Why are puppies so expensive right now?

Covid-19 has had a profound effect on the puppy market in the UK. With many people (especially those living alone) seeking lockdown companions, the prices of new puppies have inevitably soared, with some puppies now selling for up to a whopping £3,000, or even more for more in-demand breeds.

Be careful who you buy from

If you’re looking to buy a pup yourself, you might, quite understandably, be put off by the massive price tag that pups are carrying these days. What’s more, you might run into unscrupulous breeders looking to profit off the pandemic by selling dogs through what’re called puppy farms. 

These are commercial dog breeding facilities where dogs are bred very quickly, and often in poor conditions. Once born the pups are removed from their mothers as quickly as possible in order to turn a fast profit. Sadly, removing the dogs from their mothers at such an early age isn’t only traumatising for the pups, but also exhausting for the mother as well, and can lead to behavioural problems for both the pups and the parent animal.

A big red flag to watch out for when researching breeders is whether or not the breeder will let you come to their home to see the pup. Reputable puppy sellers will invite you into their homes to choose your new pup, whereas puppy farm sellers will ask to meet you in a public place like a café, or even worse, try to send you a pup via a courier, something which is very upsetting for the animal. 

A pup is for life

Although it might not seem like it right now, things will go back to normal eventually, and you need to make sure that when they do your pup will still get the love and attention it needs to have a happy life.

If you’re working from home every day now, but are going to be going back to working five days a week in an office next year, your pup is going to be on its own all day and suffer from separation anxiety, boredom and loneliness as a result. Please bear this in mind when considering buying a new puppy! 

Rescue dogs need a home too

Rehoming a rescue animal can give a dog or pup that hasn’t had the best start in life a second chance, and give you the companion you want at the same time. These dogs might require a little extra time and attention, but will reward you tenfold with love and affection for changing their lives for the better. You can find out about rescue dogs near you by using the RSPCA website.

Whether you adopt a rescue dog and transform its life or buy a puppy from a reputable breeder, you’ll quickly become very attached to your new pet and, naturally, want to look after it in the best way you can.

Cover My’s pet insurance packages enable you to do exactly that, with cover including everything from vet’s fees and theft to holiday cancellation and complimentary treatment – why not find out more by getting a quote today?

Top 10 tips for puppy training

Getting a new puppy is a fun and exciting time, but it isn’t without its challenges. An essential (and sometimes neglected) part of forming a bond with your new puppy is the process of properly training them.

How hard this is will depend on a variety of factors, from the type of breed you’ve got to whether or not you’re a first-time owner, and whilst there may be times when training your new friend can be difficult, ultimately it’s one of the most rewarding experiences there is for any dog owner.

Why not try some of our top puppy-training tips to help you get started?

Name recognition

Teaching your new pup what his name is should be one of the first things on your puppy training agenda. To do this, get down on your pup’s level and say his name, whilst also gesturing for him to come closer.

When he does this, successfully, make sure your tone of voice is positive (good boy, well done etc.) and reward him with a treat for getting his new name right.

Give your pup its own space

Another of the first things you need to do before you get a new pup is ensure that you’ve got a private area for him to sleep in. All dogs need to have their own space, and giving your new pup a cage filled with blankets for him to relax in during the day and sleep in at night will help him to feel secure and safe, and make the process of moving into a new home less stressful.

Toilet training the smart way

If you catch your pup relieving himself somewhere he isn’t supposed to, saying ‘no!’ firmly and loudly whilst carrying your pup outside to finish off its business is the way to go.

Eventually, he’ll realise that you don’t appreciate your floor being covered in mess, and will only go when being walked or even stand at the door to let you know he needs to be let out.

Biting is bad

Even though watching your new pup chew your finger or hand can be adorable to watch, the last thing you want is for your pup to carry this habit into adulthood (especially if he’s a larger breed).

A good way to prevent this is to loudly pretend that you’re in pain when your pup tries to bite you – this will usually shock your pup so much that they’ll stop immediately, and once he stops give him a chew toy straight after so he understands what’s okay for him to bite.

Should you neuter your dog?

You may also want to consider neutering you dog in the future once he’s gotten a bit older. Doing this may make your more docile and friendly rather than aggressive, and can help make your dog more child-friendly if he’s a larger, more boisterous breed.

Be gentle when toilet training

If you find that your puppy has had an accident while you were out the room or weren’t home, don’t be too harsh on them as this can frighten new dogs, especially if they’ve very young.

Instead, simply clean up the mess and aim to move your pup outside when he’s in the act of doing his business; this will help him learn much better than simply shouting at him when he’s already done wrong.

Start slowly

Once you’ve taught your dog the basics of toilet training and not biting people, you might want to start teaching him some tricks. It’s important to start with the basic ones first so your new pup understands the learning process; usually, starting to teach your dog to sit, stay and lay down are a good place to start.

