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I keep reading about people carrying puppies down 2 steps, severely limiting activity, worrying about over exercise, no tug until a certain age, etc...

Puppies are tough. They need to learn resiliency. They need to learn that sometimes you fall down, but getting back up and tackling the problem is rewarding. They need to learn how to navigate obstacles. They need proprioception. They need exposure to slippery, wet, hot, fluffy, hard, sharp, stinky, cold, unstable... Everything.

They need to fall down and go boom, and then suck it up and carry on. They need to get a correction and quickly get back to fun. Raise the dog you want to live with.

I'm not suggesting you allow your 10 week old pup to repeatedly launch themselves off a tall bed. I'm not suggesting forced exercise, particularly on pavement. I'm not advocating forced anything. When puppy gets tired, let them rest.

Valor, 11 weeks, was just today climbing up playground equipment, with expanded metal grating surfaces, and sliding down slides all on his own. I was just observing. I also put him up on a spring rocking dinosaur and he could, eventually, balance by himself. He slid off a couple times and right back up he went. He was into it so I let him try again until he got it. Lots of treats when he got it.

Fama, at 4 years old, was searching a semi trailer. It was so tall that my vertically challenged self couldn't see the deck of the trailer. There was a container that was about 15 foot from the rear that I wanted her to search. I got a hand on her harness, said up, and threw her up into what I thought was a solid floor.

I was wrong.

There was no floor.

She went right over the back, between the frame rails, and right down onto her head. She popped right out from under the trailer, gave me a look like "REALLY DAD?!?!" and went right back to work.

Video of cute puppy exercise and socialization. There is also some drive building here which I don't necessarily do.
 

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I keep reading about people carrying puppies down 2 steps, severely limiting activity, worrying about over exercise, no tug until a certain age, etc...

Puppies are tough. They need to learn resiliency. They need to learn that sometimes you fall down, but getting back up and tackling the problem is rewarding. They need to learn how to navigate obstacles. They need proprioception. They need exposure to slippery, wet, hot, fluffy, hard, sharp, stinky, cold, unstable... Everything.

They need to fall down and go boom, and then suck it up and carry on. They need to get a correction and quickly get back to fun. Raise the dog you want to live with.

I'm not suggesting you allow your 10 week old pup to repeatedly launch themselves off a tall bed. I'm not suggesting forced exercise, particularly on pavement. I'm not advocating forced anything. When puppy gets tired, let them rest.

Valor, 11 weeks, was just today climbing up playground equipment, with expanded metal grating surfaces, and sliding down slides all on his own. I was just observing. I also put him up on a spring rocking dinosaur and he could, eventually, balance by himself. He slid off a couple times and right back up he went. He was into it so I let him try again until he got it. Lots of treats when he got it.

Fama, at 4 years old, was searching a semi trailer. It was so tall that my vertically challenged self couldn't see the deck of the trailer. There was a container that was about 15 foot from the rear that I wanted her to search. I got a hand on her harness, said up, and threw her up into what I thought was a solid floor.

I was wrong.

There was no floor.

She went right over the back, between the frame rails, and right down onto her head. She popped right out from under the trailer, gave me a look like "REALLY DAD?!?!" and went right back to work.

Video of cute puppy exercise and socialization. There is also some drive building here which I don't necessarily do.
Do you not drive build at all? Or at that age? Or in that style?

Stonnie Dennis has a video for everything:

 

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Do you not drive build at all? Or at that age? Or in that style?

Stonnie Dennis has a video for everything:

Yes he does lol.

I'll build drive with specific exercises if it isn't there. I would say that my tug style builds drive, or taps into to it if you will. I start including misses pretty early on if it doesn't frustrate the pup to the point of quitting.

I also always have a mentor dog around that steals stuff and runs away, plays tug, chase etc...

Depends on the dog really
 

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Mentor dogs! Now that's a top in itself! Allomimetic behavior! I use it all of the time. So does Stonnie! LOL
 

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I'm just a dumb military grunt with an opinion. I'm not suggesting you disregard what your breeder told you. I'm suggesting you do your own research.
 
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I totally agree. I’ve always been baffled by the trend to physically baby a puppy. They’re pretty sturdy. At the breeders, all my puppies have dashed up and down her deck stairs. Dive bombing off the deck onto each other. We would take them to the woods behind her house, and they would climb on logs and get into everything.

The last time I carried a dog down some steps was when my very dramatic Dobe got spayed, and she was convinced she couldn’t walk down them (she could).
 
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My front door had three small steps leading up to it. For a week I would watch Shadow try and try. She whined and howled in broken hearted defeat. Either me or Sabs would eventually step in and give her a boost. I never carried her. And she was tiny! She would jump, miss, tumble and try again! It was a bit heart wrenching.
But then she made the first step, and then the second. And finally she made it to the door. The wiggle and wag exhibition told me that she was very pleased with herself. I think it is vital to let them conquer things. It teaches them to try. I could have just carried her, but then I am enabling a lack of confidence.
Those steps defeated a lot of pups on the first go. But they all made it, and not one got broken trying.
 
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