~For All She Does
Every OwyheeStar puppy is hand-raised, and this process requires a good eye as well as focus. Then there is follow-through–steps we take at every transition point from birth for the exit. We are fortunate to have our granddaughter (who we trained) as a puppy-whisperer. You cannot teach someone to do this–it takes instinct and the ability–and the eye to see the little things before they spiral into something bigger. Pups get scratched, develop little issues, need nails trimmed, ears cleaned, etc. –it is a lot because a young pup is susceptible to all kind of bacterial, viral, and yeast infections.
You might remember Dink–he was a miracle pup. Christina decided she would keep him with her 24 X 7 because he needed around the clock care. She did this knowing she might not be able to save him–but if she could, it would be so rewarding. Over the years, we have saved many ultra-small pups that needed extra care. They could not survive because the bigger, stronger littermates would push them off the best teats. There might not be enough teats for everyone to drink at once–and the bigger keep growing while the small ones get shoved away. This scenario doesn’t mean that a smaller pup has anything wrong, but without intervention, their chance of survival is slim.
You Probably Know the Story
Dr. Calhoun at the Idaho Veterinary Hospital gave his as through of a check that is possible at the six-week visit.
It takes all of us to produce a well-balanced ready to adapt puppy. People ask, “do you have them house-trained.” I always say, “no, but we have them ready.” I think that is the better approach–they have to learn your routine, the household layout, and adjust. If you stay after it, the housebreaking can happen very quickly.
Before the pups arrive, the Mamas have our full attention–we work to ensure they eat well. We watch for any sign of a problem, etc. The whelp-window is typically from day 59 to day 64. The pups must be at least 59 days old to survive–although we might use extraordinary measures to save a puppy–there are limitations.
Once the pups are here, Christina and I do most of the hands-on work. We do like to involve Cliff when possible–a man’s touch is a good thing. Some pups require a lot more than others–case in point, Dink. You might remember the tiny undersized puppy which Christina took to feeding and caring for around the clock. Sometimes intervention doesn’t work–because there is something wrong. Other times such a pup starts to thrive and eventually catches up with their litter.
From Day-One, there is a lot of hands-on work. Thankfully, Christina is a skilled puppy handler-whisperer sort of helper. Recently, she whelped a pup when we had to be away from the house. She has an eye for details–watching and looking the puppies over constantly while she adjusts their collars, handles them, and works with each one. As you might imagine, this kind of process is labor-intensive–but we believe it works–is essential.
There are many stages and steps involved in the raising of the Weimaraner. We hope to have them set up for success–but once they transition to their ‘forever family,’ the work continues. No matter our efforts, it is almost as if you are starting from scratch–it is a new environment. They have to adjust and adapt, which they will do very quickly, and at the same time, the humans must take control of the leadership role, or the puppy will rule the house in short order.