Six days old and surprisingly noisy. They suckle loudly like a human baby and it’s quite endearing, it’s brought back many memories of when mine were new born. My youngest son can’t wait until they open there eyes but I can’t help but treasure every moment. Already they are almost double the size they used to be and each day they change in some small way. Many of the puppies are getting spots they didn’t have before. Some white spots have appeared on there backs and some black spots on there nose and muzzles. Today I took away the heat pad as they were no longer using it, they can consistently be found in a little dog pile or in two puddles. Except Carson, the little devil has disappeared several times, he likes to burrow deep underneath and he frequently gets stepped on by mom. I had a comforter tucked in the whelping bed but have switched to a bed of hay and two throws. Much easier to shake out the blankets and locate our missing little man. Today I finally got the pictures up on the bed so that every time my husband or the kids share some new little milestone they have made we know which one it is. Already they have their own distinct personalities
After being up all night, my husband kindly took our son to school and I proceeded to sleep until three. I woke up and Ceana was tired but happy and I realized I have a mess to clean up. The whelping bed we had built was not where the whelping took place. As I think the whole process of giving birth had frightened Ceana at first we never considered moving her. We left her in our room that was familiar and comfortable.
Every dog towel I had been used, was smelly, and the mess had soaked through the dog bed and into the carpet. At this point I could hear my mother’s voice in my head saying; “this is what you wanted” and I smiled to myself and thought..yep..it is.
We have 8 healthy puppies, Ceana is healthy and feeling good and she looks content with the situation, I have no regrets and with that, I set about moving the whelping bed.
I changed my mind. My dogs go everywhere with me. I go to the bathroom Meeko opens the door, I do laundry he’s up and down the stairs with me. I shake the sheet he grabs and pulls. I do the dishes he lays at my feet. Ceana can’t open doors but she sits and stands and looks at me, waiting for, what we are doing next? It’s true I sometimes turn around and trip over them both and ask why? But I see concern in Ceana’s eyes and affection in Meeko and I think; why not, and smile.
So the whelping bed is in the dining room in the centre of all things. My husband works at home and she has company all day. She can see him and me at all times every trip up or down the stairs she is the center of attention. So far she’s happy. I think putting her away from us when she normally is our constant companion would do more harm than good. Her sleeping day time spot under my husband’s feet while he works is visible to her and now she is reassured that no other animal in the house has taken her spot.
At 2:08 am Abigail came into the world. She was dropped on the floor beside our bed. Ceana hid under the bed where she likes to sleep and left baby there. We coaxed her out and showed the puppy still encased in the amniotic sac where it lay on the floor and she curled herself into a ball between Pete’s legs looking for comfort. A few cuddles and more coaxing and she curled up onto her bed she couldn’t be coaxed to come back to the baby. I picked up baby and brought it too her and Ceana started to lick. A huge sigh of relief for us, I had prepped everything I needed to feed an unwanted puppy but thankfully the old adage is true: if your prepared it won’t happen.
She kept preventing the puppy from being able to latch at first, I was told to not interfere unless absolutely necessary but after a half hour I gently put my hand against Ceana’s head and blocked her from unlatching the puppy. She tolerated my interference quite well and by the third puppy she was letting them all nurse and was becoming a pro at motherhood. She laboured until 7:28 am. By the time the last one was born I think that the first one had nursed 3 times.
It probably seems a weird item to have on your bucket list, for most people its to travel, to climb a mountain or accomplish a career goal; but for me, I never heard of this idea of a bucket list until just a few years ago and so I set myself a difficult but attainable goal. At the time I rented so just having 1 dog was difficult, never mind more…renting and animals, even cats, do not mix where I live. Landlords okay with animals are few and far between and its going to cost you double as a renter.
So life was looking up and sadly my dog past away. I was devastated. The years flew by and my partner and beloved Sprite died of old age at 15. I had no idea the extent of daily comfort I received from her until her loss. She was my rock when I felt like the sea had no shore.
After some time had passed I realized I needed a new puppy, both for my personal happiness and so I could reach my goal.
Let me introduce you to my beautiful dogs:
Ceana is full of energy, she is always up for an adventure, and she is so graceful that she practically floats across the ground. As I walk the trails she leaps and explores all through the bush, shes very curious and an excellent listener always responds to commands right away; both dogs respond to verbal commands as well as hand signals. I made up my own hand signals for on the trial because she runs so fast my voice doesn’t carry, but Ceana will always check back to see that I am there and when she sees my hand up, turns herself around and comes to sit at my feet.
Meeko is a lover, every 2 minutes he will lay his head on some part of your body looking for loves, hugs and kisses. Due to this behaviour he is slow to respond to commands as he has learned that people will say no or off but if he leaves his head there long enough with those beseeching eyes…it never fails to bring on the loves. Unlike Ceana he lumbers down the trail like grizzly bear. He lopes along and likes a good rest and he keeps up with Ceana but only because she does it first and he won’t be left behind. He works for cuddles, Ceana eagerly awaits a treat and he would rather have a hug or a belly rub. He’s got an incredible jump though, when we are traveling he is to impatient to wait for the tailgate and from a sitting position leaps into the bed of our truck.