We get lots of email asking for help perhaps your answer is here.
I would love a wolfhound puppy where can I get one from?
First of all read all you can on the breed, don't impulse buy and never from someone willing to sell you a puppy without asking lots of questions and getting to know you . If you are sure you are interested then contact your nearest Irish Wolfhound Club for information on who has puppies for sale. You might consider a rescue dog and you will be thoroughly vetted before your name is put on a list.
Our wolfhound Club address for the U.K. is http://www.irishwolfhoundclub.org.uk/home.html
My puppy is growing fast how can I give him the best care?
Do not allow your puppy to jump up and down from cars or furniture or run up and down stairs. Also if your puppy wears a collar check regularly that it is not to tight, they grow so quickly it may go unnoticed!. Read through our website it has lots of tips to help you care for your dog.
I am worried about bloat ( Torsion) what are the signs?
If you're dog has any of these signs, obviously uncomfortable, drooling heavily, staring and cold to the touch or retching (a dog that is sick with yellow bile is probably hungry and needs fed) and he may also look fatter at the early stages then it is possibly bloat, sometimes they go off down the garden and lie quietly on their own, I have heard of two doing this. I have only had two dogs bloat in thirty years of living with wolfhounds so don't be too alarmed. Most wolfhound people in the U.K. feed their dogs at shoulder height as advised by our club and we always soak kibble, we feed lower protein food and never exercise an hour before or after feeding, after many years of different ideas this is thought to be the best. However everyone has their own theory on bloat and no one is an expert, it is a bit like cot deaths no one can explain them either. In my opinion if your dog is susceptible to bloat then no matter how careful you are or how you feed it will happen. It is not hereditary nor has anything to do with temperament. I have had wolfhounds bolt their food at an incredible rate and they have lived full happy lives without a problem I have also had one bitch who carefully picked at hers and she did take bloat, so you see it can happen no matter what kind of eater they are.
You have a very short time to save your dogs life; ( 20 mins) vetinary treatment should be urgently sought if you suspect your dog has bloat.
If your dog does have bloat and needs to be operated on, then please make sure your vet stitches the stomach to the outside wall to prevent it twisting again. We know of a beautiful four year old who took bloat and was operated on; was sent home and bloated again, the second operation caused peritonitis and she did not survive.
How can I stop my puppy biting me?
Puppies are just like children, distract them with a toy and if they continue to bite at you then take them by the scruff of the neck and GENTLY shake them saying a firm NO.
My puppies feet are turning out the way what is wrong?
Puppies legs will turn out a little while they grow, over exercising can make their legs turn out too much so cut back on the exercise and you should see a difference. Do not totally restrict exercise; you have to develop muscle and it is overdeveloped muscle that will push the bone out of shape. Jumping up and down stairs can damage growing bones so be careful.
Are you feeding high protein food? Vets will try to get you to use it. They do NOT always know best, they listen to the salesmen telling them how wonderful their products are and how much profit they could make selling it! If so change to a much lower percent around 20 is the best, after he is off his puppy biscuit. Slow growth rate produces a much thicker stronger bone and don't supplement with extra vitamins; Milk if the puppy can tolerate it is sufficient.. Around a half pint twice a day for a growing wolfhound. Feed two meals of kibble and meat and two of porridge and milk. Cut back to three when he leaves one of his meals. Then as he stops his rapid growth cut back to two.
How much exercise should my puppy get?
Garden exercise is enough for a young dog. As long as your garden is not huge, let him play around on his own and he will be fine. Do NOT let children run with him he will then get to much. You can take him for very short lead walks to get him used to it and when he has finished his rapid growth then increase his walks gradually.
My puppy sleeps a lot is he ok?
As long as a puppy is eating and drinking looks bright and happy then do not worry about them, they do need a lot of sleep they have a lot of growing to do! However if your puppy is not tested for liver-shunt then he may be ill, is he growing properly or is he a lot smaller than he should be? If he is not tested then have him checked out. All good breeders in the UK test for liver-shunt and no one should buy a dog without a certificate.
My puppy has traces of blood in his faeces what has happened.
Something in his diet has upset his digestive system. It may be that your puppy no longer has tolerance to milk, stop giving him cows milk or change to goats milk. If you are feeding tinned food then make sure it is for puppies. If that fails change his kibble. If he is stressed or obviously ill then take him to your vet.
My dog takes a long time to recover from exercise is this normal?
If you have ruled out hot weather, overweight and you have not taken him on long walks before or often then he may have a problem, have your vet check him out.
I cannot let my dog off the lead as he just keeps running away from me.
Take your dog to an enclosed field or tennis court. Let him off the lead and have some tasty treats handy( cooked liver chopped into small pieces works wonders). Call him in and when he does eventually get close, take his collar and give him the reward, praise him highly then let him go. (If he runs off don't chase him, turn around and walk away, hide from him he should panic and come looking for you.) Do this regularly but don't always give him the treat though do remember to praise him, never scold him or he will not come back. If you cannot get an enclosed area either walk him with an obedient dog or use an extending lead to train him to come back. He will eventually come to you without a problem. Most important when training a dog is your voice, you must be firm and mean it. Please don't give up, your dog deserves to be able to run free in the forest, along a beach or a huge field.
My dog pulls on the lead and it is no fun walking him
When training a dog to walk at heel do not hold him there; let him out on his lead and then keep pulling him back giving the command close or heel. You must be firm and you can treat him now and again. Use a horses rope as a lead ( it is also very comfortable in you hand) and you can loop it over the tops of his legs, clip the lead on as normal; make a loop large enough to go over his head and let this sit over the top of his legs, hold the lead and the loop in you hand, he won't pull.
I have occasionally had people contacting me from around the world to say they have problems with their hounds. Why? Because they are using food recommended not by their breeder, who have in some cases years of experience, but by some well meaning 'dog expert'. The breeder is then blamed for the dog being cow-hocked, lame etc.
High protein food and supplements forces bone in wolfhounds causing hot painful joints, twisted legs and possibly bloat, vets then want to (and do) x-rays and all sorts of weird and wonderful diagnoses are made including hip-displasia! I know of a case where a wolfhound of 8 months had his front legs broken by a vet and reset straight! The joints were of course ruined and the dog was PTS at 3 years old. I have heard of 3 cases where a young wolfhound not fully grown was x-rayed and diagnosed with hip displasia, you cannot x-ray a pup who is still growing, his joints will be all over the place and I have never heard of HD in a wolfhound. All those puppies were soon sorted out by a change of diet using a lower protein feeding so be warned.
We have used Proplan Athletic available to anyone in the UK USA and parts of Europe. We have never had bloat or joint problems on this food (we are not paid to promote it). We genuinely believe it is the best feeding for our beloved hounds. It is an excellent food and our dogs love it. We also feed tripe and meat with the soaked biscuit, fed at shoulder level.
Our puppies are started off on Proplan Puppy and are on the adult biscuit by ten weeks without any problems. We feed Pedigree puppy meat with this soaked biscuit.
Please listen to the people who have cared for and raised a puppy for you to enjoy, not destroy!
If this has not helped you then please email us, we are always willing to help, we can help you with most dog related problems and of course our advice is free.
Finally once again can we warn people NOT to buy from puppy mills