This article is designed to help you select a Pomeranian Show Puppy.
Despite other breeders protesting that they have a 100% success rate, I have never believed in the pick your puppy at birth theory. During this period, my priority is to ensure puppies are born safely and quickly start nursing. I will very quickly check markings in coloured litters. It’s always exciting to check the markings on newborn parti coloured Pomeranian. I have found narrow blazes often completely disappear and wide blazes will often narrow.
[emember_protected for=3 custom_msg=’ Sorry the complete article is only available to our Premium members. Please join us now.’] Solid coloured Pom puppies born with white toes shouldn’t be passed over as being only pet quality, as these white markings will often “grow out” as puppy grows. I also notice weight.
Despite all my experience in keeping records of growth rates and weight, I can’t find anything that significantly correlates between the puppy’s weight at birth and the eventual size as a full adult.
POM PUPPY OBSERVATIONS: 0 – 3 weeks.
At this age, I focus on the mother and puppy’s health. It is important all pups commence nursing quickly after birth and receive a share of their mother’s colostrum. The dam has her temperature checked daily for a few days after the pup’s arrival.
I monitor the litter closely during the next few days. They should gain weight daily and be firm and plump to hold. If a puppy does not gain quickly, or if the skin will pinch up with your fingers, pup may be dehydrating.
Pups who are firmly latched onto the teat and are actually drinking are easy to detect as these pups will be holding tiny tails high. Another good sign to observe is a puppy twitching while sleeping. This twitching is activated sleep and the pup’s muscles are gaining strength as he twitches.
A puppy with colic will scream in pain for days. Plain yoghurt often helps ease the pain. A puppy in trouble will feel cold to touch, lays limp and refuses to nurse. This puppy needs your assistance.
POMERANIAN PUPPY OBSERVATIONS: 3 – 8 weeks.
The litter will develop quickly. Pups start eating solid food, eyes will now be open and pups will attempt to stand and begin to play.
I spend lots of time playing with pups of this age. An ideal time to commence socialising and to observe overall behaviour and note any changes. Often a stylish puppy has caught my eye and it’s quite usual for the same puppy to keep catching my eye. I cannot help myself, this is the puppy I always pick up and cuddle first. I’ll make note of everything he does for future reference.
As his head starts to develop, I begin looking for correct head proportions. If I can look at a puppy at nose level, that helps me get a clear picture of the under-jaw and his head in general.
Don’t choose a puppy with a narrow under-jaw, because his lower incisors will require plenty of space. I don’t pay much attention to the length of legs or height during these early stages, because most puppies seem to be chubby and short anyway. However, it’s advisable to be alert if a puppy seems extremely up on leg or has very little depth of ribs at his elbow.
Pomeranian puppy coats grow quickly during this stage and the pups are starting to resemble cute little fluff balls.
The 5-6 week mark is the time I start stacking pups to give me an opportunity to make better assessments. I do this on a table using a secure, firm bath mat. I spend a short time every day playing with, posing and handling the puppies.
This early training is a vital element that contributes to show training down the track. I look for overall balance instead of conformation details at this point. I am looking for a balanced puppy with a high tail set, straight top line, and a short back.
The top line firmness generally won’t disappear later but it may develop later. A long backed puppy will never develop into a short backed adult and a low tail set rarely improves.
I focus on rear and fronts when stacking. Avoid puppies if they’re too narrow or too tight between their legs. Never position the legs. Let the hindquarters move into the natural position. Fronts are often less reliable to assess when puppy is at this age. A better idea is to know your lines. However, I can identify puppies that will be out at the elbow and have straight shoulders when they’re at this age.
If the puppy toes out, this fault could improve as the chest develops. If the elbows are too wide in the chest, puppy won’t improve as he develops.
It is hard to determine the colour of eyes at this age I attempt to select a puppy with eyes that aren’t too small or too large, but are the correct almond shape. It’s handy to analyse the amount of stop but puppy can have changes as he develops. However, don’t think for a second that if he has hardly any stop now, he’ll ever get a moderate stop.
A Pomeranian puppy with very large ears will always have large ears. While you’re evaluating the heads, remember to keep an eye out for the right occlusion of both lower and upper jaw. Although the jaw line can vary due to different factors, it’s a good idea to know what you have to start with.
One of the many habits I have during the assessment process is to take lots of photos. Having a library of photos of your past puppies at various stages of development is an amazing tool.
By this time, I hope you have possibly “sorted” your puppy litter. Remember to be aware of the weaknesses and strengths of the parents and also the immediate grandparents.
When I focus on one problem in a breeding I have done, I think about whether I have been successful. However, never forget about the WHOLE DOG as a big picture. Too much fault hunting can be dangerous for your breeding program. [/emember_protected] TO BE CONTINUED….
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