I had to open with this photo for the weekly update. If you follow my blog, you know we have fun naming our puppies. In this litter, Shadow is named after the retriever in Homeward Bound. If you've seen that movie, you should be able to hear Sassy saying, "Cats rule and dogs drool!" when you look at this picture.
Now for the photo updates...
The puppies are doing fabulous at 6 weeks old! They are growing and changing and leaving their newborn puppy days behind. Nap time, although still an important part of the day, is decreasing as play time is increasing. On average, they sleep all night (though they often get up for a potty break or two on their newspaper) and 6-8 hours during the day. Puppies are known for lots of energy, but their energy comes in spurts. They may be a mini tornado one minute and sacked out sleeping the next. We make sure the puppies have lots of sleep time because sleep is essential to their growth and development.
The puppies are eating 3 meals a day of Life's Abundance Small & Medium Breed puppy food. I soak two-thirds cup of food in a cup of goat milk/water to feed to the group at each meal. They eagerly chow down on it. By 7 weeks, our goal is to have them on dry food. Their weights are as follows: Thomas and Shadow - 4lbs; Rex - 3lbs, 14oz; Annie - 3lbs, 9oz; Elsa - 3lbs, 5oz; and Clarabelle - 3lbs, 1oz.
In addition to their food, we have added Life's Abundance Wellness Food Supplement to their diet. They receive a very small piece daily; I break 1 vitamin into 6 pieces for them. I add this to their diet as they prepare to receive their first round of puppy vaccinations in the next week and prepare to make the transition to a new home in just 2 weeks! I feel this vitamin helps maintain their overall health.
The biggest change in their lives was going outside for the first time!
The milder temperatures coupled with the puppies getting older allowed me to take them out for a few minutes. They stayed today on the rock outside our door before - guess who - ventured out first. If you've been here to visit the puppies or if you've read my blogs on this litter, you might be able to guess.
Thomas loves exploring, and he is the first to try new things in this litter. The puppies got to experience rocks, mulch, and grass during their short time outside. Another new experience was meeting our cats and hearing our goats. They also got to experience hearing gun shots because we live close to State Game lands. I introduced them to an umbrella and some new sounds (lawn mower, vacuum cleaner, snow blower, weed eater, and more city noises).
Another new experience for the puppies was bath time. Though it was not their favorite experience, I kept it quick and positive. They smelled and felt wonderful after bathing them and misting them with my favorite bath products. They had another brief brushing session with my Slicker brush as well.
As I did last week, I'm going to address some great questions I get from families. (Be sure to scroll to the end for more pictures!)
Should I take my new puppy out in the cold weather? This question can not be answered with a "yes" or "no" because there are many factors - age of the puppy, outside temperature, breed of the puppy, if the puppy has been clipped, etc. When I get this question, my mind goes back to when we brought our first mini schnauzer home. It was Valentine's Day weekend 2013. We took her out for potty needs from Day #1 here. We did not clip her coat to give her some protection from the cold. In my opinion, it is okay to take them out to go potty for short periods of time. If your puppy does not go potty in a few minutes in the cold weather, I would recommend crating them for another 20-30 minutes and trying again. Obviously, if the cold is extreme, you should not take a very young puppy outside. However, mini schnauzer puppies will quickly be able to stand colder temperatures as they grow. For this litter, they will be going home in early December. If I were brining a puppy home in December, I would (as I did February) take them outside for potty needs from day #1. I would not clip these puppies until at least February or March. Use common sense and watch your puppy for signs of being too cold when deciding if he/she should stay inside or go outside.
Do you at Russell Homestead take the puppies out for potty needs? Weather-permitting (see question above), we start taking the puppies outside for potty needs between 5-6 weeks. There is no way to take the puppies out for ALL their potty needs at 5-6 weeks, but we take them out at common times of needing to go - when they wake up and after they eat. For this litter, the temperatures have prevented us from taking them out a lot, but we are starting to whenever possible as they get older.
What grooming tools do you use on your mini schnauzers? My adult mini schnauzer receive a weekly bath and brushing. The two tools I use the most are a Slicker brush and regular human comb. I occasionally use a de-matting comb. If you are looking for a Slicker brush or other great puppy products, visit my sister's shop at Kristen's Happy Tails.
Thanks, as always, for stopping by! We wish you a heartfelt Thanksgiving from Russell Homestead.
Vanessa from Russell Homestead. Follower of the Lord Jesus, wife of my knight in shining armor, mother of 5 wonderful children, and joint-keeper of the Russell homestead. Thanks for stopping by!
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