Monroeblog - The Monroe-Eddie Puppies

Whelped August 2, 2009.

Monroe || Eddie || Weights

The breeding was done by artificial insemination with the assistance of Dr. Janice Cain, DVM. [AI was necessary because Monroe would have nothing to do with Eddie.] Ultrasound at week 5 showed many puppies--Dr. Cain estimates 12-14. Because of the large number of puppies, we will have a late-term x-ray on Tuesday, July 28.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

We returned from our 17-day cruise in French Polynesia yesterday afternoon. For the last week I have been in regular communication by text with Scott Sorenson, our dog/house sitter, and knew that Monroe was beginning to show some discomfort at night. She continued this pattern and woke me at about 3 am this morning with some heavy breathing. We filled the whelping box with all of the blankets from her crate, plus a few more, and she has been spending most of her time there. As you can see, she has scratched all of the bedding up into a heap, which is normal behavior.

The x-ray on Tuesday showed at least 8 puppies but Dr. Cain was not able to give us a hard count. She has sent the plate to the consulting radiologist but I have not heard back from her yet. I just emailed her to ask for a report. I expect Monroe to whelp sometime this weekend and it will help to know sort of what to expect toward the end. Although Monroe has been bred once before, this will be her first time to experience labor. In her first breeding she just had one puppy and never went into labor, so we had to deliver the puppy by C-section (see http://camelotrr.com/monroe1/index.html). It took a few days for Monroe to get the idea of motherhood, but once she figured out what it was all about, she turned into the best mother dog we have ever had, and has since acted as step-mother for other puppies in our household.

Sunday, August 2, 2009 11:10 AM

The puppies were born between 3:20 pm and 9:37 pm. There were nine puppies, including one stillborn male. The eight surviving puppies included six ridgeless (3 females and 3 males) and two puppies with pet-quality ridges (one female and one male). The puppies have been given temporary names in honor of our recent cruise to the South Pacific:
  • Tonga - ridged male
  • Tahiti - ridgeless female
  • Cook - ridgeless male
  • Tuamotu - ridgeless male
  • Fiji - ridgeless female
  • Marquesa - ridged female
  • Solomon - ridgeless male
  • Samoa - ridgeless female
  • For a blow-by-blow description of whelping day, click here.

    Monday, August 3, 2009

    I made a bed by the whelping box and slept there last night. I only had to get up a few times to rescue a puppy who had wandered away from mom. The pups are very strong and are already scooting around the box a lot. I put the protective rails in the whelping box this morning, which makes it easier for them to scoot around behind Monroe's back so the rescues will be less necessary from now on. Following are a couple of pictures of the box and the puppy pile taken this afternoon:

    One discovery in today's weighings is that one of the ridgeless males was erronously reported on whelping day to be a ridgeless female. (It was the next-to-last puppy, born at 8:15 pm).

    Tuesday, August 4, 2009

    Things have settled into the comfortable period when the newborn puppies get strong and mobile enough to look out for themselves and the new mom becomes super-motherly and constantly looks out for the puppies. For the next three weeks the puppies will require very little care, except for feeding Monroe twice a day, changing the bedding once or twice a day, weighing the puppies, and holding each of them for awhile to begin their human socialization. Today I finally sorted out all of the puppies so I can tell which is which when I record their weights. They are gaining weight at the rate of about 5% per day. At birth the average weight was about one pound and by next Sunday when they are one week old I expect them to average about 2 pounds.

    Wednesday, August 5, 2009

    Things continue to be smooth. Monroe's milk is fully down now and weight gain is taking off. The average gain since yesterday was about 10% with the smallest (Tahiti) now at one pound. This afternoon the four with rear dew claws are going to the vet to have them removed. Some years back I made the decision to leave front dew claws because I have had no indication that there is any good reason to remove them. On the other hand, I do continue to remove rear dew claws because I think there is a reasonable tearing hazard, since dogs use their rear legs to push off, often in brush. Nevertheless, Tonga, Tuamotu, Marquesa and Solomon will be making the 30-minute drive to Bishop Ranch Veterinary Clinic in about an hour.

