Puppy's Early Life
We believe that happy, healthy dogs have happy and healthy puppies. Our dogs get daily accupressure massages and frequent holding, petting, and playing by both children and adults.
Our puppies are gentled into life. We endeavor to have a peaceful, quiet, and beautiful environment for our girls to give birth in. We hand deliver the puppies and help the Moms to clean, dry, and warm their new babies. I stay in the same room with our girls for the first few days after the puppies are born--until they are relaxed and comfortable with their babies on their own. After that time, the whelping box is put in the middle of the main rooms in our house so that they are exposed to every day events in our home. The puppies are held frequently every day. They are exposed daily to new individuals--both children and adults. We supplemental feed our puppies some formula in order to facilitate human-poodle bonding.(plus, it's a lot of fun) We handle our puppies noses, paws, and mouths from birth in order to make grooming comfortable and easy for them when they are older. They love to have their teeth brushed.(At least they like the chicken tooth paste that we use) We start gently brushing their hair daily at about 2 weeks of age. Their hair is then brushed daily. They have their first grooming at about 1 month and first complete grooming at 6 weeks. They have had frequent baths and are comfortable in the bathtub.
All of our dogs, including our boys, help to raise the puppies. They help the babies to get through the doggie door in the beginning of their training, help to clean them, entertain them by bringing the puppies their favorite toys and bones, help to train them in basic commands and potty training, and are in general, instrumental in growing the puppies easily and properly.
Poodles are extremely intelligent and willing to please. Our puppies are fed their first meals outside so that they will eliminate in the yard after eating. By four weeks of age, they are big enough to get in and out of the doggie door--they are naturally clean. At that point, they are potty trained in just a few days. They do 99% of the work themselves with the help of their parents. I can't take the credit for their early potty training but I am certainly grateful that they are so easily trained. By the time that they are ready to go home at 8 weeks, they are independent in their use of the doggie door and will attempt to potty on command with "go potty".. They are very easily trained(in a day or two) to bark when they need to go outside if their new home does not have a doggy door. Some have been taught to ring a bell when they need to go out. Likewise, they are easily crate trained in the same period of time.
By 6 weeks, the puppies know several commands: "go potty," "in," "out", "quiet,"and "no."They have had early lessons in leash walking, playing fetch, and "sit."
Many of our puppies have strong prey drives and are excellent retrievers. Several have become hunting dogs. Their owners have often had labrador retrievers or other more common hunting dogs prior to their poodle hunting dogs. On more than one occasion, the hunters have said that their poodles were superior to their other retrievers because the poodles had little interest in eating the birds, unlike their other hunting dogs.