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.

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