    Thursday, August 6, 2009

    We didn't get to keep our appointment with Dr. Cain for rear dew claw removal yesterday because my (brand new!) Highlander Hybrid would not start. Seems to have forgotten its "smart key." I had it towed to the local Toyota service center and will pick it up today. So the dew claw appointment is Friday afternoon. The pups continue to gain weight--up 9% over yesterday. There is beginning to be a very noticeable spread in weight now with Cook being almost twice the size of petite little Tahiti.

    Friday, August 7, 2009

    Close call today. I had to drive my new Highlander hybrid back to the service center because it is still having trouble starting. I left it at the service center, picked up a rental car, and drove back home. I went in to check on the puppies and heard one screaming its head off. I picked up the only one that was crawling around and cuddled it but the screaming continued--from the direction of the whelping box. I scanned all the other puppies and they were all sound asleep. Then I noticed that there were only six, besides the one I was holding. Then I saw that there was a big puppy-sized lump INSIDE the dog pad that was in the box. It turned out that the pad we put in this morning had a hole in one corner and the puppy (Marquesa) had crawled in and then scooted all the way forward to the other end of the pad. But she couldn't go any further and couldn't bak up (this is why lobster pots work). I could not dislodge her so I ran and got the scissors and carefully cut the dog pad open (see picture below):

    So now I am off to see Dr. Cain with the four pups with rear dew claws and little Tahiti, whose belly button doesn't look right. I will report later.

    Saturday, August 8, 2009

    The visit to Dr. Cain was normal and the four puppies who were born with RDC are now RDC-free. Often the rear dew claws are not attached firmly. However, the ones we tend to get are very well articulated and are more difficult for the vet to remove than the normal front leg dew claws. Because a few people have written to ask me about rear dew claws, I will say what I have observed. I think that rear dew claws are a simple dominant mode of inheritance, but with a penetrance of only about 50%. In other words, for a puppy to be born with rear dew claws, one of the parents must have had them, but only about half of the puppies of a dog who had rear dew claws will have them. Ours come from Chip (Kimani's Blue Chip Image), who had them. He was bred to four different Camelot bitches about 8-10 years ago and we got rear dew claws in every litter. In total, about half of the puppies in the four litters were born with RDC. I have bred three Chip sons multiple times. Hadley (Camelot's Galahad of Avalon) had RDC and he has produced them in every one of his eight litters. Again, about half of Hadley's sons and daughters had RDC. Mojave (Camelot's Code Red) and Ruger (Camelot's Promise to Bakari) did not have RDC and they have not produced them (22 litters for Mojave, 17 litters for Ruger). Monroe (the dam of this litter) had RDC and, according to prediction, about half the puppies got them.

    In addition to the four RDC-puppies, I also took little Tahiti to be checked out by Dr. Cain. Tahiti's umbilical cord was removed prematurely by an over-enthusiastic mom and an "outer umbilical herina" resulted. Although it hasn't seemed to bother Tahiti, who has a good appetite and gets around as well as the other puppies, I was concerned that it might become infected (see following photo):

    Dr. Cain debrided the opening, removed a little necrotic tissue, and cleaned it well. She found that the injury is well walled off and that is is showing signs of healing "from the inside out." She did not think that any antibiotic treatment is necessary and I will just monitor the wound to be sure it continues to heal normally.

    Weight gain continues and two of the boys hit two pounds today. Following is a photo of the eight puppies in the cardboard box where I put them after I weigh each one every afternoon. They really like being confined in this little space and immediately quiet down and go to sleep when I begin to load the box one-by-one.

