Tuesday, June 30, 2009

They Made It Through The Night

Well, we survived the night! Actually it was a great day to put the puppies out yesterday. Not too hot and it never rained as promised. Very cloudy but a good day. They hung out under the tarp for most of their time out there and I did have to place them inside the pig hut at night, but apparently they stayed put as I found them all inside it and cozy warm this morning. As you can see, we have great success now with the large pan and eating formula/milk. Adding a bit of regular milk and will gradually change over. Also visible here are their new collars/colors. The details:
# 1 is now yellow, female
# 2 is now pink, female
# 3 is now blue, male
# 4 is now purple, female
# 5 is now turquoise, female
# 6 is now dark green, male
# 7 is now red, male
# 8 is now rose, female
# 9 is now light green, female
# 10 is now black, female
So for the full day they've been outside and free to move about, I can see that # 9, the light green girl is one of the first to always come over by me. Climbs up on my leg already, very social. Purple girl #4 is a close second here. All the others are much less inclined altho I suspect that will change drastically as they become familiar with the pan of food. I use a spoon to clang on it, sort of like Pavlov's bell, and a few are beginning to respond already. Give it another day or so and they'll all be running when I approach. I am grateful for such a good night!

Monday, June 29, 2009


OK, they've been fighting this a bit. But today, just now, they all inhaled the milk from the pan nicely. Well, as nice as crazy hungry puppies can be. Now it's just a matter of converting them over to whole milk slowly and then adding pulverized food, then less fluid, etc. This weaning turnover happens so quickly, within 3 weeks or so. But I'm THRILLED they all took to this bowl outside. Yippee!!!!!!


Oh my, I bit the bullet and moved them all outside today. All they do is pee, pee, pee and so it's time. The fresh air will do them good and they're old enough to handle the weather, be it cool or hot. I put up a 12x16 tarp (hopefully it won't blow away) over the back end of the kennel they're in. It's secured in a number of spots with a slant for drainage and let's hope it works. Never did that before. But it's gonna be hot outside and there are so many, they need a place of shade where there is good air flow, not just the pig hut. And....this will also hopefully block the view from any hungry hawks. No, I'm not kidding, that's a reality. I'll leave Bella with them for a week then I will put up a wooden barrier by the adjoining kennel so she can hop in and out at her convenience but lock her with them at night. So keep your fingers crossed for a good week.
Bella was good as always tending to their needs. I first moved them out this morning (using the 2 bins to carry five in each) for about 15 minutes out in grass and sun. So little miss light green on the left seemed the most adventuresome today. Very interesting!Later I made the choice to go for it, bought the tarp and set up house. Here they are inside the pig hut, yiping, squirming around. Bella was beginning to dig a spot in the pig hut.Gabi and Rosie look on, I'm sure wondering who the heck are all these guys making all this noise?Here's the crew chillin' out in the shade. No they didn't crawl out there themselves, I moved the babies to be near their mom. One dish of water for them for now, and one of them even stuck her face in and licked some. Yahoo!! Will try formula (again) later this afternoon.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Father's Day picture

Been very busy here. Puppies all went for a 2 week wellness check on Tuesday morning. Put them into 2 rubbermaid bins and trucked them off. Everyone has gained weight nicely, we have no heart murmurs, no umbilical hernias, no problems with anything. It's just incredible! Back home to oppressive heat and so we're running the AC, which we rarely do. However, these guys do not need to get overheated at their age. Bella is feeding them as best she can but they all get supplements twice a day still. I'm changing their collars often as they grow. We now begin to introduce formula in a saucer. Nobody much wanted that this morning, and I had a mess all over me, tipped saucer many times, puppies turning up their noses at this strange new way to eat etc. But we'll keep offering it to them and soon they'll get the hang of it. Puppy # 10 was the only one who sort of took to it, but she's the largest and almost expected. Here is a picture taken on Father's Day. Had the party here and 10 people decided to hold puppies and get this snapshot. Very cute. Oh yeah, puppies are now peeing big time without stimulation from mom. So we are changing bedding often as 10 puppies making 10 puddles many times during the day just makes for a smelly mess. Soon they'll go outside 24/7 and that's a GOOD THING :)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Saturday pictures

Here are four of them piling on top of one another. Eyes are open and they're moving around very fast within the confines of their whelping box. Next week (around the 23-25) they will move to living outside 24/7 with Bella. I have 2 huge kennels with shelter and one will be for puppies and Bella can get some relief by moving over into the adjacent kennel whenever she wants. Probably won't post now for a few days as we're very busy here this weekend. Hi to Kathe and Lisa who visited from MN yesterday. You were wonderful houseguests and we can't wait go come visit you this August! Just a quick shot this morning before I'm off to bake and clean etc. Hosting Father's Day lunch here tomorrow. All ten are over 2 lbs. Doing fine. Will do a wellness check on Tuesday morning. Don't expect to hear anything except that they're all great!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Number 8 on her back

Last picture of the day. I found #8 lying there so peacefully with her sister # 4 across her neck. Just too cute to pass up.

Being weighed

So here's how we start the day. They are getting 2 small supplemental feedings per day. Bella is doing her part but we just want steady gains. All puppies HATED the powdered formula so I switched back to the goat's milk pre-made and had a hard time finding enough of it. I first weigh all puppies each morning and then one by one they get their little bit out of bottles. 9 out of 10 puppies have reached the 2 lb. mark this morning. The last one is close behind. My beautiful scale came with a nice matching bowl but they have outgrown that one. So I move up to another size and pretty soon, I'll have to change that too.Number 1 puppy really did not pop her head up too much but scrambled around the bowl. Ms. 2 was moving a bit and I had to snap this photo quickly. I am not the best photographer. But these were all taken with my iphone.

