Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Girl Scout Puppies: Early Neurological Stimulation

Guest post by Girl Scout Troop 11967. Troop 11967 is caring for SSD Aunt Megan and her nine puppies, who will be trained as service dogs.

Yesterday was my first time meeting and working with the SSD puppies and their mom, SSD Aunt Megan. When I first got there, I met Megan and bonded with her before I met the puppies, so Megan would trust me.

Shortly after, I got to meet the nine puppies and rub and scratch their stomachs and ears. Next is when the real work started. We first started by doing ENS (Early Neurological Stimulation)* by holding the puppies toward us, holding them with their back toward the ground, holding them upside down, and placing them on a cold, wet washcloth. Then we picked them up and tickled their toes with a Q-tip. this process is to stimulate the puppies using different sensations.

Then we put all the puppies into a separate bin and we cleaned the whelping by by removing the dirty towels, wiping down the sides and bottom of the box, and putting in fresh towels and toys. After putting the puppies back into the box, I went upstairs to feed mama Megan.

Once we returned downstairs, we cleaned the puppy toys using water and bleach. Finally to finish, we mopped the floor.

Although all of these tasks are repeated several times a day, I was only there for a small amount of time, and I only got to do each step once. Even though it was hard work, I enjoyed working with the puppies very much.

*Early Neurological Stimulation (ENS) helps to create dogs who are better equipped to handle stress, which is extremely important for service dogs, who will be going everywhere with their partner.

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