Species Appropriate Nutrition
We feed our dogs and raise our puppies on a balanced and varied diet based on the Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (B.A.R.F.) principle. If you want to know more about this amazing way to help your dog to grow, thrive, and reach its full potential in life, here is an excellent place to get you started:
We are advocates for the BARF and PMR (Prey Model) diets. Having a healthy, happy dog does not have to be complicated or time-consuming. With the right preparation, it can be a joy to implement.
If this style of feeding is not for you, yet you would like to know more about feeding and providing a high-quality, varied diet for your puppy, do not hesitate to contact us and we can help you to understand your better options.
Vaccine & Parasite Protocol
Deworming every two weeks from birth until eight weeks of age with Drontal by Bayer. After that, we use Milbemax every month to six months to treat against 13 species of internal parasites. We then vary between brands every six months to maintain effectiveness. There are natural ways to "help prevent" parasites, but we live in the countryside and it is important to take more serious steps to keep our dogs and puppies in top health and condition. Parasites are the enemy. They can cause pain, bloating, weight loss, essential vitamin and mineral deficiencies leading to anemia and lethargy (amongst other things).
Vaccines - Proper immunization starts early with CHPPiL, Rabies, & Kennel Cough vaccines
(all documented from day 1 in a Passport).
The protocol is as follows:
6-8 weeks of age - CHPPi Multi L & KC
This means that by 8 weeks of age your puppy has received their inoculations against Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus, Parainfluenza (Kennel Cough), and 3 strains of Leptospirosis.
12 weeks of age - CHPPi Multi L & Rabies
So by 3 months of age, if the puppy is still with us, they receive the primo for the above vaccinations, as well as their vaccine against Rabies.
At this age, puppies begin wearing Seresto collars to prevent against external parasites (the zone where we are located does not put our dogs at risk for piroplasmosis but we do still take precautions during the warmer months.)
Bio Sensory Training
(ENS / ESI)
Early Neurological Stimulation (ENS)
The U.S. Military developed a program in the 1970’s called “Bio Sensor.” (Became publicly known and is often referred to as the “Super Dog” Program or Bio-Sensory Training for Dogs.) The program was developed to improve the performance of dogs.
The basic premise of the program is that early neurological stimulation exercises could affect the performance of the dog. The Army’s research revealed that early stimulation of the puppy from the 3rd day through the 16th day influenced rapid neurological growth and development.
We practice Bio-Sensor and incorporate it into our socialization and temperament development regimen. The Bio Sensor program easily fits into our established puppy natural rearing process and supports our values.
We strongly feel that handling dogs at an early age helps with the physical and social development of the puppy.
We do not substitute the Bio-Sensory Training for socialization and handling of the puppies. The Bio Sensor method is a well-documented puppy development tool. Many puppies bred for field, security, and guide work are introduced to the Bio Sensor Program as part of their development.
These exercises produce neurological stimulations, none of which naturally occur during this early period of life. These exercises impact the neurological system by kicking it into action earlier than would be normally expected. The result is an increased capacity that later will help to make a difference in its performance. Those who play with their pups and routinely handle them should continue to do so because the neurological exercises are not substitutions for routine handling, play socialization, or bonding.
Five benefits have been observed in dogs that were exposed to the Bio Sensor stimulation exercises. The benefits noted were:
Improved cardiovascular performance (heart rate)
Stronger adrenal glands
More tolerance to stress and
Greater resistance to disease
In tests of learning, stimulated pups were found to be more active and were more exploratory than their non-stimulated littermates over which they were dominant in competitive situations.
Secondary effects were also noted regarding test performance. In simple problem solving tests using detours in a maze, the non-stimulated pups became extremely aroused, whined a great deal, and made many errors. Their stimulated littermates were less disturbed or upset by test conditions and when comparisons were made, the stimulated littermates were calmer in the test environment, made fewer errors, and gave only an occasional distress when stressed.