    Sunday, August 9, 2009 4:30 PM

    The puppies are one week old and the average weight is 28 ounces. This isn't quite the doubling I predicted but not too far off. They got their nails done for the first time this afternoon. Personalities are beginning to emerge. Two are very willful -- Tonga and Samoa. Therefore, they are getting more than their share of holding, to get them used to being handled. On the other end of the spectrum are a couple who seem to really enjoy being held and sort of melt into our arms -- Cook, Tahiti and Tuamotu. The other three are in between -- they struggle a bit at first but settle down in about 30 seconds. All of them did better with the first nail trim than I expected, although it was a challenge with Tonga to get him to hold his paws in one place long enough for Cheri to clip the nails. In this first trim we only do the front feet -- the ones they use to kneed mom's boobs when nursing. Nest week we will trim the back nails as well.

    Monday, August 10, 2009

    Nothing much new to report. Both of the cotton bath mats I have been using as pads for the whelping box were wet so I put in a nice cotton bath mat from our front bathroom. Unfortunately, Monroe, in her zeal to scratch it up into a heap, wrecked it by pulling a bunch of the loops out. So now we have a permanent whelping box mat and are short one bath mat. Average weight gain since yesterday was 5.7% and there are now three two-pounders, as Samoa hit 32 ounces today.

    Tuesday, August 11, 2009

    I had to go to work at campus today (boo-hoo) so I weighed the pups fairly early. Nevertheless, weight gain was still 6% over yesterday and the average weight is now almost exactly 2 pounds. Little Tahiti is continuing to prosper and actually showed a greater-than-expected gain. I often find her on a nipple when all of the other puppies are sleeping, so I think she has decided it is time to catch up. In every litter one puppy emerges to capture my heart and in this one it is Tahiti. On our recent eclipse cruise in Polynesia we visited Tahiti, which is actually two volcanos that are connected by a narrow isthmus. The larger island is called Tahiti Nui (meaing roughly "big Tahiti") and the smaller one is called Tahiti Iti (meaning roughly "little Tahiti"). We spent one night in a charming lodge on Tahiti Iti and it was one of the highlights of our vacation. In the picture below, Tahiti is the 2nd puppy from the right.

    Thursday, August 13, 2009

    Pups are starting to be pretty mobile now--and demanding. The following little video shows the normal sort of uproar when they try to get mom to lay over on her side and expose the milk bar (and she isn't really ready yet).

    video

    Friday, August 14, 2009

    Things are pretty calm now. We have an oil heater in the whelping room to keep it toasty warm at night and the pups are sleeping pretty much all night, except when Monroe climbs in to nurse them. I turn the heater off during the day. There really isn't much to do now except change their pad daily. They are continuing to gain weight at about 5-6% per day. Amazing what mom's milk and DNA can do! Here is a picture that shows the normal state of affairs:

    Little Tahiti's umbilical wound has almost completely healed now and she is doing great with her nursing and growing like a weed.

    Saturday, August 15, 2009

    Pups are contuing to thrive. They had some visitors today--three delightful children who gave them lots of holding and cuddling (see following photo):

    This is the last blog entry until Tuesday, as I am headed out early tomorrow for a two-day trip to Washington, DC, for the American Chemical Society National Meeting. I have a dinner party Sunday night, a board meeting Monday morning, and a reception Monday afternoon. Then I will be on the 7 pm flight back to California.

    Tuesday, August 18, 2009

    As I wrote Saturday, I had a quick trip to Washington and returned late last night. The pups grew noticeably during my absence and their eyes are starting to open. They are all up on their feet and lurching around from time to time. There was a little epidemic of "cheese poop" the last couple of days. This sort of diarrhea often happens and then resovles itself. Today things look pretty normal again. Tahiti's wound has healed completely now and she is continuing to prosper.

    Here is a little video that shows one of the pups on the first real "seeing day."

    video

    Thursday, August 20, 2009

    The average weight is now three pounds (actually just a tad less) and the occasional cheese poop is continuing. Monroe is eating a huge amount of food--about three times what our other adults eat at each meal. Even with all this food, she is starting to look a little ribby. Therefore, I am going to give her a little assist today by mixing up some of the goat's milk supplement that we use to start the pups on pan food and I will give a little afternoon feeding to the four smallest pups. We will probably start a little pan feeding Sunday---by then I think they will be up on their feet enough to lap from a pan.

