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Week 3 - 5 Weeks Old

5 Weeks Old

Your puppy is 5 weeks old. Your puppy now looks like a puppy...soft, fluffy, cute, and playful. They are also responding to each other in playful, sometimes terrorizing, ways. They are finding their voices: tiny barks are being heard along with the dove cooing. 

Regroup and see if you have completed the previous week's homework. 

  • You should have ordered your NuVet. I will be notified by NuVet when you order and each time you order. You MUST order NuVet before you pick up your puppy. And your puppy must stay on NuVet for at least 2 years. Besides the health guarantee, NuVet is a must-have food supplement for your dog.  Cold-pressed and human-grade...we have seen first-hand what 30 days of NuVet does for our rescues and our puppies.

  • You will receive a video on how to order EO, where to order, and what to order. 

  • You have chosen your puppy. Have you sent me your puppy's name?

  • Have you sent me a SMALL blanket for YOUR puppy? Blankets should be rubbed all over your house and bodies. Then, send it to us for your puppy to begin to learn who you are. 

This week's homework will begin with registering your puppy's microchip number. 

1) Go to and set up a login and password. We will send you your puppy's ID number in another week. This is a two-step process; so, be sure to get a password now. Houndful Hearts will ALWAYS be on the microchip information as a backup in case your puppy goes missing, ends up in a shelter, etc. If you have any difficulties, please contact us directly. 

2) We are asked frequently about what size harness to purchase. We HIGHLY recommend the all-in-one harness/leash for your dog found at Purchase the small. It will be great for at least 6 months, then purchase the large. We HIGHLY recommend this halter. IT WORKS! We LOVE all the cute harnesses and collars you can purchase for dogs. We purchase them and our kids wear them on special occasions. The BEST collar for your dog for a lifetime is a chain collar, NOT a pinch collar. European Basset Hounds produce a ton of yeast and the dog's neck becomes inflamed and disgusting. By using a chain collar, the dog can ALWAYS have their ID on them, but the germs and gross stuff remain OUT of the chain links, and the links allow air to circulate keeping yeast from building up. 

3) We are waiting for AKC to send us YOUR puppy's AKC papers. Once you get the papers, you can decide to or not to register your puppy. If you decide to register our puppy, be sure to give the pick-up date. You will be entitled to 30 days of free health care, such as it is. The puppy's name on the AKC papers will be the name we choose. ALWAYS will your puppy be known by its AKC name even though the puppy's call name you will decide on. We choose to give the puppy its first name, and we use the call name as the secondary name on the AKC papers. We are HOPEFUL that AKC will send the papers to us BEFORE you pick up your puppy; this does not always happen though. If we do not receive the papers in a timely fashion, we will mail you the papers as soon as they arrive. Later down the road, should you need to call us, you'll want to share which litter your puppy/dog is from; the litter name (generally a letter, such as the J Litter) will be provided to you. 

4) We LOVE this company's products: They wash well, stay looking new forever, and have excellent construction. They are a bit expensive, but I cannot ever use anything else again--their products are that good!

5) You need to think about where your puppy will be when he or she gets home. You will need to block off an area and have a bed, water bowl, toys, and a sweater for a puppy. Size medium. Do you have a vet appointment?

We are entrusting one of our babies to you. We want ONLY the best for our/your puppy. We want your puppy to be healthy and free of any preventable situations. After many years of research and errors and learning hints while rescuing and breeding quality Basset Hounds, we present to you this list. It is completely your choice if you decide to provide this puppy with our experience and suggestions, he or she is your dog after all. NuVet is the most important thing for your dog, followed closely by the EO. 

This is a lot of information. If you are feeling overwhelmed, please call us, and we'll work together. 

As usual, please confirm you completed this week's homework via email. 


Margaret and Kyla

Feeding and Ear Care Guidelines

Feeding Guidelines and Recommendations

for Monitoring Growth Rates in Puppies

We don't believe in free feeding.

Feed-controlled portions four times a day until the puppy is 3 months old. Then, switch to three to four times a day until your puppy is 1 year old. Then, depending on how much exercise, feed twice a day. Remove any unused food after 30 minutes. 

Feed your puppy/dog in a quiet place. Some dogs eat too much or too quickly, especially in the presence of other dogs. 

Avoid feeding just prior to or just after exercise. Remember the old swimming rule? No eating an hour before swimming....

Feed healthy treats: apples, carrots, blueberries, etc.

Do not feed bones. Bones damage teth. Bones and bone fragments can become lodges almost anywhere in the gastrointestinal tract. 

