What a day (or last few days)!
Bottom line… Deja had seven puppies (4 girls/3 boys). Puppies and Mama are do great…So far so good!
Blue Boy: 11.4 oz
Green Boy: 12.6 oz
Orange Boy: 10.0 oz
Pink Girl: 14.2 oz
Red Girl 11.8 oz
Purple Girl: 12.6 oz
Yellow Girl: 14.6 oz
As many of you know, Deja was scheduled for a C-section. I had her due date as 4/24 realizing there is a 24 hour window on each side (so due date would be 4/23-4/25). There was a small possibility her due date might have been today, 4/23 (so that 3-day window would have been 3/22-3/24). To make sure her due date wasn’t actually today, she had her progesterone level tested yesterday early morning and her C-section would have possibly been done yesterday. Both her progesterone level and the much less scientific approach of taking her temp proved her due date was NOT today so doing a C-section yesterday was out of the question. I know this probably sounds confusing but… the very last thing to develop in puppies are their lungs (and the ability to breathe on their own). Taking even a day too soon could cause problems with puppies not being able to breathe hence not being able to sustain life.
So… we went home to repeat yesterday… today! The big difference, Deja’s temperature this morning was 96.8! That is a huge temperature drop signifying her drop in progesterone… Means puppies within the next 24 hours (or so). And yes, her progesterone level done at 0800 definitely indicated she was going into early stages of labor! Pups were ready to be born!
Now it would be terrible to put Deja through labor and then also the surgery of a C-section! Sometimes, that can’t be avoided but like I thought, her due date WAS 4/24 (63 days post ovulation!) While my hunch was correct, I am very happy my reproductive vet MADE SURE and based that C-section on those progesterone levels!
My vet is fantastic! Her philosophy with her C-sections is “8 minutes from the moment of anesthesia to getting those pups out”! Why is this important? Anesthesia given to Deja passes through the placenta’s and will also sedate puppies. When anesthesia given at the last possible moment, Deja is comfortable for her surgery and those pups are out before becoming sedated. I tell ya… this is the first C-section I’ve ever had done where pups were NOT sedated! They revived quickly with hearty crying (a really good sign in newborn pups!) Pups were cared for (umbilicus cords tied off, dried off, suctioned)… all done simaltaneously while Deja was sewn up and given a chance to wake up. Before we left the vet clinic, all pups had a chance to get that first milk rich in colostrum. Then, back home with Momma, still a bit groggy, while pups rode home on a heating pad in our “warming box”.
Deja is awake now and has cleaned all of her new babies. My other dogs have all reacted to the puppy squeaks wondering WHAT is in with Deja?? The other dogs are separated with Deja giving mom and pups plenty of privacy so Deja can focus on her new babies. Weights and collars put on once we got home and are used to monitor weight gain/health of each individual puppy.
Call it a “hunch” but I had a LOT of reasons to do this C-section with Deja. One of my biggest concerns was in “losing” puppy/puppies during whelping. As it turns out, Deja has several very large, fluid-filled cycsts on the OUTSIDE of her uterus. It was difficult getting that last puppy out around these cysts as they enveloped this puppy. My vet ended up having to make Deja’s incision just a bit longer/bigger to get this puppy out. This, no doubt, was the reason we “lost” a couple of puppies from her last litter? It is highly unlikely this particular puppy would have survived a natural delivery! (The plan for Deja will be to have these cysts surgically removed once Deja’s hormones return to normal sometime at the end of August of this year.) I am so grateful we did the C-section not only to save that last puppy but to also get a direct view of Deja’s reproductve system so that she might be treated for this problem in the near future!
Welcome to the world precious babies!!