New Arrivals!!

Birthday: August 11 & 12, 2019

Go Home Date: October 6, 2019

Litter Theme: National Parks

2 Boys & 4 Girls

1 Stillborn Girl 🙁

Mother: Willow

Father: Rufus

Follow us on Social Media!!

 

Photos & Videos

The first glimpse...How many puppies do you see??!!

These will be updated as the puppies grow up. Click on each week to view that Week's gallery!

WEEK 1

WEEK 2

WEEK 3

WEEK 4

WEEK 5

WEEK 6

WEEK 7

 

VIDEOS: Check out our YouTube Channel for up to date Videos!


First things first:

Your puppies are being raised with two very advanced puppy raising programs! Early neurological stimulation has been proven to build confidence and resilience in young puppies, which sets them up for success as they get older. Both programs have free and paid resources you should take advantage of!

AVIDOG

Free: Avidog Puppy Book

Free: 97 WAYS TO CREATE GREAT PUPPIES

PUPPY CULTURE

Puppy Culture Essentials Playlist For Puppy Owners

 


Frequently Asked Questions

Before Puppy Comes Home

Preparing Puppy To Come Home

We have a separate tab with shopping lists to help you prepare, but this article is a helpful starting point! Read this:

Pre-Puppy Preparation

Watch this:

Why don’t I get to pick out my puppy?

Simply put, we know these puppies better than you do. If you meet them for an hour, you may develop opinions based on your one hour window of observation. However, an hour is never enough to really get a feel of who is who. Read: “The tragic myth of being “chosen” by a puppy”

Not only that, but Science is telling us that it is hard to test puppies to predict how they will turn out. Plus, so much will happen once the puppies leave here that will impact how they grow up.

We do our best to match puppies to their new families, based on the personality we have seen in the puppy, and your lifestyle and needs. If anyone is going to be good at predicting this, it will be your breeder. I have always allowed breeders to choose my own personal dogs, and with great success…. and I’m a DOG TRAINER!

Temperament Testing Puppies:

Do Puppy Personality Tests Predict Adult Dog Behaviors?

When will we know which puppy is ours?!

Probably around 7 weeks old. Their personalities have started to show by then and given us some time to think about the best match-making!

Webinar about Bringing Puppy Home

Link to Webinar recording HERE

Supplemental material for webinar is HERE

Does Puppy come with Pet Insurance?

YES! But it is up to you to activate it!!

I’ve joined up with Trupananion’s Breeder Support Program. HERE you will find your personalized Gravitas Goldens offer (aka Go Home Day Offer). Your offer contains a promotional code specific to Gravitas Goldens. This promo code is the most important aspect of the breeder program because it is needed to activate coverage. I do not gain from this at all, it is the only way to give our puppies coverage through their transition to a new owner without there being a waiting period. This is completely voluntary.
If you DO want to sign up, Just remember that the activation has to happen within 24 hours before or after the puppy goes home. This means you can call in the day before pick up, day of, or day after to activate. The number to call is located on your Go Home Day Offer and is available 24/7. Calling in to activate takes about 5 minutes on average and then the puppy is instantly covered!
Overview of the Go Home Day Offer:
• 30 days of coverage with no obligation
• Immediate coverage, waiting periods are waived
• $250 deductible, applies per condition for the lifetime of the pet
• 90% coverage with no limits on what Trupanion pays out
• Vet Direct Pay
• Coverage for any new injuries or illnesses (more information about Trupanion online)
Here’s hoping you won’t need it!

What are the different stages of puppy/dog development and what should I expect?

This infographic is a great visual of what to expect:

Dog Development Infographic

When will the puppies be ready to go home?

At 8 weeks old. No earlier. If you cannot pick up your puppy at 8 weeks, you have the option to enroll him/her in our young puppy board and train program. There is a charge for this, but you get a discount!

Do you have recommendations on items I should buy to prepare?

 

YES! We have quite a few tried and true products that we use regularly between our training business, service dog non-profit and of course Gravitas Goldens. You may not need everything listed but we know some folks are getting their first dog ever and need more guidance than others!

New Puppy Shopping List

Puppy Chew Items

Bringing Puppy Home

What else will I get when I pick up my puppy?

Prior to picking up your puppy you will get access to a private “Litter Webpage” which gives you an online Puppy Manual including shopping lists and answers to all the questions about raising, training, caring for a puppy etc!

