Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Puppy Safety Patrol Reporting Live

It is 3 a.m. and here I sit on Puppy Safety Patrol. The need for this was illustrated yesterday. I was about 15 feet away from the whelping box at the kitchen table having breakfast. I had settled Cadi with puppies and all was well just a minute before. I heard some squeaking and looked over to see Halo with a very concerned expression. I jumped up and ran to the box, quickly counted seven puppies and dragged Cadi up to find that she had rolled onto a puppy! The puppy was okay but another few minutes and she would not have been. Very scary :(

The puppies can scoot around and so they spread out a bit. As Cadi rolls to lick one puppy who has scooted off, she easily can land on another. They are so small and she is a new mom so this is just a reality of raising a litter. I know of so many litters that have lost puppies in that way -- it just takes a few minutes. As the puppies get bigger and louder, and Cadi becomes more experienced this risk will be reduced and we can have a more relaxed Puppy Safety Patrol -- but for now we are vigilant and exhausted.

Speaking of exhausted, Cadi is finally starting to sleep. At this moment she is snoring and her tongue is hanging out -- she is completely zonked out. Cadi has not really been sleeping for days and so I think it is all catching up with her and now she sleeps more while puppies nurse rather than trying to lick the fur right off of them. She is still going for that Clean Puppy award, but she actually takes breaks now, which is good for all involved!

The puppies are thriving. Last night I calculated weight gain at 48 hours and it ranged from 22% over birth weight to 34%! This is impressive. I suspect that all the licking Cadi does keeps those puppies stimulated and so they nurse, and since Cadi can't really be the Beauty Queen she is right now, she has decided to be the Dairy Queen instead. Puppies are definitely benefiting from the great abundance of milk, and they are plump and sleek (and clean!).

The puppies are entering the Smudge Puppy phase. This is when the pigment on their noses starts to darken, and it looks like their noses are just dirty. Yesterday I thought one had something on his nose so wiped it but it was just a spot of pigment so it stayed on :)

I took a picture just to show you what I mean about the smudge on the nose. I was marveling at the little feet and so I took a close-up of a rear foot to share with you. The foot still has the rear dewclaw, as you can see; those will come off tomorrow afternoon. We remove only rear dewclaws (not the front ones) and it is done with local anesthesia but still not a fun time. When I am cleaning the whelping box I put the puppies in a basket on a heating pad; the one picture is of that from last night. The rest of the pictures are self-explanatory -- just pretty little puppies with a proud, obsessive mother! I did want to mention one more thing -- in the interest of helping you learn to recognize the puppies please note the first picture. Do you see that big white front foot? That is Sydney and the white markings on that foot are distinctive and just like her mom.

I hope you are obsessive about having a wonderful day -- one you can be proud of! Thanks for visiting.


  1. Morning to the Glitter gang and their band of caregivers!! I love all the pictures and the stories - it makes me all warm and fuzzy inside. I'm so proud I can't wipe the smile off my face or shake the twinkle in my eyes.

  2. The puppies are all so beautiful! And the rust! Wow. Usually the rust on puppies starts out more tan and then as they mature it darkens to a beautiful rust color. These puppies are all starting with the beautiful rust color!

    I guess the old rule of sleep when the baby is sleeping does not apply with puppies! Try to get some rest.

    Marti and the Kaibab gang down south.

  3. Sleek, plump, clean puppies -- not a bad definition of perfection. And that photo of the little pink foot: one of my most cherished memories of puppyhood.

    Susan and Djinn

  4. What precious photos . . . all of them. The ones of Cadi and pups are so sweet and tender. What an attentive mom she is! And I totally agree with Susan about the little foot photo. If you can capture puppyhood with one photo, that might be it!

    M-A, I am once again inspired by your puppy-raising ethics and devising of a plan to have someone awake at all times to assist Cadi in her enthusiastic motherhood. And I am also simultaneously wishing some much needed rest for you and Galen in the very near future! :)

    ~ Liz, Sam, Kiko the snoring pug, & Lilycat

  5. I agree with Susan and Liz...some of my favorite pictures of my kids are of their little feet and the same goes for little puppy feet. So soft and pink! It's nice to see Cadi relaxed and dozing...wish the same for you in the near future!

  6. You do have the shiniest puppies I have ever seen. And the color of these youngsters, awesome! I so apprediate the Puppy Safety Patrol's efforts. You guys are the BEST! :D I often wonder how many other Breeders devote this kind of effort/time/love to their litters.
    What you are doing right now reminds me of children around a swimming pool...NEVER TAKE YOUR EYES OFF THEM.

    Kudos to you and your team Mary-Ann!


  7. Mary-Ann, you hinted in your post about a question I've been wondering about. How are your other girls reacting to the Glitter Litter? Are Zoey and Faith intrigued by the puppies? Does Halo show any intrerst in them?

    BTW, I see from today's Berner-L picture, the signs of Cadi's OCD showed up before the arrival of the litter.