Well, it's good to be back. :o) Sorry to worry you; I've just been neck deep in...well...you can imagine. ;o)
Puppy land has kept me quite busy since last weekend. DH was out of town from Monday through Thursday this past week, and the pups started weaning (pretty quickly, I might add). And with weaning comes REAL puppy poop, and boatloads of puppy clean-up and pen cleaning.
Then, of course while DH was away, a few pups discovered how to use the rails to climb over the whelping box walls. I knew it was coming, but didn't expect it quite so soon. So I had my hands full trying to figure out a containment plan until DH returned home.
Oh, and they discovered their we-want-to-be-fed-NOW voices, too. So picture me, all by myself running on about five hours of sleep each night, with eight howling pups all waiting to be fed, but piddling and pooping while they wait, watching me soften their kibble, run it through the blender, mix it with puppy formula and pour it in the pan all the while running back and forth between making gruel and cleaning up poop and piddle puddles so the pups don't step in it, and then finally getting their meal done and setting it down for them to devour, then while they're busy devouring, cleaning up whatever is left to clean up, pulling soiled bedding, washing floors, laying down fresh paper and bedding, starting our puppy laundry, then transferring all eight pups back into the fresh, clean pen where they all poop and piddle some more.
Now, repeat that five times a day, and you get the picture.
Oh, and all that doesn't take into account puppy playtime and socialization. :o)
Out of sheer necessity, I finally set up a second pen in the kitchen until DH got home. It made life (and me) saner -- I'd let the pups pee and poo in the pen attached to the whelping box, then move them to the second pen to eat.
Needless to say, four of the last six days have been sheer survival (well, the ones when DH was away). Trust me.
It wasn't that I didn't WANT to post on the blog and keep you all updated. LOL...I had all I could do to just get through the day.
Oh, and to boot, I had to teach a 2-hour class Tuesday morning, too. THAT was a trip: getting puppies cleaned up and fed and safely contained and ME cleaned up and fed and out the door by 8 a.m. (while hubby hotel-ed it in D.C.)
Speaking of DH: he's my hero. He rescued me Thursday night. He added wall attachments to the whelping box, so now no one can escape.
On Friday, he helped me set up the new outdoor pen in the yard on the grass (twice the size of anything the pups have been in before). And now they're learning to run. :o)
So the following two videos capture they're great adventure on grass for the very first time.
In this first video, the pups come out one at a time. Watch how they move from tentative (with tails down) to curious and happy-go-lucky (with tails up). You can also hear me talking in my ridiculous puppy voice (hehe).
In this second video, my twin sister Jean (aka Aunt Jeanie to the pups) and her college-freshman daughter Kristin (aka Cousin Kristin to the pups) stop by to help with socialization. Jeanie helped deliver the pups and has interacted with them several times a week since birth, so the pups recognize her.
The pups had never seen Kristin before this video was shot, so this gives you a glimpse in how they handle "strangers."
Just like the Labs of their lineage, the pups treat everybody as a new best friend!
There's more to come this evening yet, so stay tuned!
'Til next time,