How to Deal with Dog Litter Separation
Does Dog Litter Separation affect Bonding?
For the puppies to grow into healthy and well-behaved dogs bonding with the mother is important. These puppies depend on their mother’s milk for the first few weeks for nourishment and survival. Obviously, milk provides the essential nutrients for growth and development. Besides, it also contains antibodies to protect young pups from the disease.
Not only with this improve closeness but also assist in them gaining independence. Just like our babies too much attention can cause a very strong attachment and hinder their development due to a lot of dependencies.
How can one separate the puppies from the mother without interfering with their bonding process? This is a question that most dog owners ask?
What Happens During Separation and How to Handle It?
The puppies may suffer separation anxiety and may exhibit undesirable behaviours. Due to the care that the puppies were used to around their mother they might be frightened by loud noises and follow you everywhere.
Moreover, the puppies may start barking or howling, tearing seats due to anxiety. This can be reduced by enrolling them in a puppy class to be trained on acceptable skills and behaviours.
The puppies may also be unable to sleep due to fright and want to be held every time to be reassured of your love.
It may take time for the puppies to adjust to the changes and separation. Keep training them consistently, have patience and understanding.
Have a routine on feeding, training, walks, potty breaks as the puppy will adjust with the routine.
If you have children in the household teach them to handle the puppies. Allow them to be involved in family activities as this makes them feel loved and boosts their confidence.
Supervise the children’s interaction to avoid any accidents or injury due to aggression from the puppies.
Why Dog Litter Separation is Necessary
To start with, your presence might be a contributing factor in the process, limit interaction with the litter the first 2 weeks.
Introduce the puppies to new people, animals, and environments after 3 to 4 weeks alongside weaning them.
Moreover, weaning helps the puppies to grow independently as one lessens the mother’s milk and care.
It is natural for the mother to take care of them after birth, but after a while, weaning can start.
Introduce solid food gradually after 3 weeks to avoid allergies and constipation.
How to Wean a Litter of Puppies
Start separating the puppies from the mother gradually for a few hours after the 3 weeks.
Subsequently, this will begin to lessen the puppies’ dependence on their mother’s milk and presence.
Undoubtedly, the puppies will begin feeling independent and develop self-confidence when separated from the mother.
Separation anxiety can occur but with training, the effects will be mild.
Keep the puppies together during weaning, do not separate them as a litter. Clearly, this is the time to work on their socialization with other people and pets. I would recommend puppy classes that sharpen their development in behavior for later stages.
Easy Way to Wean Puppies
Over time increase the time of separation and food intake.
Alongside this, remember the puppies are used to mother’s milk, and introducing new food can be challenging. One has to think about food intolerance, the ingredients used, and the quality of the food. Will it be nutritious and beneficial to the puppies?
Feed them high-quality food that is nutritious to meet their developmental needs as well as appealing.
Puppies learn important social skills from the mother and siblings in these early weeks. Following this it is not advisable to separate them immediately from their mother or siblings after birth.
Advantages of Dog Litter Separation
The mother also needs to rest and take care of herself. Immediately after birth the puppies depend solely on their mother for love and feeding and can get exhausting.
Congestion on the mother’s tits can lead to health issues, for instance, mastitis and pain especially if the litter is large.
Separating the litter from the mother will give her time to rest and be healthy too.
Additionally, this can be achieved by supplementing the puppies’ diets and reducing the nursing duration at mothers’ tits.
Negative Consequences of Early Litter Separation
As much as it is necessary for the mother and the puppies it should be done at the right time.
When done early the litter can deprive a lot of love and maybe affected negatively as stated below. The litter may suffer from:
- Separation anxiety
- Poor physical condition
- Weight loss
- Increased disease susceptibility
- Decreased learning ability-as they learn skills from mother and other siblings
How to Transition From Dog Litter Separation Smoothly
Separation can be traumatic to puppies too. Get a crate with a nice blanket in a cozy area in the home. The puppies will need a lot of attention and care from you after separating them from their mother.
Definitely, this will help the bond with you grow stronger as it reassures the puppy that he has not been abandoned.
Imagine being separated from your own mother as a baby? It can be scary. That is how a puppy feels the first time that happens. No one likes to be removed from a familiar home, smell, space, siblings to a new area.
The puppy is completely dependent on the mother the first few weeks after birth. This is manageable after at least 8 weeks as most responsible breeders and experts would advise.
It is normal and natural for the puppies to be nervous after leaving the mother. Lastly, for easy interaction with the new family and adjustment ensure to provide constant attention and closeness to the puppies/puppy.