An apple a day....
You guessed it! Today's ESI scent was apple and some pups really loved it! Of course, others didn't and others looked like they were asleep :-)
Otherwise, not much new - eat, sleep, get cleaned by mom, crawl up onto some toys and then do it all again! Bruce soldiered through some more toe nails tonight.
We've had our first escapee from the laundry basket where we store the pups while we clean the whelping box and a close call on two other escape attempts from the box itself. They are definitely geeting stronger and more active.
The pups sure are enjoying their toys though it makes the daily count to 12 more challenging.!
We're trying to think of good props to use for their photo shoot at 5 weeks or so - suggestions welcome!
Welcome Week 2!
Today marks the start of Week 2 of the Roadsters' lives. This should be another fairly quiet week as the pups remain in the whelping box and the focus is still on eating, growing, being cleaned by Mom and developing their little brains. However, they will still experience some significant milestones this week. For one, their eyes will open. We are starting to see the beginning of that already in some of the pups.
ESI and ESN continue this week (chukkar tonight btw) and for you out there reading this in Blogland, visitors are more than welcome!!! Bon is watchful, but comfortable with people seeing her babies. And of course, they'll continue getting lots of snuggle time from us.
Granny Hiscoke is here this week to spell off Bruce and I so we can log in some hours at work. She's doing an excellent job and,I think, having fun caring for her grandbabies. The pups already have some dates booked for visits with far-away relatives who want to come see them.
While Bon takes care of the babies, we keep taking her of her. Coaxing her to eat, cleaning her incision, managing her discomfort and lots of praise for being such a good momma.
We are limiting the flash pics so don't have a ton of new pics from today, but here are a couple. Also, we are putting a bunch of photos up here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/127860692@N07/sets
Happy 1 Week Birthday!
The Roadsters are 1 week old today! We survived! They survived! Happy Birthday, babies!
Lots of welcomed help from the Aunties today as another 200+ nails were trimmed, whelping box cleaned, Bon's incision cleaned and cared for, some ribbons changed that were getting frayed, groceries procured etc etc.
Bon has gone off beef after her bout with an upset tummy yesterday but ate some tripe for dinner. And she actually ate in the kitchen. No breakfast in bed - yeah!
We added some toys to the whelping box too. Not that they need a lot of obstacles with the gang to clamber over but it provides different scents/textures.
Today's ESI scent was rosemary. Again, mixed reviews with some loving it, some hating it and some ambivalent.
Deb and Bruce took some amazing photos of the babies today and stated hold work with some of them :-)
Thank goodness for Aunties!
The Roadsters (and us) got some much needed help from Aunties today! Bruce's mom arrived from Uxbridge today to say for a few days and Auntie Deb came by again to lend a hand. Bon is really sore and has been protecting her incision and it's hard enough for the pups to find room so we're rotating the pups off and on to make sure everyone gets a shot at the faucet.
Bon's pretty sore still and had an upset tummy today so not much eating. Happy to have a few bites of pizza tonight though. We ran her into the very for a check up on the incision and it's looking good.
Tonight's ESI scent was pheasant which proved much more popular than any of the previous scents.
And we are starting to see just the barest glimmer of eye cracks on a few of them so we'll start keeping the room dim and flash pics will be limited.
Here's a few from today.
12 puppies, 10 nipples. You do the math. Gayle at Avidog once described neonate puppies as heat and milk-seeking missiles. Boy, was she not kidding. It really is a war in there. The smaller guys get latched on and then one of the other pups comes through underneath and knocks them all off. We help the littler ones out a bit by putting them back in the box first after a nail trim/box cleaning so they have some alone time with the milk faucet.
Pups continue to do well. We all survived their second nail trim. Everyone had their collars replaced. A few of them are trying to get their legs underneath them as they scoot along. And I got the first whiff of puppy breath!
Tonight's scent was lemon. It was supposed to be a game bird but it was a G and T kind of day and the lemon was to hand.
Save the Date!!
SAVE THE DATE!
The Road Litter's Puppy Walk will be Sunday, November 9 assuming we have decent weather. Start time to be confirmed, but likely late morning.
Please join us for an enjoyable afternoon with the pups and a pot-luck lunch. For those who are new to the idea, Puppy Walks are parties that we hold for the pups. We gather first for a walk in the fields with the pups and their mom. Then back to the house for a pot-luck lunch and an afternoon of puppies and friends. It's a lot of fun and the food is usually terrific. Everyone is welcome to join us so drop me a note.
