Happy 6-Weeks Old!

Puppies are much more active these days. They LOVE being outside to explore their surroundings!

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LOTS of new experiences for puppies this week! Developmental leaps and bounds! Puppies keep us really busy along with caring for our other critters too! All the puppies are eating dry food now. I’m feeding a little over 1/2 cup per puppy three times per day now. When puppies go to their new homes, you will feed about 1 cup per feeding. I doubt they will eat the entire cup of food but you will know they’ve eaten enough (after 15 minutes of feeding or when puppy becomes distracted. Then just pick up the feeding bowl. Puppy has eaten his/her fill.) And again, when puppy shows little interest in that mid-day feeding, you will know you can eliminate that feeding and go to your permanent twice per day feeding schedule. (Usually at around 3-4 months of age).

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Pink Girl “caught a tail”! Well at least until the other puppy gets mad!

Puppy poops are firming up more now too which is a good thing! We are in the process of drying up Deja who still wants to nurse her babies. And puppies LOVE nursing on Deja even though they bite her now.

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Puppies LOVE being outside! They play hard (and then sleep hard)! 

Puppies weight this week has everyone around 8 lbs. Light Blue Boy weighed in at 7 lb 14 oz so he has effectively “caught up” to his siblings. Purple Girl  and Dark Blue Boy have both hit 9 lbs (9 lbs 4.6 oz and 9 lbs even respectively). Pink Girl will hit 9 lbs today, I suspect, weighing in at 8 lbs 15.6 oz yesterday! Puppies are usually 10-12 pounds by the time they are 8 weeks old. We are right on target for those weights. And… All the puppies have had their third de-worming, dosage based on their individual weights. This is common practice with puppies to ensure their health. Roundworms are dormant and become “active” during whelping and through lactation. Treating them now as young puppies immune system are being built up fosters their health now. Later, puppies will start heartworm preventaive meds that will continue to prevent “wormy puppies”!

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Surprise attack

In other news…

Light Blue Boy went to the door this morning to be let outside to potty. I think he is absolutely BRILLIANT! Of course the other puppies went outside also and had to potty too but watching this bitty puppy sit at the backyard door and look up willing it to open/be let outside… BRILLIANT!

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Which way to go?

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ALL the puppies have met my barn kitty! “Gusto” has taught many puppies to respect cats although he is very gentle with puppies!
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Definition of a happy puppy? One who can play in the water and dirt! 
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Light Blue Boy… SO ADORABLE!
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Dark Blue Boy… He’s a retriever!
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Black Boy deciding what to do next? He LIKES the shade he’s found! 
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PRETTY PUPPY!
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And there off…
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Funny puppy!
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Pretty, pretty head piece on this puppy!
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Yep, she is a little piranha! Those puppy teeth are SHARP! 

5 Weeks Old Today

Feeding schedule and other info

And just like that, it seems, pups are growing up! Puppies now go outside several times per day (and are doing a great job pottying outside!) They all have found the “hole” Deja has dug where she only THOUGHT she would have her puppies! Puppies like to dig in this hole unearthing the cool dirt. Fortunately, the area is dry so the dirt just brushes off puppies. This is a really good thing for folks to know… No matter how dirty puppy/dog seems to be, let them dry off and much of the “dirt” will fall off or be easily brushed off. Crate puppy/dog until they are dry and voila… clean(er) dog again!

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Puppies learn SO MUCH from each other! One of the most important things learned… bite inhibition! Red Girl is going to tolerate that puppy playing with her unless that puppy gets too rough. Then, she’ll let him/her know… NOT COOL!
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So much exploring to do!
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If you are going to “play rough”, you’ve got to be ready to get it back in return!
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Light Blue and Pink playing… Like kids, they use their mouths for everything!

Puppies have more toys now including a small child/toddler’s slide… They love climbing up the little steps and sliding down the slide! “King of the Slide” IS a thing here! And they now have yet another newcomer to play with… A rather large stuffed tiger that tolerates their tugging, climbing all over, and snuggling with.

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Having them outside in our covered dog run is still iffy, in my mind. It really depends on the weather and heat. They are 100% safe in the run with LOTS of room to run and play except for the heat (and humidity). I’m really following the big dogs lead… If they don’t want to go outside, I figure they know best! Regardless, hubby has now put up additional shade clothes over the run to give puppies more shade but really… It depends on the heat! Pups still prefer to sleep on the concrete (cooler) and enjoy the AC in our dog room!

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Successful attack of that menacing tree branch!
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Pups are in and out of the shadows where it is cooler!
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Now which way to go?