    Friday, August 21, 2009

    I made up a batch of the goat's milk formula. For those who are following this blog and haven't seen the recipe before, here it is:

    Puppy Milk

    mix:

  • 1 tablespoon Karo syrup
  • 2 tablespoons mayonaise
  • 1 egg yolk
  • stir in

  • 8 oz plain yogurt
  • 1 qt of goat's milk (in lieu of goats milk, use 1 can (about 12 oz) evaporated milk and 8 oz water)
  • Over the last 18 hours I gave Tahiti, Tuamotu and Marquesa each about 4-5 ounces of the formula with a baby bottle. They love it, especially Tuamotu. Today's weight chart shows the predictable effect. I'll continue occasional supplements for the next few days. Here is a little 3-minute video of Tuamotu, who is most enthusiastic with the bottle.

    video

    Saturday, August 22, 2009

    The puppies had several visitors today, and they got their nails done. Now that they are up and running around the box, and can see, they are beginning to seem more like puppies than gophers or moles. Mocha is here for a sleepover, since her custodial parents have an activity tomorrow. She is fascinated with the puppies and adores Monroe, who acted as her surrogate mom for a couple of weeks in July when she first came here from Portland. Monroe is fine with Mocha leaning into the box to sniff the puppies, but she drew a line when Mocha tried to climb in with them.

    Sunday, August 23, 2009

    We are getting close to weaning time. The pups are three weeks old today and I am having trouble getting enough food into Monroe to keep up with the necessary milk production to support eight ravenous puppies. The total daily weight gain for the pack is now about 1 1/4 pounds! I had Monroe up to almost 4 cups of prepared Honest Kitchen FORCE in the morning and four complete chicken back/neck pieces in the evening meal. Yesterday she had gas so bad that it was hard to be in the same room with her. So today I backed her down to only twice what she would normally eat. That means the milk supply is going to start coming from her own body fat, so I will probably start feeding the pups once a day from a pan on Monday or Tuesday. I know from Monroe's first litter (Darwin) that she is a mother who will keep on nursing until the pups are 6-7 weeks old, even if they are getting most of their nourishment from pan food. At the beginning I will feed them the goat's milk formula with Gerber's rice cereal mixed in. This isn't real different from mom's milk, except for the fibre in the rice cereal, so she will continue to clean up.

    Monday, August 24, 2009

    The big event today was first fiber! I warmed up 1 1/2 cups of the goats' milk formula and stirred in enough baby rice cereal (I bought it at Whole Foods and it was typically WF-PC; no genetically modified rice!). I served the critters their first meal from a pan and they did a pretty decent job of putting it away without too much mess. It always amazes me that the little tykes know exactly what to do when they are put in front of a bowl of food for the first time! In the video you will also see my 13-year old granddaughter, Emily Jackson, who arrived this afternoon from her home on Orcas Island to spend her last week of summer visiting grandparents.

    video

    Tuesday, August 25, 2009

    This morning after breakfast, I had Camille, Conner and Emily help me weigh the puppies (see Camille and Conner in the box in the picture below). I am a little worried about Tahiti, whose weight has levelled off the last few days. I will give her a bottle this morning before I head off with the grandkids to the California Academy of Science. When we get home this afternoon I will feed another pan meal and be sure Tahiti gets a separate bowl.