Your puppy needs PUPPY food until they are AT LEAST 1 year old. They need PUPPY food for LARGE BREED DOGS. 

NuVet is the ONLY food supplement your dog will need. You don't need to purchase any other supplement. You don't need it. Once your puppy is 3, we HIGHLY suggest you switch to NuVet Joint. If you can afford both from the get-go, EXCELLENT. If not, follow the protocol of NuVet for the first 3 years followed by Nuvet Joint after 3 years.

If your dog gains too much weight too quickly, he or she will start limping and be in pain. This is called PANO. If your dog exhibits these symptoms, take the dog off puppy food and switch to adult food. Your dog will also need Carprofen, an anti-inflammatory. You will need to get a prescription from your vet or call us, and we will get you some. This is one time that Western medicine is good. Oils will not help. However, you should be diffusing Clary Calm to help sedate your dog. We can't tell you how many puppy parents have freaked out and rushed their puppy to the vet only to be told a number of horrible things. We had a puppy parent freak out and took her 6-mont-old Basset to the vet. The vet scheduled emergency surgery for the next day to amputate the dog's leg. No! No! No! Call us! We are the expert in Basset Hounds. Your vet will say your dog is too fat and needs to be on a diet. Call us! Most vets do not know about European Basset Hounds. 

PLEASE remember we are here for the life of your puppy. CALL US ANYTIME if something does not seem right. 

Food Allergies: 99% of all dogs will NOT show food allergies until they are 2. The #1 food that dogs are allergic to is chicken. 90% of all dog food is made from chicken. I feed the puppies chicken, once my dogs get a bit older, I switch them to Purina PRO Plan Salmon and Rice for Sensitive Skin and Stomach. Purina PRO Plan is coming out with Salmon and Rice puppy food. If you are able to switch right away, Basset Hounds get horrible hot spots, and generally, it is from the food or the chicken. I give my dogs chicken treats and only Penelope shows allergies to the treats. 

EAR CARE for Puppies

Ear infections are the most common condition seen by vets. There are a number of reasons that a dog's ears become infected, but the most common is bacteria or yeast. In Basset Hounds, a yeasty ear is no joke, and once the dog gets a yeast infection, it is almost IMPOSSIBLE to clear it up. The dog will exhibit discomfort;  perhaps shaking the head or even just tilting the head more than what is normal. When you pick up the flap of the ear, the smell will hit you. PREVENTION is the name of the game!


Clean the dog's ears weekly. Your Basset Hound ear drum is several inches down and at a 90-degree angle. There is NO WAY you can get your finger that far down the dog's ear. We have already sent you the protocol for the ear cleaner. I have recopied the recipe below. If you follow the guideline set out in the recipe, your dog should have a head start to a clean ear. Remember, once you stick the nozzle way down into the dog's ear you need to massage the solution all around. You will hear the solution mixing all around. You will also take a warm cloth and with one finger stick the cloth as far as possible and scoop out any gross stuff. It should be black or VERY dark brown. Finish by cleaning the inside flap. Then, let your dog shake his or her head and get the rest of the fluids evenly distributed. Don't wipe off the excess. Puppies RARELY get an ear infection. For the first few months, put a bit of solution on a cotton swab and swab away. 


If after your diligent work, your dog gets an ear infection, use the recipe for the Blue Genten. Again, the recipe is below. The important thing here is that you do this OUTSIDE. The solution will stain clothing.  Your dog will shake his or her head and a lot will come out. Don't do the treatment wearing your fancy clothes. Your dog should be better within 3 days--but give the treatment for 7 full days, twice a day.


If your dog continues to show signs of an ear infection AFTER you religiously follow these directions, your dog may also have Pseudomonas bacteria in the ear. This can be eradicated by using a flush of apple cider vinegar and warm water (two tablespoons of cider to one cup of WARM water and one drop of frankincense, shaken really well and flushed twice a week). 


For Prevention:

8 oz. of organic Witch Hazel

15 drops of Lavender

15 drops of Basil

15 drops of Geranium

15 drops of Arborvitae

4 tablespoons of Hydrogen Peroxide. 

Put all ingredients in a squirt bottle, like a hair-dye bottle. You can get the right size squirt bottle at the dollar store in the kitchen department. Shake VERY well before use. 

For an Active Infection:

16 oz. of Organic Witch Hazel

4 tablespoons of Boric Acid Powder

16 drops of 1% Gentian Violet Solution

15 drops of Copaiba

The first three ingredients you can purchase on Amazon. Get the Copaiba from DoTerra. 

