Day 48
Six weeks is the beginning of the most intense phase of being a breeder-caretaker. It’s also a week where differences between pups may become apparent.
In this litter, we’ve been watching Aretha for a couple of weeks, as she throws up at least once every day. (Sweetheart that she is, she almost always throws it up on the pee pads, which makes it easy to clean up). She isn’t distressed and isn’t otherwise ill. She’s different than her brothers in that she isn’t a food hound – she doesn’t like dry kibble and won’t even open her mouth for it.
As a precaution, we had her in at the vet this week to rule out any strictures or other abnormalities, and to make sure she didn’t have an obstruction of her GI tract. One of the things I’m incredibly grateful for at PADS is that we seek veterinary attention early for our youngest puppies; because we aren’t breeding for profit we are never in the position of weighing the cost of treatment vs the profit we can make.
In addition to seeing the vets at Burquitlam, she also had a consult with Dr. Head, a radiologist, who checked her out with ultrasound and did barium x-rays over two days (she was home in between, they just wanted a follow up view the second day, once the barium was at the far end of the GI tract).
Good news – no abnormalities or obstructions were found!
So, the vomiting could be caused by over-eating, or low blood sugar could be a factor, so smaller meals are in order for the time being, and we’ll continue to give her a mixture of moistened kibble and canned food.
Fortunately she’s super bright, and often ahead of her brothers in training, maybe partly because she gets gooey canned food for treats.
The boys came along for the second vet visit, so everyone got to practice their car skills and meet a bunch of new people at the vet.
Other things the puppies have been up to this week:
– a pared down “Puppy Party” training session with our family and the other family in our social bubble. As opposed to most normal exposure, where puppies can choose whether or not to engage with items, in the Puppy Party we work on getting them to manoeuvre three different obstacles, working on building confidence, working drive and resilience.
– we’ve ditched the communal bowl and are feeding in individual bowls
– we continue to work on the “Puppy, Puppy, Puppy” call for recalls with their meals, and have started “This Way” when outside
– we’ve mastered going through a tunnel and walking in unstable surfaces
– kennel training
– puppies got their second course of dewormer, and took it like champs!
– more clicker sessions
– more +CER sessions with the bathtub
– lots of outside time
– continued exposure to new sights, sounds and experiences, including seeing cars driving by while we were at the vet
– more work on their default sit (“manding”) to access things they want, like the pen door opening, getting out, us or Elfin coming in, petting and food
Things are going well, and it’s hard to believe they are here for less than 2 more weeks!