Thursday 15th May 2008
Three puppies were born today, all three were bitches who were born by Caesarian section because of a complication and, following a slow start both mum and puppies are doing well.
The puppies at birth weighed about 18 ounces each and have a heart beat of around 200 beats a minute. As they grow older this will reduce to between 60 and 70 beats a minute and it will go slightly lower still when they are older and in the peak of their fitness.
The puppies have no teeth. These will appear in about four weeks time and after about five weeks their front incisors will begin to appear.
The puppies names are Eva, Ella and Bella. Although at the moment they look almost identical we are told two will probably be blue brindles whilst the third will become a fawn. Their little pink toes will become white.
Sunday 18th May 2008
3 days old
This afternoon we visited Mum and her puppies to take our first set of photographs.
READ ABOUT THE PUPS & MORE PICTURES
Wednesday 28th May 2008
13 days old
The Greyhound puppies now 13 days old still have their eyes closed and are still unable to stand up. They've been putting on around 2¼ ounces in weight a day so they now weigh just over 3lbs each.
Today I was allowed to hold the puppies for the first time. Their owner handed me them one at a time so Stuart could take photographs and oh, what a joy it was.
Eva weighs about 3½lbs so is slightly heavier than her two sisters. Apparently, how fast they grow in the first few days is an indicator of how big they will be as adults. Their ears are a little bigger and they are beginning to get small noses. Instead of being almost the same colour they are now beginning to show their own identity. Bella is much more fawn than ten days ago and Ella and Eva are beginning to show their brindle markings. Eva, as well as having half a white foot now has a white mark down the side of her nose.
The pups had their nails clipped today because they were quite long and sharp so there was the risk of them scratching and hurting their Mum whilst searching for milk.
In order to help Mum recover from the birth, gain strength and provide enough milk for the three pups she is being fed scrambled egg with cheese and milk first thing in the morning. At lunch time she is given a tin of rice pudding and more milk, then in the evening she is being given 1lb of raw meat, cooked chicken, brown bread, complete Greyhound food and more milk. Round about 9pm she is given more water and milk mixed together to last her through the night. In all she's drinking about 4 pints a day. If she'd had 9 puppies as some Greyhounds do then she would need to drink in the region of 6 pints of fluid a day in order to provide the milk for her pups. She is fed on raw meat as it encourages her to clean the pups when they urinate and defecate so as to keep the area clean and prevent the pups from eating their own mess, which could kill them. I know to some this must sound awful but it's natures way of helping the young survive and the goodness they pass goes back into the mother to help her provide more milk for them. It's not just Greyhounds who do this but many other animals do the same. Mum is also being given 2 calcium tablets and a multi-vitamin mix each day as well to keep her well during this demanding time.
Sunday 1st June 2008
17 days old
The Greyhound puppies are now 17 days old and we heard today their eyes are just beginning to open and they are attempting to stand up. Their front legs still aren't strong enough but their back ones are making every effort to get them up on their feet, but very wobbly. It will take three or four days for their eyes to open fully and a further three or four days until they focus properly. During this period they can look quite comical as their legs are strengthening to support them they are wobbling and bumping into things whilst their eyes are becoming focused.
Wednesday 4th June 2008
20 days old
The Greyhound puppies are now 20 days old and beginning to look less like moles and more like puppies, albeit little chubby ones. They are still in the maternity unit with the wooden frame around it to protect them when Mum lays down and their bedding is still taped to the sides to stop them crawling underneath the blanket and duvets and getting lost. However, today with it being such a lovely afternoon there was a fan on to keep them cool instead of the heat lamps on to keep them warm.
Mum is as lovely with them as ever and has recovered well after her operation when the pups were born.
They still make little squeaking noises but this afternoon Bella did a definite yap. There was only the one yap but it was a yap and it caused a comment.
The puppies are beginning to get their own identities in that Bella is turning more fawn and Eva and Ella are beginning to develop their brindle markings. All the puppies since we last saw them now have white on their tummies and the white mark on Eva's nose is much more prominent.
The puppies ears
are a bit larger and their noses are slightly more prominent than last week so we took a photograph of each one's profile so we can watch their noses grow!
This afternoon they were weighed again and today Eva weighed in at 5lbs (2.27k), Bella weighed 5lb 2oz (2.33k) and Ella, who is the largest weighed 5lb 8oz (2.5k). Therefore, Ella has gained nearly 4½ lbs since she was born 20 days ago.
are much more mobile and up on their legs but their legs are still strengthening so they wobble around as if drunk at times. Their eyes are beginning to focus because they will watch you if you are close to them and they showed interest in Stuart pointing the camera at them to take close up pictures of their faces. They are beginning to show an interest in what is happening around them, are beginning to play with each other, crawl to get away from the camera much faster, climb over their mum as if she wasn't there - and she didn't mind! They will turn towards noises and they are inquisitive as to what is in their mother's feeding dish, although they are too young to be allowed to eat anything from it - even their mum's lunch time rice pudding!
Thursday 19th June 2008
5 weeks old
The Greyhound puppies are now 5 weeks old and as we entered their pen Mum came over to say hello and gave us a sniff to check us out. After a few minutes I sat on a couple of breeze blocks so I could get lower to them without hurting them because the danger at this stage is you could easily tread on them by accident, therefore, you either walk 'shuffling' your feet, crouch down or sit down so they can safely run around you, chew your shoe laces, trousers, sleeves, hands, hair and anything else they can get hold of!
The puppies are now running around the small yard outside the 'maternity unit' and they have lovely sky blue eyes and are becoming more individual in their looks by the day.
Although they are up and running around they are still very wobbly on their feet and often run into things as they still misjudge distances. Running up the ramp from the yard into the 'maternity unit' where their bed proves a problem at times as they tend to nose dive near the top because they haven't worked out they are no longer running along the flat but up a slope. Coming down they tend to do the same but nose dive the yard as they don't always adjust their positioning from going down the slope to being on the flat again. It's very funny to watch them and they are a laugh a minute!
Friday 27th June 2008
6 weeks old
The Greyhound puppies are now 6 weeks old and have been moved to a unit where there is more room to run, and run on grass. Having said that they are still very young and although very lively they soon tire and need rest at intervals to recuperate.
As we entered the unit Mum came over to say hello and have another sniff to make sure she knew who we were then the rest of the time she was on her toes keeping an eye on where the puppies were and guarding them against other likely intruders. If Mum decided to run to the end of the pen and look out the gate she was often followed by one or more puppies who nine times out of ten couldn't stop when she did so ran into, or under her before they had control of their little legs.
I was really amazed by how much lighter in colour Bella had become since we saw her last week. She is turning into a really light fawn Greyhound. The white on them also seemed more white and oh, what little characters they are becoming!
Their owner is beginning to teach them their names but they haven't got the hang of it yet so things become very confusing as they either don't take any notice or come running towards him to swerve off at an angle to charge Stuart laying face down on the grass with camera at 'puppy level' to peer inside the camera lens, pull his hair or try and jump on his back. Today's photo session was quite a haphazard event and because of the size of their 'run' it was difficult to get all three in the same place at the same time. Stuart has his work cut out now they are more playful and mobile but today it was a fairly short session because it unfortunately suddenly started raining heavily so everyone, puppies and Mum included ran indoors to shelter.
Tuesday 15th July 2008
9 weeks old
26th August 2008
14½ weeks old
The puppies went to the vet this afternoon for their second inoculation and whilst there were weighed. The smallest of the three weighed 35lbs and the largest 38lbs.