|We love to play together!|
“Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting”
Imagine a warm summer evening as the sun goes down accompanied by an almost deafening sound of crickets chirping in a meadow. Now transition that thought to another context with eight hungry puppies huddled around their food bowl smacking their lips in unison as they devour their dinner. The way this group approaches every mealtime, one would be left with the impression that they’ve not eaten in days. The truth of the matter is that they get three generous meals of mush a day, interspersed with deliveries by their mom, Bailey with her milk wagon. In addition, the little ones are supplementing their meals and keeping themselves well hydrated with a constant supply of fresh water. Small wonder that some puppies with their big, round bellies are already breaking the 7 lb. barrier.
This is the beginning of a key socialization period for the puppies. When they’re not sleeping or eating, they spend more time playing with one another. Now that they’re gaining strength and coordination, they scurry around at top speed. They pounce on each other and head butt, which are the beginnings of Ultimate Puppy Wrestling. They test each other’s limits and learn the difference between hard and soft biting. They also take turns sleeping at the top and bottom of the sibling pile. Since their hunting and chasing instincts are kicking in, we ensure that they have plush toys to play and cuddle with, that is unless Bailey steals them to play with herself. There’s also a waiting list to make friends with the puppies; our Sierra takes advantage of every opportunity to sneak into the puppy area to catch a glimpse of the flock.
The little ones are becoming more responsive to their environment, reacting to every sight and sound, watching us very intently as we move around the whelping box. It’s a challenge to reach in without having a herd of little feet anchoring the very towel we’re trying to swap out. The gang communicates with little squeaks and barks and waggley tails, ever eager to be picked up as if to say “pick me, pick me!” They love snuggling and being held, all the while nibbling on our noses and bathing us with little puppy kisses. These are among the blissful moments that make our journey worthwhile.
That’s it for now, but be sure to join us next week for another enchanting installment of “Puppy Tales”.