Rigger and Lovely’s pups – 2 weeks old !

Mr. Orange enjoying the sweet life

The puppies are all continuing to enjoy their life of sleeping and eating – although they are spending a few more minutes awake every day.   Their eyes are all open now with Miss Star taking the prize for having her eyes open first on Day 11 !!  I guess she just didn’t want to miss out on anything – although at this point they really can’t focus on much and everything is just a blur of light and dark and shapes.    The pups are becoming more mobile and Mr. Green was the first to escape the whelping box in pursuit of Lovely and her meal tray.    We now keep up a short gate on the whelping box so there won’t be any more escapees for the next little while.    It is interesting to watch their awkward attempts at walking – which consists of taking a few steps and then stumbling and crawling – and usually ending up in a heap with brothers and sisters.

All of the pups continue to have ravenous appetites — Lovely is trying her best to keep up but we usually help bottle feed at least one meal a day to ease up some of the demand. Lovely is the perfect mum and waits on her puppies diligently.   She prefers to sleep just outside of the whelping box where things aren’t so crowded (or warm) – but the pups scarcely let out a whimper and she is right back with them checking on them and providing a fabulous menu of milk and more milk whenever they ask for it :-).  All of the puppies are weighing approximately 3 lbs. (or 1.33 kg) and never, ever miss a meal.

Lovely also has ventured out on a few mini walks – but in her usual maternal fashion – she only travels about 400-500 feet from the front door before she puts the brakes on and will not travel any further away from her pups.    She is truly dedicated and never leaves their side for very long.

In the days to come the pups will start to hear also – they continue to do SO much growing and developing in these early weeks.   They are becoming increasingly aware of the world around them and enjoy all the snuggles and cuddles they can get.   Josh is of course my #1 helper and is such a complete blessing to have — as he cares for and attends to the pups almost as much as Lovely 🙂

We will have an exciting week ahead as the puppies spend more time awake and their individual personalities begin to emerge.

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Rigger and Lovely’s Pups – 1 week old

Lovely's pup at one week old

Well I am not really sure where the last 7 days have gone – for here we are at the one week birthday of Lovely’s puppies !!    They have done lots of growing this past week  – doubling in size !!  All the puppies are weighing in at around 2 pounds now….  (I think Lovely must be serving them steak and potatoes when I’m not looking).  They are a hungry little bunch – and Lovely’s biggest challenge this week has been keeping 11 little mouths happy and full.    I have been supporting her a bit by offering a bottle to the babies (usually twice daily but especially in the evening) which seems to have helped relieve a bit of the demand.    Lovely is an especially attentive mum – and always watches with great interest as I feed one of her pups (while keeping an eye on the other 10 at the same time).    The puppies all still have their eyes closed at this point – and also cannot hear yet – so there is not much interaction during these early days except for crawling around the whelping box in search of mum – or huddled up for a sleep with each other.    I handle the pups at this age as much as possible and have also adopted the US military’s bio-sensor approach which is a very brief series of handling exercises heralded to help nurture a superior dog:

  • Improved cardio vascular performance (heart rate)
  • Stronger heart beats
  • Stronger adrenal glands
  • More tolerance to stress
  • Greater resistance to disease
  • The days ahead will continue to be a phase of very rapid development for the puppies.  Over the next week motor functions will improve dramatically – eyes will open and they will spend more time awake and interacting in the world around them.    I know Lovely will continue to give them the best possible care – she is such a great mum and will barely leave their side except for the occasional potty break.   I am hoping this week she will atleast entertain the idea of a short walk or two – as it is important for her to be at her best with such a large family to care for.    It will certainly be an exciting and entertaining week ahead as we watch these little precious lives unfold.  🙂

    They’re here!!!!

    Alexis here, yet again,  reporting for my mother who’s busy with Lovely at the moment.    : )
    After much much much much much waiting…   and 36 long hours of labour,  Lovely’s beautiful puppies have begun to arrive!  

    Puppy #1 arrived at 12:05pm in the back of my mom’s vehicle, in the parkinglot of our vet’s office  (Lovely had been in labour so long, we were taking her in to make sure everything was okay).     Of course, Lovely decided this would be a perfect time and place to have her first little pup – a beautiful boy, mr. blue, who my mother has nicknamed hotwheels.  : )

    Puppy #2 was born at 12:25 – mr. green – another “handsome and dashing young boy” says my mother.    (mr. green was born after we made it safely back home.) 

