Saturday, February 11, 2012

From the Puppies: Milestones in the last Ten Days

We've transitioned to solid food. We even like dry kibble now! 

We've explored confined, closed-in places (like this kitty cube). This week Gramma Joan says she's going to introduce us to a "crate" (whatever that is).

We've played with lotsa toys.  Oh, and we play with each other, too.  Sometimes we play too rough and make each other yip. But Gramma Joan says that's how we learn.

We're figuring out how to carry things in our mouths. We like to do that.  We are Labs, after all!

We got to play outside when in was warm.  We even learned to climb up on a canine hammock (under the red and black fleece above).  Climbing in hard, but Gramma Joan says she's helping us get ready for steps.

Master Red was the first to figure out that he could climb up on the hammock, but Master Blue was quick to figure it out, too.  The red stuffed bone motivated him.

We're beginning to lose the blueness of our eyes.

We've become quite observant, and we let our humans know when we see things.

We've almost learned to trot with things in our mouths (almost is the operative word there...we still trip a lot).

We sometimes watch things before we pounce on them.

Oh, and we got to "meet"  Auntie Elsie.  She was really nice to us even though we tried to nurse from her. We also got to meet Daddy Tuc (he wasn't too interested, but at least he didn't step on us), Pinot (who wanted to sniff us a lot), and big puppy Chessie.  Chessie (she's our half-sister since we have the same mom) likes to play with us.  She wants to play all the time!

But Auntie Elsie is the best at teaching us canine manners.  She'll get to do that more over our last two weeks here.

Oh boy!  We also got the play in the snow!   Gramma Joan only let us play in it for about ten minutes because she didn't want us to get too cold (we're still pretty little), but she wanted us to be familiar with snow so we wouldn't be afraid of it when we get bigger.

We're still learning how to navigate steps and door-frames. They're a little tricky, but we're getting it!

We've also found our voices.

We use our barks on purpose now.

And we're learning to sit to get attention.  No one will pet us or pick us up unless we're sitting. 

We can sit pretty well now, but we sometimes bark to let our humans know we're waiting very patiently (note Master Green in the back).

We think we're quite special, all-in-all. We play for much longer periods of time now, sometimes even a whole half hour!  But we still sleep a lot, too.  And we dream.  Dreams are fun.

We love being with each other, but we're also quite happy to have 1:1 time with our humans. And we love to explore.  Sometimes new things are a little scary, but we're brave enough to investigate, and so far everything we've investigated has turned out to be okay.  Our humans protect us a lot, though. They don't let us get into trouble. 

We're down to nursing just once per day (we like puppy food), and we don't sleep with Momma Kenya all night anymore. We barely see her at all right now (Gramma Joan says it's because we're being weaned). 

Oooooo... and today, while it was still sorta warm outside, Papa Don took us out in yard one at a time. It was a grand adventure. We followed him all over the yard, so now we're tuckered out and sleepy again.  We'll let Gramma Joan tell you anything else...   Zzzzzzzzz......

From Gramma Joan: 

Yup, that's puppies: play hard, then sleep even harder!

The pups are doing quite well  They're in the very-busy-creating-more-work-for-the-humans phase of development. Between pen cleanings, pup training (very limited and preliminary), puppy socialization, laundry (about 3 loads per day for the pups alone), and life stuff,  I've had less time to be on-line. 

And, lol, since Chessie chewed up my little camera with which I take videos (yes, you read that correctly; Chessie destroyed our Canon Powershot... silly puppy...yomp, yomp, yomp, but thankfully not ingested), I can't take puppy videos anymore. At least until we get a replacement camera (which I will remember not to leave on the table outdoors when the big canine kids go out to play -- my fault, not Chessie's).

The pups have their six-week-old vet visit on Monday morning during which they'll be examined, dewormed (routine -- no sign of parasites, but it's standard practice), and will receive their first round of vaccines.

I'm taking them in on my own (no help), so I'm not sure how well I'll be able to document the vet visit with pictures, but I'll post their check-up report sometime later on Monday after we return. I'm not expecting any surprises.

We do know that (get this) all three boys have umbilical hernias!  In all our litters combined, we've only had one pup with an umbilical hernia before, and it was a larger black male from last year's litter. I'm wondering if it has anything to do with their birth size and the difficulty of their passing through the birth canal (putting more strain on the umbilical cord perhaps).

Our vet assured us last time that these are nothing to worry about and that they usually self-correct in the first few months of life (all three are fluid and can be gently pushed back in). And if they don't self-correct, they're easily fixed when the pups are neutered later on.  I'll check with Dr. Wagner on Monday to be sure, but I suspect he'll say the same thing.

How odd, though, that all three have them. All three were more difficult to deliver than any pups from past litters (and were much bigger), so maybe that's it. That's the only reason that makes sense to me.  But I'll check on that, too.

So that's it from here.  All is well! :O)

 'til next time,

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