The newest members of the Notch Hill Labradoodle family are a little over 4 weeks old, which means that they have entered the first critical socialization period. Our happy, bouncing Labradoodle puppies are increasingly interested in exploring the world and interacting with their environment. Let’s find out what’s in store for the puppies as they continue to grow up.
Learning that the world is safe (and fun!)
During this critical period of development, everything the puppies experience will remain in their memories and always be familiar. Well-socialized puppies generally become confident adults, because they learned that the world is safe at a young age. That’s why this is the ideal time to make their environment as interesting as possible. We introduce our puppies to a variety of sights and sounds, including TV, music, hair dryers, vacuums, cars, etc. This makes it easy for our puppies to adapt to their new homes.
Meeting new people
At this stage, the puppies will begin to recognize people and form attachments with humans. It’s important to introduce the puppies to new people during this period. Luckily, there is no shortage of people interested in meeting and interacting with the Notch Hill Labradoodle puppies! Our puppies learn that meeting new people is fun and exciting, which prevents them from being shy around strangers as adults. The puppies will get used to being handled by a variety of people at a young age. These experiences will come in handy when it’s time to take them to the groomer or vet, or in any new situation.
Establishing pack behavior and social order
The puppies will start interacting with each other and displaying new behaviors, including chasing, nipping, barking, and wagging their tails. They will also start engaging in group-coordinated behavior. For example, if one puppy leaves the den area, others will follow. As the puppies grow up, they will begin to establish social order through play fighting. During this time, we interact with the puppies on an individual basis, away from the litter. The personal attention helps Notch Hill Labradoodle puppies learn that they are individuals. Plus, it can help a naturally timid puppy feel more confident.
Still learning from mom
While the puppies are becoming more independent, their mother still plays a critical role during this phase of development. These babies still have important lessons to learn from mom. Through play, she will teach them bite inhibition, which helps the puppies learn to be gentle with their mouth. This is one reason why puppies should never be removed from the litter too early. The puppies are still nursing, but they are also eating solid food to supplement their increased energy requirements.
Our puppies would love to meet you!
We generally start allowing visits when the puppies are around 5 weeks old. If you do visit the puppies, you’re likely to see some fun stuff as they bounce and play. To schedule a visit, contact us anytime. We look forward to seeing you!