Quality Starts at Conception
Our sires and dams are hand-picked for temperament, confirmation, health, and train-ability. Pedigree is considered, however the focus is not on ring-side champions. The focus is on shape, disposition, and willingness to train. Our pairings are made with both companion and competition Dobermans in mind. Each litter is planned carefully, craftily raised to contain an ideal blend of family friendly and instinctively protective personality traits. After conception, each pregnancy is monitored closely and the dam is put on premium food, designed to provide only the best nutrition for the growing pups. Litters are whelped at home, in the dam’s comfort zone, with an emergency vet on speed-dial. Pups are collared, or otherwise distinguished, at birth, and each one closely monitored.
Excellence is about Environment
Just after birth, each puppy receives some one on one nursing time, ensuring that each one gets the colostrum (the first milk from the dam, which plays critical roles in the pup’s immune response and brain development) he or she needs in order to set him or her up for success in the weeks and months to come. Following the conclusion of the whelping, the dam is observed continuously, to ensure she bonds with them, cares for them properly, and transitions well into her new maternal role. While nursing her litter, she will remain on premium puppy food and will be allowed to eat and drink as much as she wants to. Each puppy is monitored and any pup deemed to be below average size is pulled aside each day several times for exclusive nursing sessions with his mother.
Neurological Boosting Programs
The Kennel Birkline participates in both Early Neurological Stimulation (commonly known as the BioSensor or the Super Puppy Program) and Early Scent Introduction (also known as the Avidog Program) to set our pups apart. Participants in the Avidog Program are known to hold more scenting titles than their counterparts who did not participate, and earned them earlier. The BioSensor program is used by the United States Military today to provide participants with a stronger heartbeat, better problem solving skills, improved responses to stress, and more effective immune system. The strategy is simple. Participants are exposed to very specific types of stimuli for brief periods of time from the third day of life through to the sixteenth day. These include exposure to specific scents, gently holding the pup’s body in distinct positions and using thermal stimuli to prompt the brain; creating early synapses, or neurological highways. These proven programs give an above-average dog the physical assist into greatness.
Healthcare is Crucial
Our litters see a veterinarian within a few days of birth. Each pup is weighed, evaluated, and early procedures performed. They are closely monitored, as is the dam, to ensure each one develops as ideally as possible and receives adequate nutrition and necessary healthcare. Before they are released to their new homes, each pup will have been micro-chipped, de-wormed , and will have had shots at five to six weeks, depending on how quickly the dam begins to wean them, and a second set of shots at seven to eight weeks. We recommend all our pups to receive boosters at twelve, sixteen, and twenty weeks. Rabies should be vaccinated against at twelve weeks. (If we have them that long, we ensure each pup receives one.) It is also recommended that new puppy owners speak to a local veterinarian about additional vaccinations needed in a particular area. Pups are vaccinated against the following:
- Canine Distemper
- Canine Adenovirus Type 1 (Hepatitus)
- Canine Adenovirus Type 2
- Canine Parainfluenza
- Canine Parvovirus Type 2b
- Leptspira (Canicola, Grippotyphosa, Icterohaemorrhagiae, & Pomona)
- Rabies* (Given at Twelve Weeks if still with The Kennel Birkline)
- Heartworm Preventative* (Test at Twelve Weeks if still with The Kennel Birkline)
Full Genetic Profile from Embark
Every one of our pups is also swabbed and saliva is sent to the Embark laboratory team. The animal is tested for 172+ genetic markers, providing both fascinating and important insight into the puppy’s genetic history and future. Clients are provided with this information and access to the online full health report. This report can provide owners and veterinarians with vital information they can use to diagnose more accurately. For example, if a dog has a lower than average (though still normal) reading for a particular enzyme, than it is possible, with the test results, to notify the dog’s vet, so that in the event of a crisis, the team is already aware that the dog’s normal reading is low, and can take that information into consideration when taking medical action.
