So, what have you been up to?

Breeder - Laurie Turner, Washington.  Amazing set up, toys, litter box, nonslip surface for puppies to move around and den.  Really nice.  What a great start to life for these little munchkins.

I always wonder what puppies are doing when I cannot see them.  Let's face it, these days it is hard to find an amazing breeder next door.  So, this means that you must rely on photos and videos if you want to know.  I WANT TO KNOW.  I do not like being kept in the dark about anything and that goes for my future puppy.  What are they doing all day?  What is the breeder offering the litter as far as enrichment?

A great example of enrichment, Youtube.  First day in their new big space.  Breeder is Laurie Turner in Washington.

Same litter, 5 weeks old.

Over the years I have seen many, many, many litters.  I have photographed, assessed and temperament tested them.  Some litters I've just been there visiting but still took the time to talk about what the breeder doing as far as enrichment.   Like everything else in this world there are those who do little with their litter; to breeders who offer a full on enrichment agenda.  

All breeders are also different as far as sharing images and videos.  Although many these days rely on FB and Youtube to share their little bundles of joy to the world.  But if you are getting a puppy from a breeder who is not into "sharing" then you will need to ask and ask you should.  A puppy who has had little enrichment and socializing will be extremely different than one who has already experienced a great deal.  

I love when I see a litter who is introduced to many different things.  Even if a future puppy of mine is not in that litter; I get excited with breeders who are giving their all.  Those breeders who are doing their best to give their puppies an amazing head start in life.  Puppies who have been given early enrichment, thrive.  Of course one must understand what is a good amount of enrichment. 

Enrichment is not hard to offer puppies.  Introduction to new things on a daily basis is easy peasy.  It doesn't take much to introduce new things to puppies who have only been alive for maybe two or three weeks.  Everything is new to them; but if they sit in a whelping box or cage all day and night then they are not being enriched.  A puppy with no experience at all will be at a disadvantage.   

You as the puppy buyer may have a great deal of work ahead of you when you get a puppy with a non enriched background.  I have seen many puppies who have been raised in a box and literally never set foot anywhere else until they are 8 weeks of age.  It is a sad thing to see puppies so scared of everything around them.  But when a breeder has given their puppies early enrichment and socializing, they are much more prepared to take on new things in their life.  It is not as scary when you've already dealt with different things.  

When you begin your search for a puppy, ask about early enrichment and socialization.  Along with health testing parents, proper nutrition and temperament testing; socialization and enrichment is up there with important things to consider when choosing a puppy.  Not only will it give your puppy a great start in life but you will be supporting a breeder who is doing their very best for their puppies.  That is important.