Your Puppy Swag Bag will include:

  1. Health/Vaccination Records in EMAIL
  2. Trupanion Health Insurance Offer/Code which covers the puppy without a waiting period *IF* you choose to buy/activate it
  3. AKC Reunite Microchip & Registration Info
  4. Limited AKC Registration is provided after certain contractual obligations are met by the new owners
  5. Bag of Mini Treats
  6. Adaptil Junior Collar
  7. Soft tug toy
  8. Snuggle Puppy
  9. Treat dispensing toy
  10. Clix House Line
  11. 1-2 other chew items
  12. Operation Socialization Puppy Passport
  13. Blanket or Pet Towel with Siblings/Mother’s scent

Webinar about Bringing Puppy Home

Link to Webinar recording HERE

Supplemental material for webinar is HERE

Driving or Flying with Puppy

AIR TRAVEL

For air travel, make sure you have booked in advance for an “in-cabin pet” for your flight. Usually it is around $100-200 depending on the airline.

Most airports have Pet Relief Areas to let the puppy play and potty for as long as you can before catching your connections.

You should bring an appropriate crate for the flight you are on (check with your airline), soft sided is preferred. The puppies are not trained on puppy pads but I recommend you bring 1-2, along with a small 2 x 2′ piece of astroturf. They ARE trained to go on the turf, so I put the turf on the puppy pad, and usually they immediately go potty and you can throw the pad away (and the turf piece if need be). Also, bring some paper towels & wet wipes “just in case”.

As a reminder, you’ll get your swag bag at the same time I hand off puppies so make sure you have room for it. Your Puppy Swag Bag will include the following items:

  1. AKC Reunite Microchip & Registration Info
  2. Bag of Mini Treats
  3. Adaptil Junior Collar- put this on immediately in the airport!
  4. Soft tug toy
  5. Snuggle Puppy
  6. Treat dispensing toy
  7. Clix House Line
  8. 1-2 other chew items
  9. Operation Socialization Puppy Passport
*I usually add a ziploc with some puppy food and other extra good chew items for puppies flying.
*I suggest you have a small collar that you can attach the training line or a leash to. In the airports the puppies can usually come out and play but need to be on leash.
*Food/water – use sparingly, what goes in must come out! I will usually feed them breakfast and let them have water up until I leave Visalia (1 hour away from our airport). However I would plan on a small meal and offer water briefly during layovers just before or while you are in Pet Relief area. Take puppy back to Pet Relief area just before boarding connection. Finally, when you land at final destination, offer one last meal while waiting for bags, and then potty at first available location and obviously again once HOME!!
Here are some good articles I like to share prior to flying with puppies…PLEASE READ THEM:
Airports provide a pretty amazing socialization opportunity, and our pups generally do very well taking it all in! Please use your treats/food as needed if puppy seems nervous/scared at times to help it become a positive experience. Usually during any layovers I have puppy out of the bag and playing… once on the plane you generally have to keep them in the bag at all times. Sometimes I’ll have the bag open with my hand in it just to keep puppy calm but still in the bag.
Most people are very nervous flying with a puppy for the first time! Generally speaking the puppies just sleep most of the time on the flights! A bit of whining/barking may occur, that is why you’ll have good chew items etc. It’s like flying with a toddler, and airport staff are usually very good and understanding so DON’T STRESS! I know, easier said than done, but you will do great!

DRIVING

Long drives require a similar amount of planning! Puppy can travel in your lap or in a secured crate. Crates are much safer than laps during an accident, but I know most puppies ride home on laps!

Resources:

Driving Home With Puppy

 

Does Puppy come with Pet Insurance?

YES! But it is up to you to activate it!!

I’ve joined up with Trupananion’s Breeder Support Program. HERE you will find your personalized Gravitas Goldens offer (aka Go Home Day Offer). Your offer contains a promotional code specific to Gravitas Goldens. This promo code is the most important aspect of the breeder program because it is needed to activate coverage. I do not gain from this at all, it is the only way to give our puppies coverage through their transition to a new owner without there being a waiting period. This is completely voluntary.
If you DO want to sign up, Just remember that the activation has to happen within 24 hours before or after the puppy goes home. This means you can call in the day before pick up, day of, or day after to activate. The number to call is located on your Go Home Day Offer and is available 24/7. Calling in to activate takes about 5 minutes on average and then the puppy is instantly covered!
Overview of the Go Home Day Offer:
• 30 days of coverage with no obligation
• Immediate coverage, waiting periods are waived
• $250 deductible, applies per condition for the lifetime of the pet
• 90% coverage with no limits on what Trupanion pays out
• Vet Direct Pay
• Coverage for any new injuries or illnesses (more information about Trupanion online)
Here’s hoping you won’t need it!

