The older the pups get, the busier things are around here.  This week was the beginning of individual conditioning, which consisted of four steps.  The first step was to take the pup out of the kennel by himself/herself and place a collar on.  I then carried the puppy to the back of the property and had him/her follow me back to the house.  Next, the puppy and I went out to the front yard, where I placed a leash on the collar and had them drag it around, just to get used to the feeling of the leash.  Lastly, we went into the house where I did some housework while the puppy stayed with me.

In addition to the individual conditioning, we are also getting out as a litter 2-3 times a day.  Yesterday evening, I was finally able to get the whole litter to walk from the kennel out to the back hill with me and then back to the kennel without having to carry anyone to goad them along.  I will manage to get this on film before they go home, but in the beginning, just working the dogs is difficult enough.  Charles has been contributing to the puppy conditioning by firing off a children’s cap gun while we are sitting around on the back patio.  It is near enough to the kennel that the puppies can hear it, but far enough away that it is just another noise to them.

There are a few videos that I took this week.  The first one is just of the puppies getting out of the kennel and playing: There are a couple of videos of pups showing off their natural retrieving abilities:  There’s also a crazy video of all of my dogs, the puppies and my kids on the loose (which consists mostly of me getting after a kid or a dog, but may be amusing)

Here are some photos from our individual time outside:

Barb at six weeks

Bart at six weeks

Ben at six weeks

Bess at six weeks

Betty at six weeks

Buster at six weeks

All of the puppies are doing things the way that I want them to at this point and are all creeping up on the 10 pound mark.  This week we will be beginning crate conditioning and will try to take our first adventure away from mom and the home turf.  I’m also going to be getting in touch with local game bird breeders to see if they have any immature birds that we can work with.

For those of you shopping for a puppy, all of these have homes that they are going to, but it isn’t too early to get a reservation for next year.  I will be taking six reservations for the 2012 litter and have already taken two firm reservations with deposits, along with several seriously interested parties.  If you would like to complete an application for puppy placement of our 2012 litter, e-mail us