Development of the dog.

1 Neonatal or eating-sleep phase (birth to about 2 weeks)
During this period the puppy does nothing but grow, sleep, drink, crawl around to find the nipple and relieve itself. The mother massages the puppies' bellies by licking to promote defecation. To stay warm, they huddle close together (so-called contact lying). There is no social contact between the puppies yet. The puppy is not yet finished at birth; the brain is not yet fully developed, the eyes and ears are still closed, he sees and hears nothing. The puppy is not yet afraid during this period. Smell -. touch, and temperature senses already work, so it is important to hold the puppy every day to familiarize him with human smell. He can also squeak. If he is too far away from his littermates and no longer feels their body heat, he squeaks miserably, to which his mother immediately responds, picks him up and brings him back. The eyes open around the 12th or 13th day, but the puppy cannot see until around the 18th day. Around this time, the ears also open and the sense of smell continues to develop.

2 Transition phase (2 - 3 weeks)
The puppy is now developing very quickly, developing its brain and from the moment it sees and hears, it starts to respond to its environment. He can now also stand on his legs and walk. Teeth start to come through from day 20 onwards.

3 Primary socialization phase (end of 3rd week to approximately 12 weeks)
A very important period in the dog's life, in which he gains all kinds of experiences, but he also has to do this because this is of great importance for his behavior later in life. During this period he learns who and what he is and who his peers are. It binds itself, as it were, to these creatures and will later deal with them normally and, for example, not regard them as prey. The 4th to 7th week is also called the imprinting phase by some scientists, others think that the imprinting only lasts a few days. In any case, it is a sensitive period during which the puppy becomes familiar with its immediate living situation. In this, but certainly also in the 2nd phase that runs from 7 to approximately 12 weeks, the puppy is very receptive to new impressions. He will therefore need to have a lot of contact with people, so that he can properly absorb the scent of people and get to know them as a species. It has been shown that during this period all impressions that the puppies gain are stored in the memory and can be difficult to catch up on later. Puppies are therefore brought into contact with different people; small, big, old, young, with glasses, with a cane. Children are regarded as different beings than adults due to their behavior, so it is therefore necessary that he comes into contact with both busy and quiet children. But also different-looking dogs, other animals, things and all kinds of other sounds, such as the vacuum cleaner, telephone, bell, falling objects, beeping sounds, bangs and the like. Because the puppies are so eager to learn and curious during this period, they try out all kinds of things. They examines everything and almost everything gets chewed. They sniff each other but also the environment, so they get to know it. They will play a lot with the littermates; stalking prey, shaking to death, ranking games, mating behavior. They also learn the limits of the game and learn something about the strength of their own jaws. Everything is practiced and learned in a playful manner during this period. All lived experiences are regarded as ordinary later in life.

Puppies that grow up isolated in this phase, have had little or no contact with other dogs, will later always have problems seeing others of their own kind in other dogs. They find them scary and do not know what to do with them, they will behave towards them behave antisocially. Puppies, who have had no or very little experience with people, will, on the other hand, be afraid of people, because they have not learned that they are, perhaps somewhat strange, but nevertheless similar. Because a large part of the primary socialization of the breeder is partly responsible for this period. Fortunately, there are many good breeders. Unfortunately, not every breeder is aware of this responsibility or is not interested in it as long as he sells (bread breeders and the so-called puppy farms, which buy up entire litters, often much too young; age, breed or non-breed, it doesn't matter to them).

Between three and five weeks the puppy goes everywhere freely without fear of people, animals and things. After about five weeks he reacts with fear reactions for the first time, but he recovers quite quickly. Later recovery will take longer and longer. When the puppy is seven weeks old, the approach behavior and the flight behavior are in balance, after which the approach behavior decreases and the escape behavior increases. This process is completed around the twelfth week and from that time on the puppy will explore unknown and new things with restraint. You understand that if the puppy has grown up in isolation and it only goes to a new owner after the twelfth week, this puppy will be afraid of everything, if not panic. However, if the new owner spends enough time with the puppy and takes him everywhere, a puppy that leaves the nest at a later age than 8 weeks will not cause any problems.

