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Showing posts from February, 2022

Storm and Olivia Litter – Week Five

 “The Porta Potty” The space within the whelping box has been redefined. One end now features sleeping quarters and the other end has a tray filled with paper shredding that serves as their lavatory. This is the first step toward house training until we’re able to introduce them to the great outdoors. In addition, the pups now have gym memberships with an activity centre and numerous plush toys at their disposal. And it’s open 24/7.  Dogs are pack animals and their emotional well-being relies on the presence of their pack-mates, whether other dogs or humans. It underscores the need for love that we all experience. The dynamic in the whelping box is evolving. This is the beginning of the most influential socialization period for the puppies. They’re learning to communicate with each other and with us by wagging their tails. With the increased control over their facial muscles, they are making expressions and are beginning to reveal their personalities and communicate their opinions. The

Storm & Olivia Litter – Week Four

We're alert, eating well and love to play together. “The Godfather of Soul” The gang has evolved from sounding like a flock of pigeons to something completely different. We’re not sure who takes the lead, but sometimes when they wake up and begin to stir wanting food, there’s one pup who begins to vocalize like James Brown. Before long, many of the others join in unison albeit that bears no resemblance to singing in harmony. Olivia and her bunch have moved out of the bedroom and relocated into the living room; a veritable V.I.P. room for moms. She has a sofa and a loveseat to stretch out on for her ultimate relaxation while being able to keep a watchful eye and ear on her brood. What’s more, she has a private yard for a little walkabout which her puppies will eventually use as their playground.  The puppies now have numerous plush toys at their disposal and in order to accommodate their rapid growth and increased mobility, we’ve removed the pig rails and added an extension to the w

Storm and Olivia Litter – Week Three

Very crowded at the milk bar these days! “The Flock”   It happens several times throughout the day when Olivia is off on one of her well-deserved breaks. She spends her free time in the adjoining ensuite where she lies on the cool tile or atop our bed. As soon as Olivia comes anywhere in proximity of the pups, they sense her presence and begin cooing like a flock of pigeons to express their need for nourishment and motherly love. Olivia never fails to oblige them and their enormous bellies are a testament to that fact.   The pups reside in what’s called a whelping box: a 4 ft. square enclosure which we’ve lined with mats and towels. In order to accommodate the puppies’ rapid growth, we’ve had to raise the pig rails up a notch. These are rails around the inside of the whelping box, which are there to help prevent mom from accidentally squishing one of her kids. At some point during the next couple of weeks, the rails can safely be removed altogether and an extension to the box will be a

Storm & Olivia Litter – Week Two

We're getting so big! Happy 2 week Birthday! “Let Me be Clear…”   Many of the puppies’ critical organs including their brains are not fully formed at birth and they will spend several weeks developing rapidly. Since the gestation period in dogs is a scant 63 days, the tradeoff is that puppies are quite helpless at birth. Biologists refer to species that produce immature dependent offspring as altricial, which means “to nurse, to rear or to nourish.” It refers to the need for the young of these species to be fed and taken care of for a prolonged period of time.  Puppies are born with their eyelids tightly shut because their central nervous system is still developing including the eye and optical nerves. These are extremely fragile at this stage. The closed eyelids serve as a barrier to protect the eyes from potential damage allowing the eye to develop in safety without the risk of any foreign objects (like dirt or dust) causing an infection or other developmental issues. Of course,