Bee is 6 weeks old now, so she has changed a lot in the past few weeks. She’s not really ready to be out in the world yet, but her training and socialization has already started. Most dog owners don’t get to see how much time breeders spend with their puppies before they go home. Since Bee is a singleton, we’ve had a lot of time to spend with her but everything we are doing would be the same if we had a larger litter. 

7 am 

Wake up. Bee sleeps with her mother, Ginny, in a small pen in our family room. She has a litter box which she uses consistently, but is already well on her way to housebreaking and prefers the chance to go outside. After sending the adult dogs out, Bee goes to her exercise pen out front for a quick potty break. She comes back inside while I prepare breakfast and then has some time to eat while we get ready to start the day. 

9 am

Another trip outside and a short walk on our property with Ginny. Ginny is leashed and Bee follows her and checks out the smells. This is a great way to encourage a puppy to explore new surfaces and for a PBGV puppy to learn to go into brush piles and cover. This may not sounds like something you would want a puppy to learn, but Bee may participate in hunts as a adult and rabbits live in brush piles. 

If you are a PBGV person who is freaking out because Bee is off leash, remember that 6 week old puppies don’t move very fast and have a strong instinct to stay with the group. Running off at this age would be extremely abnormal behavior for a dog of any breed. 

After this short walk we head upstairs to Bee’s larger pen, which takes up most of a small bedroom. She has litter boxes, beds, a small crate with an open door, and a rotation of toys and enrichment items. So far she has tried 2 different tunnels, a sit-n-spin, a piano mat, and several safe pieces of canine fitness equipment. She’s tasted marrow bones and dehydrated rabbit ears since her teeth are in and she wants to chew. There’s also a platform to give Ginny an escape route from puppy fangs. 

I have an Alexa speaker in the puppy room, so I’ll usually turn sound on for about an hour each day. We started with Though a Dog’s Ear, which is classical music that has been specifically developed to keep dogs calm, but have branched out to sound effects like city noises. I used to get noise CDs from the library, but now you can get these through Apple Music or similar services. 

10 am

Send Ginny out for a break. Bee is still nursing, but keeping mom out of the puppy pen for 2 hours before meals encourages Bee to eat better.

12 noon

Brief trip outside, then a short training session, mostly to introduce the idea of eating treats, before lunch. I use Fresh Pet Small Dog as baby puppy training treats. A bag of this goes a long way, so I divide it into tiny portions and freeze it until I need it. Lunch follows the training session. 

1 pm to 3 pm

Ginny goes back to the puppy pen to keep Bee company. 

5 pm

Outside trip, then move back downstairs to the smaller pen. Maybe another short training session before dinner. 

Short visits to the kitchen and to hang out on the couch with us and carefully selected adult dogs. Bee has aunts and cousins who are happy to play with her, which is nice for a lonely singleton. We are careful to keep her from being overwhelmed in these sessions and have protected her from the dogs who aren’t crazy about puppies. 

10 pm 

Another outing before bedtime. 

Over the next couple weeks, Bee will be ready for more formal training and she’ll learn about crates and leashes soon. Between eight and sixteen weeks we’ll start prioritizing outings to new places and experiences.