Deja continues to nurse puppies a handful times per day but puppies are getting the majority of their nutrition from solid food. And all are drinking from the water bowl although we still have a few who try to “swim” in the bowl! Regarding feeding, puppies go to new homes eating three meals/day. About one cup of food per puppy per feeding. They will probably NOT eat all of that food so don’t be alarmed if they don’t eat it all. I just figure it best for them to get their fill than leave feeding time “hungry”.  You can always re-feed any leftovers at the next meal time.

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Getting ready to pounce on littermate!
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Meal time and pups come running!

At around three months of age, they will start showing little interest in the mid-day feeding. They may eat some then prefer to play instead of eating. That is when you will know you can quit that mid-day feeding. Puppy is just not that hungry anymore. That is the time you will go to twice/day feedings; still one cup per feeding morning and night.

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Yellow Girl
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I just LOVE this photo of Red Girl! Deja went inside and she is trying to figure out, “where did mom go?” 
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The “hole” underneath my arborvitae
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Moxie has no interest in “nursing” Deja so… she tries to get Deja to play with her instead. Deja is SUCH a good dog tolerating Moxie’s antics!
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Places to go…
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Regrouping, no doubt! “Which way shoud we go next?”

When your puppy is getting their series of vaccinations from your vet, puppy will be weighed. So often, folks get caught up with the number. A better guide for weight is “how does the dog look?” I’m attaching two guides that I use frequently to gauge weight in my dogs. These guides have nothing to do with a number but more on how your dog “looks/feels”.

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The BEST way to describe how fat/thin your dog should be! Use this guide!!

 

P.S. Sorry for being a day late! Computer glitch and internet down yesterday afternoon! Ahh… the love-hate relationship with technology!!

LOTS of Changes!

Puppies have been moved to a bigger area! Their world just got even bigger!

I’m raising this litter “differently” than I’ve ever raised any other litter. In the past, I’ve set up my big whelping box on a linoleum remnant to protect my flooring and have had puppies in various rooms throughout my house. For this litter, Deja had her puppies in my “dog room” (the most amazing “utility room” and highlight, for me, of my house!) We’ve lived in our current house over ten years; I don’t know why I’ve never thought of doing this before?

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A new “puppy” joins pile… Pups welcome the newcomer!

I vowed to NEVER have puppies in the summer after last year’s litter! The linoleum remnant covered my ducts thus blocked the AC flow of cool air. Puppies were HOT! Everyone was HOT! My dog room is on its own separate heat/AC system! It has to get pretty darn hot for me to turn on our house AC but the dog room AC… it gets turned on for the dogs!

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Wondering, “what’s going on?” 
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supervising the changes!
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Let me know when you get my new area set up!
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Pups are growing fast now!

This room has been finished with indoor/outdoor dog runs. I can separate visiting dogs, girls in season, or in this case… Puppies! Yesterday’s brilliant idea was wondering if I could open up two runs to create a bigger area for Deja and the puppies? HUGE thanks to hubby who reminded we DO have an extra 5′ panel gate not being used. He switched out the plain 5′ gate for the 5′ door panel and voila… two runs opened up! One for puppies and one for Deja to be able to get away from puppies! While the door is open, there is a panel that Deja easily can walk over to get to the puppers but they can’t get to her. Every mother knows it is nice to be able to take a break from the kids!

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Move over, newcomer!
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Holding area while we change their area

Puppies now have a bigger area (and toys) to explore indoors as they may still be a bit small to take outside. Eventually, I will open up the doggy door for pups to learn to go through and have protected time outside too (the dog runs are covered specifically for puppies. Nothing can get to them outside. Remember I live “in the country”. We have owls, hawks and eagles that like to “fly over” looking for easy targets/meals!)

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Potty pads on the left to start house-breaking process and more toys! There is now a divider between the runs for Deja to be close but have her own space.
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Interactive puppy “gym”. Toys to play with and bars to go over or under.
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Meet and greet only the other dogs are more interested in being fed
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Deciding what to do?
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Beanie, our French Bulldog, has ALWAYS been fascinated by the puppies. She has decided it’s her job to “co-mother” Deja’s puppies!
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Gently licking/cleaning the puppies!
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Exploring their new area has worn them out
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Making friends with Beanie

We will start weaning puppies onto solid food this week. We will also be getting puppies outside this week also. All puppies have now master walking on concrete (flooring in the dog room) which was no easy task… the concrete is slippery! They will do much better on grass. Puppies are developing their personalities more and more each day… All are curious, outgoing puppies and all LOVE to be petted/touched. They are almost as excited having me in with them as they are having Deja in with them… almost!

They were ready for the move to a bigger space. And Deja is ready for them to be started on solid food. Standing to feed puppies is our sign of that! Plus, Deja gets to “clean up”and eat any puppy food leftovers… I think she will enjoy that part the most!

