Friday, June 28, 2013

S-P Pups Day 50: Indoor & Outdoor Play

With the temperature rising into the 90's, it is too hot for the pups to be outside all day. They enjoy their indoor pen, filled with toys and chews. We rotate the toys, for cleaning and also to maintain interest and to see which ones are a hit. In the video above, they are playing with a new favorite toy, a crinkle glove, found at discount at TJ Maxx, a great source for pet beds and toys. We also have a new toy that was an immediate hit, a Kyjen toy teaser, a toy on the end of a long stick, think lunging crop, and we tired the pups out as they ran, jumped and stalked this fun toy. I will have to get a video of the toy teaser play.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

S-P Pups Day 49: 7 week stacks

The Fast Times litter

Hard to believe the pups are seven weeks old and will be going to their forever homes in a little over a week.  We continue to evaluate the puppies' conformation as well as observe how they play and react to new experiences.  We took the 7 week stack shots today and we pleased not only with how the pups look, very consistent and promising for show pups, but they have been the easiest litter to stack as they all have such easygoing and biddable temperaments. 
The final conformation evaluation, done by a group of experience breeders, will include hands on grading and watching puppy movement, will be when the pups are 8 weeks old. Then, along with the results of the temperament testing, we will make the final and extremely important decisions of which pup is the best match for each family.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

S-P Pups Day 46-48: Fast Times Pups Play Hard

The Fast Times Pups have a rocking good time on this children's seesaw.  The pups are used to things that move and unsteady footing since they were four weeks old and we put a wobble board in the puppy pen.  The wobble board and seesaw help the pups get comfortable with sound and motion.  This seesaw is great for giving them confidence when objects move, works different body parts, makes noise and is a ton of fun!  These pups all have the potential to be future agility stars!
Puppy play and socialization are very important parts of the pups development. They are currently in the Curiosity Period, (5-7 weeks) of the Socializaiton period which lasts from 5-16 weeks. The pups want to climb, crawl, investigate and taste everything. 
The pups have the lowest fear now and are attracted to and accept people. We have visitors on an almost daily basis, introducing the pups to all kinds of people. 
The more chances a puppy has to be exposed to something new during this period, the less bothered it will be throughout its life when confronted with new or scary things.

The pups play includes growling, chasing, wrestling and "kill" games. They love to stalk each other from behind the bottle pool or the chairs. You can see the increased mobility and agility of the pups. They also use their teeth quite bit and may seem rough to an outsider, but this teaches the pups bite inhibition. We provide the pups with stimulating toys, such as those that move, bounce, make unusual noises and have various textures, are great for the pups.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

S-P Pups Day 47: The Gray-V Train

Dinner is served! Watch the Gray-V Train starring the Fast Times Pups (Parker x Savi) come running for their evening meal!

Food is a big motivator for the pups and once the pups were weaned, we introduced loud noises to the pups as we began to feed them. This way the pups associate loud noises, like banging their metal food dish, with positive outcomes like food and help decrease noise sensitivity.  Additionally, you can see in the video that we have begun early recall training using food and the puppy puppy command to get them to come to me. This early imprinting is very important and even our older dogs respond to my puppy puppy call.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Another Sporting Group 2 for Bliss!!!

Huge congratulations to Jen Boyd for handling Bliss, Grayhart's Launch My Line (Clay, BIS GCH Bzyfeet American Idol x Trixie, CH Grayhart's I'm Not Really A Waitress, CD, RN, AX, OAJ, V BROM) to a Group 2 under judge Elizabeth Muthard at the Alaska Kennel Club show on Saturday!!! This is Bliss' 3rd group placement! 

Beautiful Bliss was WB/BOW (Winners Bitch/Best of Winners) for 5-pt major at the Chattahoochie Supported Entry during  the 2013 Weimaraner Club of America Nationals week and won the Open class at the WCA National Specialty!  Bliss is a littermate to Savi, our girl, who is home with puppies.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

S-P Pups Day 45: Six Week Stacks

We began stacking our Fast Times Pups (Parker x Savi) when they were five weeks old and here are the six week stacks. The purpose of stacking or making the dog stand in a specific stance, it to to see all parts of the dog's structure to determine if he follows the standard of his breed. When a dog is shown in conformation shows, the dog is stacked so that the judge can lay "hands on" the dog and examine him to feel his bone structure and muscular condition. We stack the dogs to get an idea of their conformation each week with the final evaluation at eight weeks.
All the pups were naturals and stood like pros...I also think it helped that we had the magic cream cheese!

S-P Pups Day 43: Weimie Weekend

The Fast Times pups turned six weeks old and this week brought lots of exciting changes. Some of the pups went for rides in the car, they spent lots of time in the outside and played and played and played. They took turns being out alone with us and in different groups, some in the pen, while others played outside.
With the weaning process complete and Savi dried up, she enjoys being with her kids. She is such an amazing mother and loves her babies.
 Many of the pups are what we call "nookers" and love to nurse on their toys or blankets.
 These pups have such beautiful heads and show such expression.

 The pups have shown great interest in the bird wings and want them all to themselves!
 Tennis balls are also fun to retrieve!

The pups are incredibly photogenic and below are some of our favorite shots of the day.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

S-P Pups Day 38: Stacking Practice & Sweet 16!