When will the puppies be ready to go home?

At 8 weeks old. No earlier. If you cannot pick up your puppy at 8 weeks, you have the option to enroll him/her in our young puppy board and train program. There is a charge for this, but you get a discount!

How much is additional training for my puppy?

Once your puppy is ready to go home with you at 8 weeks old, you have the following board & train options:

TRAINING ADD-ON

Please note that these rates are discounted for Gravitas Puppy Buyers only.

If you are local to Visalia, we have other options including drop off day training!

Do you have recommendations on items I should buy to prepare?

 

YES! We have quite a few tried and true products that we use regularly between our training business, service dog non-profit and of course Gravitas Goldens. You may not need everything listed but we know some folks are getting their first dog ever and need more guidance than others!

New Puppy Shopping List

Puppy Chew Items

What is the puppy’s daily routine?

Puppy Daily Routine

This routine reflects my personal daily schedule, your puppy can get used to a new schedule if you are more of a “night owl” than a morning person!

 

5-6am- Wake Up! Go straight outside for potty and playtime. I usually stay outside with them for a while to make sure they pee and poop before they come back in house.

 

8am- Nap Time! The pups can usually stay awake for 1-2 hours before it becomes obvious they are tired! At this point you can either crate your puppy for 1-2 hours of naptime, or you can let them sleep in the same room you are in as long as you are supervising them. When they wake up, they should go straight back outside for potty break again!!

 

10am- Potty/Playtime! When they are inside the house playing, I let them back outside every 15-20 minutes for a potty break. They are not “telling” me they need to go potty yet, I do not usually expect that at this age. If you see your puppy start walking around sniffing, they might need to go!!

If you catch your puppy going potty in the house, I usually just run up to them, pick them up and taken them straight outside. I do not punish them, they are just babies, I just make a mental note of the time between potty breaks and adjust accordingly.

As puppy gets older, they get better control so you can start pushing time between potty breaks.

 

12pm- Naptime again! Puppies need naptime, so don’t worry about crating them. They need the rest otherwise they can seem like a cranky toddler who hasn’t had a nap!

 

2pm- Potty/Playtime!

 

4pm- Naptime!

 

6pm- Potty/Playtime! I try and keep them up at this point until bedtime to help them sleep through the night. I usually pull water access around 7pm to help prevent drinking too much and needing to pee in the night.

 

10-11pm- Bedtime! Usually 10-11pm is “last call” at my place. Your puppies should be sleeping in their crates at night by now. Right now they are sleeping through the night!! Don’t be surprised if your puppy wakes you up the first few nights, it is a new place, new people etc so they may be a little stressed. Take them out to potty if they cry in the night, and put them straight back. No playtime in the middle of the night unless you want to create that habit!

 

Crate training is done early to ensure the puppies can “hold it” as well as get used to being alone sometimes. A crate comes in handy for all sorts of reasons, but should NOT be somewhere your puppy is left 8-10 hours a day in a row. The crate can be useful after surgery, when guests come over, when traveling in hotels, etc so even if you don’t want your pup in a crate most of the time, maintaining some crate training may help in the long run.

This is YOUR puppy… if you want your puppy to sleep with you in bed… go ahead! If you want your puppy to sleep in your daughter’s room… go ahead!! Just remember new changes may be unsettling, so be prepared for puppy to wake you up, move around, etc. so if you are a deep sleeper, you may want to keep puppy confined so they cannot walk away and have an accident or chew anything.

My Vet said my puppy should not go anywhere until his last shots? What are your thoughts?

The current and long-standing position statement of the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior can be viewed here:

AVSAB Position Statement On Puppy Socialization

Another good article on the subject can be read here:

Socializing Your Puppy: Why “Later” Is Too Late

 

We get our puppies OUT!! My two cents is your puppy is not 100% safe ANYWHERE. One thing is pretty for sure… and your vet may not have told you this part… if you don’t get your puppy out and about before 16 weeks old (ish) then you have missed the socialization boat completely.

I believe how and when you do this is a very personal choice, but a choice you should have ALL the information on before making it.

