We put a lot of work into our puppies from day 1. When you are looking for a pup remember that a well socialized puppy is going to make for an adult with less anxiety issues. We provide the foundation, but it is up to you to continue and pick up where we leave off. Continue with puppy games (training) and I strongly encourage taking a puppy obedience class at the earliest stage possible. This helps understand your pup in a way you may not have thought of prior.

We have developed a series of tests and exercises for new born puppies, which both educates and evaluates each puppy as it grows and develops. These methods are based upon Clarence Pffafenberger's book, New Knowledge of Dog Behavior, Howell Book House, Inc., 1977, as well as my own experiences and lots of hours of research. I have combined what I have learned and what works best for me to achieve a very well rounded weimaraner. I have been raising puppies for almost 20 years now, as well as do a lot of rescue work. All of my experience is hands on and with the intent of providing the easiest transition from my home to yours making it a positive puppy experience. We also provide life long guidance and support.

Because of research we know that newborn puppies can begin learning as early as 3 weeks old. By day 21 all of the puppy's senses are intact, the last to develop is hearing. 

It is assumed that you are starting with a litter of puppies whose parents have passed all of the VIP recommended health tests for the breed and have excellent temperaments and conformation.

Goals:

We are  maximizing the potential of each puppy by stimulating its learning ability, interests and natural instincts. By utilizing the tests and exercises in this guide we hope to develop and identify a group of alert, friendly, fearless, inquisitive, happy, and smart adult Weimaraners!

Methods:

We intend to stimulate all of the senses as they first begin to develop and we pay particular attention to the 4 Critical Periods of development as defined by Paffenberger.

  1. Day 1-19, baby puppies need warmth, food, massage, sleep
  2. Day 20-49, infant puppies learn to play, learn limits, and learn dominance
  3. Day 50-84 (7-12 weeks) puppies learn independence and relationships with people and other animals, and they learn fear
  4. **Week 12-16, puppies learn self-confidence, housebreaking, that they must obey and the difference between play and work ************<---- This is according to Paffenberger. We are so hands on with our pups that they are doing this during the third phase and begin house training at 5 weeks old! By the time our pups hit 8 weeks they pretty much have the hang of it!

IDEAS FOR STIMULATING THE VARIOUS SENSES:

Smell: breeder's hand, orange peel, nail polish, bird feather, bread, meat, cat hair, carrot, etc.

Touch: cool metal, pan of sand, ice cube, pan of gravel, terry cloth, cotton sheet, nylon cloth, tile, brick surface, wool mat, newspaper, plastic, screen, metal floor grate (place puppy on these various surfaces from day 3 onward)

Hearing: clapping hands, pounding on wall and door and floor, dropped cake pan onto floor, radio, voice (loud, soft, variety of voices), bell, cap gun, bird, vacuum, clock

Vibratory: Vacuum cleaner, clock ticking, mixer, hair dryer,

Sight: people, other animals, TV, toys, cars, machines, trees, everything that you can think of

Taste: Begin at day 21, use your imagination, they tend to taste all new things, floor, rocks, you, toys

Guide For Daily Testing and Training:

 

 DAY ACTIVITY  1 examine and handle each puppy, hold them in various positions (see Note-day 1 below)  2 repeat day 1 and stimulate touch 4-5 seconds 3 repeat day 2 plus trim nails and stimulate small Dewclaws may be removed and tails docked on day 3 or 4. 4 handle, hold in various positions, stimulate touch and smell, put each puppy singly into a shallow metal pie tin and time how long it takes puppy to crawl out of tin onto wool pup rug (see Note-day 4 below) 5 repeat day 4 plus stimulate vibratory sense 6 repeat day 5 7 repeat day 5 plus trim nails 8-10 repeat day 5 11 repeat day 5 plus trim nails and stimulate sight if eyes open 12 (eyes usually open between 10 and 15 days of age) repeat day 5 plus stimulate sight and move from whelping box into exercise or play pen, place puppy see-saw in pen on one or two inch elevation for minimal motion 13, 14 continue all of above plus introduce toys, spend at least 15 minutes three times a day sitting in pen and playing with puppies, begin introducing well-behaved children into pen for short periods of play. 15 trim nails and begin individual work with each puppy for 5 to 15 minutes each day 16-19 continue above, introducing more and more variety of toys, cats, people, noises 20 begin auditory stimulation and put legs under teeter-totter to raise it about 8 inches from floor; leave a radio playing in puppy room for most of the day from now onward. 21 (first day they can hear!) hang a play object from ceiling just within reach of puppies, and raise it higher up as they grow  Play with puppies as a group and individually, include lots of noise, laughing, cuddling, and petting, continue holding in various positions  First bath  and another nail trim, start feeding puppies and create loud noise prior to each time of placing pan of food before puppies 22-49 daily play, learning "no bite", there are no bad or frightening noises, introduce foods, continue twice a week nail trims, introduce various "obstacles" such as tall grass, horses, neighbors etc,  introduce to water pool (do not force puppies into pool, put toys in pool and if they go in spontaneously fine, if not just leave them alone. A good way to make a puppy afraid of water is to force them into a pool at this age. Teach them that you can examine their mouths, ears etc; do "follow me" and retrieving play, they begin learning their basic commands such as sit, lay, come, stay, and also kiss, touch and high five. 


