Step 1 is having a healthy, happy, well-nourished confident Momma dogs! We are blessed with 2 beauties here at Royal Goldens. We go to training classes, take lots of walks, play games, give and get lots of love and hugs! We love other dogs and kids, have a huge fenced yard and get to play in the grass and snow. But most of all, we love our babies and they are the best Momma’s ever.
We built a dedicated room for whelping puppies and for their nursery as they grow. It's safe, warm (or cool) and has everything we need to care for these precious babies! We do not allow outside visitors into the whelping room for the safety of the puppies until they are 4 weeks old. This helps keep them from contracting parasites, parvo, flu, so many things are dangerous for these young little lives so having this space for them is critical. It is cleaned meticulously on a daily basis.
At Day 3 we start handling the puppies doing ENS training. This is a series of 5 handling exercises that, conducted daily helps to improve cardiovascular performance, stronger heart beats, stronger adrenal glands, more tolerance to stress and greater resistance to disease. Tests show that pups raised with ENS from day 3-16 were more active and exploratory than the non-stimulated pups. During week 1 we also begin clipping their nails to keep Momma from being scratched and possibly contracting mastitis. We check her temp and watch for signs daily. Important to keep Momma clean and supply her with lots of good nutritional food and supplements. Coffee is for me! Puppies will have more than doubled their birth weight.
Puppies are weighed daily. Critical to keep a close eye on their growth. We also begin administering anti-parasite meds at week 2. They will continue to receive deworming meds every week until they go home at week 8. Momma and Auntie also get the treatments. Prevention, prevention, prevention!!!
By week 3 we start potty training! Puppies will have started to open their eyes and ears and wobble around like drunken sailors. They also have started playing with each other and their toys. Scent and noise exposure are introduced at this point and a bath! We also start feeding them Diamond Naturals large breed puppy food. At first, we make a gruel (more water than food and add some similac puppy formula for probiotics). Move to kibble with a little water, then straight kibble with Nuvet plus powder added to improve their immune systems. We want Momma to have a break and help her wean them.
Now the fun part!!! By week 4 we are on to training!! We start right away with teaching them puppy, puppy, puppy recall. We have a seperate "play pen" area that can be indoors or out depending on the weather. We introduce different toys that make noise, require more motor skills, play with a tug toy to encourage following and go for a car ride! We also start allowing visitors so they get exposure to new people. Visitors are encouraged to gently handle the puppies and play with them to reinforce that people are good! We want our puppies to be secure, feel safe, and be confident. They will have now transitioned into the juvenile kennel set up giving them more room. From here until they go home at 8 weeks we will continue to improve potty training, recall, learn to sit and settle, start crate training in individual crates and begin leash training. We also will have our vet confirm their health, insert microchip and administer their first shots. Continued vet care and the remaining vaccines are the responsibility of the new family but it is critical. Also critical is the continued training! ALL are critical for the lifetime of the puppy.
We believe in puppy matching. After all the time we have spent with these pups we know them pretty well! This is also why we want to get to know the families! It's obviously not an exact science but it sure does give you great insight! Some puppies are better suited to be with kids or maybe other pets. Others will do better with a single person or a retired couple. We can learn the best fits from handling and evaluations.
We do a personality evaluation at 7 weeks to finalize the placement of which puppy will be the best fit for each family. This test is performed individually with a tester that the puppies are not familiar with previously. The tester will run them through several drills that will help determine their assertiveness, confidence, motivation level, nerve and strength resiliency, touch tolerance, energy level, sound and sight sensitivity, prey drive, human focus, tender hearted and dog friendliness. We will expose them to the crinkle of a blue tarp, a human temper tantrum, an umbrella opening quickly, a lifesize stuffed animal, all things they have not yet encountered. Depending on the reaction and recovery we can score them and place them in the home that gives both the puppy and the humans the best love they will ever feel!!
We firmly believe that all the care and love we provide for your puppy sets you and the pup up for the greatest opportunity to enjoy life with a furry companion. There is nothing better!!
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