Pampered Pup Early Experiences
Our pups are raised in our kitchen, because we want your Doberman to become accustomed to all kinds of household noises, such as television, radio, vacuum cleaners, toasters, microwaves, doorbells, sibling rivalry , play dates, electronic toys, etc. We contain them in a simple kennel and wire fencing set up, and using puppy pads laced with attractants, they naturally learn to relieve themselves away from their bedding. To keep everyone calm and to assist in keeping the odor to a minimum, we use essential oils diffused into the air. Lavander is a calming scent many pet owners like, so we use this.
After teeth begin to erupt, the dam naturally begins to wean the litter, and she will spend progressively more time away from them. At this time, they are offered fresh water 24/7 from a standard bowl and “puppy porridge” twice a day. Why only twice per day? In the first stages of weaning, the dam is rejoined with the pups several times throughout the day to provide them in-between-meal snacks via breastmilk. As they become fully weaned, we continue with this twice a day regiment because we understand most dog owners work away from their homes. Most dogs in the United States are fed twice daily, and we want our pups to be accustomed to this feeding schedule from the start.
Other Unique Experiences
By the time a Birkline Doberman goes home to his or her furever homes, each one has had many unique experiences to prepare them for what they will surely encounter in their lifetimes. These experiences include but are not limited to the following:
When your puppy goes home with you they:
- Are accustomed to wearing a collar.
- Have walked on linoleum, carpet, tarp, mud, concrete, dirt, and grass.
- Have experienced common household electronics and appliances, like flash photography, blenders, televisions, microwaves, vacuum cleaners etc.
- Have experienced standard household noises, such as slamming doors, children playing & fighting, doorbell, other dog breeds, etc.
- Have experienced standard outdoor noises, such as traffic from cars and motorcycles, seen from our front yard during play breaks. During this time they also hear more dense traffic from a main road behind our home.
- Have smelled a wide array of human food, from eggs, rice, bacon, and chicken to ice cream, coffee, pizza and steak.
- Have been handled, played with, and raised around young children.
- Have been handled by a variety of people (different genders, ethnicities, ages, shapes, and sizes).
- Have been outdoors both during the day and in the darkening hours of the evening.
- Have been spoken to in both high-pitched, more feminine voices and in also deep, masculine tones.
- Have had their nails clipped once per week, starting at three weeks of age.
- Have been to the vet and have had subcutaneous injections.
- Are accustomed to crate living and have taken the first steps in the process of potty training.
- Have been bathed at least twice.
- Have ridden in a car several times
Assessment and Placement
From birth, our puppies undergo ceaseless evaluation with regards to social attraction with humans, social order within litter, degree of willingness to please a human, emotional stability, as well as sensitivities to touch, sight, and sound. Pups are evaluated with the Volhard Puppy Aptitude Test. With the number of unwanted pets soaring all over the world, it is critical to place every puppy in the right home for everyone. Anything less would be an injustice to both parties involved.
Pups are evaluated preliminary from birth by the breeder’s careful eye, to learn position within the pack, behavioral tendencies, and potential for placement. They are exposed to a variety of situations and objects to prepare them for both busy city life and a more laid-back rural existence. They are formally tested at the beginning of the seventh week, with the results posted for timely client review.
Photographs are taken at minimum once weekly and posted to our gallery for viewing. Visit our gallery to see images of how we Doberman and find a soul mate today!
Most importantly, our clients aren’t in ownership of a Birkline Doberman all by themselves. When a client adopts from The Kennel Birkline, we follow up to ensure our families have a support system in place. We’re not only here to answer questions and provide guidance. We’re also interested in the physical health of our pups; a characteristic great breeders share. We’ll follow up through the lives of our Dobermans so we can improve our program, ensure the lifetime homes of our pups, so that they never enter dog shelters or irresponsibly reproduce, and to continue providing the unbeatable Birkline experience.