We began stacking the pups last week to get them used to being on the grooming table and can start taking a critical eye to their conformation.  At 5 weeks, the pups have much maturing to do and we do not make any decisions on whether the pups are show prospects until they are 8 weeks old.  We were happy with how the pups look at this age, the consistency of the litter and they all had solid toplines, good tailsets and beautiful heads.  Cream cheese is what we use to bait the pups and they love it!
 The pups have also an enormous amount of socialization from people of all ages and last weekend was   no different.  Friends came with their young children and then it was a Sweet 16 party for my daughter and the girls couldn't get enough of the little gray pups.

 Sorry girls, the puppies are not your party favors!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

New Pet Partners Promotional Video with Jam

The long awaited Pet Partners Promotional Video has finally been released. Jam and I were honored to be included in the filming of this video. This is a great introduction to their Therapy Animal Program. The video features several teams, including us, from around the country visiting various facilities.  The last segment tells the story of a little girl and how a therapy dog saved her life is extremely touching and will bring you to tears

Friday, June 14, 2013

S-P Pups Days 31-33: Busy Busy

It has been a super hectic week with visitors, work and of course, lots of puppy fun.  We haven't had time to update the blog but it doesn not mean the pups have not been socializing, learning new things and getting exposed to new experiences.  Here are some photos from the past week of our favorite time spent outside.  Due to the horrendous weather in New Jersey, days of pouring rain, the pups have only been outside when the weather has been more cooperative.
 Looking for treats in the bottle pool...

 Eating dinner al fresco...

Sunday, June 9, 2013

S-P pups: One Month old! & new digs!

 The past week has been full of excitement and we haven't had time to update the blog with all the news on our Fast Times litter. The pups moved out of the whelping box into their puppy pen located in our living room; talk about being in the heart of our home.  They are right off the kitchen and we spend many hours in here watching TV and reading.  The puppy pen has super comfortable rubber mat flooring which gives the pups excellent traction, a litter box, dog beds and lots of toys, which we will rotate.
 The pups have grown and are now playing with each other and we see their personalities developing.  They are being exposed to many new things including sounds like the vacuum cleaner, hammering and dogs barking.  We've had visitors of all ages who played with them and handled them and helped us Dremel the pups nails.
 Savi was feeding the pups when we first moved them into the pen along with their kibble meals but now they are being weaned so are on the food 100%.  We bang their metal food dish with a metal spoon at feeding time to ingrain loud noises with a positive experience (food) and they get very excited at the sound of meal time!
 Like all Weims, these pups are creatures of comfort and love all the different dog bed.
 They have many new toys and we will rotate the toys to continue to expose them to different textures and noises.
 We even have a crate in the pen which is the start of their crate training.
The weekend was a crazy one and we will post those photos and tell you all about the puppies' cool outdoor space and the bottle pool.

Mia-belle new OA title!!!

Huge congratulations to Jessica Scharff and Mia-belle for earning their Open Agility (OA) title yesterday with a 1st place!  This also gives Mia-belle her WCA VX2 title

Mia-belle is now CH Grayhart's Special Request, CDX,RA,JH,OA,NAJ,NSD, RD, VX2 (Zeke, CH OB's 38 Special x Trixie, CH GraytSky's I'm Not Really A Waitress, CD, RN, AX, OAJ, V BROM). So proud of this awesome team and our second Grayhart VX2.  

Monday, June 3, 2013

S-P Pups Day 25: The modeling gene

Our little pups are already showing amazing focus.   I was able to get them to practice a quick group stay and even look at the camera!  

Sunday, June 2, 2013

S-P Pups Days 21-24: Growing leaps & bounds & a big adventure!

The Fast Times pups (Parker x Savi) turned 3 weeks old a few days ago and it seems overnight, they have become more active and playful. They have now begun the developmental period called the Awareness or Identification Period, lasting from age 21-28 days. 
  From Pat Hasting's book, Another piece of the puzzle: Puppy Development:
Since this is the first time the puppies have use of all of their senses, they now need a stable environment and the influence of a stable dam.  Sight and hearing are functioning well.  A variety of noises (music, radio, bells, vacuums, etc) and sihgt (change in light level, moving objects and vibrations) should be part of thei daily life.  
 The exposure to sudden loud noises must happen during the  3rd week when fear has not yet developed.  The startle response should be encouraged so that the pup will startle and then return to normal on its own-something it must be able to do throughout its life.  
  Puppies must now learn that they are dogs; recognizing their mother (filial imprinting), recognizing other species - specifically humans that are part of their social relations (fraternal imprinting) - and have experiences that mean survival of the species (sexual imprinting).  A poorly imprinted puppy will have problems being a  "good" dog in the future.
 ...The puppies will begin "play-fighting" during this week, with a loose pecking order starting to form,  Barking increases. 

Yes, we've noticed all of these things and more.  Most of the pups escaped from the warming box while I was changing the pad in the whelping box and even explored the room!  Now they ge put in a crate while we clean the whelping box.  Their first experience being crated. They are also quite vocal, barking and growlingm and I think they like to hear the sound of their own voices.
 The pups received their "big dog" buckle collars and look very cute in them.
 They also made their first trip outside to the backyard.  We were thrilled to see how confident and bold they were as they explored the new place.  It was very hot, which made it a short trip, and they passed out for an afternoon nap when we brought them back inside.