first vaccinations, the second dose will be half-price!

We recommend the booklet "Good Puppy" by Erica Peachey for sound advice and good common sense for training and rearing a puppy - don't wait for a problem - read this first! (sold at cost price at all surgeries)

De-worm pups every 2 weeks (from 2-3 weeks of age) until 12 weeks of age - use something from us - it will be cheaper than pet-shops and much more effective.

Vaccinate at 8 and 10 weeks (or as soon as possible if older) - see vaccinations for details. If older, you still need 2 weeks between vaccinations. Dogs need vaccinated every year thereafter to maintain their proyection. See notes on Parvovirus infection HERE.

OVERVIEW HERE -  have first vaccination done at 8 weeks old or soon after and it is worth giving kennel cough vaccine at this time too. This is in the form of nasal drops. Second vaccination is 2 weeks after the first, also a good time to microchip your pup. Remember that all dogs must have this done in Scotland by 6th April 2016. Pups can go out for walks 1 week after the second jab, though playing in your garden or where no other dogs have access, is fine when younger.Attend FREE Parkside Puppy Parties after vaccinations for advice and leaflets on canine care - great for early puppy socialisation. We can advise on where to go to keep this going.

Vet Check at 6 months to ensure development is normal.

De-worm again at 6 months - use a complete, one-dose wormer, which covers all tapeworms and roundworms in one effective tablet. This is usually crushed, in food. Read more about worming HERE. You must de-worm every 4 months after 6 months of age especially if you have a young family and if your dog scavenges when out. Some pups have the bad habit of eating other dogs faeces when out and if your pup does this, you should deworm every month. Look out for Parkside offers on wormers! Our wormers are always cheaper than in big pet shops.

Arrange neutering around 6 months of age too, if you wish this done. Most dogs are neutered. This involves arranging a suitable day when your dog comes to surgery between 8.30 and 9am and can be picked up, same day, mid to late afternoon. Sutures are removed 10 days later. Pain relief is included. Occasionally we may recommend to wait a bit longer, but please allow us to advise.

At 10-12 months of age make a FREE nurse's appointment for a health check. Good to weigh and check weight at this time, when growth has finished. Pick up wormers at same time.

Vet check at 15 months and annual Vaccination Booster.

Yearly checks and vaccinations thereafter.

When your dog is elderly, we may recommend 6-monthly senior health checks, with free urine test - if you bring the sample!



New pups should always be fed the same food as they were eating before purchased. After five to seven days, if preferred, you can change over gradually to a new food you may prefer. Avoid finishing one brand and then starting a different one. Change over gradually by mixing the two foods together for 5-7 days. Dry or Moist is your choice. One is not any better than the other, though dry (complete) is more convenient. Do not feed a complete food with meat. If you feed meat (moist food) you should use a plain mixer biscuit to balance the meat and not a complete (already balanced) food.

A young puppy should be fed 4 times daily till 12 weeks of age, then down to 3 meals (as they are bigger, they can eat more in one go) then at 5 months down to 2 meals daily and at a year down to one, or you can stay on two smaller meals. When a puppy, you can feed "to appetite" - i.e. as much as they can eat in one sitting! Best NOT to leave food down after a meal as your dog will become picky and eat less at a time, which is not best for their tummies in the long term. If they leave food, take it away. From 5 months of age you cannot continue to feed to appetite as growth is slowing down and they will tend to become overweight, so you must "feed to effect" i.e. feed enough to keep the correct weight. Because they are growing and becoming heavier, weighing is not very informative, so you need to go "by feel". You should always easily feel their ribs and you should feel the tips of the spine when you stroke down their lower back. If you cannot, then they are too fat!


TRAINING club is always recommended. Mainly to train you to train your pup, which gives a well behaved dog who is an even bigger pleasure to have around!












A great source of advice for buying a pup can be found in this downloadable booklet. CLICK HERE


Dogs are domesticated mammals that are descended from the wolf. Dogs are omnivores (can eat meat and veg) and in the wild usually hunt in packs. There are large numbers of breeds of dogs as well as crossbred animals (mongrels). Because of this, there are a tremendous variety of physical features to be seen across the breeds. Size can vary from the small Chihuahua (approx. 15cm tall) to the huge Irish Wolfhound (up to 100cm tall). Correspondingly, weight too can vary enormously, with the St. Bernard being one of the heaviest (approx. 75kg).

Ears may be pointed and erect or drooping. As most dogs are covered in hair and they have no sweat glands, they can only keep cool by panting, losing heat through their throat and tongue. Dogs' coats may be of various lengths and textures and most have two coats, an outercoat and undercoat. However, all dogs in the wild shed their coat (moult) twice a year, triggered by daylight hours and temperature. Animals that live indoors may moult all year, as these two factors are more constant.

Dogs are one of the most intelligent of domestic animals and can be readily trained - as well trained as you train them. Different breeds have different natural instincts e.g. herding, hunting, and guarding. Dogs also have very acute senses of hearing and smell. All these specific traits are used to train working dogs - guide dogs, sniffer dogs, helping dogs, hearing dogs, even therapy dogs, whose job is to go round hospitals and homes and be stroked. Now there's a niche! 

The breed of a dog is most important when choosing one for a pet. Feeding and exercise requirements vary along with temperament and a lot of thought is needed to find one to suit the individual's needs. A dog is not suitable if no-one is home during the day all week-days. Do not get a St Bernard if you have a 2-room flat. Call us if you would like advice. Allow us to check your new pup for free as soon as you have bought it - just to ensure all is well. This is free!