Every day and night I can tell the growth that the puppies are going through. This morning, however, one puppy stood out not because he had grown so much, but because he was thin and lethargic.
That is certainly not something we want to see. I removed him from the group and brought Lila out and let him feed by himself. He tried, but it seemed he was so weak that he was not able to suck.
Next we tried the bottle with the puppy formula. Ford (yes that is his puppy name) kept trying, which is great, but seemed unable to get any in.
Now I was reaching the certifiably terrified stage.
Rod kept trying to feed him and later, after noticing some blood in his stool, made a call to the vet.
All I could think was PARVO which would frankly be a death sentence for our whole brood. But the symptoms didn't add up, and how would he have got it?
Well, it seems like Ford might have an infection, perhaps from getting his dew claws removed, and maybe his immune system was weaker than the other puppies. So the vet gave him antibiotics and hydrated him,then sent him home again.
We are feeding him with an eye dropper, keeping him warm and hoping for the best.
Puppies are so fragile, blind and deaf at birth. Completely dependant on their mother (who sits on them, by the way) and her people.
Ford is now even more fragile, unbelievably so, but is fighting every step of the way.
I don't think they understand how dependant they are for every aspect of their life.
So similar to my ignorance of our Father Creator taking care of my needs, even while I am blindly unaware.
Saturday, February 24, 2007
I need more sleep, and I'm getting kind of cranky. Pretty darn cranky at certain times of the day. But the puppies are seriously, amazingly, astonishingly cute and Lila is so sweet and patient that I never get impatient of crawling out of bed to do the puppy head count. 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9. Over and over again. All night and day. 24-7.
It only gets slightly insane when it goes, 1-2-3-4-5-6-7..........1-2-3-4-5-6-7.......1-2-3-4-5-6-7
And then I begin tearing out blankets and puppies and newpapers until I find the missing critter, usually underneath Lila. Lila is never cooperative about these midnight head counts either. When I push against her, she pushes back ,her warm furry body filling in all the empty spaces that I was trying to search.
Sometimes when it is late, I count 10 puppies, and I find myself recounting. Then I chuckle, in that half asleep twilight when everything is funny and figure out that too many puppies is okay. Maybe I counted the monkey, like Lila does.
When I brought I all the puppies out into the living room for Rod and me to have a Puppy Picnic (not how it sounds, like a Teddy Bear Picnic...except Hannity and Colmes was on in the background and totally ruined the ambiance) Lila walked out a few minutes later with Monkey, like we had forgotten one of her puppies. She dropped it on the pile and we laughed until we were hoarse.
We will probably get tired of certain aspects of PuppyWorld, as Lila obviously is. But we are so enjoying each little thing and are grateful for this time.
Thursday, February 22, 2007
Okay just one more quick post because I need to clean up the house and make cookies to get ready for bible study tonight. Doesn't real life get in the way of my PuppyWorld fun? (Just kidding!!!)
And Amy, don't mock me because I am spending too much time on taking pictures and blogging. If you would do cute things like run when we tossed the stuffed monkey or catch snacks in your mouth, we would have an AmyBlog. Really, we would. :-) Love you, honey.
Just a picture to show how the strong the puppies sunction is.
So I feel I owe an apology to Amy and Josiah one of whom brings up the vast difference in numbers of pictures between them when they were small and the puppies.
Two words, Amy. "Digital cameras." And you know we love you.
That said, we have more cute stories and pictures to share of PuppyWorld. (you know you want to see them more tham anyone,Amy)
So I tossed Lila's monkey over onto the chair in the living room the other day while I was picking up. It makes a whining, howling, semi-monkey like sound which Lila has always seemed to enjoy.
Well, here comes Lila, bolting out of the room where the pups are, she finds her monkey, gingerly(okay, as gingerly as a bullie can) lifts it up and takes it back into the room. I grab the camera and follow.
