How we raise our puppies
This is a week by week outline of the things we do with the puppies to help them grow into happy healthy and well adjusted members of your family.
Pictures of each week and more information
At OMG Poodles we watch our expecting mothers very close and are there to help when they are ready to give birth. They are giving Satin Balls and other high nutrition food for the first 10 days. Some dogs do not feel well right before and after birth and will loose their appetite the Satin Balls are super tasty and packed full or nutrients. They help us make sure that our girls get what they need to birth and raise health happy puppies. Once the puppies are born we weigh them and make sure they are nursing and give them a few days to bond with mom.
At 3 days old we start the Bio-sensor Program until they are 16 days old. The Bio-Sensor Program is early neurological stimulation and socialization. Some of the Benefits include improved heat rate, stronger heart beats, stronger adrenal glans, more tolerance to stress and greater resistance to disease.
During week 2 we continue the Bio-Sensor Program. We also De-worm the puppies for the first time, they will get de-wormed by weekly till they go home.
Also mom is a high priority but after the first 10 days she gets taken off the satin balls and is still fed a high quality food several times a day while the puppies are nursing.
Week 3 our little puppies have opened their eyes or will do so soon. We start to introduce new toys every day and a small potty area in the whelping box. This is the time to exercise the startle and recovery response of the puppy. This is explained more in the Puppy Culture DVD. This is a very important time for the puppies development were the puppy has a startle response but virtually no fear and recovers very quickly. By exercising this startle and recovery response the dog will have a better recovery when startled as an adult! We will start to introduce all sorts of different loud noises and different visuals. Also the puppies will get their first grooming at this time just a bath and blow dry( their nails get trimmed every week.). We will also start to give the puppies short,one on one sessions. Food! Don't forget the food!! Feeding goats milk, lean beef, and crushed kibble!!!
This is a super big week! We De-worm the puppies again and move them out of the whelping room and or remove the whelping box. Now is the time to flood them with new things daily! New toys , new objects, and meeting the other dogs in the house hold. At this time we also start working on learning and problem solving activities. This is also explained more in the Puppy Culture DVD, but by stressing/ frustrating the puppies slightly with adding a barrier when feeding it will improve the dogs ability to deal with stress as an adult. We start with something small for them to go over as a group during feeding. Then we work with them one on one with an x-pen panel in front of them to go around and as they get better we keep making it a little harder.
Now this is the real fun. We introduce the clicker and work on the communication trinity. This is the first formal training we start to do with the puppies. Its starts with powering the clicker up and teaching the puppy the sound means good things! Then we teach him how to offer a behavior, using the clicker to mark the behavior, finally and most importantly we teach the puppies manding. Manding is the act of asking for something by sitting. It is natural for puppies to jump up when they want attention but that natural behavior can cause most of the unwanted behaviors your dog may exhibit as an adult. By punishing the dog for jumping takes away his way to ask for attention. By training him to sit to ask for attention the dog is happier and more fulfilled , but by teaching him this in his critical early developmental stage he will hold on to for his whole life with no heartache later on.
Week 5 is the first fear period and we pay special attention for any sudden fear response from the puppies. This could happen any time and be very small, even unnoticeable to very big. We continue working with the puppies with structured training and introducing new things but we watch closely for any fear and work with those puppies to create a positive association with the object or situation. If a puppy views something as scary during a fear period that can stick with them for the rest of their lives and be very hard to re condition.
Highest Socialization Period
The puppies are over their fear and its time to get out and explore. At 6 weeks old their natural fallow instinct kicks in and depending on the weather we will start adventure walks with the litter, mom and maybe some other Auntie type dogs. We have 24 wonderful acres with, trees, sand, rocks and grass. Getting them out into different texters is very important for them at this time and climbing over, rocks, hills and logs will help them develop good body awareness. So when you are out with your dog they will be less likely to injure themselves. These adventure walks will also build confidence and is the start of a good recall. In your puppy booklet you will get a whole chapter on how to counite these walks and building a good recall. Off leash walking is very important for the health of any dog and doing so safely is key so we start early!
This week is power packed with grooming, socialization, training and as many new thing as we can do. They are moved in to a bigger weaning pen and de-wormed again. We work on a recall, heal and leash work. These puppies are little sponges and we take advantage of it in this critical early developmental stage so your puppy will be will balanced and ready to live a full happy life.
This week is power packed with grooming, socialization, training, adventure walks and as many new thing as we can do. They are moved in to a bigger weaning pen and de-wormed again. We work on a recall, heal and leash work. These puppies are little sponges and we take advantage of it in this critical early developmental stage so your puppy will be will balanced and ready to live a full happy life.
At the end of this week or the very beginning of next week we do our temperament testing. We have a very wonderful professional trainer that comes down to do our testing. She does the Avidog APET. This is a very detailed test that takes about 30 minutes per puppy. The test scores over 3 personality traits and is key to helping us place each puppy in the right forever home where both puppy and owner will thrive. I will video this for all deposit holders to see. They do take me a few days to get uploaded to YouTube.
Traditionally puppies are sent home at 8 weeks old and even younger if you don't know any better or your not a reputable breeder. There has been scientific evidence that puppies taken from their mothers before 8 weeks of age are more likely to end up with severe behavioral problems such as excessive whining, chewing or barking, separation anxiety, and other destructive behaviors.
That being said we believe that sending the puppies home during a fear period is not fair and not setting them up for success. It is so easy to miss something small but it could stick with them for life and cause problems in the future. Every litter is different when exactly they will have their fear period and how long it will last. Usually a day to a few days.
The beginning of this week we will also do structure evaluations. I take the litter to a very experienced shower and breeder friend of mine. These results also help us place the puppies.
This week we continue to do the adventure walks but I also make it a point to take each puppy out on their first solo leash walk. We work on rewarding them for healing and learning to come off the pressure of the leash so they are much less likely to be little bucking broncos for you at home! Also working on introducing the kennel and getting all the puppy packages finished.
We say goodbye to our sweet babies but never for forever. Although we send them off to their new homes we are always there if you need us!!! Your have the puppies for the final 2 weeks of their critical solicitation period. Take them out and show them the world, get them used to all the things you want to do with them in their life. Let them meet all different kinds of people and friendly dogs. Keep them safe and avoid dog parks, pet stores, and rest stops. These places have high traffic of unknown dogs and its best to avoid those types of places until your puppy is fully vaccinated
More about Puppy Culture
This is a puppy buyers guide from the Puppy Culture web site. It gives you an idea of the helpful content that is included in the DVD set. It also gives you an idea on what we focus on in our puppy rearing program.