Friday, August 5, 2011

Chow Time!

First meat at 25 days

Weaning Dal pups is so simple!  Put down bowl, show bowl to puppies, clean up afterwards!  The Arboks had their first non-mom meal last night.  Warmed goat milk with some added goat milk yogurt.   They cleaned the bowl of course!  Tonight they will get the same meal with an added egg yolk, and tomorrow the meal will include some freshly ground turkey thigh meat from Whole Foods. Although the adults get a less expensive brand of frozen turkey (but always get human-grade foods), I prefer to feed the pups with top quality fresh foods whenever possible.

Yum, what a tasty foot - Lucas

Clockwise in the picture from 1:00 are Lucas, Letty, Weather, Sloan and Virgil.  Many photo ops with the puppies now.  I just need more time!

Letty & Virgil

This weekend I need to check in with the people who have expressed an interest in the pups.  Have not heard recently from the person who had first choice on pets, so am assuming she is off the list.  I don't take reservations because I want people to have the option of changing their minds, and I want the option to place my pups in the homes that sound the best to me!

Also two inquiries from foreign countries for show pups.  I have sold pups overseas in the past, but because we have pups so rarely, I'd really rather have show potential pups stay in the US (or Canada) to be shown.  The last pet pup who went overseas went to Okinawa, and that was a total disaster, one I have always regretted.  The pup finally arrived safely, but the buyer defaulted on his shipping costs, and did not stay in touch.  He talked a great story, but turned out to be an irresponsible deadbeat.  I'm responsible for my pups for their lifetimes, and there is no way I can help that dog if he ever needs it.  We've been really fortunate on homes over the years, but that was NOT a success story . . .

Thursday, August 4, 2011

New Puppies In Paisleyland - PaisleyWI

Penny with day old babies

Chapter Two.  Penny's Pups were born last night, on the 61st day, same as Reebok's.  Not sure what this litter will be referred to, as Penny + Cruise does not go together quite as well as Argus + Reebok = Arboks.

This was Jess's first litter done on her own.  She helped with many litters while living at home, but this was her litter to raise from start to finish.  I suggested the sire (after we had considered dozens of dogs, we finally came up with Mr. Right - we hope), and am a co-breeder, but it's really Jess and Laurie's litter (Laurie is Penny's other owner as well as her co-breeder - she owns Penny's mom).  So glad that everything went smoothly!  Nikon was not bred until she was 5 years old, and the whelping was anything but smooth, but Penny performed like her Grandma Coral and did a great job!

Final count, 2 boys and 4 girls, 1 girl a patch.  Jess is currently thinking that the un-patched pups are all livers, but will check them out in better lighting today.  Lots of trim, and the skin spotting on the newly born pups looked nice.

Argus meets Letty
 Argus got to meet his kids last night.  All the dogs have sneaked down to take a peak, but this was his first actual visit and as expected, he was very good - but extremely jealous.  When I held pups on my lap he tried to sit there too.  Big baby!

Pups get to try their first real food tonight, which will be a mixture of goats milk and goat milk yogurt.  We do not start pups on carbohydrate-based soaked kibble, or worse yet, on cereal.  Dogs have no established need for carbs, so why would I feed them to puppies.

Pictures tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A Puppy Morning

Weather & Lucas getting out of bed

The pups are changing so quickly now!  Every day brings something new!

Everyone is keeping the rug clean now, leaving the box to pee on papers in the pen.  Lucas was the last to catch on, but he's the laziest puppy and the slowest to wake up.  Sure makes it easier to keep the box clean, but now we're doing lots of paper changes instead.

Pups are really starting to play with toys
Letty checks out a toy
now.  I add new toys every day, and they all have to be checked out.  Today I will add a cardboard box which they will enjoy, and perhaps put a piece of lumber in there too, so they will have to climb over it.  We try to expose the pups to as many different things as possible.  Meeting people, exploring, being exposed to a variety of novel objects, and later visiting numerous locations will help to insure that the pups are confident and well adjusted.  It's also great fun to watch their reactions!

