Puppy Culture 

We apply Jane Killion's Puppy Culture techniques to our breeding program.  It involves detailed puppy rearing from birth to 12 weeks and older.

A complete program from Breeder To Puppy Owner! Puppy Culture breeders lay the foundation for emotional stability and learning. Then Puppy Culture owners follow through with training and socialization. Here's just a sampling of the fun and easy lessons included in Puppy Culture!

"The same exact gene can express itself as an extremely negative trait or an extremely positive trait....Mother dogs who receive affection during their pregnancy may give birth to more docile puppies."

"While there is nothing you can do to control this genetic lottery, you can make a difference in how those genes express themselves.

...The pre-natal care and emotional support you give your mother dog can affect the ultimate health and personalities of her puppies.”

The Prenatal Period:

“Newborn puppies look like sleeping loaves of fur. But there’s furious activity going on under their little hoods – They double in body weight by 10 days and their brains undergo amazing changes. Dr. Carmen Battaglia shows us how to take advantage of this period by neurologically “jump starting” puppies when they’re between 3 – 13 days old.”

The Neonatal Period:
0 – 14 Days

"Did you know that puppies have developmental periods, and those developmental periods are defined by behavioral markers? It’s important for both breeders and puppy owners to be able to correctly identify these behavioral markers, because something that is extremely beneficial one week, could be very harmful in the next week, depending on what developmental period the puppy is in.


In this amazing week, we see the puppies transform from deaf, blind, helpless loaves of fur, to real little puppies who can hear, toddle, and play. You’ll get to take a peek at the funny and touching moments when they realize there’s a whole world outside of themselves.  

 

The puppies' eyes and ears are sealed shut when they're born. Their eyes open first (usually at around 12-15 days old for our breed), and their ear canals usually open around 7 days later. That period, between the time that their eyes and their ears open, is known as the "transitional" period. This is because useful vision and hearing are thought to be necessary for the puppies to enter into the next developmental period, which will be the socialization period."

Transitional Period:
14 – 21 Days

“Did you know that the critical socialization period in dogs begins at just three weeks old, and is over when the puppies are 12 weeks old?

What does it take to socialize a puppy? Socialization is more than just exposure – it’s a rich blend of skills, experiences, and enrichment.”

Did you know that prevention of common behavior problems begins when the puppies are just three weeks old?"

..."Breeders and owners will find a wealth of information for avoiding conflict between adult dogs and puppies, enriching their puppies environment, early problem prevention protocols, and safe guidelines for socialization of puppies.”

Critical Socialization Period: 3 to 12 Weeks
Activities Week By Week
Week 3
  • The Enrichment Effect: Puppies receive a carefully enriched environment, the benefits of which will last a lifetime. This continues every week until puppies leave.

  • Puppies begin receiving visitors as socialization starts.

  • Startle Recovery exercises prime puppies for the challenges of a busy life.

  • Foundation exercises for the prevention of separation anxiety.

  • A designated potty area is introduced

Week 4
  • Puppies are moved into a larger weaning pen, with age appropriate enrichment.

  • Emotional Resiliency Exercises are done, giving the puppies the gift of “bounce back” from life challenges.

  • Problem solving games are introduced, these help puppies learn to handle life’s frustrations early.

  • Crate training starts!

    • Crates are introduced to the weaning pen (doors removed)

    • Comfy beds are placed inside to encourage puppies to nap in crates.

Week 5
  • Puppies learn to communicate with us in socially acceptable ways, learning the Communication Trinity, how to solve problems, and finding their voice.

  • Clicker training starts and puppies start learning their core skills: Attention, Manding (asking politely), Come.

  • Fear starts: At five weeks puppies are for the first time, capable of experiencing true fear. We avoid any experience that might cause lifelong fear problems, while building more emotional resilience as we go along.

  • Crate Training:

    • Puppies are fed in crates

    • Puppies are encouraged to run into their crates.

Week 6
  • In Week 6 Puppy Parties are started. These important socialization and training events are designed to expose puppies to just the right experiences at the right time.

  • Novel people of all shapes, ages, and sizes are introduced, and we work to ensure the puppies have positive responses during these important “first” meetings, because a scary meeting at this age can cause lifelong fear.