Put all ingredients in a squirt bottle. Before each use, SHAKE VERY WELL! Squeeze about 1/8 of a cup in each ear. You want to flood the ear canal. With the ear flap down, rub, rub, rub, and massage and squish to the count of 60. When you pick up the ear flap, you will see the black yeast oozing out and dropping all over the floor. Wipe away the excess discharge and solution very gently. On the first treatment, flood the ear again and leave alone without massage. The dog will shake out the excess. Do this twice a day for the first 7 days or 2 depending on how severe the infection is. Treat once daily for the next 7 days. Then, treat one time per month depending on the dog. 

If you take the dog to the vet, the vet will give your dog a toxic antibiotic and charge you an arm and a leg. Just have the natural solution ready, and you can save yourself the hassle of a vet bill. 

Sometimes it is just easier to purchase the solution from me. You can do this, but the cleaner is $30 plus shipping. It should last you several months. 


Insurance: This is tricky! 

We want to educate you about Dog Health Insurance. It's an important subject that you should discuss with your family. Only recently has there been affordable health insurance for our beloved pets. It is a subject we think about a lot as our vet bill runs about $1,000 a month. Every time we pay the bill, we think, "Jeez, isn't there a better answer?" So, for several years, we have researched health insurance for pets, INCLUDING Banfield, for which we personally don't see the benefit). 


For us, keeping track of the dog's health insurance, sending off claim forms, etc., is difficult and time-consuming...a real bother. Last year, we decided to try AKC Insurance to see if it was a viable option to suggest to our puppy parents, and in typical "Margaret fashion," she never sent in a claim. She did sit down recently and filled out a year's worth of claims. It was quite easy. She sent the claims off to AKC but has no idea how much of the claims they will pay or when. She got a message from them saying they needed more information from the vet. We think we're paying $70 per month per dog via AKC.


Recently, Houndful Hearts was given the RARE opportunity to offer our puppy parents Trupanion Canine Health Insurance. We signed up Penelope for their service. They come HIGHLY recommended, and I think the fee is very reasonable and is dependent upon the deductible you choose (they even pay for the oils!). This is NOT insurance for wellness checks, this insurance is for illness and injury. They pay 90%, and you pay 10%. From all accounts, their payout is awesome, and the ease of the claims is great. 

None of us want to think about our pets getting sick. But, let me tell you, they get sick, and visits to the vet are AWFULLY expensive. Houndful Hearts pays out huge amounts of money, usually because we also rescue, and the rescue dogs generally cost several thousands of dollars to get up and running. Penelope is eight this year and considered a middle-aged girl. Problems are going to start popping up.  We are insuring her because of the potential problems that may come up,

We suggest you explore the following options. Let us put in a waiver that we do not benefit from whether you get insurance or what type you get. Again, speaking from experience, vet bills are HUGE.

  • You have the option of not insuring your dog.

  • You have the option of contacting Trupanion. We've posted a flyer below. We can offer you this health insurance ONLY because we are a Good Dog Breeder and have done considerable health testing on our dogs and Trupanion believes your dog to be a healthy canine. Insuring through them is a bit tricky as you have ONLY 24 hours to sign the puppy up once you pick him or her up. You must be on your toes with this one. ALSO, the rules are different in New York and Florida. So, if you live in one of these states, let us know, and we can send you the waiver for that. Unlike the AKC preventative Care, Trupanion is an injury and illness-only insurance. They PAY for the first 30 days of FREE insurance as long as you sign the dog up within the 24-hour period. 

  • You can contact Fursure. It is a FREE Pet Insurance broker. They help you find the best insurance for YOU and your family. 

  • You have the option of contacting your local Banfield Hospital via Pet Smart. 

  • You have the option of finding your own health insurance. 

  • You have the option of not purchasing health insurance. 

When researching pet insurance, be sure to ask about:


  1. Are there exclusions or limitations by breed?

  2. Are hereditary and congenital conditions covered? If so, is there a limitation on coverage?

  3. Are prescription foods covered?



  1. Does the provider offer direct payment to the vet at checkout?

  2. What is needed to send in a claim?

  3. How long does it take to process?

  4. If there are no direct-payment options, what is the average time to receive reimbursements?

General Information:

  1. Can a previously-covered condition become pre-existing upon renewal or if you change the limit or deductible?

  2. Are there penalties for making changes to the policy?

  3. Are premium increases on a predetermined schedule?

  4. Can your policy be canceled for any reason other than non-payment?

We hope this helps a bit. Please let us know if you have any questions.

Margaret and Kyla

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