Aura is very happy. I swear, this dog would take care of small puppies every day of her life if you let her. It will be sad to see these pups grow.
This a great sized litter. The smaller the litter, the bigger the pups. There was nothing wrong with previous litters, but these pups feel a day or two ahead of their time. They jump right onto Aura’s nipples and go to town. When they need to be heard, they let out large yelps. The yellow collared girl practically barked today!
The whelping didn’t go completely as planned. Thankfully our midwoofs were here to assist in the entire process and offer peace of mind.
The hurdle this time around was the time between puppies. Some vets jump to a C section after no pups have been delivered for 3 hours. It is difficult for them make this call as they do not know the dog’s history. On Aura’s first litter of German Shepherd puppies she did take a very large break during whelping. I’d have to dig up the paperwork but if I recall correctly it was right around 5 hours.
One of the fears is dystocia, where the uterus stops working or becomes tired. After Aura’s last pup at 5:47PM we had no pups for several hours. There was no pushing though- Aura wasn’t in distress or tired. She simply popped out the puppy and decided to take a nap.
I took her out to walk her and she pulled with great force to go back inside to be near her pups. She had a ton of energy. And I had been exercising her for months. Dystocia was definitely not the problem.
An examination confirmed there were no pups stuck. They were simply deep inside of her and “not ready to come out yet”.
I have friends in the business who tell me their girls can take 18 hours to deliver. This would make a vet’s jaw drop.
Anyways, what to do. Wait? If so, how long? Would she have them? Would she need a C section? Are the pups dying? What is going on? Aura was definitely 100% healthy. What to do. We held out as long as we could. After 10 hours we arrived at the Emergency Vet and unpacked. An exam confirmed everything above and that the placentas were intact. The vet gave her 1 shot of Oxytocin. We waited. 30min later she started having small contractions which would push the remaining 2 puppies down the uterus.
I should point out here that waiting 10 hours is generally a very stupid thing to do. I am very in tune with Aura and spend every day with her. She also has amazing instincts and experience on her side. We read each other very well. I felt comfortable waiting. Was it her behavior? The position of her ears? The speed at which she was breathing? I’m not sure, but, it felt like the right thing to do. There is no right or wrong answer here. She may have even had them all by herself without intervention. Or, maybe she thought “she was done”.
Around 1AM she was “nesting”, which is basically scratching the floor of her whelping box furiously. Historically, she has never, ever done this unless her body tells her to and that pups are on the way. This was another “good” sign.
Anyways.. At 6AM, out came a perfect boy. We gave him the black collar, since we were “back in the black”. I had reserved this particular collar just for the occasion.
Speaking of collar colors…
The first pup was a girl. So, we gave her a pink collar (Why not?).
Pup #2 was a girl, so, we gave her a purple collar (the last of the “girl colors”).
Pup #3 was a boy, so, we gave him a blue collar.
Pup #4 arrived just after someone watching the live blog emailed us (thanks Queen Maebh!). They have the orange collared girl from the B litter and were rooting Aura on. Pup #4 was a girl, so, the orange collar went on. 🙂
Pup #5 was the boy who got the black collar when we were “back in the black”.
Pup #6 was a girl who got the yellow collar.
At some point in time we’ll have to fill out paperwork that is going to ask for the birth date. This usually requires 1 specific date for the entire litter. We’ll be putting down December 16, 2014, even though 2 came out early on the 17th.
Speaking of the 17th. Aura spent the entire day with the pups. We served her supper in the whelping box which she was thrilled to eat. Puppy food and cottage cheese. We add lots of great protein to her food while she’s nursing. Around 10PM I was able to convince her to get up and go potty, which she did in about 10 seconds and ran back in to see the pups. For the next 3 weeks it will be very difficult to separate her from them, even for the simple task of going outdoors for a moment.
This pic is of her around 9AM on the 12/17/2014 after returning home from the vet.
We’re all battling a cold here and I have slept very little today so it may be a day or two but we’ll definitely have more pics and news up soon!