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Help/opinions PLEASE!

1549 Views 13 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  selzer
Hello I am new to the board and I have an issue with a new GSD that I just purchased.
Let me begin from the begining and please bare with me because it is a rather long story.

I have never owned a GSD before, I have always had black labs and currently still have a 11 year old male. Me, my wife and 8 year old daughter moved into a new house recently, we live in a secluded area, with our closest neighbor being about 1/4 mile away and we have about 8 acres of property. I have a detached garage that was recently broken into and some things stolen. anyway between being robbed and me working third shift with my wife and daughter being home alone at night I wanted to get a dog that would be somewhat protective( my lab is deaf, so he is no help in this area) but also be a good family member. We decided on a GSD and here is where the fun started.
I found a local breeder selling 8 week old GSD puppies, we went last Friday to the breeder met the parents and picked a female pup. We brought the pup home and things where fine except the pup was not eating very well for the first few days. I had taken the pup to the vet on Tuesday for a checkup and to get one of her shots. I told the vet that she was not eating very well and he said to try wetting down her food but overall the pup looked good, well we tried the wetting down of the food and she still would not eat she drinks plenty of water but will not eat.

I happened upon this site several days ago and noticed that an 8 week old female GSD should weigh about 16 lbs, my pup weighs 4.2 lbs, red flags went up in my head. I called the vet back today and explained my concerns and he said that he did not think the pup was 8 weeks old when he saw it, I am not sure why he did not tell me this on our visit but he did not. When I got off the phone with him I called the breeder and she said that in fact the put was 8 weeks old when she sold it to us, I told her the vet did not think so and she said in not so may words that the vet is crazy. I told her I will take the pup to another vet and if he said the same thing would she pay for the vet bill, she became mad and said to just bring the dog back and I will refund your money. I should also mention that the vet said to put the pup on a milk replacement to see if she would eat this. I discussed taking the pup back with my wife and we agreed to try the milk replacement to see is she would eat, I tried it and the pup would not drink it, at this point I am getting very concerned with the pup not eating so I fried up a bit of ground meat and tried to feed her it, she would not eat it either but I left it with her and eventually she did eat it.

That is the story, does anybody have any recomendations on what I should do? should I take the pup back?

A few more facts about the pup.
She does try to play with my other dog and her and our cat do play together, it is not like she is on her death bed, she does have some energy but not as much as I think she should have.

She is still pooping, it is all diarea and I will occasionally see a spot of blood in it.

Sorry for such a long and confusing post but I have a million things going through my head and I wanted to get as much info as I could in this post.

Please any help would be appreciated. Thanks
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How did you find the breeder? Ad, newspaper, word of mouth?
What kind of health testing does the breeder do on their breeding stock?
What does your contract say about health, returns, etc.?

I realize that I don't have all the details in this case, but it sounds to me like you didn't end up with a very good breeder, one who may have sent you home with a pup that was too young to be sold (if your vet is correct) and a pup that might also be seriously ill.

If your puppy is not eating and has diarrhea with blood in it, I would be seriously concerned - that is not a good thing in a pup this young and she can easily become dehydrated, even if she's drinking water. Has your vet done any testing to see what is causing this? Has she been under vet care at all other than for the one shot?

Personally, I would probably return the puppy to the breeder and ask for a refund. You can then invest that refund in a puppy or a young dog from a better breeder or from a rescue. Personally, I would go with a young adult, especially if you want a dog that will "alert" if a stranger is on your property while your wife and daughter are home alone - a puppy wouldn't do that, anyway.
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The blood and diarrhea worries me. Mainly the fear of Parvo. Which could also be why she's refusing food. I'd take her to the vet for a check on that just to be sure. Though I also think by now, if the puppy had Parvo you'd for sure know it. But never hurts to check into it just in case and I'd do it ASAP because Parvo is deadly if not treated and in such a young pup, it'd hit them fast and extra hard. Did you tell your vet about her poops? If so, what'd they say?

I'd pick up some quality canned cat food (Since it tends to be smellier than canned food for dogs) and mix a little into the kibble and see if she eats it then.

I wish you the best of luck with your new puppy! It sucks to bring them home and realize somethings wrong.
(One of the reasons I'm so paranoid about Parvo)
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first i would have some tests done, i don't like the presence of blood in the stool/diarrhea. there is a reason why the pup is not eating, and if your vet doesn't seem to comply with your wishes to investigate the problem, i would go to another one. then when you get the results i would present it to the breeder, and decide at that point whether you want to keep the pup or not, get a refund, etc.
there is definitely a problem.......

Vet-hold your breath until some of these things (off the top of my head) are done: bloodwork, parvo testing, fecals, temperature taken, possibly x-rays in case of obstruction, etc. or find a new vet.

What would the breeder do if you took the puppy back I wonder?

The GSD is one breed where one must be *very careful* in finding a breeder. Just scouting the newspaper for someone who happens to have a litter of GSDs is nearly as risky as playing Russian Roulette. There are umpteen health problems in the breed, temperament issues, this is no easy breed! But when getting a pup from the right breeder, the GSD is magical, the best there is.

