This crew turned 2 weeks old on the weekend. They have their eyes fully opened now and their ears are beginning to open; they’ll be able to hear by the time they’re 3 weeks old. They have all figured out how to walk and it’s quite entertaining watching them manoeuvring around the whelping box. Now that they are associating our smell with our faces, they are eager to make their way over to say hi when we walk in the room.
Yesterday was the very first time they were introduced to water. Using only a baby bath tub and a small amount of water, puppies were placed in the warm water, one at a time. Aqua conditioning is a fantastic method of teaching calmness and confidence to puppies. It’s also a great way to introduce them to massage and help them work through tiny bursts of stress & teach them to overcome it with a positive outcome. Some of the puppies fell asleep! They only stay in for a short amount of time and then it’s cuddle time while they’re cozied up in a towel. This also helps to establish a bond with the pups.
We’ll continue using the baby tub for phase 1 of this, but as puppies grow, we’ll be using a larger pool so we can use the aids of flutter boards, life jackets, and even stairs in the water to continue to condition them in the water. Research has shown that the puppies exposed to this conditioning have zero issues with motion sickness in vehicles as they get older. Also, as puppies grow, water provides low impact exercise which helps to strengthen muscles and help proper growth plate formation.
We’re nearing the end of the first scent introduction for the puppies. In just a few more days we’ll have this completed and will compile the results for our assessors. Each puppy will receive a little report card about their individual results, which will ultimately be the blue print for each puppy. We will then be able to teach according to their unique personalities and shape their temperament accordingly. Each of the puppies will be sent home with their report card and a training package so their families can continue the work we’ve set a foundation for.