    Wednesday, August 26, 2009

    The pups had their second pan meal Tuesday afternoon and they are becoming very enthusiastic about this mode of eating. We fed Tahiti separately to be sure she got her share. This morning before breakfast, I gave Tahiti a full four-ounce bottle of the goat's milk formula with a bottle. She has had a hard time learning to use the bottle but today she finally got it. Today's weighings showed a healthy weight gain across the board, with an especially gratifying increase by Tahiti. In fact, her apparent 10% gain in a single day is no doubt more apparent than real, since she probably still had a lot of the water from her 6:30 am bottle still on board when I weighed her at 10. Emily and I are going to take a drive over to Muir Woods this morning and then visit Chinatown in San Francisco. When we get back this afternoon we will give the wild bunch another goat's milk-rice cereal meal.

    Thursday, August 27, 2009 4:40 PM

    The little critters have become very agile--they can now leap on each other, wrestle, and carry the little puppy toys around in their mouths. It is amazing to me that just over a week ago they were just lurching around on four feet for the first time! They had a big meal of goat's milk formula with rice cereal yesterday afternoon. I will give them two meals today -- one about 10:30 and the other about 4:30. Monroe is starting to look a little like a Biafra-dog -- ribs showing. She is eating four times as much as the other adults now, but that still isn't enough to make all the milk that this crew wants. The average weight gain per day is still running 5-6% but as the puppies continue to get larger, 5% amounts to lots more than it did two weeks ago. The average weight this morning is now over four pounds per puppy and even little Tahiti is over three pounds now. The day of extra feeding I gave her on Tuesday-Wednesday seemed to really help and she is back on a normal growth line, and acting frisky. The following little video was taken just after their big meal in the morning.

    video

    Thursday, August 27, 2009

    When Emily and I got back from campus this afternoon we made stew for tonight's dinner and then whipped up a bunch of cereal for the puppies. Here is a little video so you can see that their eating manners have improved since Monday.

    video

    Friday, August 28, 2009

    Emily and I went to Chinatown this morning for sightseeing and lunch at a nice dim sum place on Jackson Street. I fed the pups cereal in the morning about 9:30 and again at 2:30 when we got home. They are at a point where I have to scale back how much I give them as they are not eating all I have been preparing. I made their little pen in our master bathroom and you can see their new digs in the following photos. This will be home for the next week and then they will move out to a kennel run.

    Sunday, August 30, 2009

    I am still feeding the puppies pan food two times a day and today I started in the morning adding some ground-up Canadae grain-free kibble. I used two cups of the goats milk, one cup of ground kibble, and enough rice cereal to make it like oatmeal. They polished is off pretty smartly. This afternoon we have a puppy open house and a few of the prospective families will be visiting. the following photo is Cheri taking a nap with Tahiti on her chest.

    Here is a picture of Ann James, who will be mom to Marquesa, visiting the pups Sunday afternoon.

    Tuesday, September 1, 2009

    For the last couple of days I have been introducing kibble into the diet. I am using Canadae grain-free and I grind it up to a powder with a Waring blender. At the start I used 1/2 cup of kibble with 1 pint of the goat's milk formula, and enough Gerber's rice cereal to make the consistency I want. Over the next few feedings I gradually increased the amount of kibble, by 1/2 cup each feeding, while reducing the rice cereal. Today they will get no rice cereal--1 pint of goat's milk formula with two cups of the ground kibble. Tomorrow I will begin to water down the goat's milk formula so that by the weekend they will be getting kibble with warm water. When the diet becomes kibble, the amount and nature of the poop changes. I now change the papers in the play pen several times a day and put the soiled ones in a garbage bag that I keep in the privacy yard outside the bathroom door. Our routine is that on first rising I get up and feed the adult dogs their Honest Kitchen breakfast. Then I go to the puppy room and move the pups from their pen into the whelping box while I clean their pen and put down new papers and fresh water. While I am doing that, Monroe generally gets in the whelping box and lets them nurse--but only sitting down. She is pretty much done with lying down with the milk bar fully exposed and letting eight ruffians, all with sharp teeth, chew and pull on her nipples! However, they seem to get enough milk to be satisfied until I give the first pan meal around 11 am. Here is a photo of Monroe doing her seated nursing yesterday:

    The kibble diet has a very pronounced effect on weight gain--they are back to 5-6% per day increase, but now the average weight is more than five pounds. That means that the litter weight is now more than 40 pounds, so a 5% gain per day means that the group puts on a total of more than 2 pounds per day! Here are a couple of pictures of the play pen that I snapped this morning after I cleaned up.