Early Scent Introduction (ESI)
Early Scent Introduction is performed in conjunction with Bio-Sensor Early Neurological Stimulation (ENS) training on the puppies from day three thru day sixteen. The benefits of ESI range from positive training results in dogs who use scent detection to earn titles, do service work, therapy work, hunt tests and field trials, nose work, search and rescue work, obedience, tracking, and more. Some also believe this early exposure helps dogs be more stable when coming across differing scents in life. It's very beneficial in Medical Alert dogs especially.
Puppy Culture represents a gold standard in puppy rearing and early socialization. We start it here using the rule of 7 as soon as the period for ENS/ESI is finished, however, we highly recommend our new puppy parents to continue with this method to at least 6 months of age. It is highly beneficial in raising a strong, confident, happy, and social puppy.
We take a holistic approach to natural wellness in our dogs. This involves the practice of the following...
Homeopathic / Botanical Medicine
Naturopathy & Essential Oils
Genetic Health Tests
Our dogs are all health tested before breeding. Below are what we test for (all results must be clear of any issues or we will not breed the animal):
Official DNA Blueprinting
This is sent directly to the national purebred registry (Societé Centrale Canine) to be recorded and allows puppy owners to prove the parentage of their dogs.
Degenerative Myelopathy (DM)
(Also called Chronic Degenerative Radiculomyelopathy)
Degenerative myelopathy (DM), also known as chronic degenerative radiculomyelopathy (CDRM), is a disease affecting the spinal cord, resulting in slowly progressive hind limb weakness and paralysis. The symptoms result from degeneration of the white matter of the spinal cord. DM is similar to some of the forms of human amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. A genetic mutation, SOD-1, has been identified as a major risk factor for DM. The condition is most common in middle-aged to older dogs, with a range from 4-14 years. It has been reported in young dogs on rare occasions.
Multi-Drug Resistance Gene (MDR-1)
Multi-Drug Resistance 1 (MDR1) is a gene that is meant for helping to protect the brain. This gene specifically codes for P-glycoprotein, which is responsible for transporting certain drugs out of the brain. If this gene is mutated, it will create a defective protein, and consequently, drugs will remain and build up in the brain to toxic levels. This dominant gene is inherited from the parents, whether the parent has two copies of the gene or only one copy. If neither parent has a copy of the mutated MDR1 gene, then nor will the offspring.
The dog with a mutated MDR gene will have increased sensitivity to certain drug molecules, including macrocyclic lactones (such as Ivermectin).
Hip Dysplasia / Spinal Spondylosis
We x-ray the backs and hips of our dogs at adulthood to ensure they are healthy and apt to train and compete in sports.
The term luxating means 'out of place' or 'dislocated'. Therefore, a luxating patella is a kneecap that moves out of its normal location. When the patella luxates, the dog has difficulty bearing weight on the leg, although there are rarely any signs of pain. It may learn how to kick the leg to the side, which will hyperextend the knee and snap the patella back into its normal location. Medically, there are several degrees or grades of patellar luxation, ranging from a mild form in which the kneecap only luxates when force is applied directly to it, to moderate luxation in which the kneecap pops out frequently, all the way to a severe luxation, in which the kneecap may be dislocated the majority of the time. We ensure that our dogs have a grade 0 (ZERO) for PL before ever considering breeding. We test them repeatedly throughout their lifetime for this.
A cataract is an “opacity”, or loss of transparency of the lens of the eye. The opacity may be confined to a small area of the lens, or it may affect the whole structure. A complete cataract affecting both eyes will result in blindness.
We test our dogs for this hereditary maladie via the HC-HSF4-A genetic test and veterinary clinical exams.
A heart murmur is an abnormal heart sound, usually heard by listening to the heart with a stethoscope. A heart murmur is caused by turbulent blood flow within the heart. Since it is impossible to know if a puppy's heart murmur is congenital or genetic, we take every precaution to prevent the latter from being the cause of such an affliction by ensuring that we do NOT reproduce from any animal who has ever been diagnosed with any type (systolic, diastolic, continuous) or degree of heart murmur (they are graded by severity up to 6). Puppies are all sold with health veterinary certificates.