Sheepadoodles are a combination of the Old English sheepdog and the Standard Poodle. These adorable fluffy mixes, especially when they are pups, are hard to resist. Thinking of buying one soon? Here’s an ultimate guide in owning Sheepadoodle puppies.
The Process of Sheepadoodle Pup Ownership
The recommended age for adopting puppies is at least when they reached the seventh week. By this stage, they are ready for weaning and they can start eating solid foods.
Don’t rush bringing your new pet home because the first few weeks are vital for his development. Apart from the stimulation he gets around his mother, your pup needs enough play time with his siblings. These are keys factors in his proper development.
If you haven’t tried adopting or buying a pup before, here are the typical procedures that you will go through before getting one:
- Connect with your prospect breeder. State your preferences and answer all the breeder’s questions accurately. This will help the breeder gauge your seriousness and commitment in having a puppy. Many breeders these days already have their websites and social media pages so connecting with them will be easy.
- Reserve a pup. This involves paying a deposit to ensure your breeder will not sell the pup to anyone else. On their part, it guarantees you will not buy one from another breeder. A breeder usually requests a deposit if they have a waiting list and if you have special preferences.
- Choose from the litter. It’s best to observe the pups in person while in action. This also gives you a chance to look closer so you can see if the pup has any fleas or skin problems. Observing in person will give you an idea which pup to take based on your preferences. Do you want a playful pup? The most active in the litter may be the right one for you.
- Track the puppy’s progress. The breeder should update you regarding the development of the puppies. Some breeders allow visiting the pup as early as the first week but they don’t allow going near the pup. You can only watch from afar.
- Arrange on how you will take your pup home. Your puppy’s essentials should be ready at home. Take a look at our checklist of must-have puppy supplies so you can prepare them in advance.
- Bring your new buddy home. Congratulations on your new puppy! The first few weeks may be a bit challenging but it’s normal because your buddy is adjusting to his new surroundings. Just a tip, consider a travel crate. It will be a big help when picking up your Sheepadoodle puppy.
Checklist of Puppy Essentials
- Puppy food
- Vitamins and supplements
- Food and water bowls
- Grooming tools
- Collar and leash
- Dog tags
- Chew toys
- Potty training tools
Apart from shopping for new items for your dog, it’s also time to find a local vet. You may ask for recommendations from friends or family members. You may also check the vet’s evaluation records at the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) website.
Once you have the recommendations, you may want to visit the clinic to see if you will be comfortable with the overall feel of their facility. It should be clean, organized, and have modern equipment. The most important of all is you have a good rapport with your veterinarian because this could be a long-term relationship.
Health Testing Requirements
Sheepadoodles parents should be genetically tested to see if there’s any condition they could pass on to the pups. Degenerative myelopathy is one of the relevant exams needed for both the Old English sheepdog and Standard Poodle.
Ask for relevant health clearances from your breeder. These records will give you the details regarding any possible health concerns related to the mix. In most cases, these dogs are fairly healthy but this does not mean they could not inherit certain conditions from their parents, like Cushing’s disease, bloating, and joint swelling.
Vaccinations are significant for young dogs because they are more vulnerable to infections compared to adult dogs. When your pup is still with his mother, he gets protection from diseases from the milk. But once it is weaned, it is recommended to have it vaccinated before letting it get along with other dogs.
Your puppy should already have his shots for distemper, measles, and parainfluenza. These core vaccines should be administered from 6 to 8 weeks of age. It should be followed by the DHPP vaccine which is for distemper, adenovirus, parainfluenza, and parvovirus. It can be given from the 10th week until the 12th.
Starting from 12 weeks of age, your puppy can start receiving other core vaccines like rabies and three more shots of DHPP. Depending on your state’s law on rabies, your puppy may need to have his rabies vaccine every one to three years.
Spaying or neutering
More than 5 million animals are euthanized across the United States each year. Overpopulation is a big problem but it can be prevented by spaying or neutering a dog. This process involves removing an animal’s reproductive organ.
Starting from the eighth week, female dogs can already be spayed. It is advisable to do this before a female dog reaches her first heat cycle. This varies per breed but it normally occurs from the sixth to the seventh month of age. It is recommended to do it at an early age because doing it later on will put a dog at higher risk for complications.
Like female dogs, male dogs can also undergo reproductive organ removal starting at eight weeks of age. Neutered dogs will not chase female dogs in season, will not be as aggressive as un-neutered dogs, and will not contribute to canine overpopulation.