    Wednesday, September 2, 2009

    Our routine continues--Monroe gives them a little nursing first thing in the morning, then I feed kibble-milk at about 10:30 and again at about 4:30, and she nurses them a little before bedtime. I put the puppies in their whelping box while I clean up the pen and put down new newspapers. My friend Barb Bridwell has donated a large stack of her Wall Street Journals and this is a vastly superior newspaper for the puppy pen. The pages are larger, there are more pages per section, and the pups will grow up with financial acumen. They have outgrown the little Salter kitchen scale and I had to move them to my large postage scale. This one weighs in pounds, with 1/4 pound resolution, so I revised my weight chart this morning and coverted all of the previous weights to pounds. They are now averaging about 5 1/2 pounds, with three at 6 pounds. Tahiti is now four pounds and Tuamoto, the smallest boy, is at 5 pounds. The following photos were taken this morning in the whelping box while I was doing my weights and changing the papers in the pen.

    Thursday, September 3, 2009

    The pups spent some time in the backyard this morning and even had their lunch there while Mildred Cho and Mark Shattuck were visiting. Mildred and Mark are going to provide a home for one of the girls and they came by on their way to Hetch Hetchy reservoir for a weekend vacation.

    After Mildred and Mark left I cleaned the kennel and moved the pups to their new home, where they will live until they depart for their real homes. They are in an indoor 5 x 8 foot room with a chain-link door to the central kennel room where I prepare food, give baths, etc. Their indoor room has a dog door with a heavy rubber flap to keep out the elements. For the first week or so I will have the flap tied up so the dog door is just open. It is warm weather so the door doesn't really need to be closed yet. When they get used to going in and out of the dog door, I will let it down and they will learn to push on the rubber flap to go through. Following is a photo of their first exit experience. As you can see, one of the boys got out on the porch and just flattened--I guess he doesn't like heights (like me).

    Susan and Rudolf Mueller came about 5:30. They are from Irvine and will be taking one of the ridgeless girls on October 2. They played with the puppies and then we had dinner outside on our patio (grilled steaks) while the puppies sacked out on a cozy bed beside out dinner table.

    Friday, September 4, 2009

    I went out to feed the pups this morning about 7 am and found that there was not a single poop inside their sleeping room! I was very proud that every one of the eight puppies had already gone outside to the enclosed kennel run and done their business. This bodes well for house training.

    Saturday, September 5, 2009

    The puppies have turned into little dogs in just the last few days. They had lots of visitors yesterday and today and will have more tomorrow. They have experienced playing in the backyard and have learned the way from their little kennel room, out the dog door, through the adjacent kennel and over to the back door. When they get tired of playing, they just head back for the kennel and put themselves to bed. They are on three meals a day now and by Monday they will be eating Honest Kitchen FORCE in the morning (now it is 60% ground Canadae and 40% FORCE), ground Canadae grain-free kibble at lunch, and ground chicken backs and necks at night. They are eating a lot but their weight growth doesn't show it, mainly because they are now getting a lot of exercise.

