Friday 27 April 2018

E litter go to their new home

After a 3 day delay because of a sickness bug the E litter have finally left to go to their new homes.

Since our last blog the pups have continued to thrive spending lots of time outdoors.

Here are a few pictures of the pups enjoying themselves.

Since they were 5 weeks they have made regular visits to Police headquarters to meet the staff.

They love having their meals outside in our garden.

When I let them outside for their food it’s a bit of a race to get their before them to make sure everyone gets their fair share.

Sasha has been the most amazing mum and her temperament is outstanding.  She greets visitors and allows them to interact with the pups and she allows Ella to investigate them also.

Here are Sasha and Ella in the garden together.

I run them both together at Killerton National trust park in the morning and evening.
As you read this blog you will notice how much mum Sasha loves interacting and being with her pups.

Sitting in the garden I get quite emotional sometimes watching her interacting with her pups and seeing the pups playing around the apple tree which I planted when I buried my beloved and much adored Police dog champion Spud.

The pups are very advanced and forward for their age. We are lucky to have a very large garden and to keep them stimulated I opened the whole garden for them to explore. Here they are being let out of their existing garden area into the rest of the garden.

Friday the 13th was the day that the pups were assessed as to their potential to be future Police dogs.

Here I am giving them a briefing before we set off on the 45 mile journey to Plymouth where my friend and Mentor Graham Mabbutt assessed them at his house.

The scientists tell us that at 7 weeks or 49 days old the pups nervous system and brain is fully formed and that this is the time to assess their characters.

We assess their confidence when being placed individually in a room they have never been before with an assessor they have never met before.

Here is Errol confidently exploring the room and investigating the assessor.

We assess their desire to play retrieve and tug games. We assess whether they are sensitive to height, noise, or panic when restricted. We assess their sociability and desire to recall to breeder and assessor.

Here is Eyke playing tug of war with the assessor Graham Mabbutt now in his 87th year and still as passionate about dogs as he ever was.

Here is Eyke showing a calmness as Graham gently places him in the down position.

Here is Eddie being assessed for height sensitivity. Eddie is completely unfazed with the table being slightly rocked and shows no sign of panic.

We assess their pain threshold to see if they are overly sensitive to pain. Here is Eddie showing no acknowledgement of Graham gradually squeezing his toe harder as he counts to ten.

We assess their reaction to an unexpected occurrence which on this occasion was a small umbrella suddenly opening above them. The umbrella is then thrown to the side and we see if the puppy is worried by this and if it has the confidence to investigate it.

Echo is completely unconcerned by this.

Here is Ernie happily retrieving a ball with a small bell inside it.

Here is Elsie playing with a toy dog and is completely unaffected by the siren being sounded above her.

All 6 passed the assessment and 4 of them Ernie, Eyke, Eddie and Echo passed with distinction. The assessments are just a guide and this is taken into account along with the breeders observations during the weeks he/she raises the litter.

Overall we are looking for general confidence and most important a determination and strong desire to play.

So after an impressive assessment it was home for them all to have a well-earned lunch.

He we are arriving home.

The difficult job now was selecting 4 pups to go into our puppy program and 2 to go to civilian homes. My inclination was to keep all 6 after seeing them perform in their assessments but unfortunately we only had places for 4 pups in the program.

Here I am briefing the gang on how well they had all assessed.

The pups were due to go to their new homes on Saturday 21st April but they all became ill with diarrhoea and sickness the day after their inoculations on the Thursday.

Here is Eddie having his check up and inoculation.

As a result their leaving date had to be postponed until Tuesday 24th April.

Here they all are looking pretty worse for wear the next day.

On the Friday the 2 girls Echo and Elsie were still under the weather and were not particularly happy with the boys who had by now recovered and were charging around jumping on them.

I then witnessed an amazing event when mum Sasha realising the girls were suffering stayed with them and physically prevented the boys getting to them.

As the leaving day approached Eyke and Errol became regular escapees out of the exercise area. Here is Errol having climbed over the sofa I used to block them in relaxing on the seat.

Elsie and Echo were always together and although they were more than capable of standing up for themselves they did find the boys behaviour somewhat tedious on occasions.

Also by now my wife Di was finding it increasingly difficult getting out of their exercise area in one piece.

The one memory that will stay with me forever from the E litter is the obvious pleasure and joy Sasha got from being able to spend time with her pups whenever she wanted to. The fact that she had stopped feeding them nearly 5 weeks previously made no difference to her desire to be with them.

Here are some photo’s of their time together.

I am aware many breeders remove mum from the litter at an early age and many would argue that mum is able to cope and adapt to this. I would just say look at the following video’s and see for yourself the wonderful experience you are depriving mum of.


Here are the pups showing their remarkable focus and attention.

The day finally arrived for the pups to leave us and I had made the decision that Eyke, Errol, Ernie and Eddie were staying in the program and would be going to puppy walkers. With a heavy heart I decided to sell Echo and Elsie to members of the public who had been waiting for a puppy.

But at the last minute one of the buyers had to withdraw and so Echo will now also remain in the program. Elsie is going to a very enthusiastic man called Sam from Plymouth who has been asking me for a pup for some time. He will be training with my friend and Mentor Graham Mabbutt which means I will still get to see Elsie.

Here we all are on the morning of Tuesday with all of the puppy walkers and Sam about to start their journeys home with their new pups.

From left to right are Sasha, Elsie, Echo, Ernie, Errol, Eddie and Eyke.

I then took Sasha back to her carers Julie and Les near Bath. Here they are being reunited.

I will hopefully see the pups for their first training get together on Sunday 13th May and also for an appearance at the Devon county show.

I would like to thank my wife Di for her support, patience and hard work helping me with the pups, welcoming and looking after the constant stream of visitors.

I would like to thank Sasha’s carers Julie and Les for their dedication and sacrifice in looking after Sasha and being without her for 3 months.

Thank you to my existing puppy walkers for their patience as I have neglected them for the last couple of months.

Thanks also to the handlers who have helped with various jobs. Thanks to Andi Derby for the papers,
Mark for looking after Ella and Chris for helping with the photographs on the last day.

And finally thanks to Graham Mabbutt for carrying out the puppy assessments.

See you all next time


  1. Thank you so much for the update. Have loved following the tweets on Sasha and the puppies over the weeks. I shall miss reading about them but hopefully you'll be charting their progress to become fully fledged police dogs at some point.

  2. Thanks for the fantastic tweets Paul, it has been brilliant reading about the puppies and their journeys. If you ever have a pup in the future hat needs a good home I would love the opportunity.


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