Friday, June 15, 2012


Yesterday's posting had a record number of views because I posted the link to Facebook.  Because of all the beautiful pictures of Letty on Facebook, many people felt as if they "knew" her, and were concerned  about how she was doing in her new home. They too were pleased that everything seems to be going well.

Pauli and pups are doing great.  After a couple of scary days earlier in the week, she's bounced back perfectly.  She'll stay on antibiotics for the full 14 days, but is doing wonderfully well now.  Presumably all the manipulating required to remove the dead, out-of-position puppy during whelping was the cause, but of course there is no way to tell, nor does it matter.  It only matters that both Pauli and the pups are thriving now. 

At one week of age the pups have doubled in size, nose trim is almost complete, rims look good, and spots are just beginning to come through.  It appears that the patched puppy will be the most colorful, but he also has a bit thinner coat than the others so it's easier to see the body spotting on him.   Most of the pups are like little woolly bears, so it will be a few days before the spotting patterns become evident. Interestingly, all of the pups have open marked faces, with just a few freckles, less face spotting than either Pauli or Louie, and more like their grandparents.

By next Friday we'll have started hearing testing.  Hopefully they all respond quickly, so I can stop worrying and just enjoy the pups.  Once I know they hear, they will get named.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Letty Update

Because everyone has been asking how Letty is doing, I thought I would share Skip's observations.  I think Letty has it made.  (I love the story about Letty & Tigger the cat.)

Letty is truly fitting in well.  She finally had a romp with Mickey,the Jack Russell late this morning, but the heat of day limited it to about ten minutes. We will try the dog park early tomorrow morning when few people will be there and try it off leash. They had a good chase for the short time.

The cat scene is definitely improving. Tigger, the very smart calico, played mind games with Kelley the last four or so years of her life.  She would lay in front of a door opening that she knew the dog wanted to use, "saying, I dare you to walk by me". Fearing she would be cat swatted, Kelley would whimper until rescued. Tigger must have been very surprised when Letty jumped about two feet over the cat's head and on her way. Tigger immediately sulked away to talk with her consultants about a new plan of action. Actually they have been sleeping next to each other this afternoon.

Letty and grand-daughter Laura also had another good exchange yesterday. Letty is boisterous in her affection toward us, but then she went up to Laura and so gently licked her nose and fingers for
about half a minute. How does she sense that such a change of affection is the needed way toward this tiny person? I thought of the last line of my all-time favorite movie, Casablanca. "this could be
the start of a beautiful friendship."

We did the first off- leash run at the Airport this morning and it was an unqualified success. We went at 6:30 when the population of dogs would be less of a problem. There were about ten or so dogs of
which only three were a mph challenge. Letty was able to catch them, but when they tried the chase
were no match after a time. What a blur. It was so enjoyable to see such grace -in-motion. We had treats along and called for her to come. She did so. When far enough away to not get a response, a good loud "whistle between my teeth" always brought her running back. A plastic bag of chicken pieces that she realized I had on me, was great motivation ! I so missed the speed and grace of Kelley in her prime, that seeing it again brought tears to my eyes.

We are going again tomorrow morning. ( Later, Anne, Laura, and Lucinda took her for a walk around the golf course and she was very active again.) She was "crazy" when she got home for a short time.
The eye-lids became very droopy and sleep took over for a good nap!)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Things Are Looking Up

I never got this finished and posted yesterday, just not enough time in my life right now, so this is a two-day posting.
Today is off to a good start, a MUCH better start than yesterday!  Yesterday at this time I was waiting to take Pauli in for a 9:00 AM vet appointment.  She had totally stopped eating on Sunday afternoon, and could not be bribed to try a single morsel of food.  Because she had not been eating very well since the birth of her pups, something was obviously wrong.  I called Dr. Jim on his cell phone and he told me that as long as she was still drinking and caring for her pups, and her temperature was normal, it was OK to wait until morning.

