This litter was born on January 4, 2013! There are adorable, chocolate, fleece-coated, medium-sized Australian Labradoodles. There are 7 puppies in this litter-6 boys and 1 girl. They are all FOUR WEEKS OLD NOW!
The little ones are fine and thriving, and they are turning into real puppies now! They’re up on their feet, wagging their tales, seeing, hearing, playing with toys, romping, and chewing on each other (and biting each other’s ears, which hurts with those sharp puppy teeth). They’re getting much more 1:1 time with us, apart from each other, and we’re beginning gentle redirection on things like puppy biting and jumping to which they are responding quite well (they are *so* eager to please!).
They’re still nursing, but we’ll slowly introduce them to solid food toward the end of this week with the goal of transitioning them completely by the time they’re six weeks old. They should be weaned by their six-week-old vet visit for check-ups and vaccines.
Just two days ago, on a sunny 65-degree day, we carried each outside to experience the feel of the sun and breeze and the sounds of planes overhead, wind chimes, and bird calls. All were appropriately timid at first but seemed to relax and enjoy the adventure. They now love to romp around in the grass and follow us around.
Socialization: Four to Six Weeks
From four to six weeks, puppies continue to be influenced by their mother and littermates. They learn to play, gaining needed social skills from littermates, such as inhibited biting (biting to play, not to hurt). The puppies also learn the ins and outs of group structure and ranking within the group. The puppies are being socialized with humans, have a variety of people interacting with them – young (with supervision) and old, male and female. House-training can begin as early as five weeks, when puppies will follow their mother through a dog door or can be taken out for elimination lessons. At approximately six weeks, puppies can begin in-home training. His first collar and lead will be introduced, he will be encouraged to come using his name, and reward him with praise and treats. At this age, you can also start training puppies with positive reinforcement methods: using a clicker, praise, and rewards.