Great Companions

Miniature American Shepherds





Please bring a bank check, money order or cash in the amount of the remaining balance as stated on the deposit form and the contract that has been sent to you.  Checks should be made payable to Linda DuBois.  

Bring a collar and leash appropriate for a puppy.

Crate if you are traveling alone, otherwise, the family members can take turns snuggling your puppy.   Paper towels could be handy if there is any car sickness or accidents.

Your puppy will be micro chipped.  There is no additional cost for the microchipping.


Your pup should have a vet visit within 72 hours of pick up, unless there is a holiday.  In the case of a holiday, take the pup as soon as you can preceding the holiday. Pups will be seen by my vet sometime just before they are 8 weeks of age.  Your vet will be able to confirm that the pup is in good health and also set up the vaccination schedule for you.


Your pup will have one 5 way shot before being sent home.  During your vet visit you need to set up the remaining shots according to your vet's protocol.  I personally never give Lepto which most vets want to give.  Some Mini's have had reactions to Lepto, and for others it has been safe.  Usually if the pup is older, they tolerate the other vaccinations a bit better.  I also never give the final 5 way shot on the same day as the rabies.  This is a personal preference and also the preference of many Mini breeders.  It means an additional trip to the vet, but allows the pup's immune system not to be overtaxed.


Some Australian Shepherds, but not all, are sensitive or allergic to the active ingredient IVERMECTIN.  The heartworm medicine Heart Guard and the flea and heartworm spot-on Revolution, are a few of the popular ones containing this product.  Any paste wormer containing IVERMECTIN, can possibly have a TOXIC build-up in the liver & reaction that can cause death.  Please check the active ingredient in any product you use.

Information about Ivermectin and products containing Ivermectin can be found at:

Interceptor is my choice for heartworm treatment but is no longer available.  Check with your vet on the products he has that do not contain IVERMECTIN.  Even if both parents are MDR-1 clear, I am not responsible for products given by you or your vet.


Puppies have been fed Pro Plan Performance Blend.  Even if you do not intend to continue on this food, you need to purchase a small bag and mix it with the food of your choice.  Mini's sometimes have a tendency for their bones to grow quicker than the surrounding tissue which cause a problem called knuckling if they are on puppy food.  

I start 8-9 week old pups with 3 meals a day, adjusting the amount that they consume rather than letting them graze all day.  They are always crated to eat when the food is given.  I watch the leanness of the dog and adjust the amount of food accordingly.  If they look heavy, I cut back a bit.  If they are getting skinny, I increase the amount.  Just like real babies and children, there are growth spurts that need to be met with more nutrition.  I feed 3 times a day until 6 mo. of age, then reduce to twice a day.  Larger meals are always in the morning to sustain the energy during the day.  At night I will feed a smaller amount if necessary, but I always feed twice a day.


I use an all-natural product called NuVet with all my dogs.  My referral code is 71186.  I will be sending you information about NuVet in a separate email.

NuVet can't be purchased at a pet store, but comes straight from NuVet themselves.  Information will be sent to give you the information that you need to keep your puppy on NuVet.  The pups are started between 4-5 weeks of age and a sample packet will be sent home with your puppy. I suggest you order your first bottle before puppy goes home so you have it on hand so puppy can remain on it without waiting to order after his/her arrival.

I was skeptical at first when I was introduced to NuVet, but soon became a believer.  It is not so much what you can see, it is what you can't see.  My pregnant girls are given NuVet twice a day during pregnancy and the nursing period.  

An older female that my daughter had was started on NuVet was suffering from the benign old age cysts and just feeling tired.  After a month on NuVet, her cysts were smaller, and she was acting full of energy once again.  She lived to old age and stayed in good health.

Our boy Nate has a sport injury from Frisbee.  He was on Rimadyl because of the stiffness and pain.  He now takes the NuVet Plus because of the anti-inflammatory properties, along with the NuJoint made by NuVet. The vet wanted to do surgery, buy we refused to put him through that amount of discomfort.  We have been able to stop the Rimadyl and Nate is feeling good taking his NuVet Supplements.

I recommend that you consider keeping your pup on the NuVet.  As mentioned above, the benefits can be seen on the outside but also what you don't see going on in the inside.  I have compared the ingredients in other supplement which I always use, and will not change from this product.


Crate training is a must for your puppy and is a part of my contract.  Puppies need a safe place to rest and be kept out of trouble when the family isn't watching them.  Pups are introduced to the crate by 4 weeks of age.  They are already comfortable in them and are actually crated daily while I do the cleaning of the area.  The type of crate you use depends on you.  My personal choice is the double door, folding, wire crate.  Depending on where I place my crate, I always have a door to use.  If the crate is against the wall, the side door is used.  If I have crates side by side in my van, I can use the end door.  No matter where I place my crate, I have access to the pup/dog.  

If your puppy is not being watched very closely, then the pup should be in its crate.  Puppies need constant supervision during the first few months. You can feed puppy in the crate, just so he/she knows it is a good place.  When you want them to go in, throw a very good/smelly treat in the crate.  This way, they associate treats with the crate.  Place a soft old blanket or pillow in the crate along with a few of his favorite, safe toys.  Make sure you take your puppy outside before confining him to the crate.  Sometimes a puppy will soil his/her blanket.  If this happens, give him/her a clean blanket.  I personally crate my young dogs and crate until the age of 2 years whenever I leave the house.  This way I know that they are safe.  When we travel, all are in crates in the van or motor home.  This is a personal preference but does protect the dog.


As soon as your pup wakes, it will need to go potty.  Puppies go often until they learn to hold themselves a bit longer.  Your pup will be introduced to the litter pan as soon as they are walking.  It doesn't take long before they start using the litter pan for their potty area.  I use Yesterday's News cat litter.


Any treat is appropriate for training, but I have found that the cookie/cracker types are harder for puppy.  My favorite is Natural Balance Dog Food Rolls.  They come in assorted flavors.  They can be easily cut into very small pieces.  This is also the one recommended by my trainer.  I use this treat for clicker training and conformation training and your puppy will be introduced to it before going home to their new home.


Minis are herding/working dogs and should have a job to do.  The job can be retrieving a ball, catching the ball/Frisbee, running after kids, going through sit, down, and stay commands, etc.  It is wonderful if they can go outside and run off the energy, but if the weather doesn't permit, just play tug of war, inside ball retrieving, or anything that you can to keep your puppy busy.  When they are tired, love them for a bit, and then return them to their crates.  If you find your puppy is a bit more active than you desire at the moment, try a game of tug of war.  Let puppy win often.  We don't want to pull its teeth out, but they love it and it will tire them out quickly.  Fetching soft toys will also help.

If you catch your pup chewing or playing with something it should not have, take the forbidden item away, say "NOT YOURS" and give them something that they can have.  Puppies are very easily distracted, so it isn't hard to get them to play with something else.