How to Identify a Healthy Puppy

Healthy Puppy, How to Identify a Healthy Puppy, PawFax, PawFax

How to Identify a Healthy Puppy

At Pawfax, we guarantee the health and well-being of any puppies sold on our platform. But, for those of you who like to do your own homework (we get it), we’ve put together a handy-dandy healthy puppy checklist. While there are illnesses and conditions that have little or no physical symptoms (Pawfax guarantees against these diseases too!), you can use this checklist to make sure any puppy passes the eye test.



As a general rule, dogs should be kept with their mothers for the first eight weeks of their lives. If you find a puppy available that is younger than eight weeks old, that should be a red flag that something’s not quite right.


A dog’s cleanliness can be a very good indicator of a puppy’s physical (and mental!) well-being. Some dirt is ok, especially if the puppy spends a lot of time outdoors, but white fur should be white, not gray or tan. Take time to look at the puppy’s ears, too. Dirty ears can invite ear mites or cause infections. In addition to the ears, make sure there’s no type of discharge coming from the puppies eyes or noise — those are both signs of an unhealthy, poorly kept puppy.



Ah yes…good ol’ poop. There’s a reason vets are always quick to take stool samples at consultations and checkups. A runny or excessively soft stool can be a sign of much larger health problems. While we’re talking poop — it’s a good idea to check out the area where the puppy’s brothers and sisters go potty. If there’s any soupy or runny stool there, it’s possible that an infection or disease could be spread across the litter. 



For those who have some experience owning dogs, we know that lethargic or atypical behavior is often the first sign that something isn’t quite right. The same goes for any puppies you may be thinking about bringing home. Watch how the puppy in question interacts with other dogs or people. If it seems depressed, disinterested, or otherwise lethargic, there’s a chance that something isn’t right. While some dog breeds tend to be lazy in adulthood, healthy puppies are generally playful and inquisitive by nature.



A puppy’s coat shouldn’t be dull or spotty. Instead, make sure the puppy’s fur is shiny and fully grown in. A little dirt is ok if the dog has spent time outside socializing, of course. But, there shouldn’t be any type of significant buildup. As well, there should be no bald patches. Try to look at the puppy’s stomach too, where the fur is the thinnest — if you see any red splotches or irritation, that could be a sign of an unhealthy animal. 


Vet Records

Last but absolutely not least, you should ask any breeders for the dog’s medical records. A reputable, legitimate breeder will keep this information on record for any prospective buyers. If the breeder has any problems producing these documents — chances are, you’re dealing with an unhealthy pup. 

If you’re looking for a healthy puppy, use our Puppy Finder service free. Make sure to check out the reviews from the breeder before buying your puppy. View Breeders

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