Puppy Care FAQ

What is a good weight for my puppy/dog to be?

In our experience each individual has different energy needs and two dogs can have very different food requirements and weight fluctuations. Pet obesity is becoming a huge problem just as in people. Also BE ADVISED, I’ve seen many veterinarians think that a fat/chubby dog is the perfect weight. No disrespect to your vet, please do your own science based research before going with their word as the Bible. Goldens are prone to joint issues, and obesity can directly and exacerbate affect this health issue.

Here are a couple good visual references for you (click on each to enlarge):

The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention has some great resources you can check out.

How much & how often do I feed my puppy?

We feed 8 week old puppies 1/2 cup kibble, 3-4 x daily starting first thing in the morning, up until about 5pm. We feed them in their crate to make sure they LOVE going in their crate.

We do not usually use a bowl, we just throw a handful in the bottom of the crate and let the puppy root around! This helps keep things fun for the puppy and ensure that puppy does not eat too fast.

If it is not mealtime but puppy needs to go in the crate, I always make sure to throw a few pieces of kibble or treats in!

As your puppy grows you will need to increase the amount incrementally and slowly decrease the number of feedings per day. My ADULT Goldens eat about 4 cups of kibble per day total ON AVERAGE.

 

This growth chart is something you can use and customize to your puppy:

https://www.waltham.com/resources/puppy-growth-charts

 

REMEMBER a lean puppy/dog is generally a healthier one! These studies demonstrate this quite well:

Effects of diet restriction on life span and age-related changes in dogs

Influence of lifetime food restriction on causes, time, and predictors of death in dogs

Diet restriction and ageing in the dog: major observations over two decades

Car Sickness in Puppies/Dogs…

Car sickness is not common in Gravitas Goldens but it can happen. There is hope! This article originally appeared in the NTCA News · Spring 2010, and was written by Magda Omansky. It was written for Norwich Terrier owners but I find it is very sage advice!

COMMON SENSE MOTION SICKNESS BUSTERS

by Magda Omansky (NTCA Health Chair)

Most of us have been there – soiled dog beds, miserable pooches, that unmistakable acrid smell of dog vomit. Motion sickness is no fun for dogs or their caregivers. Luckily, there are things we can do to avoid it. Most puppies outgrow this unpleasant condition, but some unlucky ones remain affected all their lives. My Holly Bee is one of them. Her motion sickness is both severe and long-term. In dealing with Holly’s car sickness, I developed a number of successful strategies to minimize the condition and to help Holly to cope with it. I hope you find them helpful. Understanding the mechanism behind motion sickness helped me most in addressing it. I learned that travel sickness is a result of stimulation of the vestibular apparatus located within the inner ear. The most common hypothesis for the cause of it is that it functions as a defense mechanism against poisons. There is a part of the brain, called area postrema, responsible for inducing vomiting when toxins are detected in the body. When a dog feels the motion without seeing the cause of it the brain jumps to a conclusion that the experience is a hallucination due to ingesting neurotoxins. In other words, air sickness occurs when the brain receives conflicting messages from the body affecting balance and equilibrium. Car sickness is more commonly seen in puppies and young dogs, just as it afflicts more children than adults. The ear structures used for balance are not fully developed in puppies and the brain cannot cope with the conflicting messages. Sometimes the problem may be an improperly formed middle ear, but most commonly it is a function of the brain overreacting to the stimulus of moving. The severity of motion sickness varies from mild, when the dog is only yawning, whining and drooling to severe, which might involve explosive vomiting and diarrhea. There are some common sense ways to help mitigate motion sickness: Condition your terrier for positive experience. Consider spending some time in a parked car with your dog. Take her for really short and fun trips. Drive around the block and have a fantastic play session afterwards. Go to the car for a doggy massage session or just some one-on-one time, with lots of petting and attention. I spent many, many hours in the car with Holly without the car moving; just sitting in the driveway. I would either read or work on my laptop and Holly eventually learned to settle and not be anxious in the car.

Take your dog for a walk before any travel. This is especially important when you plan on traveling far. Make the time for a really long walk. A tired dog is a less anxious dog. The brain will be less reactive. Do not give any food or drink before a car trip. My rule of thumb is 6 hours of no food and little or no water, before any longer trips. The idea is to send messages to the brain that the stomach is empty. There is no poison there to get rid of. One exception to no eating rule is ginger. Give one ginger cookie to settle the stomach about 30 minutes before a trip. Ginger is a traditional remedy for nausea. I found it especially helpful for puppies. Puppies should not be kept hungry.

