The Silver Litter

from the beginning.................

December 12, 2003

I pick up visiting stud dog Danno from the airport in Portland
Friday morning he is the happy mushy leaning sweet boy dog
I remember! Anne Camper was so generous to let him come to
visit Rave! Friday afternoon after work I decide to let the dogs
meet while I’m scooping the yard. I anticipate that this will be a
first meeting to romp around and play since Rave is on about day
10 of her heat. I was wrong and with in about 3 min we had a tie!
Also I had decided not to do timing tests on Rave for this breeding.
I felt since Danno would be here with what I thought would be a
good window of time I thought that I could do timing tests if things
did not progress as I thought they should (based on the behavior
of the Rave and Danno)

December 14, 2003

Sunday morning I let the dogs out to romp in the yard again, this
time there was not even much flirting we had a 2nd breeding,
I’m almost embarrassed to say that Rave does not play hard
to get at all!

December 15, 2003

Monday night after dinner I decide that I will let the dogs play
one more time. Danno is not as interested as he was on Sunday,
and I feel that we have hit the window with Friday/Sunday
breeding. Rave however flirts with Danno and we have our 3rd
breeding with in about 3 min of the dogs being in the yard.

I wonder at this point if I was wise not to do timing testing?
I could have really screwed things up by not having vaginal slides
and progesterone tests. I thought about why Rave bred much
earlier than she had on her first litter and I think in hindsight
her heat may have progressed faster? Her daughter had come
into heat (Shine’s first heat) about 10-11 days before Rave.
I think all the hormones in the house did play a part in the
progression of Rave’s heat. Only time will tell how things work out.

December 18, 2003

Thursday morning I take Danno back up to Portland to fly home
to Bozeman. I call the airline several times to make sure he
is in route. He has to change planes in Seattle and I relaxed
some when I heard he was confirmed and in the air on the last
leg of his travel home. I don’t take the responsibility lightly,
Anne Camper was willing to send her very much loved boy
out to me, and I feel a weight of responsibility for him while
he is in my care. I look forward to a call from Anne letting
me know he is in Bozeman safe and sound. About 2:30 the call
comes! Danno was a happy camper back at home and hanging out
with Anne at her office at work for the rest of the afternoon.

December 19, 2003

There is now nothing to do but wait. I make sure that Rave is
getting good exercise it is very important for the health of her
pregnancy and delivery of puppies but I know it will be about 3
more weeks until I know I have pups coming or not. At this point
Rave is eating how most of my dogs do. About 50/50 kibble and
Raw home made diet with her regular ration of food.

January 1, 2004

We had about 6” of snow the dogs are having a blast and I took
lots of pictures. However, the dogs have not been to the park
for a BIG run in about 5 days because of our weather. Looking
at the pictures I think it is hard to imagine that Rave really
has babies coming. But while rubbing her tummy I do notice some
mammary development, this could just be a false pregnancy,
it happens – her daughter Shine is currently having
a false pregnancy

January 7, 2004

Rave has some tummy gas and is burpy today, it makes her
feel uncomfortable and a bit stressed. I talked to my raw feeding
friend and Golden breeder Gina about Rave’s tummy trouble.
During Rave’s first litter she did suffer some of the same
indigestion, acid reflux type of symptoms. We were never able
to make much progress on getting her tummy 100% settled
but we did see some improvement using the homeopathic
carbo veg. Gina suggests I change her diet and take her off
kibble, I figure anything is worth a try both Rave and I will go
crazy for the next 5-6 weeks if things continue how they are.
We try whole ground rabbit and cooked yams. I hold my breath
and wait? She does great her tummy has settled. Over the
next few days I will add other ingredients one at a time
to make sure I can identify what might be causing her
tummy gas. I also think that the coat on her belly is hanging
differently, because of a very slight weight gain. Weather
update, our storm has continued and today to make matters
worse we had about 1.5 inches of ICE to coat the yard,
the house the plants, everything! The dogs have still not been
to the park since late December.

January 8, 2004

Off to the vet for palpation. My vet can almost always confirm
canine pregnancy at about 21 days. Well our weather has been
horrible (snow/ice storm) so we are coming in at about 3.5 weeks,
after about 30 days they fetuses are much harder to find more of
a mass than well defined nodes roughly the size of a small
chicken egg or walnut. The “nodes” lined up along the uterine
horns. My vet makes his introduction; Rave is not all that
thrilled and looks away in disgust! I figure too many pokes
and prods in the past I think! Anyway upon feeling her tummy he
very quickly says yes! Oh yes we have several, does the 2, 3, 4 – oh
yes there are several. I must note that my vet does not count!
He only confirms pregnancy – I agree with him that this is
NO need for extra groping!

I’m on cloud 9 as I’m driving home; I can’t wait to tell
waiting puppy buyers the news!

