We are ready…and waiting. The first thing you’ll notice is the whelping box is empty! According to some whelping charts, today September 12th is Day 63 and according to others, yesterday was Day 63. Last night I sat on the sofa palpating puppies and wondering when they’ll introduce themselves. I’ve been trying not to be a nuisance and palpate too often but it’s difficult for the nurse in me not to put my hands on her.
I’ve switched out the blankets I had in the box for River to nest in for layers of newspaper and whelping pads. After each puppy is born, the top layer will be thrown away. After all the puppies arrive, I’ll lay down bath mats and housebreaking pads. I tried to put an ex-pen around the box so I could drape the blanket across the top and down the side to create a den-like feel however the location of the box in the room didn’t allow that to work. The batteries are charged for the digital and video cameras and I dug out the tripod from the basement. Now that I look around the table next to the whelping box, I see some things I ought to do, like take the scale and the hot water bottle out of their boxes. Glancing at the plastic bag full of brightly colored colors to mark the puppies I think to myself I should choose a few colors and lay them out. But I don’t want to only pick two colors because I might jinx myself, maybe I’ll choose 5 – what a perfect sized litter that would be!
An interesting behavior this week was River’s reaction to Romance, our 6 1/2 month old mix who came into heat for the first time one week ago (WAY earlier than we anticipated I might add.) Until last night, my stud dog wasn’t too interested in Romance, however, River is madly in love with her and in fact, tries to hump her, play bows, makes monkey sounds much like her daddy does when he’s in love with a girl. I expected River to take exception to the fact that another mature female is in the area as she nears her whelp date but instead, she’s fallen head over paws in love. What strange hormonal cocktail my house is right now!
This morning River’s temperature was 99.1º which if you’ve been following is only a degree or so less than her normal temperature. Getting her outside in the dark for potty breaks is near impossible. She’s unwilling to spend the night in her crate next to my bed where she has slept for her entire life. I suppose my Sleep Number® bed is far more comfortable on a pregnant belly than blankets on the floor. Or perhaps she just needs to be in constant contact with me. In any event she slept better last night than I did. I don’t mind the thought of losing sleep while midwifing puppies but I’m not too happy about losing sleep anticipating puppies from a dog who isn’t in any rush to whelp.
We are ready…and still waiting.