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Happy Three Weeks Old!

Puppies growing and hitting appropriate milestones… YES!

All up and walking well. All learning their voice (a few howl because… they can!) They are starting to play with toys (and explore with their mouths). All are being individually handled/rolled in our hands. They LOVE being scratched/tickled under their chins, bellies, necks!

All are really good eaters! We will start weaning, for real, this upcoming weeks. They are learning to “chew”/”lick” and not just “suck” although nothing beats “mom”! Regarding weaning… we always let the mom’s determine when to quit feeding puppies. Deja has, in the past, nursed or tried to nurse her puppies up until the day they leave. She is an incredibly patient “mommy” even when they start biting her! Yes, teeth are coming in!

Photos from 7/25/19:

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They wake up when I go in to play with them! They hear and smell me!
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But are you going to feed us? Hmm??
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Everyone is up and walking. And much more stable now too!
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Exploring with their mouths. Literally, putting one’s foot in tehir mouth, LOL! 
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Teeth are coming in so rubbing them on anything makes them feel better!
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They are developing their personalities.
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This puppy pile is too warm for this pup so… On the move!
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BIG stretch!
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Wait, is that FOOD we smell?
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They are heat seeking missiles when they smell food or mom! Polished off this feeding with MUCH LESS swimming in the pan! Time to get out my bigger feeder soon! 

Two Weeks Old

Milestones reached… Pups can see and hear now!

Happy two-weeks-old to the puppers! I’ve been trying to take photos of puppies but all of them, when they aren’t sleeping, are on the move. Happy to say all puppies are pushing themselves up and using their rear legs to support themselves. They are learning how to walk! This, as it is with any baby, is a huge milestone for them.

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Dark Blue (collar) Boy

Other big news this week… eyes and ears are open now. Eyes start off as tiny slits as they adjust to the world around them. Every day, eyes open more and more. Ears open right around this time too which honestly… freaks me out! Puppies yip, cry, give little barks that bring me running to see what is going on? As puppies “get their voice”, they startle themselves hearing themselves (wondering where is that noise coming from?) The puppy yipping is turning his/her head all around trying to find out where that noise is coming from that s/he is making… It IS sort of funny!

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Eyes opening (as well as ears)! 

I tried to “re-post” an article I’ve posted before but seem to be technically challenged doing this…sigh! Just wanted to let folks know that yes, we do “neurological stimulation” with all the puppies. This stimulation is done when puppies are very young and is supposed to help them become “better  puppies/dogs”. I don’t know how much of an effect this has on puppies but.. It is what we do with all of our puppies. You can read more about this here… Early Neurological Stimulation (click here!)

All puppies are over the 2 pounds now but one. We are spending more time with this puppy “helping him” get the best nipple and not be bullied/pushed off when eating by his siblings. He IS gaining weight but not quite 2 pounds yet. He will be soon hit that milestone but as long as he is still gaining weight every day, I’m happy!

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We are still planning “puppy party” in two weeks (for those that can make it). I’ll send directions later. If August 3rd doesn’t work for anyone, let me know and we can make other arrangements. And that is MY cue to get Puppy Info Packets ready! Expect them in the next few days; early part of next week at the latest. As always, if you have any questions, let me know…

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Puppies are significantly bigger and committed to their spot at the “milk bar”. 

 

 

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One Week Old Today

Looking at the future; LOTS of information!

It’s hard to believe a week passed so quickly? So much happened in such a short period of time or so it seems to me! That first week of life can be a very critical stage for puppy’s growth; I’m celebrating that all are doing so well! Pups are all growing/gaining weight; I’ve had to loosen their paracord collars to accommodate their growth twice now. Deja’s body has figured out the milk requirements to make for the demand of puppies and is doing great also. Time to think about “down the road”…

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Amazing, when you think about it, just how fast puppies grow!

Puppies will go to their new homes any time after Friday of Labor Day weekend. When folks decide exactly when they want to come pick up their puppy, let me know so we can all coordinate calenders.

A week before puppies go to their new homes, I will take them all in for their first vaccinations and wellness exams. New owners will get a copy of this exam for their puppy along with everything I’ve done for puppies prior to them going to their new homes. This information is what you will want to give to your vets to continue puppy’s care. I always want to keep puppies a few days after that first vaccination to make sure all puppies are doing well. It just doesn’t make sense to stress puppies’ system with both vaccinations AND leaving mom/littermates and going to a new place at the exact same time.

