Jump to content
BC Boards

A Walk at 14 Weeks..?

Recommended Posts

I've read all about the risks before the last round of shots which Tio will be getting on Sept. 2nd but was just wondering if I can get him outside for a bit of a walk around the house. Our house is not in a typical location. Basically, we live 30 feet from the ocean in front of a boat harbor which is entirely concrete so no other dogs and no grass at all. I have a little patch of artificial grass on the side of the house where he is potty training.

So, can I take him around the harbor (all asphalt and concrete) to get him outside for a bit? There's a park nearby but I'll save that for after the final round of shots. We are both just chomping at the bit to get out and about and start seeing the world...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is an issue and a discussion that Trainers and Vets have been having for many years. Myself being a Trainer, feel that it is imperative to get that puppy out and socializing. Waiting until "all shots" have been given puts your pup in danger of not be a social dog and picking up fears that could possibly turn into seriously unwanted behavior issues at a later age.


From about 8 wks (or earlier) until about 16 weeks is the CRITICAL age for introducing your puppy to many POSITIVE experiences with people, places and things! Of course even beyond that age for continued experiences, BUT up to 16 weeks is a VERY formative period for pups. There is also a lot of current information available to you, including research and debate about the pros and cons of all the shots we give our puppies, of which I will not personally discuss, however there is MUCH information available on this topic. (Whole Dog Journal) has several articles called "HOT SHOTS". They do not accept advertisement, and are VERY thorough....I suggest checking them out.


My personal opinion and what I do and also advise my clients....., I would most definitely take your puppy out and about! I have a new puppy as well, who just turned 4 months old this week. We have been to playgrounds, stores, 2 very long road trips with many stops on the way, farms, shopping centers, neighbors and walks in the neighborhood. I have done a lot of research on immunization shots and have formed my own opinion based on that research and discussion with my "traditional" family Vet, and my Holistic Vet. She is healthy, active and well socialized! We have done this since 8 weeks old!


As a Professional Trainer, I can only advise in that capacity, and will say.... " I " and many Professional Trainers, strongly believe the risk of our puppies becoming ill as opposed to developing fear based behaviors that could be serious problems in the future, is indeed a risk worth taking.

Best I can offer is do your research and not just take the word of people or even some Vets (who are well meaning but still cling to what has always been.....times and attitudes are changing, and health care vs training is in fact a debate worth having). Again current thought is to indeed socialize...Check out other sources for your research, and come to what you feel is comfortable for you.

I also believe that many Vets are starting to come around on the socializing early aspect! Good luck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you Joe Anne....your insight is much appreciated and respected. I think that is my major concern as he is a pretty skittish little guy about noises and such. I have been pretty busy sifting through all the opinion floating around out there. It is rather confusing isn't it... Thank you for the "hot shots" info. I will definitely be reading that.


I live in a little seaside resort town and all (not many) the dogs around here are leashed indoor pets and I know damn well every one of them has been vaccinated. Dogs and cats are EXPENSIVE in Japan and people are pretty diligent on the vaccination protocol. Common sense tells me the risk is pretty statistically low.


Like you we have a number of long road trips (5 hour drives) in September and I want to get him acclimated to various surroundings as soon as possible in preparation for the trips. Right now I'm at a 50/50 whether to take him along or just leave him at a local kennel club for the two weekends we'll be away. Ideally, taking him would be best but there are quite a few hurdles from getting him properly trained to his new travel crate to getting over the fear of riding in my LandCruiser which is quite an intimidating machine. I'm assuming he will be freaked out riding in the truck but he hasn't been in it yet.

Right now it feels like we are at the starting gate and that opening bell is painfully slow to ring. Indeed Joe Anne, maybe a false start is what we need. :lol:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dear Mr. B Point,


Get Tio used to the crate. If he feels safe in it, it won't matter what car/truck/bus/train/plane he's in. Puppies are usually car sick. Get him used to the car by taking occasional very short trips to somewhere fun for him.I doubt he'll be acclimatized to crate and 5 hour car travel by mid September. Although human/pup bonding is very important at this age a long drive with a frightened, puking, pooping pup and worried owners is contra-indicated. Dog travel (esp pup travel) is complicated and on balance I'd leave him in the kennel.




Although I'm a advocate of bringing puppies into the world,it really really depends on the world. In this country puppies are often brought to sheepdog trials because the handlers and sheepdogs know how to act around puppies (i.e. let them alone!). A general cluster of goofy people and part trained dogs is another matter. I have visited professional dog classes I wouldn't have taken a puppy to - too much high pitched praise, too many treats (dog money), too much ramped up excitement and far too intrusive.


There was a Japanese team at the recent World Sheepdog Trial. If one of them was nearby, it would be a blessing.



Border Collies don't need to play to be happy and its okay if they are uninterested in other dogs and non-family humans. Do get your puppy to the beach, to the park, to the woods. Let him explore. Pay attention to what he's telling you. Don't ask him to do more than he can and avoid dopey people and ill-trained dogs. If you respect Tio, take care of his needs, remember he's a baby, and don't make huge mistakes, it'll work out for both of you. Enjoy his new life.


Donald McCaig

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don't ask him to do more than he can



Socialisation is essential but it shouldn't be a case of flooding a pup with every experience an owner can think of. A pup will meet new situations throughout its life and you can't cover all the bases in the first few weeks. Sometimes less is more - a smaller number of good confidence building experiences is more likely to produce a confident adult that can take novelty in its stride. Some people get hung up on box ticking irrespective of whether the pup can cope.


It sounds like BPoint has the right sort of surroundings to get out there asap - quiet town, responsible dog owners.


I'm not a great fan of puppy classes either. They are good for newbie or ignorant dog owners to inform them but generally I have found that most do ask too much of a motley selection of pups.


A typical agility pup with an experienced owner here will be taken to classes to watch very early. If it is happy it will be left in the care of different people. At the end of the class it will be allowed to investigate on its own and be amongst a selected variety of dogs that will treat it right. It will go to shows where it will be allowed limited access to a huge range of experiences and different types of dog and human, but rather than a big deal being made of each detail, it will all be in the background and the pup will not be forced into close proximity with things it can't handle yet. It will spend much more time pottering around the exercise area and in its own garden than around the rings. The KC rule is that no pups under 4 months are allowed at shows (supposedly for health reasons) but that is pretty much ignored.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you Donald and Mum24..


Working on the crate everyday and he wasn't too bad his first time riding in the cruiser. I took him to an out of the way park and he LOVED getting out there. I think I will continue on this course of action and not push him too much. Donald, I'll take your advice and leave him at the kennel for at least the first trip and build up his time in the truck to maybe make the second one at the end of September.

So yes...small steps.





Link to comment
Share on other sites

An update....


I have been taking Tio out for 2 or 3 walks a day and he is loving it. At first he had a bit of trouble with the noisy boats coming and going around the harbor but now he's fine. Our walks are quite short and calm but on some grassy patches I let him pick it up a bit. MAN...he loves to sprint. I'm wary of delicate joints so I keep him calm but he has such a verve to fly....and he loves his frisbee... :D I know this is primarily a working dog forum...but it has been a life long dream to have a BC disk dog. We are going to have so much fun.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm wary of delicate joints so I keep him calm but he has such a verve to fly....and he loves his frisbee... :D

If you re using a frisbee just roll it along the ground at his age because of the danger of injury from jumping and twisting.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...