Friday, November 30, 2012

Day 2

Mom and pups are doing great.  The small pups are nursing well and gaining weight.  The pups' umbilical cords have fallen off already and their little tails are starting to wag when they nurse.  Last night, I applied paint dabs on their rumps for identification since they are already outgrowing their hairband collars - stocky Lab necks.  One of the times I checked on them last night, I found all the pups spread out in the pool which means they were a bit too warm, so I dropped the temp in the house a couple of degrees. 

Yoko and 2-day old pups

Puppy pile, Orange girl showing off her paint marking

Pink girl on top

Pink girl again

Green girl on Yoko's foot

Green girl sleeping with her tongue out, a common occurrence with young pups.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Day 1

Mom and pups are doing well.  Most of the pups gained weight and have nice round tummies.  The two smaller pups, including little Pink/White who was the slow starter at birth, did not gain (but maintained their birthweight), so I private nursed them this morning, and actually assisted by helping to express the milk once they started suckling.  We will continue to assist these weaker pups the next few days, and they should do fine if no unseen congenital defects.  Yoko looks great, has a hearty appetite, and a normal body temperature.  She is proving to be a relaxed and attentive mama, but I have had to "rescue" numerous pups that have gotten caught behind her.  The pups are quieting down, which is a sign of healthy content pups.   

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Newborn puppy pics

Mom and pups are doing well.  

First three pups

Pups in the warming box

Whelper helper Nancy assisting the weak pup (pink/white girl) suckle.  Yoko was very trusting.

Yoko cleaning newborn pups

Yoko cuddling Orange girl

Yoko slinging around a newborn pup.  Dams are often a bit rough with the pups. 

Yoko and all the pups in the large whelping pool

Exhausted Yoko

Yoko and pups in the small puppy pool in my bedroom

All spread out

Early Delivery

Yoko's due date was Thursday 11/29/12, but on Tuesday afternoon she was doing some serious nesting, and by 10:00 pm, she was in Stage I labor despite having eaten all her dinner (dogs typical go off food prior to going into labor).  However, Yoko did follow the rule that puppies usually come at night.  She started having notable contractions by midnight and the first pup finally made an appearance at 1:25 am.  English type Labrador retrievers often have difficult whelps, being prone to uterine inertia (weak uterine contractions) that necessitates a C-section.  I am always more nervous whelping a Lab compared to a Golden, and especially a first time whelp.  Yoko took her time, including a 2-hour break in the middle, but many of the births were very easy.  The 7th pup (Pink/White girl) was limp and unresponsive at birth and required considerable resuscitation, but she finally gained strength and started to suckle on her own.  The 8th pup (Black boy) got stuck, and I had to assist in his delivery.  I was worried that he may have been too long without oxygen, but he came out kicking and screaming.  Being a bit early and a large litter, these pups are smaller.  In contrast to Juliette's most recent litter, this litter favored the girls, with 7 girls and 2 boys.  Typically early breedings (a few days before conception) favor boys, as was the case with Juliette.  Yoko's breeding dates were more optimally timed around the anticipated day of conception (when mature ova should be present).  As expected, all the pups are black.  Black collar boy has a white spot on his chest. 

Collar          Sex/color   Time       Birthweight 
Blue                  M         1:25 am     15 oz        
Pink                   F         2:05 am     14.2 oz     
Purple               F         2:40 am     13.6 oz        
Orange             F         3:12 am     14.2 oz     
Green               F         3:38 am     12.8 oz     
Yellow               F         6:15 am     13 oz     
Pink/white         F         6:25 am     12.8 oz     
Black                M         7:44 am     14.4 oz     
Purple/white     F         8:05 am     16.4 oz        

Yet more puppies on the way

I try not to have back-to-back or overlapping litters.  However, since Yoko didn't conceive last spring, we really needed to breed her this cycle.  Yoko checked in at my house last Sunday, looking very rotund. 

A very pregnant Yoko

Yoko was bred to Mambo aka CH Tabatha's Borador Dance With the Devil, a large handsome black Lab with a calm, quiet temperament.  Mambo is also the sire of ICAN's Sheldon and Cosmo.  Mambo does not carry the yellow color gene, so we expect 100% black pups.