  • Puppies get to practice their training in real life settings, they get to Mand (ask politely) for petting (instead of jumping).

  • Puppies show off their enrichment seeking abilities and build confidence on novel object challenges.

  • Puppies learn to love strange and unusual footing, heights, and noises.

  • Session are kept short, puppies have naps and learn to relax when visitors come over, all skills they will need in their new homes.

  • Crate Training:

    • Puppies nap in crate with door open.
      Puppies eat in crate with door closed.

  • Car Training:  Puppies play in the car, engine off.

Week 7

  • Crate Training:

    • Enter crate when asked.

    • Eat in crate with door closed.

    • Chew bone in crate with door closed.

    • Nap in crate with door closed.

  • Car Training:

    • Puppies chew bones in the car with the engine running.

  • Training begins on: ​

    • To sit on cue.

    • To come when called.

    • To give up a toy.

  • Mock Vet exams, clipping nails, grooming, etc. ​

Week 8
  • Fear periods are a normal part of puppy development, knowing how to deal with them, what to do, and most importantly what not to do, have lifelong implications for the adult dog and it’s family. With the Puppy Culture training, we are able to both recognize when a puppy is experiencing a fear period, to help them through the period, without allowing any trauma that might affect their temperament forever.

  • Training continues as does practice.

  • Sit, Come, Crate on cue, hand targeting, are all continuing. Puppies continue to practice Manding (asking politely).

  • Crate training:

    • Enter Crate when asked.

    • Eat in crate with door closed.

    • Chew bone in crate with door closed.

    • Sleep overnight in crate.

  • Car Training:

    • Puppies have short car ride.

    • More work learning to love giving up: food, toys, bowls, and other resource guarding prevention is done.

The Proof Is In The Puppies! 

Learn more here.

Behavior issues?  

What if there were a way to actually have your puppy perform better in distracting situations? What if you could take all the distractions in the world and turn them into fuel for attention from your puppy? Well, this video will show you how to do it. In this two episode series (original broadcast live on October 7th and 13th, 2015), Jane Killion shows you how to teach your puppies (or adult dogs) that distractions are cues for attention—the results will astound you! You can train your pup to be "bomb proof."

In part one of this video, nine-week-old puppies demonstrate how to teach the two core concepts: 1) attention is a behavior, and 2) distractions are cues for attention. 

In part two, filmed one week later, the puppies demonstrate advanced distraction work and specialized distraction exercises for different venues, including switching between "show" and "obedience" modes, and foundation for attention heeling. 

While the lessons in the video are demonstrated by very young puppies, the protocols are the same for dogs of all ages. 

 Learn more here.

 Puppy Fitness?

Jane Killion put together a handy reference chart for you for puppies from 8 weeks through adulthood.  Before you jump in, here’s a few things we want you to know:

 

  • These are guidelines based on our personal experience with broken toes, broken bones, soft tissue injuries, torn cruciate ligaments, and all other manner of exercise and play injuries in the 33 years that we’ve had Bull Terriers. You may find it too conservative or not conservative enough, but this is our best recommendation based on our experience and the available studies.

 

  • I am not a veterinarian and this is not intended as veterinary advice.  You should always consult your breeder and veterinarian about the best exercise program for your puppy.

 

  • These ages for growth plate closure are only generalities and will vary from puppy to puppy.  There will also be a differences in recommendation based on your dog’s breed - giant breed puppies’ growth plates tend to close later and small breed puppies growth plates close earlier.

 

  • Sex hormones are what signal growth plates to close, so If your puppy was neutered before around 18 months old, he will have some delay in growth plate closure, and he will also have uneven growth in his bones resulting in joint angles that could be more liable to injury.  A more conservative approach may be warranted with early spay/neutered dogs.

Learn more here.

ADDRESS:

Sherrard, IL 61281

PHONE/TEXT:  309-373-6722

Dilutes are known for skin and organ health issues.  Because we care about the long term health of the puppies we produce, we only support the ethical breeding of Labradors in the traditional colors of black, yellows ranging from ivory to fox red, and chocolates from light to dark.  Dilutes, dilute carriers and other color variations are not acceptable for breeding.  
ALL of our dogs are proudly Dilute Free.