Happy 7 Weeks Old

Vet visit, vaccinations, car ride and… Oh my!

Whew! What a day!! Puppies taken into the vet for their exams and first vaccinations… A LOT for any puppy! I have to say, every puppy sailed through their exam and although I am watching puppies closely today for any signs of a vaccination reaction, all puppies are eating well and continue to play hard. And… all did very well for their first car ride too!

On to their last week from me… Such a happy time for new owners but a bittersweet time for me. I’ve LOVED the time I’ve spent with ALL of these puppies. I need to double check with both Donna and Corrie on when you both would like to come pick up puppies? Bad me for not writing it down since you’ve probably told me? Could you both let me know when you get the chance, please.

We’ve also done stacked photos of puppies on the table. I think ALL of the puppies are STARS!

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Black Collar Boy: Donna & Doug’s new family member!
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Dark Blue Boy (no collar here): Sydney’s new family member
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Light Blue Boy: Denna & Jim’s new family member
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Red Collar Girl: She is staying with us!
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Pink Collar Girl: Jill & Mike’s new family member
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Purple Collar Girl: Corrie & Brett’s new family member

 

Happy 6-Weeks Old!

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

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! 

Potty Talk

And you may have thought canned pumpkin was only good for making pies…

Yep, two of the big four things we all monitor in our dogs to ensure their good health. We want to make sure they are eating and drinking well but also peeing and pooping! And they are all related…

Puppies start off getting all of their nutrition and liquid from “mom” until they transition to eating on their own. They learn to bite/chew instead of just sucking. To help with this transition, we start them all off on Puppy Mousse also called “starter”. Many breeders have nicknamed this “Puppy Crack”… they LOVE IT! So what’s the problem? This is a very rich, nutrient-dense, canned food and yep, we now have problems on the other end with loose stools! Now there are alot of reasons for loose stools, especially in puppies, why am I blaming the “Puppy Crack”? Because Deja is having problems with this rich, canned food too. She frequently “cleans up” what puppies don’t finish at meal time so yep… We have a potty problem with her also!

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“Moxie” joins the puppy pen!

The first thing I did was eliminate the canned food. Puppies all have teeth now and have learned to chew so all are doing really well on the softened “maternal/puppy food” we start them off on. You may slightly soften your food when puppy first goes home but they will quickly do well on their dry food. (You might also go back and soften their food again at around four months of age when they are teething again and getting their permanent teeth. You may notice they start eating slower; softening their food with plain water may help with those sore gums?)

The second thing I’ve done is treat all the puppies with Benebac; a probiotic easily administered to puppies. You can buy Benebac from Amazon and probably any of the big box pet stores (although I do buy from Amazon and always have “on hand” when I have puppies). You can also buy from your vet if digestive problems arise later although for bigger dogs (any dog already eating well), Forti Flora from Purina (obtained from your vet) is probably the best probiotic to give your dog should you later encounter tummy/digestive issues.

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Three weeks difference in age! Moxie on left; red collar girl on right

The third thing and really what I want everyone to know is… the miracle of canned pumpkin! NOT pumpkin pie filling that also comes in a can but the actual, plain, pureed pumpkin that comes in a can and that you can buy at almost any grocery store. This IS the “metamucil for dogs”! It will help if a dog is constipated or if a dog has loose stools! And yes, it will turn stools a lovely orange color! We ALWAYS have several cans of pumpkin in the pantry and ALWAYS travel with canned pumpkin also (a time when dogs can get upset tummies)!

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Puppy pile (yes, Moxie is in between two of the younger pups).

So puppies all received a good dollop (several tablespoons to go around) of canned pumpkin and already stools are firming up! YEAH! It will take a few days for the canned food to get out of their system but we are headed in the right direction.

Now, this is NOT to replace vet/medical treatment if puppy/dog suddenly has a problem without a discernable reason; if they do, a trip to the vet is always in order. But feeding plain, canned pumpkin won’t hurt them. Most dogs like the naturally sweet puree and gobble it down… Puppies included.

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Deja & Moxie (“Are you my mother?”)

With the puppies, I KNOW they have not been exposed to giarrdia or coccidia; both organisms that can cause loose stools. And if stools don’t firm up with what I’ve done, I will talk to my vet to have them tested/treated. But I do want folks to know about the use of canned pumpkin.

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It’s a big world out there! 

As an aside, you definitely do not want your dog to get fat! Feeding canned pumpkin as a “filler” can also help with “dieting” to get a few of those pesky extra pounds OFF your dog. NOT the reason I fed pumpkin to the puppies but just a good thing for folks to know.

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Day 2… Getting used to her new home.

In other news… Deja now has EIGHT puppies! We now have “Moxie”; a Rooster sired puppy that joined our household yesterday. Moxie is only a few pounds bigger than the puppies and believe me, they are ganging up on her more than she is on them! She sleeps with them at night but is out with the “big dogs” during the day. Of course, she is fed separately than the puppies too. Moxie is still adjusting to being in a new household much like your puppies will be doing in a few weeks when they leave us. And thankfully, I have “help” caring for them all although adding her to the web site may take awhile yet!