It's certainly a promising litter so far.  Although Lucas, Letty and Weather have the best markings, the other two boys are acceptably marked (for showing) as well.  Everyone hears, there are no blue eyes, and the personalities seem very good so far.  Structure is starting to become evident too, and I love the way Weather is built.  Tails are up on a couple of the pups already which does not make me happy, but tails are SO hard to predict - you never know which ones will go up and when/if they will come down.  Trim is done on the blacks and still moving well on the livers.  Letty is about 99% complete and Weather just a little bit behind her.  Eye color is going to be very good, as expected.  Blacks are already very dark, livers with a lot of dark pigment already.  I don't care for light eyes on pups of either color, and especially value dark gold eyes on livers.

The basics are good, but so much else to monitor.  Will the pups be bilateral hearing (hear in both ears) or unis (hearing in one ear)?  Will they have correct scissors bites?  Will they be sound and move well?  Will the boys have two testicles?  Will they stay confident and outgoing? Will their health checks be good?  A pup with no disqualifications (according to the breed standard) may be showable, but that does not mean that it is show quality and that it should be placed in a show home.  We always hope that all the pups in a litter can go to show homes, but that is never the case.  If we get one or two such pups we will be happy, three or more we will be thrilled.   So if you are waiting for a pet here, can't tell you that yet.  But they are suuuuurrrreee all cute!

And over at my daughter Jess's house in Wisconsin, Penny is going through the motions and thinking about having puppies today.  Or maybe not 'til Friday.  She could nest for days, or pop them out shortly.  Glad Jess is the one doing the waiting and watching!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Politics And Puppies

And the nasty weather continues.  It should NOT be 83 degrees when I wake up in Minnesota, nor should the dew point ever be this high.  Ugly weather.   Last day of getting paid to work an extra hour a day.  The extra seven hours help, although it will be a long time before I get caught up from the lay off.  Two bills left to pay before my next paycheck which is due a week from Friday.  Two bills and a tank of gas is just about all I can afford without dipping into "other" money.   My checking account looks pretty bare, but as long as I don't have any unexpected expenses I should make it.   But how about all the people with kids?  What a shame that WE have to pay for the lack of compromise in our political process.   I'm very very tired of political rhetoric and a whole generation of incredibly selfish people.  I rememember when they started talking about the "me generation" some years ago.  Sadly true.

BUT, my puppies are so cute!  Here's some 3-week shots of the babies.

Letty & Virgil




Virgil & Letty


Monday, August 1, 2011

Fun With Dogs

Argus is watching for fish

Such a fun weekend, much of it dog-related.  Even though we're not doing dog shows this summer, it seems as if doggy things still take up much of my time - which is just fine!  While walking Argus around Como on Sunday morning, he jumped up on the stone wall that runs along the path and was walking along the top of it as he always does.  I encourage it, and he looks forward to doing it and having a treat afterwards.  As we were walking along "discussing" what a fine job he was doing, a grumpy looking middle-aged couple came walking from the opposite direction, saw Argus walking along the wall, and the guy grumbled, "Weird"  as they walked on by.  Now I ask you, was that necessary?  And what is weird about a dog and its person having fun?

What a sorry life that guy must lead if he can't recognize the simple pleasure that such an activity brings to a person and a much-loved dog?  The rest of my walk was spent watching Argus do all his silly Argus-things (note the picture above) and thinking of all the pleasure these crazy spotted dogs have added to my life.  They say that laughing is important to one's mental and physical health and I'm sure that's true, and I thank my spotted friends for all the exercise and all the laughter that goes with owning a Dalmatian.

Lucas and Letty

Pups are doing wonderfully well!  They got the front of their box cut down so they have access to their pen, and the heat lamp is off which pleases all of us.  Lots of company for puppy socialization this weekend, which was also fun.   Old friends who I had not seen for awhile, my daughter and her partner, and Dal owning Facebook friends I was meeting for the first time.  We'll have lots of company the next few weeks and the big dogs will really enjoy it too.

Cutting this short, but lots of puppy pictures tomorrow.