    Monday, September 7, 2009

    Yesterday was a very big day for the pups. They had LOTS of visitors. In the picture below are some members of the Joe family. Daisy Joe was one of my Berkeley Ph.D. students in the mid-90s. She is married to Justin Dubois, who is a Stanford chemistry professor. Daisy came for a visit and brought her daughter Soliel, her parents, her brother, sister, their spouses, and five nephews and neices. Also, my brother-in-law and sister-in-law were weekend house guests and last night one of Cheri's long-time girl friends came over for dinner and a movie. So the pups got lots of socialization, which is good for them! They have all become super-affectionate and all any person needs to do to get some puppy love is sit on the ground. Immediately the visitor will be the base of a puppy pile. As sometimes happens at this age, I have upped their food a little too much and most of them have soft stools the last 12 hours. Last night's dinner was almost pure raw chicken. I ground up three full backs, with necks attached, and they wolfed it down (pun intended). That is about 3 pounds of chicken--about 6 ounces per puppy! I will back off on the quantity today and let their digestive systems get in sync with the new food. They can handle a little hiatus. Take a look at the weight gain chart. The average is now over 7 pounds per puppy and two have reached 8 pounds.

    Wednesday, September 9, 2009

    I've been distracted the last two days with a computer problem. My new MacBook Pro would ot start! Something had gone wrong with the boot sector and a lot of file permissions were screwed up. I tried all my Mac magic and in the end had to trek over to San Francisco to the Apple Bar to visit the Genius Bar. My genius turned out to be a capable young man with bright yellow hair with green polka dots, plus a little hardware in his ears. He got my machine up and running again in less than 30 minutes and I am back in business. On the doggy front, the pups are growing like weeds and have become very adventurous. Sometimes to their detriment. Last night at 2 am I had to get up and go to the kennel because a puppy was screaming its lungs out. Turned out to be Tahiti, who had crawled into the crack between the side of the crate and the wall. She couldn't figure out how to back out and she was letting the world (literally) know that she was in a pickle. I rescued her, cuddled her for five minutes, and retired to my own crate for the rest of the night.

    Monday we had more visitors--the Kohagura family (they will be taking Cook and Solomon to live on their eight-acre place in the Napa Valley) and the James family from San Jose (they will be Marquesa's new family). Some of the photos of the backyard party are shown below.

    Sunday, September 13, 2009

    I have been pretty busy with a lot of stuff the last few days, so there haven't been any blog entries. The pups are little dogs now and spend a lot of time in the greater back yard. They have a sleeping bed on the patio by the back door and they hang out there part of the time. The adult dogs can go out through the hallway dog door (which the puppies have not learned about--yet) and visit the puppies. Monroe and Dawn are the only two adults who really have any patience with the puppy pack. Monroe spends a lot of time with them now. Nursing is done and although the pups always swarm to her and try to nurse, they soon learn that the faucets are dry. So they can just enjoy being mothered without the compulsion to nurse. They are being fed three times a day. I ground up chicken backs and gave that with their kibble at night for a few days, but I have continued to have runny poops so I have backed off and are only giving Canadae kibble, except for breakfast, when I blend in about 50% Honest Kitchen FORCE. The largest puppy is Cook and he weighed in tonight at 11 pounds. Tahiti is still the smallest at 6 3/4 pounds. The pups had more visitors this weekend and now they are cuddled back up in their kennel room for the night.

    Monday, September 14, 2009

    It is a bright sunny morning and the pups are in the yard playing with each other and with mom. They can run pretty fast now, even in the high (and wet) grass. I am travelling for the rest of the week (Minneapolis for work) so there won't be another blog until the weekend. Our dog/house-sitter Scott Sorenson will come in every afternoon to give the pups their midday meal and clean their room and kennel while I am gone. Following are a few photos I took this morning. The pups are all placed now and the first ones will go to their new families in just two weeks.

    Monday, September 21, 2009

    It has been a week since my last blog. I had a business trip last week and have been busy catching up here after I got back. The pups are all little dogs now. They weigh an average of about 12 pounds and can run a lot faster than I can walk. Which makes it hard to get out of the kennel after they have eaten! When I am home, as today, the pups have the run of all three kennels and the entire back yard. Monroe and Dawn go out and interact with them but the other three adults pretty much stay away from them. I just finished picking up the kennels and the entire 1/2 acre back yard and I can affirm that 8 puppies and 5 adults make a lot of poop! They had their first vaccination Sunday and their worming medicine this moring. They are eating us out of house and home. They get about 3/4 cups each of Honest Kitchen FORCE, mixed with another cup of water, for breakfast. Then they each get 3/4 cups of Canadae Grain-free ALS at lunch and again at night. The total food intake, per puppy per day, is more than for our adults. Here are some photos I took while I was picking up the yard this afternoon:

