Puppies on board
Opal is very visibly pregnant now and her abdominal area has grown by approximately 15 centimeters in diameter to 87 cms. She definitely has a waddle to her walk when we go for our outings – which most recently consists of walks on the lake. The winter refuses to loosen its grip here and the days continue to be either snowy or bitterly cold…. For the most part Opal doesn’t seem to mind and loves getting out for a walk in the wintery wonderland. This week is a turning point in her pregnancy as we are now heading into the final part of gestation. The fetuses will develop very quickly; their skeletons (which started out as cartilage) will mineralize and solidify and they gain weight. Amazingly, three-quarters of growth occurs during the final third of gestation. Opal’s nutritional requirements will be at a high during these final weeks so we will continue to make sure she has the best possible diet with lots of fresh meat, fruit and vegetables. Her stomach space will also decrease over the next 14 days so we need to ensure that anything she is eating will give her optimum nutrition.
We have the whelping box already up and in place, but Opal has other ideas and has started scouting out her own birthing location outdoors !! How she would ever be able to sustain puppies outside in minus 30 degrees Celsius is beyond me…. but she seems to think that the corner of the garden (where she dug a nice little den last year when she was about to have puppies) would once more be the perfect location to raise her family. I will need to have a talk with her on that one….
We look forward to the big day and can hardly wait to meet Opal and Hudson’s little bundles of joy.
Opal “practicing” for motherhood with Bella’s pups…
It has been an exciting New Year here thus far with Bella’s puppies most recently filling our home with their waggy and happy personalities…. All the pups have successfully ventured off to their new homes and so we wait expectantly now for the arrival of Opal’s little babies. Opal seemed quite content this past week to play with or curl up with Bella’s pups — it won’t be long and she will have pups of her own to tend to.
Up until now most of the development that has taken place has been cellular and preliminary. Major organs, bones, eyes and spinal cord have all been busy developing and the fetuses are starting to look more like actual puppies by this point. Opal is starting to visibly lose her slender and well-defined body shape….. It is easy to see now that she is pregnant and carrying a small bundle in her abdominal area. Her waistline has already increased by approximately 10 cms. — and will continue to expand over these next few weeks as the puppies themselves now start to gain inside her. Her nutritional demands are also increasing so we are providing her with lots of fresh meat, fruit and veggies in addition to her regular diet.
We will be looking forward to the big day and can hardly wait to meet Opal’s new family !
Ready for the next chapter !
The pups have had a busy week exploring the outdoors and enjoying the snow. The weather has warmed up a bit and the pups are now that much older that they welcome the time outside. The most favourite game this week seems to be that of keep-away. It doesn’t matter how many toys they have out there — they choose one sole, very special toy and then all parties run around in the snow after whomever is the lucky party holding it! They love to chase each other around and the more the merrier.
The pups also had their first car ride and vet visit which is always an exciting time. Everyone did extremely well at the visit and the best part is that they get completely spoiled and fussed over by everyone who happens to be in the clinic. The pups enjoyed the day’s entertainment which was of course proceeded by a big bath and spa day for everyone !
The pups have also had lots of visitors over this past week which they never tire of. Every new face is met with a wagging tail complete with puppy kisses.
So now comes the very hardest part of our journey together — the part that never seems to get any easier. I feel extremely fortunate that our puppies all have beautiful, loving families waiting anxiously to adopt them — Still, after 8 weeks of caring for these little ones it is hard to say good-bye. We will all miss you sweet puppies — May you bring just as much sunshine and laughter into the lives you will touch now as you have brought into ours these past 8 weeks. ❤
Fun in the snow !!
Bella’s pups have had a fun week exploring the world of white that has become our own personal “Narnia” this winter. The pups have been able to spend increasing amounts of time outside every day as they become more accustomed to the cold temperatures – although fortunately we have not had the bitter cold and severe wind chill of some other weeks to contend with. The puppies love to romp through the banks and are fearless as they bound through the fresh snow. After awhile their paws get cold and they are happy to come indoors and snuggle up in a huge heap.
The puppies have also taken quite a shine to one of our young adult girls: Nina, and she has likewise taken quite a liking to spending as much time with the pups as possible. She loves nothing better than to lay in the middle of the kitchen floor and let the puppies crawl all over her. Bella is quite happy to watch at a distance these days…. she is quite ready for a break from her motherhood duties.
The pups have had a nice assortment of visitors this week which provides great entertainment for them as well as more socialization opportunities outside of our family. It is interesting to see how the pups interact with people of all ages. They are always happy to greet whoever comes their way.
The pups are eating well and spending more time awake in general. Their awake time consists of playing out in the snow, playing in the kitchen, or hanging out in their puppy play area in our sunroom. They are getting to the age where they do not really like being away from our family at all – they certainly voice an opinion when they are left on their own and would much rather be with our family at all times. The bond between goldens and humans is so great — it is clear to see their love of people and why they make such loyal and devoted companions.
We will have a busy week ahead with baths and a trip to the vet, microchipping and car rides…. We will treasure every moment of this final stretch of our time with these adorable pups !!
Ready for a long winter’s nap…
Bella’s pups have had a busy week. They are spending more time awake now and spend the majority of their time in the kitchen where they are surrounded by all the sights and sounds of our busy household. They also have their own area now just off the kitchen in the sunroom where they have toys and space of their own to play and romp. The kitchen is still their favourite place to be, as even at this age they would rather be with their human family then anywhere else in the world.
The puppies play and wrestle with each other and are now completely co-ordinated when it comes to running around the kitchen and chasing each other. They also enjoy spending time with some of our other goldens — mainly Nina and Tia who very much enjoy playing with the puppies at this age and stage. Their mum Bella is spending less time with the pups and still keeps a very watchful eye on them – but as part of the natural weaning process she is less involved with the puppies and has turned their dinner/meal duties completely over to me 🙂
The puppies tend to get quite enthusiastic at meal time and usually make a complete event out of it. The pups usually end up with some degree of food on their faces and bodies – so we indulged in a much needed bath for everyone on Sunday. Everyone seemed to enjoy the warm water and attention – and after being dried off in front of the fireplace and fluffed up most of them snuggled up and promptly went to sleep….
The pups are just starting to show glimpses of their individual personalities which makes for an interesting time. Overall they are a very gentle and easy-going bunch and they adore spending time with our family. Hopefully this week we will get outside for some short escapades in the snow !!