Our local shoot captain has advised us to take a litter of puppies from her as it will help slow things down and make her a lot steadier. What are your views of this and what advice could you give as we are total novices when it comes to breeding puppies?

Mark Whitehouse says:
Having a litter of puppies can be a great experience, but occasionally it can also become very complicated.

Check out all avenues first and this will help minimise any surprises.

There is no medical evidence to prove that having a litter of puppies will slow things down with your spaniel bitch.

I have had a few litters of my own and never has this affected my dogs’ performances or ever slowed them down when they return back to full fitness.

Being a very competitive person I personally will only breed a litter of puppies with the intent to improve the breed, that is, I will try and breed something that is better than what I already have.

Planning ahead – make sure you have got the time to rear a litter of

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  • Peter Hartley

    Oh, dear me. Yet another “Expert” (the local Shoot Captain) spouting off the same old silly nonsense.

    NO, having a litter of puppies makes not a blind difference to your Bitch’s attitude. The problem will be that, if you keep a Puppy back, he/she (particularly “she”) will learn the Bad Habits from the Mother.

    One further comment – your Dog has to understand that YOU are the Pack Leader. In your case, that doesn’t seem to have worked. Sorry to be so ‘blunt’, but better for you to know the facts now, rather than another (say) 6 years ‘down the line’.

    For ANY misdemeanour, it has to be “back to basics”. That does NOT involve cruelty (as you might find in “Breaking of Dogs” and other such obsolete books). Reward GOOD behaviour; show your dislike of BAD behaviour; and make sure that YOU are the Pack Leader. Sounds easy ? No, it isn’t. But after 63+ years of ‘living with dogs’, I KNOW that is right. So do my ‘mob’.

    Best of Luck,
    Peter