Well, he was moving around and this slightly blurred picture is the best I could get for Mr. 3.
Ms. 4 posed beautifully for me this morning. One of the rare moments.
Number 5 was quiet enough, at least for this picture, then she started moving all over. I was lucky to get this one shot. Number 6 was pretty good for me and I've taken a liking to him. Hmmmmm, will this be the male I keep? Don't know yet. So Mr. 7 was nice enough to hold still while he felt the need to get out of the bowlWell, number 8 was quiet enough that I could get this decent shot of her.Here's 9, she was more interested in climbing out than being weighed. I have to hold the bowl or they tip it and fly out. OK, well 10 was climbing out of the bowl. She is a large girl and by the time I get to 10, there's the smell of formula in the air, and she's looking for it. And, here they are after being fed (supplemented a bit by me) and put back with mom. They still attack her as if they are starving. Pushing and shoving, it's the strongest first and all others, move over!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Tuesday night whew!

So as you can imagine it's busy here trying to watch and observe these 10 puppies. All seem fine, all have gained weight. 3 are now over 2 lbs. Amazing. They are not gaining by leaps and bounds but steadily. Here is a photo of them in the box while I'm changing the bedding in the whelping box. They are now big enough to really fill it up, except I kept spreading them out and they kept piling on top of one another. There's just so many!! I will have to find another bin to hold them while I clean every day. Many now have little slits for eyes as they are beginning to open. For the most part, they're not terribly loud, except when I move them when they are so comfortable in their sibling pile up. And their pigmentation is coming in on all the muzzles and some with the pads of their feet. Fascinating to watch. OK, it's late enough and I'm tired from working outside today and keeping track of all the dogs, sheep and chickens. Oh yeah, my husband too. I hear the dryer buzzer sounding...time to go.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Additional Pictures from 6.11.09

We are having such fun with the litter of Tatra puppies. Some personalities are beginning to show. Nobody likes having their weight taken and I can only imagine how they'll feel having their nails cut tomorrow. I am truly amazed and grateful that all are gaining weight and doing so well. It's interesting now to observe their pigmentation, who's developing the black muzzles first and so on.
Bella was excellent while we took so many pictures. She was certainly attentive to us handling her puppies but just watchful, not upset. She's such a good mom!
Ah, the good life!

I'm pooped from all the excitement!

Yes, it IS this much fun having all these puppies here!!

Individual Puppy Pictures 6.11.l09

Took these photos of individual puppies on Thursday 6/11/09 but did not have time to post them until this morning. Friends Ginny and Kel came by and he's a good photographer and snapped the shots while we held them. The puppies were squirming around so these are the best shots we could get. All have been gaining weight steadily and that's awesome considering the size of this litter. I've had to change their color coded collars a few times to account for the growth factor. Tomorrow I had better cut their little nails because they are sharp and we don't want them scratching Mom Bella as they nurse. Enjoy the pictures! Please disregard the owner's double chin in pictures :)

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Got through the 2nd night just fine. Mom Bella is really doing a nice job, I am so pleased with her mothering skills so far. Keeping them clean and apparently pretty well fed. I did do a little supplementing yesterday and will for while to make sure all are gaining equally but they seem to be doing great! What fun it is to watch and listen to them. All the little twitching going on, all the wagging tails, all the little yelps. Bella is consuming huge amounts of food already and this will continue as she tries to keep up with the demand. But she's also being very sweet to visitors, which we had a few yesterday. Everyone kept quiet while observing but there were no growls or barks, just her lying there looking up at all of us. She is such a sweet dog and she's proving me out by her demeanor.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Here we are again, seems all they do is eat, which is very good. All except one lost a little weight which is expected. I will closely monitor their weights to make sure they all gain. I'll supplement with goat's milk formula if need be. Mom Bella is doing a very good job so far of cleaning them and overall care. She is such a sweet dog and is turning into a very sweet mother! Maybe later today I can get some shots of each one. Lots to do as I've put off misc. work to handle puppies and whelping. But who cares when there's puppies to watch! Something fun is to watch all their little fat tails wag away as they're nursing. It's the cutest!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Well this has been quite the day! Here they are again, all snuggled together and looking pretty content. 2 Red collars and 1 Green collar are the boys. All the rest of those are GIRLS!!
Here's my Bella Busta looking all back to normal (well except for all those large hanging pink teats now) but her slim outline is nice to see. Almost didn't recognize her there for a few weeks.

And back at the milk bar.....

It's now time for the human to take a nap! Maybe tomorrow I can get some closeups of each puppy. Until then.......

Our dear sweet Bella Busta finally had her puppies. Actually, she wasn't late she was right on time but she was in labor for a full day before the big event. She was quite calm through it all and here is a shot of 10 (count the feet) Tatra Puppies!! Someone is hiding under Mr. Green. 7 Females and 3 Males. More later after I get some sleep. She seems to be doing just fine. I don't do as well with no sleep.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Just in case the stork comes early, we did a little shaving and getting ready for the big event.

Monday, June 1, 2009


Just got back from our vet visit after x-rays with Bella to see how many puppies we might be having. Well, it looks like a full house! 8 for sure, more likely 10 after a 2nd picture taken and as always one or two could have been hiding. So now it's into puppy watch mode and preparing for the main event. Looking at June 9-14 for whelping dates. Wow!