Giving and then taking food away and out of mouth

 63 begin introduction to tracking and to birds, obedience, agility and other activities- making it all lots of fun. Probably tracking is the easiest to do and the most fun (with no corrections) at this age

NOTES

Day 1- You will find pups which are very comfortable being on their backs while on your palm, others which struggle slightly and then relax and others which just can't relax when on their backs. These latter pups need lots of socialization and rarely become the top working dogs. They tend to be more noise sensitive, can panic in stressful situations and have more difficulty in problem solving under stress. Certainly, with work, these can be happy and successful dogs but they do require more work and dedication on the part of the owners. There are some OTCH dogs with this temperament, but they never become reliable service dogs or top field dogs. The ideal working temperament can often be identified on the first day after birth. During the next 8 weeks the intelligent dog with this ideal temperament can then be identified clearly.

Day 4- this is an important exercise as it can pinpoint pups which need more help and those with great potential. You may see a very laid-back puppy which is not concerned about getting out of the pan and just goes to sleep. You may see a puppy which panics and is paralyzed with fear- you can help this puppy to learn to problem solve and to trust you by gently placing 2 fingers beneath its chin and guiding it out of the pan. This pup needs lots of varied exposures of increasing difficulty to help it to overcome fear and to learn problem-solving techniques. You may see a pup which initially panics and then climbs out on its own. You may see a pup which shows great independence and is not afraid, just holds its head up, gives a sniff or two and climbs out of the pan. The next day each pup will show a similar response, but indicate that they remember this "test" and are not as concerned and most will then climb out without help. The laid back pup will usually continue to just go to sleep. This pup is a challenge to motivate all of its life! By day 7 to 10 you will see that most of the pups understand this test and as soon as they are placed in the pan just climb out easily and with no great concern.

GENERAL:

The more things to which a puppy is exposed the more he learns. Talk to them a lot, everything has a name-use it. Never lose patience with a puppy, they need to learn limits, however, from you as well as from mother and littermates, i.e.. "No bite!"

Make everything lots of fun. EVERYTHING we do is positive reward, we do not scold for "getting it wrong" they are learning. 

Never console a puppy if it is afraid or hurt. make light of and resume normal play with a puppy who is afraid. Happily continue to introduce him to things he is afraid of, this will desensitize them and help them overcome their fear.

Try to find things, which frighten him and repeatedly introduce him to this-happily and enthusiastically, he will pick up your attitude with time.

Lots of "good puppy" when he is pleasing you, encourage enthusiasm-this can always be toned down later as puppy matures.

Put floating toys in wading pool and encourage puppy to play in water. (Not if outside in winter in cold climate)

Play hide-and-seek from 8 weeks on as this stimulates their relationship with you, as finding you is their reward, this can transit into tracking training and to decrease the fear of entering into new situations. When they find you-let them know that they are terribly clever--lots of praise and play.

Manufacture games to play with the puppy to solve problems which develop

Pay attention to each puppy and tailor games and new events and stimuli to its needs

Introduce the clicker right awayif you plan to use clicker training with your dog. This is VERY effective for learning new behaviors at this age.

By week 12 be zeroing in on a favorite toy to use as a "reward play" for tracking, obedience and motivational training. The puppy should only, then, be allowed to play with this object as a direct result of completing a task or a reward for special behavior. This "reward play " should be limited to from a few seconds to 1 or 2 minutes

Vocabulary: Use the same word to indicate something repeatedly, by 6 months he should have at least a 50-word vocabulary.

BE CONSISTENT, TRAIN YOUR PUPPY TO BE THE ADULT YOU WANT

Things that you find cute now may not be so cute as an adult. Not allowing a bad habit to start is easier than trying to correct a bad behavioral issue down the road. 


 
 
 
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