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Rooster and daughter, Moxie… Rooster is an incredibly gentle and tolerant dog! Happy Birthday, Rooster (he turned 7 on Saturday, 8/3/19!)

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! 

Juggling… And BEES!

I need to make a decision on how to treat our “bee problem”!

I made a blunder! Although I refreshed my memory ahead of time before the arrival of one of the families coming to visit the puppies, I mixed this family up with another family getting a puppy. What did I mix up? The gender of puppy they are getting. The folks were incredibly gracious while I sat there trying to figure out how I mixed them up? And I realized my error was due to “juggling”! This is SO not like me!

I could say that I’m thinking of puppies in Nebraska sired by Rooster and the new homes they are going to this week. I still need/want the names/contact info for those homes to keep track of puppies related to my dogs. And why is it so difficult to NOT send me this information? I’m disappointed a home I sent for one of those puppies was never contacted. I just recently was told this and yet, I have no way of “fixing” this problem for this person. This is not the first “problem” I’ve heard back regarding this “breeder” and her Rooster puppies either!

I could say I’m thinking about local puppies sired by Rooster and what homes those puppies are going to in the next two weeks. We are going to see those puppies this upcoming weekend… It’s important to see, for myself, exactly what “my dogs” have produced! And yes, I want names/contact info for each family who is getting one of those puppies too.

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5-week-old puppies sired by Rooster. (CH Rooster and CH Deja are 1/2 siblings both being sired by my GCH boy, Tazo!)

I could say that I wanted to contact my vet who has gone above and beyond in helping me with all of my dogs to let her know… I don’t have any problems and just send her puppy photos as a “thank you” for being there for me and my dogs. I missed that chance because she’s contacted me first asking to see “how things are going?” and to let me know their new surgery lights have now been installed. We can now schedule Beanie’s surgery to fix her breathing problems. Ahhh… French Bulldogs! A genetic mess of a breed but so darling too! We are going to hopefully “fix” Beanie’s breathing problem with this upcoming surgery!

But most of all… I’m worried about poor Rooster! He has a BAD hot spot I am treating and yes, he is wearing the “cone of  shame” to keep him from scratching/irritating the hot spot. Because my dogs use doggy doors, Rooster can’t get out the doggy door with the other dogs because of Elizabethian Collar. I took it off of him for a short while and yep, he scratched his hot spot which was just starting to heal. Poor, poor baby!

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Poor Rooster wearing the “cone of shame” to keep him from irritating his hot spot on his neck

There are alot of reasons dog’s get “hot spots”. Our hot, humid weather is one of them. Dead undercoat because Rooster’s bath/grooming was delayed due to puppies is one of them. I feel very guilty about that! But a big problem we have right now are BEES!

Several of my neighbors have decided to keep bees. Great! I’m all for “saving the planet”; I’m well aware of the benefits of the bees. But when folks keep bees and don’t provide a food or water source for them, yep, they are all in MY YARD and flower beds! I’ve been told the only way to get rid of all of the bees in my yard is to destroy my landscaping and flower beds… NOT a good option in my mind. So every time my dogs go outside in the yard/landscaping that I’ve created for them, they run the risk of being stung by bees… Hence Rooster’s hot spot! He has “stings” all around his hot spot, in his ears, and around his face! That toy left in the midst of the flower bed (or that peanut the blue jays dropped from our bird feeder) was too much of a prize for him to ignore. And being stoic in nature, he never “complained” about being stung until the hot spot developed and we started treating him.

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The mature hummingbird who has chosen our yard for their next family

My plan was to spray the planting beds/flowers this weekend to decrease the bee population somewhat and then this morning… I see a hummingbird and worry if the spray will be detrimental to these tiny gems of nature? The flowering bushes I have right now WERE planted to attract hummingbirds. Every summer, we get a few hummingbirds who decide to NOT continue their migration to the mountains where it is cooler and stay and raise a family in our yard! And now, the hummingbirds are back!

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A baby hummer begging to be fed! IN MY YARD! 

Back to dogs… the puppies will be going outside soon. There is no way I want them stung by those bees! I KNOW the puppies will dive under those flowering bushes into the shade disrupting the bees in our flowerbeds! What to do? What to do? And Rooster isn’t the first of our dogs to be “attacked” by these bees… Every summer, at least one of the dogs have been stung badly enough to require vet attention and medical treatment! It is a real problem!

I can laugh at myself for making that blunder! I probably came across as “ditzy” to that family. To those that don’t “live in the country”, it can seem a totally different world? Having lived both in the city and in the country, I wouldn’t trade where I live but it does bring certain problems that I suppose folks living in the suburbs can also have… If their neighbors decide to “keep bees”!