Molly is ravenous. She has even started coming into the bedroom at 4:30 am trying to recruit someone to take her out in the kitchen for breakfast. She gets three meals a day--double portion of Honest Kitchen for breakfast and three cups of kibble for lunch and dinner. In between she gets some snacks from time to time. She appears to retaining her weight and the only sign of the very large amount of food she is processing is occasional gas.
Today's weigh-in was a bit spotty--some of the puppies continued their monotonic growth, Marcie lost slightly, and the two smallest gained but not at the same rate as the last few days. This isn't really unusual--sometimes the time of day is important, as some puppies may have not had a full breakfast yet. They will probably catch up tomorrow.
I haven't blogged for a few days. This is a pretty boring time in a new litter. Mom is pretty much completely in charge and our only duties are to do the morning weigh-in and change the pads in the box. We have started putting down a triple layer of newspapers, covered by a 4'x4' piece of indoor/outdoor carpet and a crate mat. We are using the newsprint because in a day or so the puppies can be expected to start creeping off the crate mat onto the bare carpet to pee. After that milestone we will have to start changing the box more often, usually twice a day.
The only minor problem at this point is that the puppy poop is sort of runny and rather smelly. It is possible that they have coccidiosis or round worms. Even though they haven't been out of the bathroom yet, they can get these from mother. Coccidia are intestinal parasites that often infect young puppies, who can get it from the mother. The parasite is carried by birds and we do have a lot of birdlife on our property. So it isn't a surprise that we often have bouts of cocciodosis with new litters. Usually it shows up a bit later. So I colleced a specimen and will be taking it to Bishop Ranch for evaluation later today.
The fecal sample was tested and no coccidia or round worm traces were found. However, the sample was small and Dr. Cain thought the result not definitive so she prescribed a one-dose coccidia treatment just to be on the safe side. So this morning Louise drove down to Bishop Ranch and picked up the medicine. Dr. Cain prescribed a single dose of Marquis paste, a drug that is used for treating coccidia in dogs. Each puppy had his or her own little syringe with a premeasured 1 ml of the paste. When we did the morning weigh-in we gave each pup a dose and then into the transfer box, whichis getting fuller and fuller.
The eyes are starting to open today and the pups are up on their legs, wobbling around the box. Soon we will have to put in a barrier to keep them from leaving the box, probably this afternoon.