4 July 2011

Learning to eat

Since the puppies' teeth are getting bigger and sharper with each passing day, Miska is as thrilled to feed them and to do it for long.  So it was time to start the weaning process last Friday. I usually start with some rice pablum before transitioning them to kibble.  I do NOT feed raw food to my adult dogs and certainly wouldn't think of doing it to our puppies. Pat Hastings who worked with veterinarians and canine movement specialists to develop her Puppy Puzzle evaluation technique which I'll be using on our puppies, said at a conference of hers I attended several years ago that she has seen more crippled puppies fed raw than those fed commercially prepared kibble. I know the raw foodies would disagree with that but Pat has evaluated hundreds of litters of different breeds all over North America so speaks with considerable authority.  One week of poor nutrition in a puppy is equivalent to a month in human development so when you consider a dog's lifespan may only be 12 years, feeding raw food to puppies can be seriously deleterious.

Puppies have to learn how to eat from a bowl. It didn't take them long at all; all got the hang of it in their first session. But each one wanted to bite the edge of the bowl first. You can see a clicker in some of these photos. This was the first time they were exposed to the sound of a clicker , a sound device that marks behaviour - while they engaged in a pleasurable activity.  This is called paired association; the clicker is being paired with something every positive. This is first step in their learning process.





Yellow was the messiest eater

2 comments:

  1. Awww, Miss Yellow still has such a kissable face even when she is messy!

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  2. Having a dog is really one of that best things that you can do to have fun and enjoy life and having a dog that really is good in dog events is exciting to have.dog clicker training west hollywood

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