Positive reinforcement

One of the most important things to remember when training your new puppy is to reward him when he’s done the right thing, whether this is using the toilet properly or successfully obeying a command you’re trying to teach him – giving a treat after he’s done the right thing is key to helping him learn what you want him to do.

Choose the right name!

In the puppy world, not all names are created equal. Strong, simple names that allow you to put emphasis on them when your saying them, like Marley, Max or Charlie will help your dog know when you’re talking to him and understand that’s what his name is.

Protect your pup for the future

Finally, it’s important to remember that no matter how well you look after your new pup, you never know what’s around the corner, and you need to be prepared for every eventuality.

At Cover My, we offer a full and comprehensive range of pet insurance options for our clients, including vet fees, complimentary treatment, third party liability and more. This means that no matter what happens, your four-legged friend will always be well-looked after with us.

Why not visit our homepage to find out more about how we can protect your pet’s future?

Cover My’s pet insurance packages enable you to do exactly that, with cover including everything from vet’s fees and theft to holiday cancellation and complimentary treatment – why not find out more by getting a quote today?

Best dog breeds for first-time owners

Getting your first pup is a wonderful experience; meeting, getting to know and training your new pet is one of the most rewarding parts of owning a pet, and an experience you’ll always remember. It’s going to be challenging, of course, and take time and patience for you to train your new pup to live with you, but in return you’ll have a new friend and a companion for life.

The only question is, what breed do you go for if you’ve never owned a dog before?

Papillon

This breed is a popular choice for first-time owners due to its small size, playful personality and fairly low need for grooming. You’ll need to give this breed a walk or two every day so that it gets enough exercise, but won’t need to worry about it being too rough around small children or having too much pent-up energy. A solid choice for the novice owner.

Golden Retriever

If you’re looking for something a little bigger, then the classic family dog, the Golden Retriever, might be for you. Loyal and affectionate, the Golden Retriever has a great temperament, and will love going for a run around at the park or regular long walks. It’s easy to see why this breed is one of the most popular in the UK!

Bichon Frise

Another small breed, the Bichon Frise is famous for its fluffy white coat that makes it almost toy-like in appearance. This breed is super-playful and will love regular playtimes and attention, making it a great choice if you’ve got small children in the house. You won’t need to worry about the dog becoming too boisterous at playtimes either – this breed doesn’t grow any bigger than the average sized ruler, and will grow to weigh around 5kg at the most.

Boxer

Energetic and brilliant around children, Boxer dogs are loved for their caring personalities and playful attitudes. They’re extremely loyal, and will love looking after your children at playtime or going for a run around in the park. They shed very little and have minimal grooming requirements, making them a common choice for first-time owners.

Lhasa Apso

This adorable breed originates from Tibet, and is a popular choice due to its fluffy coat, small stature and playful attitude. These dogs were actually used as watchdogs centuries ago to guard monasteries and palaces; they don’t guard castles anymore, but you’ll certainly know about it if your Lhasa Apso hears a fox in the garden during the night!

Labrador

Similar in size to the Golden Retriever, the Labrador is a fantastic choice if you’re a first-time owner that wants an active dog to play with or even to go for a jog with. They’re very easy to train and love learning new tricks, so if you’re after a dog to keep you company during your active lifestyle, then a Labrador might be the perfect pup for you.

Greyhound

Greyhounds are an interesting choice for a first-time owner. Their natural hunting instinct means that you’d have to be very careful not to let them near any small animals like cats or hamsters, and you’d have to be prepared to give them plenty of walks or trips outside to expend their energy.

Other than that, however, they’re fairly low maintenance, have very calm personalities and don’t shed, so you wouldn’t need to worry about stray hairs all over the place.

Maltese

One of the smallest breeds out there, Maltese dogs weigh on average around 7 pounds, making them cute, small and great for playing with small children. They’ve got bags of personality and will love getting affection from you, but won’t need huge amounts of exercise, making them a great choice for a first-time owner.

Poodle

Poodles are famous for their curly hair, but are loved for their calm and graceful temperament. They’re not as needy as some other dogs and won’t be constantly pestering you for affection; this may be due to the fact that they’re one of the most intelligent breeds of dog out there. As a result they’re highly trainable, and are great if you want a more relaxed dog that loves learning new things without being too hyperactive.

Yorkshire terrier

Yorkshire terriers are small, yappy dogs that are playful and affectionate, but won’t require too much exercise, making them easy to cater for if you’re a first-time owner. The only thing to be aware of is that their hair can grow quite long, and as a result they might cost a little more to groom regularly than other dogs.

Whatever breed of pup you decide to go for, you’re bound to quickly fall in love with it. While your dog may be around for only a period of your life, for your pup, you are their entire life, and as such they’ll need you to look after and care for them for as long as they’re with you.

At Cover My, we make sure that whatever may be around the corner, you’ll always be able to provide your new pup with the best healthcare available. We offer a range of competitive pet insurance options that guarantee both your own peace of mind and your pet’s healthcare. Why not get a quote today to see what your options are?