Saturday, October 20, 2012

One Year of Puppy Love!

    We went on vacation over Thanksgiving last year and while we were gone our dog had eight puppies (four female and four male). We got home from vacation and had the best welcoming comity ever. Our dog, Lady, was allowed to get pregnant in the first place because Mom thought it would be educational and memorable for us to watch a few puppies grow up. I doubt Mom was had the number EIGHT in mind.

Ten Days Old
    The pup's father, Bolto, was an drop off that we've had since I was Twelve. He's an old scrooge most of the time, but I equate it to arthritis and still love him best. Bolto is a mix breed, but he looks like a retriever, collie mix ... Who Knows?
    Lady, the pup's mother, was another mix breed we bought on Craig's List. We're pretty sure she's a hound, beagle mix. What does it make these Pups? Mutts! The best type of dog in the world!

Ten Days Old

Twenty Days Old
    They moved from a plastic tub (lined with old sleeping bag and straw) in the garage to a crate in the woodshed. But because the woodshed was so cold (It was December!) we often were allowed to play with them in the house. The first day we were only allowed in the laundry room on rag towels, but as the days progressed the puppies slowly wheedled their way into the kitchen, which became their favorite place because the heater kept it toasty.

One Month Old
One and a Half Months Old
    When they were a month and a half old we could tell all of them apart. Where, before, they had been helpless meatballs, they were now scampering fur-balls. It was about this time that they all got names. We knew we wouldn't be keeping all of them, but we had fun coming up with eight names anyway. The four females were Jules (Evolved from Jewel), Belle (Not after Twilight's Belle), Whitey, and Ruby. The four males were Shaska (It means a single handed, single edged sword), Chubbs (the most rolly-polly puppy you ever did see), Shadow, and Spencer.
    The two pictured above are Shaska and Ruby (right to left)

One and a Half Months Old
    They weren't only they fur-balls though, they were escape artists. When they became able to crawl out of the crate we put a semicircle of hog wire up to give them a little muddy yard. Jules was the first to discover that if she climbed two rungs she could wriggle through the bars. Because she was the smallest she was able to get through without any snags, but they others had to shove their fat little puppy bodies through the wire. It was hilarious to watch. All the puppies discovered the loophole, but only seven successfully ... all except Chubbs :)

Shaska ...One and a Half Months Old
Whitey ... One and a Half Months Old
    At six months we advertized them in our local Amish-run bulk food store just two minutes up the road. We found homes for three of the females, and the shelter found homes for three of the males. We were allowed to keep two and after some thought we decided to keep Shaska & Jules. 
    We kept Jules because she was gorgeous (the black marks on her eyes look like an Egyptian princess), faster than anything, and as smart as a whip. We decided to Keep Shaska because he seemed to be the most loyal. He seemed to know what we were feeling and would sympathize.  

Three Months Old
    Bolto was extraordinary with our cats, he never growled at or chased her (maybe I should equate that to the arthritis too :) ... But Stormy, our all black cat pictured above, had to learn how to deal with a bit of a beating. We thought she would leave us, but thankfully she is very tolerant and very motherly. One minute the two pups are dragging her by the scruff, and the next she's licking away their tears. 

Six Months Old
   All in all it's been a grand adventure. It was hard letting six of our babies go, but we loved it while it lasted ... and we're still having a grand adventure with our two new family members. This next month will mark a full year of Puppy Love ... and We're Still Lovin' It!

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