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updated 8/23/10

Here we will focus on how to live with a male. Boys are great and it's much easier to obtain a nice male from a breeder than it is a girl. There are a few good reasons for this. Let's talk about that for just a moment, and then we'll move on to learning how to live with the boys! While looking for a companion Pom, please understand that breeders generally need to keep the girls of good breeding quality and or show quality. This is mostly because our litters are so small in this breed, often only giving 1 or 2 puppies.

 Of the girls that we keep, not all of them will be able to carry on the breed!  Some are just not able to have puppies and so must be placed as pets once that becomes known. Some may not be up to the breeders standards for his or her breeding program and so will make that one available. Some breeders will want to show even a beautiful smaller girl and then try to see if she might be a candidate for carrying on the breed by way of one or two planned c-sections before placing her as a spayed companion.

Breeders are usually much more selective with the boys they choose for their breeding programs because they obviously can produce many more puppies than a girl in their lifetime, thus have a stronger impact on the future of the breed. Once a breeder has her picked males, and we only need a limited few, we watch carefully for one that we can utilize in our program always looking for an extra special quality male.

Unless our boys were used as a stud, they are usually pretty good at using the potty paper. What's potty paper  you say? As breeders who need more than just one daily newspaper, we go to a paper store and purchase a bundle of unprinted newspaper. I like using the white paper for several reasons. No ink on the footpads, or on the floor. Another reason unprinted newspaper is a good choice, is that in the event there is ever blood in the urine or stool, it would be much easier to detect on white paper, and again, I don't like ink on my floors.

Here is how we do it at Keepsakes: When our puppies are weaning, they are in a roomy puppy pen where we have placed a bed, toys and potty paper! Yes, training starts in the crib around here. Once these babies are fully weaned they graduate to a larger floor space, usually the kitchen or computer room. Here we put down as much of the unprinted paper as needed, covering a good area of floor. When they are doing really well going to the bathroom on the paper, we remove some of it leaving at least a 3'x 4' or so area covered with paper. Anytime we catch one toddle onto the paper to do their "business" we softly say "good boy" or "good girl" The soft voice when they first begin to toilet on the paper is used so that they do not get so excited that they stop and run to you, but instead, finish their business. We watch them go and just as they finish up we call in a much more excited voice "Oh WHAT a good boy! Look at you! Look at YOU!" Remember that until your Pom is using the paper pretty consistently, it is important to keep him or her confined to a small room such as a gated kitchen or make a large corral out of 2 exercise pens . A word of warning: puppies will chew corners of furniture and cabinets when they are very young and are teething so it may be wise to use an exercise pen until this stage is past. Keepsake Poms are usually well past this stage when they join their new family, but if not, please keep this tip in mind.

For boys that are "lifting" we set up the paper toilet as in the photo on the left. Using the unprinted newspaper which you may wish to place over a vinyl shower curtain liner, or vinyl table cloth to protect the floor. We then fill an empty, plastic, broad based bottle with water to weigh the bottle down so it won't be so easily knocked over.

To be continued.....

 email me at keepsakepoms(at)gmail.com   with 'Poms' in the subject line.

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