Training Services

Mustain Kennels offers puppy training as well as Natural Ability preparedness:

  • Hunting Preparedness is basically “starter dog” training. This includes tracking, flushing, pointing, and retrieving, along with basic commands to develop your hunting partner’s natural abilities.  We recommend this training for 5-8 month old pups to hone their hunting skills and prepare them for the field and water.  Price depends on amount of time to train, usually 6-8 weeks.  Cost is $15/day plus the cost of birds.
  • We offer a special Puppy Training package to our puppy buyers of an additional 4 weeks of training (from 8-12 weeks) for an additional $300.00. This includes potty training, basic commands, leash training, riding in cars, crate training plus introduction to Hunting Preparedness.  This allows the pups additional time with mom in addition to our other adult dogs and puppies for optimal socialization.  
  • Natural Ability Test Preparedness – similar to Hunting Preparedness, this training will prepare your dog to take the NAVHDA Natural Ability Test as well as field and water training, basic commands, etc.  Price is $1,000 and includes registration for the NA test as well as transportation to the test site and John acting as handler during the test.

For more information on the above packages or to discuss other training needs, please call John at 816-868-7629 – we’ll be happy to discuss your training requirements and develop a program that fits your needs.


Training resources and articles


                                       

Training Your Small Munsterlander

Small Munsterlander puppies are babies and just like human babies they go through various stages on their way to adulthood.  Knowing the stages of development will help you meet their needs as well as understand their behavior, what is normal and what isn't, and what's the best way to deal with situations that will crop up.  Knowing what your role is in their development and training will help to ensure your puppy becomes a loving, well behaved member of your family.  

Your Puppy's Stages of Development:

First Stage (0-3 Weeks).  Also known as the Neonatal Stage, puppies are born with their eyes and ears closed and without any teeth although their sense of touch and taste is immediately present.  The puppies mainly eat and sleep during the first few weeks and you may notice twitching which is normal and is part of their nerves developing.  The puppies cannot regulate their own body temperature when they are so young, so they huddle together as well as sleep close to their mother for warmth (we use heat lamps to help keep them warm for the first few weeks).  At about 2 weeks the pups begin to open their eyes and their ears begin to open at around 3 weeks old, as well as teeth begin to break through the gums.  

Your Puppy's Needs:  During these first few weeks your Small Musnterlander gets everything they need from their mother.  She feeds them and licks them to release their urine and bowel movements as they cannot do that for themselves yet.  During this time, we perform neurologic stimulation, which are exercises to help "jump start" the puppy's neurologic system.
Testing has shown these experiences help to stimulate their senses as well as allow them to tolerate stressful situations better when they become adults.  We also expose the pups to different sounds (vacume, dishwasher, TV, washer/dryer), let them experience different textures as well as hold them alot!  During this time the pups get their first vet check up and have their dew claws removed.

Second Stage (3-12 Weeks).  From 3-4 weeks, which is also known as the Transitional Stage, the pups grow at a phenomenal rate.  The pups by now are standing and walking with good balance, wagging their tails and barking.  By the end of the 4th week their eye sight is well developed and they can recognize their litter mates and humans.  The puppies can also now regulate their own body temperature and start to feel the urge to pee & poop.  

Weeks 4-12 are known as the Socialization Stage. During this time, their mother and littermates play a vital role in socialization as well as human interaction. With their littermates, the puppies learn to play and develop their social skills.  They learn from their litter mates about biting, they explore their social boundaries, further develop their physical coordination and learn about hiearchy.  

 

The puppies teeth have emerged by 5 weeks and we begin to introduce them to food other than their mother's milk.  At first we give them puppy chow soaked in puppy formula and mixed in a blender to the consistency of runny oatmeal and serve this to the puppies in metal bowls - the pups tend to get more on themselves than in their mouths at first, but quickly learn how to lap up the mixture.  We continue to mix less and less puppy formula with the puppy chow as the weeks pass and around 7 weeks the pups are eating dry puppy chow.  As the pups begin to eat the puppy food, their mother begins to wean the pups by going for longer periods of time between nursing, and as the pups grow they eat more at each meal until they are finally eating just twice a day by 8 weeks.   

Also during this time, the puppies learn their "canine manners."  A basic part of the puppie's attitude is based on their mother's attitude - how she reacts to people and situations influences the pups.  A calm, well-behaved mother will usually raise calm, well-behaved puppies. Also important during this stage is the way humans interact with the puppies - playing, petting and talking to the puppies help them develop their "people skills." The puppies also learn from their litter mates, and one of the most important lessons is "bite inhibition" - this is basically how hard a puppy can bite and the puppies let each other know when they're playing/biting too hard.  

These lessons are very important and we do not let our puppies go to their new homes until they are at least 8-9 weeks old which ensures they will develop good social skills as they act as role models for each other.  When puppies are separated from their littermates too early, they often fail to develop key social skills such as sending and receiving signals, the hierarchy process (who is in charge), and how far to go in play-wrestling and biting (what mouthing-pressure is acceptable - called "inhibited bite").  Play is important for puppies as it increases their dexterity, social interaction and helps them learn their boundaries.  These are all important traits and a good base for continued learning and training when they go home with their new owners.  

Your Puppy's Needs:  During this developmental stage, as breeders we continue increasing the puppies's exposure to different textures, sounds and smells.  We give them periods away from their mother and siblings to help them get used to being separated. We exercise them outside as well as inside and give them toys to play with and climb on.  Often we see the pups "pointing" their toys as they begin to develop their natural hunting instincts.   We introduce them gradually to solid food and also give the puppies water to drink throughout the day.  Once the pups leave their whelping box around 4-5 weeks, we put puppy beds inside several crates so they get used to sleeping in their crates which is good for training and traveling.  During this time the pups get their first set of puppy shots, are wormed at least twice and are microchipped at 8 weeks old.