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Thank you again, and congratulations on your Ca' Rigada Deutsch Drahthaar! In addition to preparing your puppy to go home with you, we hope to support you and your puppy going forward. We are always happy to consult with you on any matters concerning your puppy. Below we have collected some of the best resources we have found for you to start out with your new dog and Drahthaar. Recommended to both the very experienced and newer people; we find we always come back to many of these. As always, please do not hesitate to be in touch with any questions or to discuss.


Before and After You Get Your Puppy by veterinary behaviorist and trainer Dr. Ian Dunbar, PhD, DVM

Click here for the link to download the free PDFs of these books. The combined hardcopy or eReader version can be purchased from Amazon. Dr. Dunbar has also provided most of this in webpage format in the Dog Training Digital Textbook.

  • Potty Training

  • Separation Anxiety Prevention

  • House Destruction Prevention

    • You can raise a puppy with minimal to no damage to your home.​

  • Acquired Bite Inhibition

    • All dogs bite; the critical factor is how hard they bite. This is believed to be determined by 14-16 weeks of age.​ Please review this section and ensure your puppy completes his or her bite inhibition education.

  • Crate / Confinement Training

    • Somewhat counter-intuitively, the more you crate/pen/confinement train now, the more freedom your puppy will have later in life. Properly confinement trained puppies can typically have run of the house at a year - some earlier!

Dr. Dunbar is BIG on socialization, and for good reason. The one caveat is that you should be aiming for QUALITY over QUANTITY. 

General Puppy Raising, Behavior, and Training
Food and Nutrition


  • Ex-pen Ideally vertical bars only to prevent climbing, or at least quite high to prevent escape. Keep in mind if you will have a crate in the ex-pen as well, the pup will attempt to climb on that and from there, head on out. To prevent, use the vertical bars or sufficiently tall panels, or locate in a room corner and secure crate to corner.  (If you will have the puppy on a floor you want to protect from the ex-pen scratching, water and any housetraining accidents, it would be a good idea to purchase a sheet of textured/non-slip linoleum, G-flooring, drymate professional, or other high-traction, waterproof, and durable protective solution to put underneath to protect your floor.)

  • Enzymatic cleaner (Nature’s Miracle, etc.) to remove any smell in case of housetraining accidents

  • Crate - You can buy a wire crate with a divider that allows you to gradually expand the accessible room as your puppy grows. These wire crates typically fold down flat-ish for storage and travel. Airline kennels are also a fine option.

  • Kongs - ESSENTIAL for separation-anxiety preventing and home alone training. Eventually puppy will graduate to larger and larger sizes, so it may be safe to start with medium/large now to avoid buying tons. 

  • Interactive Kibble Feeders – DO NOT feed your puppy out of a bowl until he/she is older. Let them drain some energy and get some stimulation. Great way to pop them in their puppy pen and have a shower or some time to yourself. My favorites:

  • Bully sticks (some like the low odor kind) – These are life savers for separation anxiety prevention, crate training, or any time you need the puppy to entertain him or herself for a decent time. (Put a towel down to protect your rugs and upholstered furniture from smell and some minor residue.) Ingredient should state "bull pizzle"; some companies lable esophagus chews or jerky as bully sticks to sell cheaply. These will not last nearly as long.

  • Bed (EASILY washable and durable for this age – don’t have to remove tons of filler from different zipper compartments, etc.)  We do recommend bolster style once your dog graduates to a permanent, nice bed, as all of ours seem to prefer those.

  • Wee-wee pads and holder for pads, or tray for pellets if you will transition from indoor toilet to outdoor over time – recommended unless you are able to wake up in the night and are home hours. (Example: wee-wee pad tray with mesh to prevent puppy from ripping up the wee-wee pad and to keep feet clean and dry

  • Dishwasher safe stainless steel water/food bowls with rubber footing so it doesn’t slide around (you can get another material but stainless steel is easily sanitized)

  • Non-slip bath mat for puppy bath area if necessary. Towel for dog. Stripper comb if you want. All natural, hypoallergenic dog shampoo.

  • Nail clippers or dremmel (see the Facebook group “Nail Maintenance for Dogs”)

  • Front-attach harness, Y-shape for no shoulder restriction (typically small size in most brands when the puppies go home, but either go pick it out with the puppy or buy two if unsure and save the receipt) – See the link below for a great detailed review. I highly recommend the associated 2-attachment point leashes, especially for the ladies of the house to be able to use if/when needed as these dogs get big and strong. Remember not to put puppies unsupervised in their pen or crate with a harness on until they are much older - they will chew it right off. (Some people recommend no harness or collar at all while crated or penned due to the chance of the harness or collar snagging.) 

  • Baby gates as needed until puppy can be trusted alone unsupervised. Vertical bars only is ideal to prevent any climbing should your puppy prove a precocious climber (not uncommon in the breed).

  • Car seatbelt to attach to harness, or car crate (highly recommend crating/tethering your puppy for the first while until they get accustomed to cars – this helps them transition into staying in one spot in the car instead of bouncing about as an adult).

Verein Deutsch-Drahthaar

Breed & Testing Resources

Simone would be delighted if you reached out to him to discuss the breed exams. Drahthaar are tested in the JGHV (Jagdgebrauchshundverein) system (other breeds also complete these tests, including jagdterrier, deutsch kurzhaar (shorthair), etc. PLEASE, reach out to Simone and utilize him as a resource whether you're trying the exams for the first time, and even if you have done it before.

JGHV USA website with links to detailed test descriptions therein

The Verein Deutsch Drahthaar Group North America

New VDD-registered Puppy Owners Link

JGHV Testing Educational Video (Dogs Unlimited) - Videos reviewing the breed tests (VJP, HZP, VGP, etc.)

Shopping List
VDD Resources
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