Deworming Your Puppy
Deworming is important for puppies because they are prone to intestinal parasites like tapeworms, whipworms, and hookworms. A dog should be treated with a worming medication before these parasites live inside their gastrointestinal tract and cause diseases.
Many breeders already worm the puppies before handling them to the buyers. But you have to get your dog de-wormed at least three times a year for the rest of his life. Deworming dogs involve giving them two doses of Pyrantel. This medication is used for treating parasitic worm infections and should be administered orally.
Many countries all over the world, especially the members of the European Union, require dogs to be microchipped. It’s the process of implanting a small electronic chip under the dog’s skin. It is useful when locating dogs in case they stray or if they are stolen. If you live in a country where microchipping is mandatory, ask your breeder if your pup is already microchipped.
Establishing Household Rules
Before bringing your new pup home, it’s important to adapt your household to the new member of the family. If you have kids, it’s important to supervise them around the pups. You may also train them how to properly handle the Sheepadoodle so they will not be too rough with them during playtime. Young kids, especially those ages five and below often end up mishandling their new pups.
Sheepadoodles usually take the size of the Old English Sheepdogs. They can be a bit large as puppies. If you have a 25 lbs. inactive pup, you may want to start with two cups of puppy formula a day. This can be gradually increased to three cups of formula per day. Once your pup reaches adulthood, you should reduce his meal proportions.
Work with your vet in determining the right amount of food for your Sheepadoodle. Your dog’s level of activities, current weight, and health conditions will be detrimental in determining the right amount of food for him.
Starting at eight weeks, puppies can also have human food but it is better to offer it gradually and in small amounts. Also read about all the human foods your dog cannot eat. Examples of foods to avoid are chocolate, salty food, macadamia nuts, grapes, and raisins.
Puppies may also munch on fruits and vegetables, but be selective. Also, make sure to slice the fruits in bite-sized pieces so your pup will not have a hard time chewing. Remove the core or the pit if there’s any. When it comes to vegetables, consider cooking them lightly because raw veggies can be hard on a pup’s stomach.
Your Sheepadoodle pup may constantly gnaw especially during the teething stage, so better keep those chew treats in handy. If you noticed that you have a powerful chewer, buy a durable chew toy and always consider safety in mind when buying one. Dogs need to be supervised while playing with their chew toys.
For potty training, you will need poop bags, pooper scooper, potty pads, and treat pouch. Prior to the training period, you may want to invest in doggie diapers. They are a useful house-training tool, especially if you are quite busy. Just don’t forget to take your pup outside from time to time so he will be introduced to what potty training is all about.
You can start house training your pup as early as 12 weeks. In fact, experts recommend puppy training early. Waste pick-up is an unpleasant task but investing in a swivel bin and rake can make your job easier. Apart from lots of patience, a tool like this can make the back-breaking chore less complicated than it looks like.
If you think your pup does not have enough control of his bladder yet, you can wait until he’s 16 weeks old. What’s important is you will be consistent when it’s time for training. You should take the puppy to a certain spot where he is allowed to eliminate first thing in the morning. Take him there every time he does his business so he will get used to the process.
You will need tools like a brush or comb, nail clippers, blood stop powder, toothbrush and toothpaste, and shampoo. It helps to do your research before buying these items. Invest in quality items, rather than cheap ones that will only take months to use.
This mix does not shed a lot, thanks to the poodle’s non-shedding coat. That is especially true if you own an F1 sheepadoodle. Still, these pups require regular grooming to maintain the softness of their coat. It will be nice to have a nice-toothed comb and a rake for weekly brushing.
How to Help Your Puppy Adjust to His New Home
Did you know that it will take three months before a dog becomes comfortable with his new environment? Hence, it is important to take it easy. Make him comfortable by giving him his crate. Your new buddy will need a spot where he can rest and stay safe. Many breeders believe crating a pup helps him potty train faster.
Sheepadoodle Puppy Price
In case you are wondering how much it will cost you to bring a sheepadoodle puppy home, expect to pay anywhere from $600 – $2,500. Mini sheepadoodles may cost twice and may range from $2,000- $4,500 each. Registrable puppies are usually more expensive than non-registrable pups.
Sheepadoodles can be registered with the International Designer Canine Registry. Since 2009, the International Designer Canine Association has also started accepting registrations for Sheepadoodles.
Sheepadoodles are just like any puppy. They may have difficulty adjusting to their new home during the first few weeks but you can help your pup adjust by easing the transition for him. It’s important to be easy on the first few weeks while helping your buddy get used to his new surroundings. Prepare his essentials like his food, crate, and grooming tools ahead of time. Also work with a veterinarian to ensure your dog stays healthy throughout his life.