Category "Puppies"


I use lots of treats during training.  Shop bought treats can end up being pretty expensive and I’m not sure how healthy a lot of them are, although it is possible to get high fish/meat/poultry treats with minimal additives.

I dry meat.  It’s reasonably easy.  It’s pretty cheap.  Dried meat is easy to handle and doesn’t get your fingers smelly and greasy.

Good meats to dry are pig’s liver, chicken and beef.  Not so much pork or ham as it has a higher fat content and doesn’t always dry well and lamb’s liver, as well has being more expensive than pig’s liver, is more crumbly when dried.

I put the meat in the freezer, just so that it can start to solidify as this makes it easier to slice.  Once the meat starts to solidify, take it out of the freezer and cut it into thin slices.  Put the sliced meat in the oven.  Meat has to be cooked at at least 70 degrees centigrade.  I usually cook it at 80 degrees.   Check the meat every hour and once it’s about half dry, take the meat out of the oven and cut it into long strips.  Put it back in the oven and bake until it’s dried right the way through.

I break some garlic cloves and keep the meat and the garlic cloves in a ziplock bag.  This might be a bit controversial as garlic is thought to be poisonous to dogs, but garlic is ok in moderation and my dogs love it, but you can leave it out if you want.

The treats will keep for ages if fully dried.

Break the strips of meat into very small pieces when needed.

Don’t forget to take into account any treats your dog has had when considering their daily food allowance.


Pups start crawling 2 – 3 days after birth and the use their nose as a sensory and a temperature probe, helping them to orient to their mum.

Their eyes open in the second week but as their retinas aren’t fully formed yet they can only see shadows.

It’s important that the pup has human contact during this time.  Mild stress such as short periods away from the mum and handling by people will allow the pup to better deal with stress later on in life.

In the third week the pup’s ears begin to open.  This is a great time to start to habituate pups to everyday sounds as their hearing is still limited, but will improve daily up to seven weeks old.

By eight weeks old, the puppy’s brain will have increased to five times its original size, and his brain won’t be fully developed until he’s between nine months and one year old.  That means that when born, a pup has only approximately 10% of his adult brain.

Puppies who come from a litter that is predominately one gender are more likely to take on the gender characteristics of the rest of the litter, for example a lone female in a litter of males is more likely to cock her leg.

Pups go through a ‘sensitive period of socialisation’ roughly up to 13 weeks of age.  Generally, most of this time is spent in the birth home, so choose your ‘breeder’ wisely.  Studies show

  • puppies rehomed from outbuildings show significantly more fear and are less likely to bond with a new family
  •  puppies raised in a family home had less behavioural problems
  • puppies born to stressed mothers are more likely to grow up to be fearful
  • if the mother is stressed during the later stages of pregnancy, the puppies are likely to be emotionally reactive and to have reduced learning ability.

Puppies can start learning basic commands such as ‘sit’ and ‘lie’ as early as 7 weeks old.

Puppies are welcome to enrol in the Yuppy Puppy Training Course as young as 8 weeks old.  This gives you the perfect opportunity to train good habits before the bad habits occur, and to learn how to avoid future bad habits developing.

Dogs who attend puppy classes are more likely to stay in their first home.


What is more cute than puppies graduating! We did have two absentees, but they’ll get their graduation certificate soon.

They’ve learnt

• Basic manners
• Life skills
• Impulse control
• Body awareness
• Tricks

Their owners learnt the best methods of training their pups, which is with lots of positive reinforcement and no force. Their pups will have the best start in life as the owners cared enough to want to educate them. Now that they know that kind, force free methods work, they won’t be tempted to join classes where there are too many puppies, with the trainer recommending methods such as jerking the lead, forcing the pup down to the ground for a sit and a lie down and using Cesar Milan type methods (which in modern dog training are considered aversive).

The training is extremely hard for a puppy; they’re young, it’s a new environment with new people and new dogs, so it’s all very distracting. The should really be called ‘puppy owner training classes’, not ‘puppy training classes’! Despite this, these pups have done fantastically well and have all kept up with their homework.

I hope to see them all in future obedience and trick training classes and I hope their owners keep in touch so I can see how the pups are getting on.

Register your puppy for training classes or a puppy consultation.