How to Pick Up And Hold A Puppy

Helping You Get the Most From Your Hunting Dogs

How to Pick Up And Hold A Puppy

By Jennifer Broome



0:31 Announcer: helping you get the most from your hunting dogs.

0:38 Let's talk about a safe and proper way to pick your puppy up. This is how I unfortunately see most people pick puppies up. Almost like a baby, they reach underneath and they left them up like this. I'm really not fond of that method and I'll tell you why.

We have as a human, a ball and socket joint. And my arm can comfortably move out like that. A dog has more of a shoulder blade build, where their legs and shoulders are meant to move forward and backward. So I don't want to be forcing pressure with his whole body weight, forcing his shoulders out. I don't think that's real healthy for them especially as they begin to mature and get bigger.

1:24 A safer, healthier way for the pup, to pick them up, would be to grab them by the scruff, support the chest and support the butt. We'll do that again. Scruff, okay? And this is a safe way; this is an okay way to pick your pup up. Scruff, chest, and butt. So now I'm safely holding him against me. He feels secure. The majority of his weight I'm holding in his back end here. And he's in a safe position.

From there I like to put these puppies upside down quite a bit. And it's funny to see how relaxed he is, just got this puppy yesterday for a client and he goes to their house tomorrow. So I've had about a day of handling him. And yesterday, his feet were straight up in the air. All of his toes were spread. And he was very insecure and uncomfortable in this position. But already through me picking him up, in this position and holding him upside down, here's some squirming, I like this, I want to teach him that when I hold you in this position, it's a trust exercise. So I want you to relax and trust me. He wants to squirm a little.

2:34 His squirming or crying or straight legs or tension or stress is certainly not my cue to put him down. So I want to hold him 'til he relaxes. Relax. Good. He struggles. I'm going to subdue him a little holding him. He's not going to get his way. And then he relaxed. There. That's a boy.

So holding your puppy like this is a wonderful trust exercise. It's a wonderful way to teach them to relax. And I continue to pick my puppies up and hold them like this truly until I can't pick them up anymore. So they might be three, four, five months of age. I'll put him down, carefully.

Scruff, chest, butt. Pick him right up again. And the more that you do this, the more that you're creating a trusting bond with your puppies. He doesn't quite have it yet. Good boy. The more you're teaching your puppies to relax when you handle them. Thatta boy. And it's just a great way to bond with your puppy and hold them safely.

That's a good boy.

3:45 [Closing]

4:07 Announcer: helping you get the most from your hunting dogs.


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