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PUPPY CULTURE

How We Raise Our Puppies

Our mission is to breed Golden Retrievers that are not only perfect family companions, but also embody the sweetness, sociability, and eagerness to please that goldens are known for. To guarantee healthy puppies, we perform genetic testing on parents.

We raise our pups following the principles of ENS (Early Neurological Stimulation), ESI (Early Scent Introduction), and Rule of 7’s. Nestled in our home, our pups are reared with boundless love and care. They enjoy thorough socialization with us, our young children, and our dog family.

PREGNANCY

At our breeding program, we wholeheartedly embrace the nurturing principles of puppy culture, ensuring our expecting mothers feel cherished, safe, and content throughout their pregnancy journey. Our girl receives personalized attention and care, tailored to her unique needs. We attentively monitor her food, water intake, and playfulness, recognizing that pregnant females can be quite sensitive and deserving of extra TLC!
During this special time, our priority is the well-being of our beloved moms and their precious pups. We provide comprehensive prenatal care, including a visit to our reproductive veterinarian around day 25 to confirm pregnancy. As the pregnancy progresses, we maintain a close watch, scheduling an x-ray around day 57 to count the fetal skeletons and prepare for the upcoming whelping.
Our ultimate goal is to ensure both mom and her soon-to-arrive puppies are in optimal health. We prioritize providing them with the finest nutrition and environment, understanding that a stress-free pregnancy is vital for the well-being of the entire litter. Following the practices of puppy culture, we lovingly stroke mom's belly during those final days, believing it helps the puppies develop a positive response to touch even before they enter the world. By fostering this early bond, we aim to nurture gentle, affectionate companions for life.

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EARLY NEUROLOGICAL STIMULATION

When our puppies come into the world, they arrive with their eyes and ears gently sealed shut for the first two weeks of life. Within just three days of their arrival, we begin what we call Early Neurological Stimulation, a practice that holds a multitude of benefits for our little ones.

Early Neurological Stimulation, or ENS, helps our puppies build resilience to life's challenges. It aids in boosting their immune system, quickening their adrenal response, and strengthening their precious hearts. We continue this until they reach 16 days of age, knowing that these early experiences can shape their lives in remarkable ways.

Around day 18, as our puppies grow and explore their world, we start to introduce them potty training as they have a natural instinct to keeping their den clean. Following the wisdom of puppy culture, we guide them towards their instincts, encouraging them to walk away from their bedding to relieve themselves. It's not just about potty training at this stage; it's the beginning of their socialization journey, where they learn about the world around them in a safe and nurturing environment.

Click here for more on ENS.

EARLY SCENT INTRODUCTION

Neonatal puppies, from 3 to 16 days of age, are ready and able to smell their world. We take advantage of this to improve their adult scenting ability by doing Early Scent Introduction with our litters. ESI has contributed to  successes in hunt tests and field trials, tracking and nose work, search and rescue work, obedience and more.

Every day a novel scent item is placed before the puppy's nose. We watch and take notes on the interaction with the scent - positive, negative, or neutral. Some of the scents we use: tennis ball, leather, cat fur, game bird wing, birch/anise/clove oil (these are used in nose work competitions), grass w/ soil attached, pinecone, banana, moss, etc.

If you'd like to hear more on this fascinating process, here is the link to more.

https://www.avidog.com/early-scent-introduction-for-neonate-puppies/

SOCIALIZATION

By the time our puppies reach 3 weeks of age, they undergo a remarkable transformation. With their eyes wide open and their ears tuned in, they eagerly soak in the sights and sounds of their world. They joyfully respond to our touch, their excitement palpable as they eagerly greet us with wagging tails.
You'll hear them before you see them at this stage – they're a noisy bunch, full of playful energy as they romp around with their littermates. They've also taken their first steps into the world of solid foods, eagerly mastering the art of eating with each passing day. Nail trims have become a familiar routine.
To keep their curiosity piqued, we introduce new toys and objects for them to check out every day. It's all about building their confidence, so when they head off to their forever homes, they're not fazed by anything and can focus on bonding with their new families.

"Few breeds can match the golden's friendly, loving, and gentle nature; fewer still display its innate love for children."

Jamie J. Sucher, Golden Retrievers, 1987

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Around 4-5 weeks old, we begin introducing our puppies to other dogs besides their mom. They start going outside with our "pack", but under close watch to ensure everyone plays gently. We also expose them to various other animals to teach them that making friends with different creatures is perfectly fine.

Puppy culture helps us to teach our puppies these skills:

1. Communication

 2. Emotional stability

3. The ability to recover easily from fear

4. Being able to cope with stress

5. Habituation

6. Enrichment

7. Health

8. Learned behaviors So that they can exist in a human society.

9. Love For animals and humans.

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