Saturday, 18 August 2012

New Litter of Labrador Puppies

Last night my black lab Hattie produced a litter of 8 beautiful puppies, 4 black , 4 chocolate, 5 females, 3 boys. Just perfect.
She had the first puppy without any trouble during the afternoon but by 9 o'clock in the evening no more had appeared so we had to make an out-of-hours emergency visit to the vet. It was found that the next puppy in the queue had arranged iteslf sideways across the birth canal with one front leg sticking out. After much manipulation & judicious use of forceps the puppy was turned around and brought into the world, fine & healthy. We then returned home and from then on the puppies arrived at regular intervals with the last one  being born about 1 o'clock am. I sat up until I was sure there were no more to come & then left Hattie who was none the worse for the early difficulty & settled down proudly with her new family.
Our old Lab Poppy has as usual come into milk and over the next few days we will gradually introduce the puppies to her to be fed which eases the demands on Hattie. Poppy is a brilliant surrogate mother and loves feeding puppies. Even though it is a couple of years between litters she drops into the role very happily each time.
This morning Hattie was contendedly curled up with the puppies who look like little moles and squeak incessantly until they are warm & well-fed when they drop into the deep slumbers of tiny babies with the occasional twitch of a minute paw as they dream their milky dreams.

After the incessant rain yesterday, I don't think it stopped at all, today started out wet but now in the middle of the afternoon we have blue skies and sunshine which hopefully will dry up the sodden lawns and the squelching yard.

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