Clayton Hill - General Information/FAQ

Clayton Hill Neo's


General Information / Frequently Asked Questions


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Grooming:  Neos have a short smooth coat - no real grooming required - just occasional bath, occassional brushing.

Exercise:  They require minimal exercise - just some time outside romping, or love to go on short walks.

Food:  - An adult Neo can 'pack away' some food.   With our crew, it's hard to tell, but I guesstimate individual adult consumption to be about 20# of a good quality dog food per week. From there, the sky's the limit. There are all sorts of Neo diet theories out there (including one called B.A.R.F. - which has to do with raw meat and bones - personally, I think it's craziness). As we have 4 children, our Neos do get frequent 'leftover' supplements.   Neos grow for four years - two in height and two in width.  Due to this long growth period, we recommend feeding adult dog food to pups.  Puppy food can allow them to grow too quickly, which could lead to joint/hip problems.  Strong bones and a healthy immune system are important components for proper growth and development of a Neo.  With this in mind, all of our dogs/pups are on NuVet Plus supplement.

Life Span:  "Average" life span is ~10 years (similar to all large breed dogs).

Drool - they do.    Depending on how 'typey' a Neo is (term referring to how much extra skin/droop they have, as well as bone mass/width - see below), particularly in the face/mouth region determines just how 'drooly' they are.  Typically, it's only bad when they eat/drink or pant.

Health problems:  As a large breed dog, they have a shorter life expectancy, approx 8-12 years. The three most common health problems for Neos are: Thyroid (genetic - we've never had a problem). Hip/Joint problems - common among large breed dogs. We feed our puppies adult dog food from the start, as puppy food can allow them to grow too quickly ->leading to joint issues. 'Cherry-eye' - due to the extra skin/droop, the inner eyelid 'pops out'. This is not a genetic trait, but a breed characteristic. Some Neos get it, some don't. Easily corrected by a vet.

Hot Issues:  Here's the 'hot' issue with Neos: They are an alpha breed with strong guarding characteristics. As such, they are not the breed for everyone. An owner must be comfortable establishing leadership (leader of 'the pack') with his Neo - teach your Neo (from pup on up) that you (as the human) are the alpha/dominant. This isn't usually a problem, as in general, a Neo just wants to be with you, loved by you, etc.  Although, it needs to be kept in mind, as a pup grows, nip bad behaviors in the bud, before they become problematic.  If you aren't experienced with training large dogs, I would recommend obedience training (both you and pup). Guarding characteristics - this, when properly molded, is a good thing. However, without molding/training, can lead to aggressive behavior. Aggression in a 100+ pound dog is a bad thing. Early and ongoing socialization with people and other animals is the key. So, in my opinion, the two 'hot issues' are dealt with by spending time with your Neo. We take ours with us whenever we can - to stores, parks, parades, etc.
Spending time with the Neo is what they live for anyway. They love to be with you, as much as possible. Right on your lap, if you'll let them!

With early and ongoing socialization, Neos learn to be accepting of strangers.  We have 4 children, lots of comings and goings. Our Neo's announce the arrival of newcomers (bark), do a quick check (sniff), and go on about their business. They are looking for cues from us ... 'is this newcomer ok?' The key is socialization

Neos and other pets:  Bringing a Neo pup into the house - isn't an issue. The pup learns his/her place in 'the pack'. (More of an issue is how are the existing pets around new animals?) We have Neos and a couple of Yorkies. Once the Yorkies learned to watch out for the Neos big feet - we haven't had any problems. Same sex aggression - I don't recommend having two of the same sex unaltered Neos (or other alpha breed dogs) in the same household, especially males, as they can struggle to have dominance over each other.  Our males don't get along together.  They have to be separated, as they all think they are 'THE STUD dog'. 

Neo's and kids:  Some breeders won't allow a Neo to be placed in a home with kids. I don't agree with this (or fully understand it).  Neos are extremely loyal to their families.  We have four kids and our Neo's are great with them. You do need to realize Neo's are not entirely graceful, and can knock you down. So, 'use with caution around small children.'    Our twins were 2 when we first brought Grace home.  She must have knocked them down hundreds of times  (Thank goodness for Pampers), but they survived just fine.

Crate Training:  I know it's hard, but ... stick with it. A few ROTTEN nights now, and you'll be through it. A Neo pup is going through a lot of adjustments at his new home ... no longer with littermates, etc. There are some tedious things you can do with the crate training to help adjust:  Make it a happy place for him during the day, favorite toys in there, give him a treat to coax him into the crate, leave the door open so he can come and go (during the day), etc. We found pups go into the crate more readily with a comfy doggy bed (puppy size) in it. You can then bring out the doggy bed during the day to get him accustomed to the bed being his, and return it to the crate at night. Some of these ideas may help, but, the truth is ... it's still going to stink at night for the first few nights. If you break down, you lose ground. Our first Neo (Grace), won the fight, and was a permanent fixture on our bed, between John and me all night long. Then, we had serious issues with separation anxiety (destructive behavior) whenever we left her during the day, because we gave up on the crate. The good news ... Grace finally got over this ... when she was 3 years old. Try to stick with it!!

Our Guarantee:  We provide a one year replacement guarantee against congenital defect, providing the new owner shows consistent veterinary care and ongoing administration of the recommended dosage of NuVet Plus Wafer supplement.  Being that 'Cherry Eye' is a breed characteristic, and not a genetic trait, eyes are not covered under our guarantee.  All of our pups come from our home to yours with their tails docked, immunizations up to date for age, and well socialized.  It is the responsibility of the new owner to continue the immunizations and socialization to develop a healthy, well-natured Neo.  **In addition to above, to maintain our guarantee, puppy must be examined by your vet within 5 days of receiving him/her for an overall health exam and to continue the immunization schedule. **

*Link to NuVet:

- Neos in apartment life. It's do-able, but probably less than ideal - due to size. Tends to scare off landlords.  So, I would want to ensure a potential owner living in an apartment 'cleared it' with the landlord. 

- I would not place a Neo in a home to be bred with non-Neos

- Athletic vs. Typey: There are two 'looks' to a Neo: "Typey" and "Athletic" - Typey Neos have looser skin, larger frames, and HUGE dewlaps. They are the Italian imports or direct descendants, and this look has been created with much inbreeding/line breeding.  They are what is seen in the show ring.   Athletic Neos (term has nothing to do with level of activity), have slightly smaller frames  and smaller dewlaps. They still have (or should anyway) wrinkles (body and face), just not to that 'drip off the body' extreme. Subsequently, they don't drool as much. 

- Due to the Neos 'short muzzle' - they don't tolerate heat well.   This doesn't mean you cant have them in the hotter states, but they shouldn't be left outside during hot weather.   Short muzzle also means they snore - personally, I think it's cute, and you get used to it after a while.

Once you have decided you would like a puppy from us, we require a $200 nonrefundable deposit to reserve your pup.

- Our adoption requirements: That you provide a safe, loving home and properly spoil and care for him/her, the way they were meant to be spoiled.

That's all I can think of right now.  If you have any specific questions, please ask...     Kris

Updated/Effective 3/22/14





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