When driving, open windows for fresh air or at least lower them a bit. It is important to lower them on both sides of the car. This helps balance the air pressure inside the car with the air pressure outside, which may help reduce your dog’s nausea and discomfort. Locate the car seat or the crate in a place that allows a view of the far horizon. Again, the idea is to reconcile in the brain the visual stimuli with the feeling of motion. Conversely, if possible avoid the most bouncy parts of the vehicle and those closed off from seeing out the window, like the back of a van. Avoid any food or any products with strong smells in the car, which may stimulate the brain further into thinking that the poison is still there and may agitate the motion sickness. Drive as smooth as possible – avoiding sudden stops, fast turns, bumpy roads. The less the little terrier body is thrown around the better. After all, it is all about balance and equilibrium. Make frequent stops to allow a feeling of the solid ground under the paws.

If the above methods are not enough you may want to consider medication. Pharmacological intervention was my last resort but it worked very well for Holly. For her, none of the natural remedies worked (we tried about a dozen or so), nor any of the over-the counter motion sickness remedies for children that our vet suggested to try. The good news is that Pfizer came out with Cerenia, the only medicine specifically formulated for canines. Cerenia, along with other measures I shared above, allows Holly Bee to travel without vomiting. It is a prescription drug specifically formulated for motion sickness in dogs without causing drowsiness. It is a relatively new medication, so I was hesitant to use it, but it proved incredibly effective for Holly and made our life much happier. When the Norwich terrier breed was created, understandably motion sickness was not in the realm of even the most remote consideration. And so, unfortunately, car sickness seems to be relatively common in this breed, especially in puppyhood. I hope you will enjoy quality time with your Norwich in a parked car, and on a long walk, and then you set off on a smooth ride. Originally appeared in the NTCA News · Spring 2010

What is the puppy’s daily routine?

Puppy Daily Routine

This routine reflects my personal daily schedule, your puppy can get used to a new schedule if you are more of a “night owl” than a morning person!

 

5-6am- Wake Up! Go straight outside for potty and playtime. I usually stay outside with them for a while to make sure they pee and poop before they come back in house.

 

8am- Nap Time! The pups can usually stay awake for 1-2 hours before it becomes obvious they are tired! At this point you can either crate your puppy for 1-2 hours of naptime, or you can let them sleep in the same room you are in as long as you are supervising them. When they wake up, they should go straight back outside for potty break again!!

 

10am- Potty/Playtime! When they are inside the house playing, I let them back outside every 15-20 minutes for a potty break. They are not “telling” me they need to go potty yet, I do not usually expect that at this age. If you see your puppy start walking around sniffing, they might need to go!!

If you catch your puppy going potty in the house, I usually just run up to them, pick them up and taken them straight outside. I do not punish them, they are just babies, I just make a mental note of the time between potty breaks and adjust accordingly.

As puppy gets older, they get better control so you can start pushing time between potty breaks.

 

12pm- Naptime again! Puppies need naptime, so don’t worry about crating them. They need the rest otherwise they can seem like a cranky toddler who hasn’t had a nap!

 

2pm- Potty/Playtime!

 

4pm- Naptime!

 

6pm- Potty/Playtime! I try and keep them up at this point until bedtime to help them sleep through the night. I usually pull water access around 7pm to help prevent drinking too much and needing to pee in the night.

 

10-11pm- Bedtime! Usually 10-11pm is “last call” at my place. Your puppies should be sleeping in their crates at night by now. Right now they are sleeping through the night!! Don’t be surprised if your puppy wakes you up the first few nights, it is a new place, new people etc so they may be a little stressed. Take them out to potty if they cry in the night, and put them straight back. No playtime in the middle of the night unless you want to create that habit!

 

Crate training is done early to ensure the puppies can “hold it” as well as get used to being alone sometimes. A crate comes in handy for all sorts of reasons, but should NOT be somewhere your puppy is left 8-10 hours a day in a row. The crate can be useful after surgery, when guests come over, when traveling in hotels, etc so even if you don’t want your pup in a crate most of the time, maintaining some crate training may help in the long run.