She was still not eating the following morning.  Was I scared?  You bet!  A Vet appointment resulted in lots of bloodwork and a urinalysis, with the results indicating that Pauli had some kind of infection, as well as elevated liver enzymes.  We came home with antibiotics and a bitch who would still not eat.  The antibiotic can irritate the stomach, so should be given with food, but she was not taking any food, which made it seemingly impossible to manage.  I finally made meatballs of ground turkey and force fed her, then gave the antibiotic.  She later vomited some of the turkey, but I had to hope the antibiotic was already in her system.  Things did not improve over the afternoon, so I pulled out my tube feeding apparatus and went down to pick up a can of Esbilac. Best to be prepared to handraise the puppies if Pauli did not start eating or her condition deteriorated.  I tried bribing her with everything, but of course she had an upset stomach and would take no food on her own, although she let me spoon vanilla ice cream into her mouth and swallowed some of it.

I needed to get out of the house, so we went to Bakers Square for dinner, where I had a salad with grilled chicken.  No appetite for me either., so I packed up the chicken for Pauli.  When I offered her some she was not interested, so I put a piece in her mouth and she eventually chewed it.  I gave her another one and she did not resist, then she looked expectantly at me.  She polished off the chicken, hooray!  Things were looking up a bit.  I went down to Trader Joe's and picked up some grilled chicken which she ate (eagerly) later that evening.

The previous was written on Tuesday morning.  Today is Wednesday and Pauli is eating quite well (although there are some things she will not eat yet), gaining weight and the pups are thriving.  We always say that breeding is NOT for the faint of heart, and that is oh so true!  You also need to be prepared for a variety of unexpected expenses, which is why hobby breeders are lucky if they break even on a litter.  Pauli goes in for more bloodwork this morning, just to be sure things are improving.  I'm fortunate to have a job where I can take my vacation in smaller amounts, as needed.

Pups are thriving, gaining weight, nursing vigorously, and Pauli is an excellent mother.  I still need to go over my puppy list and check back with some of you, to tell you to hang on there  or that there just won't be enough pups to go around.  I've taken names off the list of people who have not stayed in touch with me, those who have found puppies, and those who have decided to wait.  Also, one who I found too annoying to sell a pup to.

I'm still not sure if the liver Lucy son Christopher will be available, as Patti would really like to be able to place him in her area.  If you are interested in Chris, please let me know as the pups will be coming down for BAER testing in 10 days.  It will be awhile before we know which of the Pauli kids will be available to pet homes.  The patched pup for sure, but we may not know on some of the others until they are 6-7 weeks.  Thanks for your patience!

Yes, Letty is doing great in her new home.  I'll post a funny Letty story tomorrow! 

Monday, June 11, 2012

A Visit To Grandma's

A very full weekend that included a visit to my mother's after Argus & I did the Dog Park.  He loves to visit his Grandma, and is always very gentle with her. He's such a lively silly boy otherwise, but always a perfect gentleman at mom's.

My brother arrived from Costa Rica late Saturday and is staying with mom, so it was nice to have a chance to chat with him too.  Al comes once a year to visit family and friends, and shop for things he can't find at home or can buy more affordably here.  We'll be getting together to celebrate mom's 88th birthday later this week.

Jess & Meribel went off to the Chicago Specialty and had another terrific weekend.  Just went Reserve at the first show (still good, with a pup) but at the second show she went Winner's Bitch for 4 more points, and Best In Sweepstakes as well.  Meribel now has 14 of the 15 points she needs for her championship, and Jess is trying to decide where to show her next.  Because Meribel has such a super record in only 4 show weekends, Jess would like to finish her with another special win, not at some little podunk show, but the panels coming up this summer are pretty grim.  Perhaps they will have to wait until fall for another show.

Letty continues to do fine in her new home - a funny Letty story tomorrow.

Pups are also thriving, but I'm a bit concerned that Pauli is not eating better.  She's not eaten well since the pups were whelped, but has eaten "enough" when bribed with things other than her regular dog food.  You can't make milk if you don't eat well though.   Pups pay a visit to the vet today to get their dewclaws removed, and Pauli may go along too, just to have things checked out.  No signs of any problem other than lack of appetite.  I always wonder if bitches get sick to their stomachs from cleaning their pups!  And she is keeping them clean.