Breeders are increasingly adding “toys” to puppy play areas. Now this is not necessarily a bad thing. Enrichment is great. But I am seeing a huge focus on adding toys for appearances and not for actual socialization and enrichment. This can actually create much of the things responsible breeders are trying to avoid though socialization programs and protocols. Many breeders are not educated in puppy development including socialization periods and puppy growth. Forcing puppies onto toys for photo ops and or allowing them to climb and jump, from unsafe heights can have severe consequences. Safety and purpose should be the focus.
While searching for a breeder please understand that throwing toys in a play area does not mean the breeder has the knowledge or is putting in the work to raise puppies with a solid foundation. It looks good but ask about how they raise their puppies and or to see the video of the work they are doing to give their puppies the best start.
Please note that not all breeders provide early socialization and that is ok, but they shouldn’t lie about it or give a false impression that they are. As programs like Puppy Culture become more popular more and more breeders are lying about using the program. I have read that the Puppy Culture creators are working to try to provide a way buyers can verify that breeders are actually participating and using the program correctly. Until then it is recommended to ask for video of them using the program and the results they are getting.