She put it with the puppies and has been caring for the poor orphan monkey ever since. We now have 10 puppies. I think we should charge more for the monkey as they are more rare. And it is harder to feed.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
caution: DO NOT READ if you have any qualms at all about animals giving birth AND ALL that entails!!!
The first surprise was when Lila had a ninth puppy, when we were only expecting eight. How many years of vet school, wasted, on reading that x-ray incorrectly, I wonder? (yes, I know I'm being way too harsh)
Technically, that wasn't the first surprise. The initial one happened after she had had her first puppy and then had been having hard contractions for over an hour. So , as per instructions, I called the vet. "Bring her on in" they said.
Easier said then done. She REALLY did NOT want to leave her whelping box and cozy blankets while she was in labor and take a drive. But we (and by we I mean me) wrapped her baby up in a warm towel and put a blanket in the back seat of the car and started driving.
We made it about 10 miles before the puppy came. After pulling over, helping clean her up (yay, another girl!) and placing her with her sister in the basket, we continued on our way to the vet.
When we got there, the vet assistants stormed out of the building to get the puppies and bring them in. I would bring Lila in. As I was getting her out of the car (which she REALLY didn't want to leave) I noticed that she was in fact having another puppy. I yelled to the assistants to bring me another towel.
As Lila and I stood in the gravel on the side of Hwy 26 with the rain pounding down on us, a puppy halfway out, and cars and trucks spraying us as they rushed by I contemplated my options. Who am I kidding, I didn't have any. I grabbed the blanket out of the back seat of the car and got a better grasp on the large puppy, still halfway in the birth canal. (Did I mention I have no animal science background?) Lila chose that moment to make a giant leap back INTO the car leaving me with the puppy (Hurray! a boy!!) but taking all the placenta, after birth and whatever else with her...where there IS NO LONGER ANY BLANKET.
The vet assistants and I just stood there for a second, staring at this seriously amazing disaster. There is Lila, on the far side of the back seat eating the placenta. This is just so wrong.
A little background. I currently drive a car my Dad left me when he went to be with the Lord. It is a champagne colored,plush interior, newer Mercury something or other. You know, the kind Grampa would drive on Sunday to go play golf at the club.
Now it looks like a couple violent crimes have been committed back there. I apologize ahead of time to anyone who has to ride with me anywhere. Sorry. Really sorry.
The vet came out to check Lila, gave her a shot to continue her contractions and sent us on our way.
Poor Lila. We never should have left home. I drove quickly with my eyes on the rear view mirror more often than not. (Sorry green Jeep Cherokee by the Oregon Candy Farm that I almost hit)
Got home, finally and went and opened Lila's door. She leaped out( can you even imagine leaping when you are in labor?) leaving a fourth puppy (panic beginning to set in, didn't check for gender) on seat, fully encased in membrane.
I rubbed the membrane off his/her tiny little face with the increasingly nasty blanket and turned around to call Lila so we(by "we" I definitely mean her) could "clean up" the back seat from the newest birth.
She was gone.
I knew immediately what she was thinking. "Fine. You take those puppies. I'll keep the rest. I'll just go find somewhere quiet and peaceful where I can be alone."
I rushed the basket of puppies into the house and ran back into the rain and began searching for Lila. I called Brenda first and asked her and the kids to pray for Lila to come home.
After 35 minutes, Buddy and I finally found her. Well, truthfully, she came back down the trail by herself.
When she came in the house, she went directly to her box and promptly had another puppy. Final count was four girls and five boys.
Oops! One last surprise. I counted wrong. Six boys and three girls. Porsche, Hummer, Chevy, Maserati, Jeep,Mercedes, Ford, Duramax, and Dodger. Lila has been with them, feeding, cleaning and cuddling nonstop.
It is just incredible thinking about how God created these dogs with the abilities to so naturally know how to care for their babies. I am amazed. And I am thankful that they are all healthy and Lila is doing so well too. Counting my blessings today. :-)