This is YOUR puppy… if you want your puppy to sleep with you in bed… go ahead! If you want your puppy to sleep in your daughter’s room… go ahead!! Just remember new changes may be unsettling, so be prepared for puppy to wake you up, move around, etc. so if you are a deep sleeper, you may want to keep puppy confined so they cannot walk away and have an accident or chew anything.

What should I feed my puppy?

Your puppy is being raised on Purina Pro Plan Savor Puppy.

Dog food is a very personal choice, and you should do your research before switching brands. There is some recent evidence that “Grain-Free” foods MAY not be the best choice for dogs. Most people, including your average veterinarian, are NOT NUTRITIONISTS. The scary part is they often pretend to be. Be your puppy’s advocate and make sure you are comfortable with the food you choose… and there is nothing wrong with switching foods!

No two breeders/trainers etc can agree on anything, but I will say that EVERY single reproductive veterinarian I have spoken to recommends PPP, Royal Canin or Science Diet. I think Avidog is more a proponent of raw feeding, which I’m not against but personally don’t have the time to do it RIGHT, and neither do most of my puppy owners!

I think reproduction is likely a very good measure of nutritional quality and we typical average 10 puppies per litter and very healthy pregnancies, deliveries, etc so I am happy with PPP and feel comfortable recommending it however nutrition is a regular point of debate among dog lovers!!

When should I Spay/Neuter my puppy? Or should I?

This is a personal decision that requires you do some research and not just listen “to your brother’s friend’s uncle who is a vet”.

Current research is compiled here:

An Update on the Health Effects of Spay/Neuter in Dogs

Long-Term Health Effects of Neutering Dogs: Comparison of Labrador Retrievers with Golden Retrievers

Neutering: This Common Procedure Can Boost Cancer and Joint Problems As Much As Five-Fold

Contrary to popular belief, you do not HAVE TO spay/neuter your dog. As long as you a a responsible dog owner not allowing unwanted/unplanned litters!! It is YOUR decision, not mine, not your vet’s, etc.

Puppy Training FAQ

Everything you do right now with the puppy you must ask yourself: "When he is 70lbs will I still want him doing this?"

If the answer is NO, then you must not confuse the puppy by allowing it for a few months and then suddenly changing your mind!

How do I keep puppy from jumping?

Read this:

Training Dogs Not To Jump

This is one of the reasons we stay in business! Jumping teenage dogs whose owners let them jump all over them as tiny pups. It’s not too late to teach an old dog new tricks, but it is MUCH MORE DIFFICULT!

Remember, this is like teaching young kids to say “please & thank you”… it is very important to teach them manners but we spend 18 years reminding them until they hopefully grow into decent human beings. Your puppy will need plenty of “reminding” the first 1-2 years of his life 🙂 Also, just as with children, it’s better to be proactive about teaching them what you want, than to react angrily every time they don’t behave the “right way”. Punishment is often ineffective, timed wrong, or unfair because the puppy is really clueless about what you want instead.

How do I handle puppy mouthing/play biting?

WARNING: They are called “Retrievers” for a reason!!! THEY PUT EVERYTHING IN THEIR MOUTH!!

Read this:

Living With “Jaws”: A Survival Guide For Puppy Mouthing

Help! My Puppy’s a Land Shark!

How To Stop Puppy Biting – The Ultimate Guide

In my experience, puppies often have a “witching hour” once or twice a day. Sometimes this is because they’ve been cooped up too long… BUT sometimes they’ve been OUT too long and really, really need a nap! Sound familiar? Anyone met a toddler before? So if you’ve exhausted all the advice in the above articles, it’s ok to put puppy in his crate with a chew toy and walk away!

Do you have any house-training advice?

Read this:

To Pee or Not To Pee: Housetraining Demystified

Now read it again and again until you’ve memorized it!

Here is another great resource:

Potty Training Planner

 

Here’s a couple great infographics showing a House training flow chart and sample crate training schedule, but your puppy may need some tweaks to his/her custom schedule!!

Do you do clicker training?

Kind of. Clicker training is a form of Marker Training. Instead of a clicker I prefer teaching clients to use a verbal marker because you always have your voice! The principles are exactly the same!

Here’s a good overview on Marker Training:

Marker Training Dogs Effectively, Speeds Up Training

What is Resource Guarding?