If you take the pup back, I wonder about her fate. She could be put down, which wouldn't be the worst thing to happen. Can you post a photo of your pup? Many of us here can look at a pup and know the age range. Some breeders could say that the pup is 8 weeks when in fact it's only 5 weeks of age- in many areas it is illegal to sell under 8 weeks. Anyway, have a THOROUGH checkup with the vet. And next time you're looking for a GSD pup, come to us first! We can give you tons of recommendations in what to look for in finding your perfect breeder/puppy match.
Welcome aboard, wish it were under better circumstances!
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Welcome to the forum.

If you are not too attached to the puppy take it back and get a refund. For you to have all this testing done is ludicrous. A good breeder should be selling healthy dogs with a good appetite with good stools right from the beginning. You should have gotten some type of paperwork indicating what kind of shots and worming the pup has already received which would give you an indication of the age and that the pup has been well cared for. Also the name of the vet the breeder uses would be on the paperwork who you could call for additional info. For the breeder of your pup to get defensive is a red flag as well.

I don't know your history with the vet you went to but if the vet was any good, he should have spoken up about what he was thinking because you are paying for his expertise and professional opinion.

The idea of returning a pup is heartbreaking because of the attachement already formed, but you may be better off in the long run. Only you can make the decision what to do with the dog because we don't know how much time, money and risks you are willing to invest into the puppy. Good luck.
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Can you take and post pictures so we can see her? And if you go into the pictures pictures pictures you can see alot of other photos of puppies to compare yours.

The ones listed as 5 week old by Chris Wild in particular.
My pups are born weighing between 13 and 17 ounces. If this pup is only four pounds, it is probably three or four weeks old tops. I do not like the blood in the stool, but it is probably even young for having been vaccinated. Usually I start them at six weeks.

Arwen was just under six weeks old when I got her and six pounds so I suppose it is possible that your pup is small and 4 weeks.

If I wanted the puppy to eat, I would try raw hamburger, though at this age, they might like it to be a little warm too. After a couple of days add a little rice. But I think that you should really take the baby back. On the flip side the evil sack of poo that sold this pup is probably not going to provide for it any better than you can. But she should not have your money. But you may be able to save this pup and give her a good home.

The decision is yours and I support whatever you choose. Poor pup.

Please consider calling animal control and having them check her out and check out her records. If the pup has papers, call the registering agency. The AKC does perform inspections on kennels and does look at paperwork, though they will not do it on demand, if enough people complain she may make their list. I think the breeder should be held accountable. Even if they cannot rake her over the coals they can cause a bit of discomfort for the audit. I do not say this lightly, I breed GSDs and think that this type of behavior should be really discouraged.
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Well thank you everybody for the great advice, as chance's mom had suggested I tried some cat food and Rutu gobbled it up. I decided to try some canned dog food and she has been eating very well. I bet she has gained 2 pounds in the last three days. She is full of energy and is a holly terror to our cat.
I have not seen any more blood in her her poop but she still has some dirarea, I hope this clears up in a few days.

Once again, thank you all for the advice and if I should ever have any further questions I will not hesitate to post them here.
I brought our pup home at 6 1/2 weeks (knowingly too early, but a decision we made)... and he was already over 11 lbs.

Okay - read your last post, and glad to hear there is improvement. Perhaps the pup was not weened yet, or properly. Best of luck!!! Hope you have a great dog for many years.
Can you post pics of the pup? Might help us guess her age. I can't imagine an 8 wo pup weighing 4lbs. More likely the pup is 3-5 weeks old, in which case she probably wasn't properly weaned so isn't entirely sure what to do with solid food.

Cat food isn't a good choice for puppies. It will get calories into her, which is important, but the nutrition profile is all wrong for a young puppy. Canned dog food is better. I would also try taking some regular dog food, mixing it with the milk replacer and soaking it until it is mushy, and giving her that. More calories per ounce than canned food, and will give her the proper nutrition. This is what we wean our pups with.

It also might help to feed her near your other dog at mealtimes. Puppies, especially ones as young as she probably is, are used to competition at feeding time. It's generally several pups in a mad scramble to eat, and that energy and needing to get in there and get the food before it's all gone helps them eat well. Take away that competition for food, and cues that it's time to eat, and some pups can become rather laxidasical about eating. If you can use your older dog to help cue her that its meal time, it may help. Not eating out of the same bowl, but near one another.
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Glad the puppy is finally eating.

I'd take this pup to another vet because:

The vet should have told you his observation about age and if you've had concerns about diarrhea - especially with blood - the vet should run another fecal exam at the very least.

I'd probably never take the puppy back - I'd be too attached by now.

Good luck!
And be sure it is milk replacer made for dogs, cows milk is not good for puppies and will cause more diahreah.

I wean my lot on regular kibble soaked in hot water and give it to them when the gruel is a little warmer than luke warm. But they still have mom to get drinks of milk from occasionally until they are eating good on the kibble.
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