    Tuesday, September 22, 2009

    The pups went to Bishop Ranch today for their exam. The pictures below capture the visit. The first few are the techs preparing to weigh, take temperatures and mop up pee spots. Dr. James Pogrel did the exams. While we were waiting for Dr. Pogrel, all the pups curled up on the bench and napped. The Bishop Ranch staff were all impressed with how calm they all were. They curled up in the crate in the back of my car for the ride home and no one got car sick.

    Friday, September 25, 2009

    The first two pups went to their new homes today. This morning I worked at home on one of my reports while Monroe had a last day in the yard with the whole pack. She taught them to climb the steps of the hot tub deck. Ellen Kohagura and her two lovely kids came in the early afternoon and collected Cook and Solomon and they went off to their new home in Napa, living on the 8-acre grounds of Silver Stag Winery.

    Saturday, September 26, 2009

    Fiji went home this morning with Dave & Ashley Moran and their two cute kids. We are now down to just five puppies.

    Sunday, September 27, 2009

    It has been >100 in our yard the last few days and the puppies stay inside most of the time.. Tonight about 6 pm, Tonga came out to play in the yard and got a sting from one of our yellowjacket hornets. Cheri saw him first--looked like a Shar Pei. We gave him two 25-mg Benadryls and he is already better, but very very sleepy.

    Monday, September 28, 2009

    The fourth puppy went to his new home today. Alicia and Peter Kafin and their sons Ben and Toby drove down from their home in Fort Bragg on the Medicono County coastline and picked up Tuamotu. Take a look at Toby -- isn't he a ringer for Tim Lincecum?

    Wednesday, September 30, 2009

    And then there were three. John Tully stopped by today to pick up Tonga. JT is a prosecuter in Fresno and has been visiting the pups since they were a week old.

    Thursday, October 1, 2009

    Tuesday about 6 pm Marquesa got in grandpa Hadley's face and he snapped at her, delivering a puncture wound on her face. Of course, it became infected and within a couple of hours the whole left side of her face had swollen up. I gave her 125 mg of Amoxicillin with her Tuesday evening food and another 125 mg on Wednesday morning and the swelling went away. She is continuing to get the 125 mg two times a day for the next few days. Monroe is having a very good time interacting with the three remaining puppies, Marquesa, Samoa and Tahiti. She spends a lot of time with them, both in their kennel and on the dog bed on the patio outside our family room door. The following photos and video were taken about 6 pm tonight.

    1 October video

    Saturday, October 3, 2009

    The three musketeers, Marquesa, Samoa and Tahiti, have had two days of sisterly bonding since the last boy went home Wednesday afternoon. Yesterday they followed me out to the vegetable garden to see if there were any tomatoes. The garden is rather overgrown this time of year and it is like a forest of tomatoe plants, volunteer flowers, etc. When I went back in the house the three girls stayed out in the garden, which is a 1/10 acre part of our backyard, fenced with a wrought iron fence that the pups can squeeze through but not the adults. After about 20 minutes, I remembered that I wanted something else from the garden and went back out. The three girls were having a great time--dragging around a dead gopher! I don't know if they dispatched it, but if they did, it was their first prey. I grabbed it and heaved it over the fence and then thought "darn, that would have made a great picture for the blog."

    We are now down to just Marquesa. Susan and Rudolf dropped by this morning and headed back to San Diego with Samoa and then at 12:30 we met Mildred Cho and Mark Shattuck in Danville at Bishop Ranch Veterinary Clinic and they took Tahiti back with them to their home in Half Moon Bay. For the next two days it will be just Marquesa and she is her mom's constant shadow.


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