Other important litter dates are:
November 12/13 - temp test (some structure if time allows)
November 14 - structure/birds
We do allow observers to the APET but first priority goes to buyers from the litter. If there is still room, others are more than welcome to join us.
And come visit!
Grass is Better Than Coffee
Tonight's ESI scent was grass. Way more popular than coffee! Really, kids? Have you no taste? :-)
Bon's doing well . Her incisions looks good, though it's itchy. But she seems a little less sore.. She's back to eating like a horse which is what I'm used to. Though if the pups are nursing, she refuses to leave them to eat, so Bruce feeds her "breakfast in bed". I reminded her that this was not going to be the norm for the rest of her life.
The pups are doing well. Getting louder! Getting a bit more coordinated. One of the pups made it to the top of Bonny's head in his travels...before she moved and he tumbled unceremoniously to the ground.
The funniest thing is when they drink themselves into a milk coma. Managing to pull themselves off the nipple before collapsing in a puddle. Very reminiscent of a keg at some parties in university.
The camera is off being repaired but here's one to keep you going 'til tomorrow!
Thoughts from the Whelping Room
As you know, we're on 24/7 Roadster watch until they are big/mobile enough to get out of her way should Bon accidentally lay down/step on one of them.
As special as the babies are, sometimes sitting in the whelping room for hours on end can get pretty monotonous so Bruce and I have each found ways to pass the time. For my part, when I'm not snapping pics, organizing pics, making lists, or rereading my Avidog material, I seem to spend my time figuring out better ways to count twelve squirming, wriggling, burrowing puppies without having to start over 5 or 6 times. Seventeen million times a night (approximately) I glance into the whelping box and count: two-two-two-two-two-two; three-three-three-three; four-four-four; five-five-two. Is everyone alive? Is everyone nice and twitchy? Who in the *&*% is making that infernal racket? (On the positive side, I have found time to re-watch the LOTR Trilogy - Director's Cut and am now making my way through the commentary which I have never gotten to.)
Bruce, on the other hand, has a small spreadsheet obsession. He's redone all my spreadsheets (mumbling maniacally something about formulas not being copied down) and has turned his attention to perfecting the weight spread sheet. His latest attempt? He's added in some functions to calculate the maximum % increase for each puppy, as well as their LAST % increase...all relative to birth weight, of course. Plus some conditional formatting so that the ones above average are marked green and the ones below average are marked yellow, just to quickly distinguish. As illustrated below, little Dk Blue, the smallest at birth, has actually been a champion increaser. In Bruce's words: "Now we've got a spread sheet!". Sigh. He's such a geek.
More on the pups tonight!
The fun stuff begins!
Well, I think it's fun though some people might just say it's more work.
Today marks the first day of the Roadie's Early Neurological Stimulation (aka Biosensor) and Avidog's Early Scent Introduction (ESI) exercises which we will continue to do daily until Day 16. If you've never heard of ESI, please watch the webinar here:
Tonight's scent was freshly ground coffee. It's one of the things I like to smell when I first wake up so I thought it was appropriate for the start of waking up the pups' noses. Overall, the pups were pretty ambivalent about the scent. though we did have a couple of strongly negative reaction an done very positive reaction.
Everyone continues to thrive. Their pigment is starting to coming in nicely and I'm seeing some little dog behaviours which I never noticed before - tail wagging while nursing, stretching and yawning.
Two of the pups surpassed the one pound mark and the others are fast on their heels. Who knew I would be so obsessive about a weight chart? And before some of you answer that!, take a look at what
the engineer came up with! And you think I'm obsessive?
No doubt, the pups are truly entertaining to watch but what I find equally fascinating is the transformation of Bon from high drive, tomboy to calm, relaxed, confident mother. Gayle and Pat have often said that good dams come from good dams and this is truly the case with Bon as she follows in the footsteps of Abbi and Flyer before her.
Enjoy the pics from today!
p.s. In case you were wondering, Bruce survived the first 218 toenail trims, although not without much cursing. That's ok - the pups can't hear yet :-) Should we tell him how many there are to go over the next 8 weeks? Probably not. I think he's already done the math so why rub it in.
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