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Puppy’s First Vet Visit: Checklist & What to Expect

Puppy’s First Vet Visit: Checklist & What to Expect

It's always exciting to get a new puppy, but there are some things pet owners should know before bringing them to the vet. Today, our Laguna Woods vets explain what you can expect from your puppy's first visit to the vet.

Your Puppy's First Trip to the Vet

During your puppy's first visit to the veterinarian, they should do the following during their exam to help set your young dog up for success:

  • Weigh your puppy
  • Take your puppy's temperature
  • Listen to the heart and lungs for abnormalities
  • Look at the puppy's teeth and mouth
  • Examine the puppy's skin and coat
  • Palpate abdomen/lymph nodes
  • Examine the eyes, ears, nose, feet, and genitalia
  • Fecal Examination
  • Discuss the puppy’s medical history/concerns
  • Provide you with any medications required

What to Bring to Your Puppy's Visit

If possible, try to bring the following items to your puppy's first veterinary appointment. The more information your veterinarian has, the better they will be able to treat your new puppy.

  • A chew toy for distraction
  • A leash and collar/harness
  • A stool sample, as fresh as possible
  • Small treats to reward good behavior
  • Any veterinary records you have
  • A list of important questions or concerns
  • Notes about food/treats provided at home
  • A dog carrier or crate

It's important to note that small puppies will be more comfortable and safe in their crate. Don't expect that you will be able to carry a squirming puppy in your arms when visiting the clinic. Puppies will need to be kept under control using a leash and collar or a harness. Because of this, treats or a small toy is a good idea.

What to Ask Your Vet During Your Puppy's First Visit

Your veterinarians should be able to provide you with all of the information that you need to help your puppy grow and stay healthy. Based on the information provided above, if you have any questions that you think your vet has overlooked or if the information they gave you is confusing, feel free to ask for clarification. 

Having said that, a list of questions can help make the most out of your first visit. Here is a list of some good questions to ask your vet during the visit.

Health & Safety

Ask your vet the questions listed below, as well as any other health and safety concerns you may have.

  • Should I microchip my dog?
  • When should I spay or neuter my puppy?
  • How often does my puppy need to visit the vet?
  • How many times a day should my puppy poop?
  • What prevention measures are necessary?
  • Are there breed-specific health concerns?

Training & Behavior

Ask your vet for advice about any questions you have about behavior and training you may have, including those listed below.

  • Do you know any local trainers?
  • How do you potty train a puppy?
  • Do you recommend crate training? 
  • When can my puppy go to the groomer?
  • When can my puppy go to a dog park?
  • How long can she stay in her crate?
  • How much exercise does my puppy need?
  • How do I socialize my puppy with others?

Food

Find out what type of diet your puppy should have by asking your vet the following questions:

  • What should my puppy eat? 
  • How many times a day should my puppy eat?
  • When do puppies switch to adult dog food?

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets.

Is your new puppy due for their first trip to the vet? Contact our Laguna Woods vets to book an appointment.

New Patients Welcome

Laguna Hills Animal Hospital is welcoming new patients! Our vets are friendly, experienced, and passionate about caring for the health of the cats and dogs in Laguna Woods. Contact us today to schedule your pet's first appointment.

(949) 837-7333 Contact