Archive for December, 2006

Everyone is Here Safe and Sound

Our household has a feeling of pride and thankfulness today, after a long night of worry and anticipation. Since Emma had only the one pup last time, it was anyone’s guess if carrying this many would present unusual problems for her. She did extremely well with no hiccups in her birthing adventure. The final count stands at nine total puppies with three being female and six being males.

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Three of our four children were still here for the holidays, and all kept vigil overnight. Brian, Lauren, and Kristen all helped with the process, and I was home as well so the timing couldn’t have been better. Like most human labors, deliveries seem to arrive more often in the wee hours. Notice the clock time in the whelping room. This photo was taken about half way through Emma’s labor.

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For the rest of the today we will reflect on just how amazing the miracle of new life is. And be thankful for the blessings that have been bestowed on our human and dog family this holiday week. Emma’s adventure started month’s ago with plans and hopes to correct her infertility situation. Those dreams have come to pass due to the amazing technology of veterinary medicine as well as the hard work of all involved.

For those family members and friends and clients waiting to hear from us about their place on our list and their dream of a golden puppy, we ask your patience. We are all sleep deprived here today, and we will contact everyone sometime this weekend. If anyone who has already contacted us is serious about a pup, filling out the puppy questionaire is the first step in the process. Please complete it if you haven’t already. These are our puppy children and we take the responsibility of finding great homes for them seriously.

Tonight we will visit Dr. Feldman to check out the puppies and Emma for any unexpected issues.

New Life Arrives in Dogville!

This morning at 1:45 AM Emma began having her pups. She has been restless for the last 36 hours, and Barb and I have kept close watch over her in the whelping box area. So far six, no, now seven, healthy pups have arrived safely. Four males and two females and now another female as I write this. She is still in labor and we expect another one to three pups. Here are a few initial pictures with more to follow after her labor has ended. What a mom she is! Thankfully everyone is doing well.
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Puppy Puzzle, and Emma’s Temperature Is Dropping

Thanks to the computer knowledge of our eldest son, Mike Jr., we found a way to put Emma’s XRay from yesterday at the vet on our blog. The puppies at her back end are so crowded together, it’s like Times Square on New Year’s Eve. Counting the actual number of puppies is impossible, even with the magnifying glass that I tried. At least eight is what Dr. Feldman and Barb and I can figure. This number fits in with the last utrasound I did. But it is very possible to miss one or two with these stuffed quarters. So we will have to patiently wait and be surprised, and we may have to do another XRay, after her labor appears over to be sure everyone is out. Enlarge the photo by clicking on the XRay and try your own count if you would like. The easiest way is to count heads or spines.


Preparations for the birth took on a more urgent pace last night when we took Emma’s temperature and found that it was already under 100 degrees. Usually our dogs run 101 plus. When the temp is below 100 degrees at term and then drops further, that usually signifies labor will start within one to two days. So we hastily made up my cot and got the final equipment and supplies ready.

For those readers that are new to us and our breeding habits, my new place of sleep for the next three weeks will be by the whelping box. We don’t want to take any chance of a little pup getting into trouble, and especially want to prevent Emma from inadvertently rolling onto any of them. Vigilant and interrupted nights are nothing new to an old obstetrician like me, but it certainly will be different hearing puppy squeaks rather than the sounds of human labor. Emma is at my feet sleeping while I type this. Despite having a house full of company and lots of things to still do for the holiday crowd that is coming, Barb or I will continually keep watch.

Emma’s Slowing Down

The anticipation is building here for Emma’s labor. Her due date is 12/28/06. This just adds another level of excitement to the preparations we are going through for the influx of family and friends due to arrive at the end of this week for the holidays. We are expecting family from Mexico and friends from England along with our local folks and friends. All our children will be home also. Should be quite a household gathering, and if Emma goes into labor early, everyone will get an extra special treat. Though I’m not sure Emma will appreciate delivering with an audience of twenty plus people. She is definitely looking like a wide body from the back.


Emma had her bath this week by us. The other dogs went to the kennel for their grooming, but we did not want to let her out of our sight. Plus we wanted avoid any possibility of her picking up some cough or illness that might have been around.

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She is moving a lot more slowly as you can imagine. She takes her time getting on and off the bed and waits for the light to go on before she jumps down. A very smart mom to be! She doesn’t try to keep up with the other dogs on our walks now and stays close to me more than ever.


In two days we have a visit to the vet for an XRay, so we can gauge more accurately the number of pups inside her. There are a good number of families waiting anxiously for their safe arrival. The countdown continues.

Christmas Tidings

Like children hopefully awaiting Santa’s magical coming and treasured gifts, we await the promise of new life and golden beginnings for the week after Christmas. Barbara and I and our whole golden family wish our family, friends, and clients much health and happiness during this holiday time.

Our whelping box, like an empty stocking, sits ready to receive life’s new blessings.


Our three “wise” stuffed animals are like the three friends who kept Solo company when she was the only occupant from Emma’s last litter. They were meant to help socialize her since she didn’t have any other littermates.

I hope you enjoy these photos of “Christmas past”.

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Best wishes to all,
Barb and Mike.

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