Nutrition and DHA
Many breeders fail to appreciate the nutritional demands placed on the female during pregnancy and lactation. We have confirmed research that purports 35% of a dog’s performance is inherited and 65% is based on other influences such as training, environment, management and nutrition.
DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) an omega-3 fatty acid, is an important nutritional supplement for neural development of the puppy and is a major structural component of the brain, as well as the most abundant fatty acid in the brain. It plays a vital role in the development of a puppy's central nervous system and retinal function. Our breeding females are given 500 mg of DHA per day beginning at the moment of conception, through the weaning of their puppies. Read more technical information by Dr. Carmen Battaglia.
Our "Super Dog" Program
The U.S. Military in their canine program developed a method that still serves as a guide to what works. In an effort to improve the performance of dogs used for military purposes, a program called "Bio Sensor" was developed. Later, it became known to the public as the "Super Dog" Program.
DoodleSmith uses the Bio Sensor/Super Dog Program which is known as Early Neurological Stimulation. The five exercises are done from days three to sixteen of the puppies life and produce neurological stimulations, none of which naturally occur during the puppy's early period of life. The US Military still uses this program to improve the performance of the dogs used for military purposes.
The benefits noted were:
- Improved cardio vascular performance (heart rate)
- Stronger heart beats
- Stronger adrenal glands
- More tolerance to stress
- Greater resistance to disease
These benefits have important and lasting effects.
Early Neurological Stimulation (ENS)
Read more about Early Neurological Stimulation by Dr. Carmen L Battaglia
We use Puppy Culture which is a comprehensive, organized program for breeders to follow during the first few weeks of a puppy’s life. This time is magical and will change the outcome of your puppy’s life because of what we choose to teach them. We do just the right things at just the right time and give your puppy the best start possible. This is definitely an incredible amount of work, but it is 100% ABSOLUTELY WORTH IT! When you adopt your puppy, you will be just as thankful as we are for this program!
Enrichment & Socialization
Enrichment is a term which has come to mean the positive sum of experiences which can also be thought of as improving the quality of life for your puppy.The simplest form of enrichment is play that uses commands, names and rewards to help establish communication and focus attention. Engaging your puppy in the world around them will keep them happy and deepen your relationship with them. Our Enrichment Activities include: Social stimulation, such as handling, mothering and contact with others, daily visits to the shop, shopping trips, outings... any opportunity for interaction and investigation.
Socialization is the process by which your puppy is exposed to as many facets of life as possible. Puppy socialization begins with us and continues with you. We start after 2 weeks and expose your puppy to different people, places, sights, and sounds. The idea behind socialization is that you want to help your puppy become acclimated to all types of sights, sounds and smells in a positive manner. Everything your puppy encounters will be an opportunity to make a new, positive association. We have a list of recommended exposures here. Ref: AKC
Most importantly, Enrichment and Socialization make your puppy happy, which as you likely know is a key component to true wellness.
Volhard's Puppy Aptitude Test (PAT)
All dogs are born with a set of instinctive behaviors that he inherited from his parents. These behaviors, or drives, can be grouped into three broad categories – prey, pack and defense. Jack and Wendy Volhard cataloged ten behaviors in each drive and created The Canine Personality Profile... the behaviors that most closely represent the strengths of the dog in each of the drives. How many behaviors a dog has in each drive, will determine his temperament, his personality and how he perceives the world. You can read more about it here.