I could not be happier with the early indications of temperament for this litter. They are AWESOME. They're all fully mobile, competing for food resources from a bowl and have several toys in their area, so it's a good time to start examining their blossoming little personalities!
I will include a temperament test evaluation in their puppy pack that will be performed by a neutral third party. Temperament tests are not the end-all-be-all personality indicator, but they can point out areas that new owners can help solidify or minimize through training.
I'll go on to discuss individuals in a minute - the entire litter has a few things going for it.
On to the first round of observations:
Several "old school" hunters have recommended this book by Richard Wolters. It was written long before most of us were born, but they all sing its praises. After the fourth person recommended it (none of them knew each other), I think there might be something to it!
This is geared toward use for competition under NAHRA (North American Hunting Retriever Association), and Poodles are hunting retrievers and water dogs.
You can find the Wolters book on Amazon, and if you're doing water retrieving or training, remember to check lake conditions (Oklahoma: http://www.travelok.com/checkmyoklake/)
Several people asked about training video recommendations and training classes.
I personally love the Leerburg site. They're all business when it comes to training puppies, and although they focus on German Shepherds, their videos can be used for all breeds.
There's a whole section of free video clips at one of their links as well:
Here's Wallace enjoying some afternoon playtime in our home office. He's ready to play 24/7 and frequently hops out of the pool to join mom when she's taking a break!
So good to see everyone this weekend! Tonight the puppies got to use bowls for the first time instead of shallow plates or dishes. Got a little sloppy and noisy! We took out all the puppy pads and put down layers of newspaper for easier clean up. Some of them have it figured out and all of them are quite messy and will have another bath tonight. By the end of the week they should have it all figured out.
Two puppies got anxious to explore and hopped right out of their "bassinet" and roamed around the kitchen (you know who you are Kingston and Wallace).
I can feel some of their little teeth starting to come through, and once those needle sharp chompers appear, Dutch will put the brakes on nursing until they figure out how not to bite. The week the teeth come through is the week she will start to teach them puppy manners. It's not uncommon to hear a mama bark or gently nip at one of her misbehaving puppies.
In other news, we have two new names! Sybil is now Maeby (like Maybe), after Maeby Fünke on Arrested Development, and the white puppy is Juju after Mama Odie's snake in The Princess and The Frog.
Those sweet puppies don't stay so little for long! Here are example videos of poodles at 7 weeks old. These are just for comparison and estimation, they are not my videos and not my poodles. :) I can't wait until they're this fun!
Almost two weeks old!
Updates this week:
Today was an especially big day for the pups and their mama:
Mama is doing great feeding her little ones - they're getting roly-poly! A few graphs of their weight below, with the first showing their respective collar colors. I will try to post photos and maybe a few videos tomorrow. With the weather today and the tornado watch, I was worried we'd have to make it into our shelter with 9 dogs! Luckily it was just rain and a lot of wind, or as my husband would say, "The tears of the Texas fans after their team took a walloping today"
We love our dogs so much they have their own blog. Ridiculous? Probably, but we don't think so.