Ruby and Rusty’s final litter arrived a week ago on the 17th of October! The smallest litter we’ve ever had, with only 3 pups. 2 boys and 1 girl! Ruby was looking smaller than usual, so we were thinking maybe she was a week behind the tentative due date I had calculated. We were gonna have here puppy count xray done the 13th but decided to push it off because she wasn’t as big as she usually is the week of whelping. We postponed it for the 20th, and were just hoping she would wait until then so we would know how many pups there were. We moved the whelping box into the house around 7pm Tuesday night. She snuck down to Talynn’s (our 5 yr old daughter) room where she sleeps and seemed ready for bed. I always have her sleep with us the last week or so of her pregnancy so i can wake up if she goes into labor in the middle of the night. She was refusing to get out of bed. I finally convinced her to come upstairs. She immediately began acting a little funny licking her bottom and panting. I thought “ha! nah she’s not going into labor is she?” For kicks I had her jump in the whelping box, she began scratching and nesting, and THEN she began arching her back- she was contracting. Depending on how early into labor he was she can contract without me noticing for hours. She then went back to our room and got on OUR bed. Jeff had to carrying her out to the whelping box. She contracting and pushed on and off for a little bit, but finally puppy #1 made it’s appearance
NEPTUNE: 1st pup and 1st male-born at 8:38p weighing 14.7 oz
SUNSET: 2nd pup and 1st female- born at 11:15p weighing 13.1 oz
JUNIPER: 3rd pup, 2nd male and final puppy born- 1:40a weighing 14oz
What is funny is after we had 2 deposits secured I had joked with Jeff “wouldn’t it be nice if we just had two puppies, 1 female and 1 male?” It can be a little exhausting interviewing tons of families, taking and editing countless pictures, weighing pups, scheduling and attending vet appointment (often me solo with 4-5 kids in tow), keeping up the blog, and just being in constant contact with families each litter. Caring for 8 pups is a big responsibility, and its time consuming, and at times can be pretty stinky and so NOT glamorous. Don’t get me wrong, we LOVE breeding Vizslas and the joy that our pups bring to their families is wonderful, the hands on experience and exposure to life and nature that it’s provided our children will be unmatched, but breeding is a lot of work and we have 5 kids 6 and under that we also juggle. So when I saw that we literally only had 3 pups I had a sigh of relief.
A couple candids from my phone….
This was gonna be a nice, much simpler litter. A good way to retire from the breeding game:) Or so I thought.
Two days into this simpler, care free breeding scenario I began looking at Ruby who didn’t quite know what to do with herself with only 3 pups to care for. Her nipples so full, and these 3 pups weren’t even putting a dent in her milk supply. I just kept thinking-‘man if only there was a litter of puppies that had lost their mom that she could care for’. I had Jeff call all the local vets to let them know that we had a bitch capable of caring for pups if they were contacted about such a need. Then Jeff contacted the Humane Society of Utah. They had just had a litter of 7 pups dropped off that morning who’s mom had died from infection of the uterus. They were 5 days old. We wasted no time-I filled out the necessary paperwork online, and as soon as Jeff was off work he went by there to pick the pups up. I was beginning to get nervous that Ruby wouldn’t accept them, and we were brainstorming on how to best introduce them to her. Fortunately my life is crazy and I was behind on laundry. I hadn’t cleaned the bedding that Ruby had whelped on. (now it wasn’t disgusting she actually births onto towels on top of this bedding but it smelled of birth and the pups from the first 24 hours) We put the bedding in the kennel with the pups for about half an hour. Then we introduced each pup one at a time after Rubbing them both on the bedding and onto Ruby. She allowed them to begin nursing immediately, but still kept smelling them and keeping a close eye on these strange pups. IT was kind of funny to watch her face as she tried to process what was going on. She was a bit wary of them for the next hour, but soon started cleaning up after them, and cuddling them, and now treats them like her own in every way! It has been the most beautiful thing to witness, and was definitely meant to be. The timing of everything was perfect, and I can’t help but feel that the thoughts I had that morning were inspired:) Here is a video of us introducing Ruby to the pups…
Ruby’s biological pups are over a week now….let’s see how much they’ve grown.
And some cute candids from my camera…
…and a few from my phone this week. Some of these were in the video also:)
Foster Pups: All 7 are boys, and at this time all are available for adoption through The Humane Society of Utah
Stay tuned and check back next week for an update on all the cute