Our Puppies

Our Puppy protocol

Born At Home

Our puppy protocol starts with the puppies being born in our living room.  Whelping is not taken lightly, thus, we start by preparing the mother and making sure she is healthy long before the breeding.  Information on good breeding and whelping habits can be found here.  Once mom is relaxed, we gradually acclimate the other dogs back with mom and the puppies.  This marks the step with socialization. 

 At 3 weeks old we move the puppies to the Foyer area where they will begin their next phase of  development.  Eyesight is continuously improving and socialization increase through mom and their litter mates.   They are also learning new boundaries as mom and litter mates let them know when they are playing to rough.  They also at the beginning stages of potty training during this phase.        

Portuguese Water Dogs new born babies
1 week old
Portuguese Water Dogs Mother feeding Babies
2 days old

Puppies teeth start coming in when they are approximately 4 weeks old, and mom will gradually start weening them.  While she is doing that we are starting them on a kibble and puppy starter mix.  We increase varying human interactions since their immune systems are getting stronger.  Socialization is most important between the ages 4 – 16 weeks.  

The puppies have already become familiar with the everyday household sights and sounds, since they have been raised in our home.      



Potty training starts in the whelping pen.  We gradually reduce the size of the sleep area each week.  The idea is to encourage the puppies to want to keep their sleep area clean while eliminating outside this area.  It is a natural instinct for wild and domestic dogs to keep their babies and den clean.  For this to be successful it is imperative to keep the sleeping pad clean at all times, which of course leads to lots of laundry.  This process continues as they  transition to a crate.      

At approximately 6-7 weeks old they are moved to a crate as this helps with acclimating process and readying  for their new homes.  See about purchasing a puppy here


Lastly, we give them lots of outdoor playtime to explore, and they are exposed to the sights and sounds of the surrounding wild life.  Particularly, deer, Canadian Geese and Sand Hill Cranes. 

All though never left unattended, we introduce the puppies to outdoor boundaries.  This is important that they are familiar with fencing prior to going to their new homes.   One area is larger which is a  15 x 30  fenced in Play yard and the other is a smaller 4 x 4 playpen.  This smaller one comes in handy.  We use it quite often  for our larger dogs when drying them off before coming in the house. 

We also make a small swimming pool available for those daring little puppies whom choose to venture.