We spent a couple sleepless nights waiting for Wonder to have her puppies. Her due date was June 6th, but she wasn't quite ready yet! Saturday morning came around, all the signs were there, but no contractions. Just to be on the safe side, we made the 1/2 hour trip to our veterinarian, LaVale Vet, for her to be examined. Dr. Griffith said, yes, one is about ready to be born and after a few minutes and a little help from Dr. Griffith, the first puppy was born, a black male! She immediately began to clean the puppy and start her motherly duties. From 10 am to 5 pm, Wonder had 8 puppies! We were all pretty tired, and happy to get home and get Wonder and puppies settled in to their box. The puppies weighed between 10 oz - 16 oz at birth. There are 6 females and 2 males-1 Black Male (reserved) 3 Black Females (1 reserved) 1 Yellow Male 3 Yellow Females (1 reserved) The puppies are all nursing well, and gaining weight. Their eyes and ears will stayed closed until they are about 10-14 days old. Right now they find mom by their sense of smell. We put collars on the pups so we can easily identify each one when we weigh them. Updates & pictures are also posted on our Facebook page "Whispering Pines Labradors WV".
2014 WEEK 1The first week has flown by! Wonder is an excellent mother. She is in with the puppies almost constantly, feeding them, keeping them clean and cleaning up after them. Wonder's stomach was upset most of the week, but she is much better now. We've been feeding her just chicken and rice all week which is easier on her stomach. All the puppies are gaining weight - some have doubled their birth weight, and a few have tripled! Usually it may take about 10 days to double their weight so we are really pleased with how healthy they are. The black male (blue collar) is the heavyweight at 2 lbs, 1 oz followed closely by the black female with purple collar. We've already had to loosen their collars (easy to do since they are velcro). The pups mostly eat, sleep and poop right now, but are starting to try pushing up with their legs. And they know when momma is around by their sense of smell and crawl right over to her. The pups all had their toenails trimmed since they are so sharp they can easily scratch Wonder. We use a magnifying glass because their nails are so tiny! We started the Early Neurological Stimulation exercises on Day 3 which will continue until Day 16. See the 2010 Puppy Blog, 2nd video (Litter News 2010) for more info & a demo about these exercises.
2014 WEEK 2Wow, what a difference a week makes! The puppies are very healthy and gaining weight every day. All the pups are over 3 lbs. now except one, and she's almost there too. The puppies opened their eyes around 10-12 days old and can now see where they're going! Which is good because they're up on all four legs, wobbly-walking around their box. 2 puppies were very adventuresome and climbed out of the box looking for Wonder. We were right there watching them and making sure they were safe. So we took the front horizontal railing down and put a short vertical piece in the doorway. Wonder can get IN, but pups can't get OUT. By next week, we will replace the whelping box with a larger exercise pen so the puppies have more room. They are such sweethearts and give us much joy. It's a great feeling to have a little puppy fall asleep in your arms. More photos and videos are available on our Facebook page - Whispering Pines Labradors WV.
2014 WEEK 3This is such a cute time for the puppies! They are walking much better now and learning they can bark and play. They can be quite noisy when they want to be fed! They have been out in the living room with Wonder and exploring a little. We changed the whelping box out for a 4'x8' x-pen so they have double the room to play now. There is a crate inside the pen, so they get used to going in and out and are comfortable in the crate. Some of the pups went right inside the crate with no hesitation and fell right asleep! Wonder still feeds them about every 3 hours, but she will wean them soon because they're teeth are starting to come in. They are all gaining weight steadily and almost all the puppies weigh over 4 lbs now. Wonder is still doing most of the work, so we are enjoying playing with the puppies and watching them grow.
