Sunday, May 29, 2011

Enrichment Outing!

The puppies are now 5 weeks old.  Today, before we arrived Sue had let them go outside her kitchen onto her fenced in patio area for a short time.  Other than that, they had not been outside before today.

Rick and I went over around noon and we took them from Sue's kitchen across the parking lot to the training yard.  We carried the puppies over to the yard and brought Neena with them as well.  The training yard at the kennel is a large, fully fenced in, outdoor training area with a synthetic grass surface.  We laid out several things for them to explore and investigate for enrichment and exposure.  The items included a small, low, sandy surfaced contact board, a small, fairly low agility table, two cardboard tubes, a small plastic covered wire rack, a rubber floor mat, a small wood teeter totter, some pvc poles, a hoola hoop and other various items lying around the yard.  We also had a few holey roller balls out there.  We had treats and gave small pieces of treats when the puppies investigated things.  After they had already explored everything, I set some treats on the teeter, on the contact board and in the tunnels.

It was actually shocking how completely relaxed they were in this new environment.  We initially set them in the sun but the synthetic grass can get hot a few looked like it was too warm so we quickly moved them to the shade.  They were all very curious and confident.  Every puppy was running up to all of us for attention and climbing onto the different equipment.  They were also carrying around leaves and playing with the balls.  We were probably out there with them for about 40 minutes or so.  A few of them were starting to slow down when we took them back to Sue's and placed them in their pen.  They literally passed out right where we set them and were sleeping when we left.  It was a great day and I am so impressed with how outgoing and confident they are.  Every time I introduce something new they investigate it with confidence and curiosity.

Here are some pictures and videos from today:

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