|Little Miss Strawberry Shortcake|
Since the pups are well on their way to being fully weaned, they always have a fresh bowl of water at their disposal. To this end, we use a spill-proof bowl. Every now and again, a litter of puppies decides to test that theory with some experimentation. This was no exception. While there’s an insert that helps prevent most of the water from spilling out, we can’t count the number of times we have to retrieve the bowl to refill it and replace all the wet towels in the whelping box.
From day one, these little guys were quite confident and completely comfortable with their outdoor surroundings. Some litters are very tentative as they venture out, but not this one. They immediately went off to explore the grass, the rockery or munch on fallen twigs. Others used the vastness of the yard to engage in sporting activities with their siblings. A popular activity is the game of tag in which each puppy exhibits a burst of energy in succession. Another popular sport involves racing around hither and thither with no apparent motive or destination in mind. The little ones spontaneously dart across the lawn at top speed but lacking the necessary balance and coordination to go the distance, the sprint also culminates in a tumble. It’s a good thing puppies at this age are seemingly made of rubber. The rock-climbing initiative proves to be very popular. In their more relaxed moments, the abundance of fresh twigs that required reworking was also a big hit. And for her contribution to the festivities, mom who is ever so attentive to their needs provided refreshments from her milk bar.
The gang is growing steadily and is now getting three meals a day, which are supplemented by Pepper’s still frequent offerings of dessert. Their muzzles are lengthening and are beginning to look a bit more like the adults they will eventually become. Their emotions are becoming apparent too, so they whine to show fear, whimper if they’re hurt and bark when they are excited, want attention or are ready for dinner. And they seem to be ready for dinner a lot! We are spending time alone with each puppy, playing gently and teaching them to relate one-on-one in a safe, trusting situation, but they don’t really seem to need teaching because they’re all so very affectionate. The best part is that we get to repeat the exercise over and over.
That’s it for now but be sure to join us next week for another engaging installment of “Puppy Tales”.