This is a very important question. It is a common, normal behavior… however it can escalate quickly into a scarier behavioral issue. It is something I have seen in a lot of Golden Retrievers! I personally believe this is for two reasons:

  1. They put a lot of things in their mouth!
  2. They are EXTREMELY food motivated!

Resource Guarding can start innocently enough with a puppy playing “keep away”. In it’s most severe form, I’ve seen dogs put people (including their owners) in the hospital.

It pays to do a lot of proactive work to try and prevent any Resource Guarding. We’ve done some already with your puppies, now you must keep it up!

Please read the following articles to familiarize yourself with this behavioral issue:

Resource-Guarding And What To Do About It

The Resource-Guarding Warning Signs

 

COVID-19 Socialization Concerns?

 

We are getting a lot of questions about socializing your puppy during this unprecedented time with COVID-19. In a nutshell, we aren’t actually that worried about it!

If you are on Facebook, I highly recommend you join the Group called “Pandemic Puppy Raising Support Group

Here are good articles on the topic:

PSYCHOLOGY TODAY:

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/decoding-your-pet/202004/puppy-or-rescue-dog-socialization-during-covid-19

AKC:

How to Socialize Your Puppy During Times of Social Distancing

Covid-19 – Reducing Separation Anxiety for When This is Over (and other times too)

Critter Corner: Being prepared during COVID-19 pandemic

Critter Corner: Social distancing and handling being homebound

 

Preventing Resource Guarding

Resource guarding is a fairly normal behavior that we humans tend to make worse when it is quite easy to make it go away! Although we have done some preventative training with your puppy already, you should be aware of this concept if you see your puppy freeze, growl, lunge, etc over any item as you approach or reach for it. DO NOT PUNISH THE PUPPY. That is the golden rule, and the primary reason this gets worse instead of better.

Here are two good articles:

Resource Guarding – How to Teach Your Dog to Share

Exercises for Preventing Resource Guarding in Puppies

Also, be sure to watch my video at the bottom of this webpage for a demo!

How do I train puppy to walk nicely on leash?

Loose leash walking is an important skill! Your 10lb puppy will get pretty big… so start NOW. A few simple rules:

  1. Start with “Training Walks”: very short 5 minute sessions
  2. Always bring good treats
  3. Always reward for focus or looking at you
  4. Always reward for slack leash and/or walking nicely with you
  5. Have fun! Use a “happy voice”! Remember this puppy is a BABY

Here’s a helpful article:

My Puppy Won’t Walk on Leash! 3 Ways to Train Your Puppy to Love Her Leash

Here is a good video:

What books do you recommend on Puppy Training?

While this website stays up to date on training techniques, you may want some extra reading! This article sums up most of the books I read as a student of dog training and believe are good resources for pet owners:

Best Dog Training Books: 27 of the Top Training Guides

Getting Puppy to Sleep Through the Night…

This is a frequent issue, that is initially understandable but gets old quickly! When puppies we breed stay for training at 8 weeks old they are crated from 10pm-6am every night with great success and consistency. Meanwhile, I often find that families who took home a sibling are struggling in a vicious wake/sleep cycle and find it hard to slowly get puppy to wake up at a more acceptable time.

Here are some resources to help you:

How to Get a Puppy to Sleep Through the Night

Puppy Culture Podcast – “Puppies who wake up too early”

Whole Dog Journal – “My Dog Wakes Up Too Early!”

 

How do I train my puppy?

We recommend and prefer Positive Reinforcement Training. My background is in the Zoo field, and I’ve worked with VERY large and dangerous animals such as Rhinos & Tigers. I’ve had them learn to let me take blood and give them injections cooperatively and without putting either of us in danger. Positive. Reinforcement.

Golden Retrievers are VERY food motivated which makes positive reinforcement pretty easy! They can also be a bit on the sensitive side, which means that heavy handed methods can sometimes “break their spirit” aka “ruin an otherwise great dog”.

But remember, positive does NOT mean permissive!

Read more here:

What is Positive Reinforcement in Dog Training?

What should I look for in a dog trainer and/or puppy class?

Remember, your breeder (that’s me!) is a Dog Trainer & Behavior Consultant! However, there may be times you need someone local to you to help. I will help as much as I can of course, but we may be limited by distance, etc. Believe it or not, dog trainers do not require any certification or even state license. You MUST do your due diligence and I highly recommend you find a trainer who has credentials from either the APDT or IAABC.

So, read this article:

How To Find The Best Dog Trainer For Your Dog

 

Also read this:

Puppy Kindergarten Vs. Obedience Class: What’s The Difference?


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