Your Labradoodle Puppy's First Week of Development
Here at Notch Hill Labradoodles, we have some exciting news to report. Last week, we were blessed with 9 beautiful puppies from Sara and 9 beautiful puppies from Sophie. All the babies are doing wonderfully!
If you’re on our waiting list, or if you’ve been thinking about getting a Labradoodle puppy, you’re probably curious to learn about their week-to-week development. The truth is that is happens very quickly! From week 1 to week 8, these tiny little bundles of joy with go from helpless newborns to bouncing balls of puppy energy. To start, let’s talk about what happens during the first week.
When puppies are born, they are blind, deaf, toothless, and can’t even regulate their own body temperature. That’s why you always see newborn puppies snuggling with their mother and littermates for warmth. Their only senses are taste, touch, and smell, which they use to root around the whelping box and find their mother for nursing. The mother’s milk provides all the nutrition a newborn puppy needs. It’s rich in antibodies that will strengthen the newborns’ immune system and protect them from diseases during the early weeks of life.
Days Two to Seven
Since newborns cannot support their own weight, most of the first week is spent crawling around the whelping box. This crawling and wiggling is an important exercise that well help the puppies develop the muscles and coordination they need to eventually start walking. Their eyes will be closed during the entire first week. These growing puppies need their rest, which means that 90% of their time is spent sleeping and the other 10% is spent eating to fuel growth.
During the first week, the babies will spend all their time in the whelping box with their mother and littermates. They are raised in our home in a loving environment. I handle and weigh each puppy every day to make sure that they get used to human contact. Puppies that are handled early and on a regular basis are generally not hand shy as adults.
Early Neurological Stimulation
When the puppies are 3 days old, we start a process called Early Neurological Stimulation. It consists of five exercises, each performed for only 3-5 seconds one time per day.
This program was developed by the US military for their canine program. These exercises kick the neurological system into action earlier than would normally be expected. That’s why Early Neurological Stimulation is also known as “The Super Dog” Program.
Studies have shown that stimulated puppies have improved cardiovascular performance, stronger adrenal glands, more tolerance to stress, and greater resistance to diseases. Stimulated puppies are also more active and exploratory than non-stimulated puppies.
At Notch Hill, we take advantage of this information to give our puppies the best possible start in life. Our goal is to help each puppy reach his or her full potential and go on to be the best possible companion for your family.
We look forward to watching our new puppies grow up. Stay tuned for week 2 updates next week. If you have questions or if you’re interested in one of our puppies, feel free to contact us.