January 10, 2004

I’m starting to make preparations and getting excited for puppies – I
let work know that the week the pups are due I will be in and out
checking on Rave then home once her temp drops (more about
that later). It is also time to start letting my waiting puppy
people be excited! I am still keeping a conservative waiting
list as I hate to have to tell a person waiting “sorry” no puppies!
Jenn Bell PBIW – (puppy buyer in waiting) offers to help me
with some HTLM code for the pup’s web pages so we plan to have
a puppy pool and develop this diary! Thanks Jenn!

I will refer in the rest of this diary until pups are born to the
following web page
for Canine Pregnancy Calendar. You plug in the date of the
first breeding December 12, 2003 and it breaks down the
changes and development of the mothers and her babies.

I find the statement on the calendar for Jan 9th amazing!
The fetuses are now and are fully developed miniature dogs.”

January 11, 2004

An update on Rave’s diet. I am now slowly upping the ration of
her food. She is still eating whole ground Rabbit as the major
part of her meal, but we have also been able to add Beef liver,
eggs, cooked oatmeal. Rave has also been getting a multi
vitamin for pregnancy and puppies thought-out her pregnancy Dr. Kruger’s Ultimate Supplements.
Rave will be eating a mostly raw home prepared diet for the
remainder of her pregnancy. This morning all the dogs are having
cooked oatmeal and yams with eggs and lamb heart!

January 15, 2004

Things are going well, I have experimented with the foods
Rave can eat while pregnant. Most any grain I offer her is
making her tummy upset. On another note I would have
to say I don't ever recall Rave being in the type of amazing
condition she is right now. Her coat almost looks wet or oiled
it is so shiny and the texture is amazing. It is not soft but
feels like a 'pelt' so thick, dense and shiny. Rave is still extra
snuggly, I often find her curled up on my bed. Whole ground
rabbit is still her main stay, but she has also had
veggies (primarily green juiced with pulp) eggs, liver,
kidney, yams, and green tripe along with her vitimans. Tonight
we are going to add some ground duck to the menu. I will
continue to increase her muscle meat, organ meat and veggies
as compared to meat/bone the closer she gets to whelping.

January 19, 2004

Well Rave's first litter turned a year old today, it was
also MLK holiday so I we had a nice 3 day weekend. I
remember thinking when I wrote the last entry that Rave
really does not look like she has gained much weight. But
WOW what a difference even a few days make! My friends
who had seen Rave a week ago are amazed at the change.
Only time will tell how many pups. Rave and the rest of
the girls had a big run at the park today and she sure does
look chunky! Not the sleek speedy Rave I'm used to. She is
still fast but not the effortless dog I'm used to watching
race around the field. The weather is looking good for a
few days so I hope to make more runs to the park this week.
I have also noticed that the days are getting just
slightly longer - Yahoo!

January 30, 2004

Well I think we have about 2 weeks to go. Sometimes I look at
Rave and I think she is HUGE, other times I wonder
is she really that big? While waiting for her last litter
I measured her girth, (measured at the last rib) I measured
her on Sunday January 12th, one week before she had
her puppies. One week before she had her pups she
measured 30.5”. So today I measured her, now we have about
2 weeks to go, not the “one” week like the 30.5” measure. Today
with about 2 weeks until she has puppies she is 29”.
I will measure her again in 1 week. I think I estimated
Rave’s normal girth at 21-21.5”

February 1, 2004

Well I have been waiting I knew it would be soon.
Today with less than 2 weeks to go, as Rave was sleeping
I felt the kick and push of a puppy. This will only get stronger and more
active as the time gets closer. I remember thinking with Tessa’s litter
of 11 pups it was like she had a belly full of lizards!

February 4, 2004

Well I needed to take one of the other dogs to the
vet today, more on that later. But I took Rave
along for a weigh in. To my SHOCK she weighed 63 pounds!
Her normal weight is about 45# and I still feel she is
underweight! We either have a lot of babies! Or really big ones!

February 6, 2004

I measured Rave's "girth" again today she is 30.5".
It is also now really easy to feel the puppies move.
I can't wait to meet them all!

February 8, 2004

Today is 58 days from Rave's first breeding.
The pups could not have come ANY sooner than today
so today is the day I start taking her temperature. Today
at noon her temp was 100.00 - this is a normal tempeature
for this stage in her pregancy. What we are looking for is a
drop will be down near the 98 point something range.
At that point puppies will be expected with in 30 hours.

February 9, 2004

We are holding steady her temp has been holding
between 99.7-100.3 normal at this point of her pregnancy.
Her shape however is changing her belly lower and fuller.
The pups are really active and when she is relaxed
you can feel the puppies move with such detail - I mean...
oh there was a head, humm that must be a leg,
really IS fun to feel those babies move around.

February 11, 2004

Rave’s temp dropped!
At 3:30pm she was 99.7 and at 5:30pm
she was 98.3 – pups expected sometime on Thursday!

go to page 2 of the Silver Diary, our first week!

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