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Showing posts from July, 2020

Storm and Pepper Litter – Week One

“Joy and Pain”We never really know what to expect when our moms-to be are in the latter stages of their labour. Typically, puppies are born in the wee hours, but every now and again we catch a bit of a break so when Pepper gave us the paws up signal at 5:00 a.m., we happily sprang into action. We welcomed Mr. Blueberry Cobbler at 5:14. It was a bit of a bumpy ride, but he managed. He was followed by Mr. Orange Creamsicle at 6:01, who despite our best efforts returned to Heaven as an angel. Little Mr. Lemon Meringue made his debut at 6:58 and was quickly joined by his sister, Miss Strawberry Shortcake at 7:15 who apparently was in a hurry. The remaining two boys were much more casual with their timing as we were joined by Mr. Crème Brûlée at 8:02 and Mr. Rice Pudding at 9:05.

While she did not share this with us, it was apparent that poor Pepper experienced a certain amount of discomfort from delivering her pups. This left her in a somewhat fragile state, so she didn’t immediately begin…

Storm and Skye Litter – Week Four

“Sound the Alarm!”It was early in the morning. Off in the distance, a couple of mourning doves were singing their melancholy song while the finches were chirping cheerily. A gentle breeze made a slight rustling sound as it caressed the leaves of the large locust trees in the yard. While it’s not unusual to hear a dog bark in this household, there was a perceptible urgency in its tone. It increased in volume, so we went to investigate. Ever the good mom, Skye was alerting us to the fact that Miss Sprinkles (Pink) had escaped the whelping box and was headed toward the step up to the kitchen from the sunken living room. Mind you, for a puppy that size, it would be like trying to scale the side of a three-story building. The crisis was quickly averted with Miss Sprinkles being gently airlifted back into the whelping box.

Skye is exceptionally good-natured. She doesn’t mind sharing her space in the living room with Faith who was recovering from spay surgery and in need of a little quiet tim…

Storm & Skye Litter – Week Three

“On the Road Again”
Now that her mastitis is under control, Skye and her new family were relocated to the living room from our bedroom this week which is a pretty regal deal for mom. She’s got both a sofa and a love seat to stretch out on, not to mention some carpeting and some sections of cool wood flooring for lounging. There’s also a walkout to the backyard for private bathroom breaks or birdwatching. Skye didn’t bat an eye about being transplanted - she knew this was a good deal.

With their vision established beyond simply being able to detect light, dark and movement, the puppies are becoming increasingly curious about their surroundings and each other. They are beginning to get acquainted with their littermates and can often be seen standing in a group gently colliding or rubbing their noses and heads against one another whether awake or asleep. This is the beginning of a key period for the puppies as they are developing rudimentary social skills. They are testing each other’s li…

Pepper, Day 56 days (pre-parturition)

Our cuddly Pepper hasn’t skipped a beat. She continues to happily hang out with the pack and enjoys cooling off indoors in the air conditioning. She has however excavated a lovely den in the backyard for her pups. Since she’s due next week, we will introduce Pepper to a lovely clean warm environment known as “the whelping box” for her to house her puppies in. 

Pepper is loving her three meals a day. Usually a very slow eater, she now devours her meals which consists of a nutritious and “unprocessed” raw meal of veggies, meat/bone, raw eggs, beef liver, pre and probiotics and vitamins.  Today she is enjoying a spa day with lots of pampering in preparation for the big event. 


At this stage, the puppies have a full coat of hair and can be felt moving around in her tummy which measures 33 inches or 88.8 cm. The coat is one of the last organs to develop along with the intestinal tract. The majority of a puppy’s growth in size takes place the last couple weeks of gestation.

Pepper is shedding …

Storm & Skye Litter – Week Two

“Feast or Famine”To add to the challenge of nursing nine puppies, Skye contracted mastitis this week - an inflammation of a mammary gland which is an infection caused either by a little bite or scratch or in this case, an overabundance of milk. This is not uncommon in larger litters and not serious when diagnosed and treated in the early stages. We opted for two courses of treatment: the medical solution of a regimen of antibiotics coupled with the homeopathic one of basting the wound with saline solution and the incredible healing properties of honey. For a bit of relief, we put a little wading pool out in her run for her to use to cool off with or treat her to some hydrotherapy in the shower.

With an elevated temperature, Skye’s milk production virtually stopped so we had to begin bottle feeding her mini pack. Once her temperature dropped, she was able to nurse a bit again, at least the ones who weren’t so keen on hitting the bottle. We have to keep part of Skye’s “equipment” bandag…

Storm & Skye Litter – Week One

“Tornado Warning”We thought we were lucky. After a lengthy preamble, Skye rewarded us with one of those rare daytime deliveries since puppies are usually born in the wee hours. Mr. Grape (purple) made his debut at 4:55 pm on Sunday afternoon. But then we waited, and we waited until Miss Sprinkles (pink) was born at 6:28 pm and so it went on with Mr. Praline (beige), Miss Strawberry (red) and Miss Chocolate (brown) at 9:15 pm. Then Skye “tossed us a bone” by producing Miss Pistachio (green) a scant 13 minutes later at 9:28 pm. Of course, there’s payback so Mr. Sherbet (orange) didn’t arrive until 10:55 pm followed by Mr. Lemon (yellow) at 11:39 pm and finally Miss Vanilla (white) at 12:55 am on Monday. By the time we got everything straightened up it was 2:00 am but of course, sleep was out of the question as we now had to tend to Skye’s precious little bundles. Skye wasted no time in assuming her motherly duties to stimulate and clean her puppies by licking them. Despite her best eff…