    Puppy #3 was born at 12:51.   A beautiful girl!   Little Miss Purple (just for Kira).

    So far all pups and mom included are doing great – Lovely has always been a lovely mom.  
    Stay tuned for more updates.   I’m gonna go get a sandwich : )

    Puppy #4!!  born at 1:26 – another little boy !

    Puppy #5, and again, another boy 🙂 at 2:09 !

    Puppy #6, another girl, at 2:35

    Lovely's beautiful babies

    Puppy #7,  born at 3:08,  another beautiful girl 🙂 hurray .  keep it up Lovely!

    Puppy #8 was born at 3:25,  and is another GIRL !

    ********

    It is now 6:50 p.m.     We all thought Lovely was finished quite awhile ago ….    but it appears that Lovely had other plans.

    Since 3:25 we have seen the arrival of two more precious boys, and one last beautiful girl.

    Lovely is now snuggled up with her new little family – 6 handsome boys and 5 sweet baby girls.   Wow Lovely !!  You are amazing !   We will certainly have our hands full won’t we !!

    Lovely’s puppies – Day 62 (Preparturition)

    Our patient girl Lovely at 8 weeks pregnant

    I truly thought by now I would have a puppy announcement post – even though Lovely isn’t “officially” due until tomorrow.   She is getting SO big – her abdominal area is now measuring 103 cms !   I didn’t think a stomach could stretch that far !     

    Unfortunately she is growing visibly uncomfortable now — Not much room for food or even water – and even breathing is a bit difficult as the puppies continue to grow and take up every inch of space.   Lovely is growing quite weary and I think she is ready for the big event to just get here.

    This past weekend Lovely travelled with me to Josh’s hockey tournament in sunny Saugeen Shores…   This would not have been my optimum scenario for Lovely – but as I am the team manager I had to be there to register Josh’s team and get everyone settled – and I knew that if I left Lovely behind she would be distressed.   She really didn’t seem to mind the trip at all – in fact she seemed to bask in all the attention – and everyone at the hotel doted on her.   They were all actually HOPING that she would have her puppies while we were there !!  Thankfully however – she didn’t – and made the trip to and from the big hockey events with nothing out of the ordinary to report.   Josh’s team ended up taking the silver medal home and Josh even earned MVP during the Championship game… So it was a great weekend !

    Any moment now things should start progressing toward labor and birthing –  and the little puppies should start arriving.   We have all commented that Lovely is a remarkably patient girl in every other area of her life – she has decided even with motherhood to take her time before allowing her little ones to enter into this world !   Soon enough she will have her hands full with demands of little hungry mouths !

    I will keep everyone posted and would expect some news shortly !    🙂

    Lovely – Day 55 Pre-parturition

     

    Lovely at 7 weeks gestation - Still the queen of the house

    Lovely is heading into the final week of her pregnancy with her usual beauty and grace.   She is such a pleasure to have in our home and anywhere she goes people are enamoured with her amazingly sweet personality.     She is still enjoying the snow and loves her daily walks – although she is not too interested in spending time with some of the younger goldens these days.   Lovely is truly respected by all of the other goldens in our home (I like to call her the queen) and she has her own special way of keeping everyone in line 🙂    She doesn’t care much for fun and games with the others – she is spending more time in a quiet corner curled up on her blanket and just resting…. (She will certainly need her energy next week when the little ones arrive !)  Her abdominal area has expanded to 93 cms. so she is carrying lots of extra weight – we will keep to shorter and more frequent walks these last days so she can still get out and enjoy the day without getting too worn out.  (Lovely still had plenty of energy left over last night to cheer on Team Canada to their Olympic Victory.    She is a big fan of Sidney Crosby !! )

    The puppies have their full coat of puppy hair by now and they can easily be felt as they move around in Lovely’s tummy.   The biggest time of movement seems to be in the early evening – when it is quite easy to feel what seems like a little puppy paw anxious to venture out into the new world.    The whelping area is all ready now for Lovely’s big day – and it won’t be long before the greatly-awaited event arrives !!    I will continue to monitor Lovely’s progress day to day and will have further updates as soon as there is any news 🙂