Updated: Jun 28, 2021
Neurological stimulation is believed to have an important positive effect on a puppies development. The first several weeks of life is when rapid neurological growth and development happens. During this time our puppies are exposed to gentle stressors which have been found to have many positive lifelong health and social benefits.
improved cardio vascular performance (heart rate),
stronger heart beats and adrenal glands.
The show a greater resistance to disease,
more tolerance to stress,
improved problem solving,
less disturbed or upset by test conditions,
more calm in the test environment,
made fewer errors in tests, and
gave only an occasional distress sound when stressed.
Early neurological stimulation : Birth to 2 weeks
Tactile stimulation - We hold each puppy for a few minutes a few times a day. We tickle between their toes, hold them in different positions, and expose them to gentle changes in temperature.
Gentle aural stimulation - We expose puppies to simple auditory stressors like doorbells, vacuums, hairdryers, vehicles, horns, barking dogs, kids playing, music etc. starting at a very low volume.
Novel Stimulation & Socialization - 2 weeks +
Continue with aural stimulation
Offer new toys, objects, and cold bottles into the weeping bed
Exposure to different textures like flooring types, carpet, and fabrics
Interaction with other healthy dogs and humans
Enrichment Activities - 4 weeks +
Acclimate to the outdoors, all kinds of weather.
Exposure to grooming tools: ear cleaning, brushing, bathing, nail trimming etc.
Drinking and eating from a bowl
Enrichment Activities - 6 weeks +
Begin treat and crate training,
Expose them to wearing collars, leash walking, and car drives
Note: Fear imprint period - 8 to 12 weeks
After pups leave the Ranch, between 8 and 12 weeks, puppies experience a Fear Imprint Period, where traumatic experiences to stimuli that induce fear may be generalized and produce lifelong aversion responses. As a result, elective surgery should be put off until after week 12, and veterinary visits should be made positive with treats.