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Puppies are growing and Deja is smiling 🙂 

At around 4 weeks of age, we will have a “puppy party”. Puppies are more interactive by this age and mom’s LOVE to show off their babies as well as soak up any extra attention they can for themselves. Looking at the calender, this is that first weekend in August. I realize folks have made summer plans so can be very accommodating to everyone’s schedule. This is true especially for out-of-town families. Just let me know what works for you.

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What I like to see… Puppies “spread out”. This means they are not too cold (otherwise they would huddle together). 

Picking puppies… I’ve taken into account what each family has requested when they filled out my questionnaire. It is through ongoing observation and interaction with pups that I will match up each puppy with what each family is looking for/stated they want in their next puppy. My personal goal is to make sure each puppy is placed in the “perfect” home from the start… I am sure that is what every family would want also.

Which brings me back to puppies themselves. Frequently, folks may have heard there is a “runt” in a litter? We take a more “hands-on” approach and “help” every puppy be the most s/he can be. I’ve taken the lightest (weight) puppies and make sure they get the best, most filled nipples at feeding time. I don’t let stronger, heavier puppies bully or push the lighter ones away. Consequently, we don’t have “runts” in our litters. By the time pups go to their new homes, they all weigh basically the same amount of weight. And once they start on solid food, even the lighter puppies “catch up” on their own.

Uniformity… All puppies will be a medium color. There are a few puppies who may be on the lighter shade of medium but none of them will be as blonde/white as my girl, Vee (her mother is Deja from Deja’s last litter). Being that this breeding is an “outcross”, I’m very pleased at how consistent each puppy is to each other. An “outcross” means… Deja and the sire do not share common ancestry/pedigree.

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What I like to see… Nice dark pigment on nose, lips, and pads of feet! 

In your puppy packet, you will receive info on both sire (dad) and dam (mother). In that PDF packet that I will send ahead of time/soon, you will see your puppy’s pedigree and see what I mean. The goal of breeding an “outcross” is to produce consistent puppies while still bringing in new genetics to diversify the pedigree.  We don’t practice “in-breeding” which can double up on genes that increase the likelihood of disease or problems in puppies produced. For those not aware, the sire of these puppies is named, Elton. He is the sire that produced the dog that won Best Of Breed at Westminster last February. Besides being a champion himself, he is from a pedigree of longevity, health, and good temperament which really, is the hallmark of the breed and what we always look at first before comtemplating any breeding.

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Belly up to the “milk bar”

Lastly, we always like puppies to be named according to a theme. It is a fun thing to do while waiting for puppy to arrive. The theme for this litter, in their registered name, will be anything with the word “Free” in the name (since they were born on 4th of July). Think of names you would like your puppy’s registration name to be; of course you can call puppy whatever name you choose. I will work on some name options and post later but time to start thinking of those registered names. I will register the litter and then each puppy with the registration name you pick out all at one time later. This is one less thing new owners have to do after bringing home their new puppy. AKC will immediately send you your puppy’s registration congratulatory email and in about a week, you will receive the formal registration in the mail.

As always, if you have any question, let me know…

Happy First Birthday Puppy Vee

Happy Birthday, Vee (and to all of her littermates too!)

Time seems to have a mind of it’s own; I can hardly believe it is almost JULY!

With all the talk about upcoming puppies (and puppies sired by Rooster who is a very proud daddy), I neglected to wish Puppy Vee, and all of her littermates, a happy first birthday (6/11/19).

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Sweet, beautiful Vee (the puppy I kept from the CH Journey x CH Deja litter)

Vee celebrated her birthday on Saturday, 6/15/19, by attending her first Health Clinic. We attend this specific health clinic every year where ALL of the dogs get their annual health testing. Am very pleased that again this year, all of my dogs passed their eye tests for breed specific congenital/genetic eye diseases. Yeah!!

Not only did Vee pass her eye exam but she also passed her cardiology exam too. “Puppies” need to be over a year of age for this test to count for their permanent health clearance so four days after her first birthday, Vee now has both her eye and heart health clearance! Super yeah!!

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Puppy Vee: She has beautiful, effortless movement! (And she is a joy to live with too!) 

Thanks goes to the organizer of this health clinic. She does an amazing job keeping everyone organized both in scheduling the vets for this clinic and the dogs/owners attending this health clinic. Again this year, the vets, from CSU, volunteer their time to do their specific exams. They are very much greatly appreciated. I specifically appreciate the continuity of care having the same vets do their exams who have seen my dogs in previous years. Health testing is the cornerstone of any breeding program because that is really the goal… to breed healthy dogs first and foremost!

As an aside, Vee’s litter brother, Trek, who now lives in California ALSO passed both his eye and heart clearance! I am SO HAPPY for brother Trek, and his owner, also!!