I have made them into baby books.
The time is going by much too fast!
And I am trying to capture the moments.
Doesn't Sugar look like she is saying, “Really, Mom? Another photo?”
Same puppy, a week later. This one is a snuggler!
(In the 1st pic that is dog food, not a piece of poopy, although there is plenty of that around too)
While the blankets and pads get changed out regularly and the boxes are kept clean, a major overhaul is still due to happen now and then.
Today, the bathroom where Suggie’s brood hangs out needed a very deep cleaning. So the shuffle began.
Sug’s babes came to hang out in Honey’s box as the family kept watch to make sure all went politely.
For today it is temporary. I bleached the bathroom, then rinsed with clear water multiple times. The pups that usually live in there needed to be away until the smell was completely dissipated.
Eventually this will be our set up, but not quite yet. The Sugar Babies are only five days old and still need the quiet space she likes them to be in. Honey’s are not big enough to get away if laid on, so need the rail in the box to escape under.
Trying out the pool and newspapers to pee on was a bit optimistic, they can’t waddle over to them to pee yet.
They are getting so large that they are running out of space in the box when their mom joins them.
Everyone is back where they belong and the shuffle went well. Sugar and Honey respectfully greeted each other’s little ones. I can see a happy, co-parenting situation coming along in the not so far future.
I made the doggie moms a special treat, of milk, cottage cheese, pumpkin, and canned puppy food topped with chopped Tums sprinkles.
They need lots of calcium and calories, plus pumpkin for tummy issues after giving birth.
And they love it when I sing to them, so they got an off tune “Happy Birthday” from me.
Although, it is just right for the newborns.
Speaking of newborns, I am glad I started this sketches of the red pups when they were tiny. Studying their spots to paint them helped me to learn which was which.
And the new families they will go to, don’t see them at this age. So maybe they would like to have watercolor sketches of the first few days.
There are no amount of paintings that will help me with Sugar’s black babes, though! Oh my. They are very similar.
As everyone grows, it gets easier. Sugar’s pups seem to have different coat textures, even if they are the same jet black, I’ll know how to tell them apart from that, and a couple white spots. The problem with the red pups, was that the spots were too similar.
Then I learned that some have freckled bellies, one has angel wings, another a T, one a butterfly. A couple are blobbity splotches that still throw me off a little. I have to get my diagrams out when I weigh them. But once they start showing some personality, that will change.
Look at what we have!
Sugar’s pups are 6 days early, Honey’s were 1 day late. My window of time in between shrank away to, well, not enough.
I had planned on moving Honey into a wading pool and turning the whelping box over to the newcomers. But after the tragedy of losing a pup, and the fact that they weren’t even a week old yet, I knew they still needed that box with its safety rail.
But, she seemed fine with the pool.
And look, it just fits, barely, in our bathroom. This way, we can keep the two moms separate until the puppies are older and ready to be best friends.
Then, they all go out to a nursery set up in the garage at night and weather permitting, in the breezeway with the door to the garden open during the day.
But for now, I have a houseful, and I am going to enjoy it while it lasts, they will be gone way too soon. 8 weeks will fly by.
Which is why I was shocked to find one dear baby dead today. It was a horrid shock, and I have been teary all day. But, it is also very common. I think her mama laid on her, and she was suffocated. Honey has been plopping down right on them a lot, their cries for help bring me running to do a head count and find the missing pup under her mother.
I’d had three of those wake up calls during the night. But did not hear this one cry out, and I was near the box when it must have happened. I am trying not to feel guilty, because I know how easily that can happen, and how often.
But I do.
It has been such a hard day. It helps to think that now, Ryan has a puppy to take care of. He was always right there with me, helping with the pups and keeping me company as we laughed about how cute and silly they were.
Last night, I fried up green tomatoes and cooked up a pot of green beans from the garden. Along with homemade honey flaxseed bread and sliced heirloom tomatoes, it was an ideal, end of summer meal. There won’t be a lot more of those tomatoes from the garden, so I invited the family over to share.
And they were happy to visit, because it was their first time to meet the teeny pups.
Honey’s babies got lots of attention from my babies. We watched Mulan on Disney Plus and every puppy got snuggles in shifts throughout the whole movie.
With nine little ones, I am going to need my helpers to get these puppies their fill of cuddle time. Because lots of cuddles makes for secure, confident dogs who know people love them.
Until they are bigger and I know them better, I needed a way to differentiate them, so I decide to “doodle” the doodles.
I need to keep track of weights, and thought a little log book for each guy would be a good idea. They can be gift books for the new owners, with newborn portraits, weight charts, and other tidbits I add.
Now, that all sounds good, let’s hope it isn’t a typical, new mother’s plan to fill baby books up that starts great and ends up empty...