The puppies are now becoming more independent of their mother and are now able to eat solid food and will hardly drink from their mother. For most breeds, the seventh or eighth week is the best time to go to their new home. It is now the new owner's job to take the puppy everywhere he will encounter in his later life. The more the puppy comes into contact with things and situations during this period, the better he will be able to survive in our human society. In the new environment you also have to get acquainted with all kinds of things: other dogs, vacuum cleaners, cars, bicycles, trains, buses, ducks, chickens, cats, sheep, umbrellas, large trucks, garbage cans.
All kinds of children, brushing the coat, putting it on the table, the market, shopping center and whatever is important in your situation. Climbing stairs is not allowed at this age, due to: damage to muscles, tendons and joints, it must first grow. In the hope that it will not become a problem later (not daring to climb the stairs), he goes up and down the stairs once under supervision during this period. It all only has to last a short time and something different every day, because the puppy still needs to sleep a lot during this period. Gaining all those impressions is very tiring and he must be able to process them calmly. Going out each time does not take longer than five minutes per month of life, so when the puppy is four months old he goes out for 5 x 4 = 20 minutes.

The puppy can now be taught how to be toilet trained in the house and what he can and cannot chew. He is taught the basic exercises in a playful manner, sitting, lying down, coming, staying somewhere for a while and walking without pulling, and the puppy is played a lot. He also needs to learn not to be afraid of normal things. If the puppy is startled, distract him with a treat or a toy and take him to that crazy thing to show that nothing is wrong. It is extremely important not to comfort the puppy if he is startled, he will see the comforting words and your petting as a reward for his fright and will be even more startled and scared the next time. After all, you have taught him that it is really very scary? Between 8 and 10 weeks of age, the puppy experiences a period of emotional instability, during which fear impressions are easily formed.

4 Secondary socialization phase (12th week to 6th month)
A period that is important for the future relationship between the dog and its pack/family members. If all goes well, the dog knows its place in the pack (the family). If he receives sufficient guidance, he is cheerful and satisfied, there is peace in the pack and the young dog feels safe. However, the dog also becomes more enterprising, occasionally pushing its boundaries and trying out its pack mates to see how far it can go. He no longer comes immediately when called, he no longer feels called to perform a certain exercise, he can suddenly start growling when someone comes near his full food bowl or bone, growls or tries to run away when brushing takes too long for his liking. It is important that you remain consistent during this period. Rules are rules and the dog has to adhere to them. There is only one who growls, that is the boss and that is YOU. There are puppies that, when they are punished, act terribly and squeal as if they are being killed. You shouldn't worry about this because he will keep trying to impress you into stopping his punishment. If he succeeds, you have lost and he can continue to try his hand at you. No, his place is the lowest in the rankings and it should remain that way. If you already had a good relationship with the puppy in the previous stages, it will - dare you - end quickly or not occur at all. During this period it is extremely important to continue socialization, otherwise the dog will become desocialized. When they are outside their own familiar environment, they still behave antisocial or anxious.

5 Puberty (about 6 months)
Puberty starts from around the 6th month. It occurs earlier in some people than in others. Some dogs also show more adolescent behavior than others. If necessary, the strings are tightened a little more and we do not accept behavior that is unacceptable. The females come into heat sooner or later during this period and the males start to lift their paws and usually no longer empty their bladders in one go. They start marking, that is, they divide their pee into many small puddles to show: here I am. Under the influence of hormones, the male could also show dominance problems and sometimes show aggressive behavior. The first heat cycle can also cause behavioral changes in some bitches. She often does not know what to do with the interest that the males show in her. Good guidance from the boss can prevent many problems in this phase. From approximately the 10th month the dog has reached its height at the withers. The larger the breed, the longer it usually takes to mature. Until the dog reaches adulthood, its physical development must be taken into account. To prevent permanent damage, the dog is allowed. while he is still growing, should not be exposed to excessive physical exertion. If the ranking has not been properly determined, he often instinctively takes power again at the age of 2 to 2 1/2 years, especially if he has not been given leadership before then. He now realizes that the group needs a clear leader to survive. (innate behavior). Fortunately, you know better now and your dog feels safe and happy under your guidance.

6 Adult phase
Dogs that have grown up enriched have an easier time than dogs that have experienced little or nothing. Even during this period, however, the dog can still be taught or unlearned a lot if this is handled in the right way.

7 Old age phase
Large dogs usually reach old age earlier than smaller dogs, although there are many individual differences. Behavioral changes can occur due to physical defects, such as poor vision or deafness. Due to all kinds of other problems, the dog can move more stiffly and sleep more. It is important to keep the dog mentally and physically active for as long as possible, adapted to its condition. With patience and love, the older dog is still able to learn something, although this will not happen as quickly as it used to.