2014 WEEK 4The puppies have teeth now and know how to bite! So we started weaning them onto a soupy mash of pureed puppy food, puppy milk replacer and water. They didn't hesitate, just gobbled it right up. They LOVE it, but make quite a mess too! We will make the mash thicker every day until they are eating solid food around 5 weeks old. All the toenails were clipped again too. They had lots of visitors over 4th of July weekend and lots of playtime and socialization in the living room. They are learning to play and wrestle with each other now, and bite each other's ears and tails - OUCH! They sure can holler when someone's got their ear. They have been playing in the living room with their toys - stuffed animals, some rope toys and balls. At this age, we supervise them with all their toys. New puppy owners, here are some ESSENTIAL PUPPY ITEMS to look for: tip-proof stainless steel water and food bowls, a crate and blanket, correct collar and leash for their size, toys (rubber kong-type toys, ropes, stuffed toys with supervision - please no rawhide or "greenies" - they are indigestable and can cause intestinal problems), gates for "off-limits" areas.
2013 WEEK 5We had lots of visitors this week so the puppies had plenty of playtime and socialization. We enjoyed meeting some new puppy families and everyone had fun playing with the puppies. They are definitely more active now and have fun running around the living room with their toys, hiding under tables and behind the couch. It's hard to believe, but the puppies weigh about 6 lbs each now! We feed the puppies 3 times per day, and recommend new puppy owners stay on the same schedule if possible. They are eating a mixture of dry Large Breed puppy kibble and some soaked in a little water first. We feed only THE BEST dog food - Life's Abundance - available at (MotherNaturesPetShop). They have a Large-Breed puppy chow as well as regular Adult and Small-Breed formulations. Wonder only lets them nurse for a minute or two now, and she is teaching them not to bite by pushing them away and showing her teeth. The puppies had their first dose of worming medicine (a normal procedure) and will have another dose in 2 weeks. Next week, adventures in the Great Outdoors! We were so busy this week we didn't take any videos. Please visit our Facebook page for the most up-to-date photos and additional videos (Whispering Pines Labradors WV).
2014 WEEK 6The weather was beautiful here in West Virginia this week, so the puppies went outside for the first time in their very own puppy yard. They have a baby pool, a big crate and a Playschool barn to play in and lots of room to run! They were funny to watch as they stepped in the grass for the first time! Some like to explore more than others, but all had fun playing. We give them different surfaces and toys to run on and play with since they are learning so much at this age. This helps them be more adaptable and well-adjusted later in life. We've been shooting a cap gun when they eat, and running the vacuum cleaner to de-sensitize them to loud noises. Wonder's role has changed from chief food source and clean up, to teacher and playmate. She nurses them occasionally, but disciplines them when they get too rough on her. Only 2 pups available from this litter - 2 black females. Please call or email for current availability.
2014 WEEK 7Time has certainly flown by with these puppies! They will be ready for their new homes next Saturday, August 2nd. They have been playing outside in their puppy yard at least twice a day. On July 26th they took a trip to Lavale Veterinarian Hospital, Lavale, Maryland for an exam and first set of shots. Dr. McFawn and all the staff enjoyed meeting the puppies and Dr. McFawn gave them all a clean bill of health. They were weighed, had their eyes, ears and heart checked, had their shots and their 3rd dose of worming medicine. After that adventure, they came home, had their toenails clipped again, and played outside - whew! What a day! On July 27th they played out in the big yard with Wonder for a little while but it was hot, so we didn't let them chase her around too long. The puppies will still try to nurse from Wonder, but she disciplines them by barking at them, and may even roll them on their backs to tell them NO! This is mom's way of weaning them and a natural part of getting ready to go to their new families. As much as we would love to keep every one of them, we know they will need more attention than we can give them. They will be happy to get individual attention in their new homes with all the new adventures that are in store for them.
2014 WEEK 8This week the puppies played out in the big yard with Wonder and had their first swim in the big pond with her too. Their natural instincts certainly showed as they took to the water and started swimming with Momma immediately. Too cute! The puppies started going to their new homes on August 2nd. We enjoyed meeting all the wonderful families and getting the puppies off to their new homes. First reports are the pups are adapting easily to their new homes. We love seeing photos of the puppies with their new families, so please remember to send some! There are still 2 pups to be picked up later this week, so we still have a few more days to spend with them. Not total puppy withdrawal yet
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