Mowing the Grass Redefined Aug. 27, 2016
It's been a good week! (Except for that 2-3 day period in the middle when I... never mind.)
On Monday, I finally found someone to do the yard the way I want it done, the way I used to do it before I started using doctors... again, never mind. Anyway, suffice it to say the grass is short and the weeds et. You can even see the address sign! And I'm going to have to do some work on that! Of course, it costs more than before. But.
Then, on Friday, I took Peri and Zuri to the new groomer. And they came back looking TERRIFIC! And happy... they were jumping up, pet me style, as they were led out to me. I really like it when the dogs act like they've made new friends. And Tammy is tired of my apologies for the condition their coats were in when I dropped them off. They were absolutely awful, but underneath, their skin was in good shape, so being almost 6 weeks late for the shampoo and cut didn't hurt them. Tuesday, the oldsters... Diamond and Sparky... are going in. Big difference, even though they are several weeks overdue, they're POODLES. And from pet lines which means their coats are coarse and curly and unmated. Of course, the new groomer costs more than before. But.
And then there is my youngest child's new... and interesting... idea for a career change. Since Oregon has legalized pot use, growing it is big business. And lucrative. You see where this is going, right? So the current idea is to buy property in the Willamette Valley (where we lived when the kids were in school and where they still have lots of friends) and get the licenses... we've decided to go for a growers license... that's for planting... and the producer license... for harvesting. Yep, two separate licenses, currently $4500. Per year. Just getting to the part where the first plant goes into the ground will take a couple years. Which will give "us" time to figure out how to get me and a dozen dogs from here to there. And to hire a crew to... mow the grass!
Speaking of harvesting, three pups going home at the end of the week.
Great Olympic Results Aug. 23, 2016
Things have wrapped up in Rio, but there is one event that was totally ignored in the televised coverage and media.
John sent me these photos showing Bob and Lula's gold medal form in synchronized sleeping.
California Chrome Wipes Up the Track with Pacific Classic Field Aug. 21, 2016
I forgot to mention the Pacific Classic which was run yesterday at Del Mar Racetrack in southern California. It was a match up between the US's all time greatest earning TB (5 year old California Chrome, aka Junior,) last year's Pacific Classic winner (the 6 year old MARE, Beholder) and the 4 year old, Dortmund (considered one of the best of American Pharoah's crop of competitors) and six others. Junior drew the rail position, which was considered to be a severe handicap considering the speed in the field and his often slower starts. However, this is not the same colt who won the 2014 Kentucky Derby and Preakness. THIS is the 2016 version... the same horse who went to Dubai early this year and won the $10 million World Cup with his saddle slipped all the way back to his rump. He broke sharply, took the lead and just kept going without any encouragement from his jockey. Beholder and Dortmund kept waiting for him to take a breather so they could catch him. He decided it was easy enough to stay in front of them he didn't need a breather and every time they picked up the pace, he did as well, pulling away nicely and finishing 5 lengths in front, well under control. Beholder's jockey, Gary Stevens, said Victor Espinosa, Jr's jockey, was just playing with them and never turned the horse loose... "That's scary to think about." Victor, who rode American Pharoah to his Triple Crown and subsequent victories last year, said California Chrome was the best horse he had ever ridden. Those of us who have loved this colt since he started racing as a 2 YO knew it all along!
A $1 million dollar bonus had been offered by Del Mar racetrack to the horse who wins the Pacific Classic AND the Oct. 1st Awesome Again Stakes AND the Nov. 5th Breeders Cup Classic. As of yesterday, the only horse with a chance at the prize is California Chrome.
So, back to Peri's puppies!
They've just turned 10 weeks old and now weigh:
(ordered by size)
Finn (Cola) -- 10-1/2# (was 6-1/4)
Cherry (female) -- 11# (was 7)
Ranger (Lemon) -- 11-1/4# (was 6-3/4)
Archie (Mel Yellow) -- 11-3/4# (was 7-1/4)
Zeph (Orange) -- 11-3/4# (was 7-1/2)
They also MUCH prefer their puppy kibble to adult food, which is rather unusual... but there's no telling for taste!
Stairs and Water Bowls and Other Playthings Aug. 16, 2016
The pups have discovered the splish and splash method of emptying the water bowl. Several times a day. They wait for me to fill it up... because it is dry often... and everyone takes a big drink. Then, someone's feet go in the bowl. A little digging... and the floor is wet while the bowl is damp. It is not always the same pup with his... or her... feet in the bowl. And it is something every litter discovers. Like newspaper. People ask me why I don't do more "candid" shots of the pups playing. There are two reasons... the first is as soon as I pick up the camera, the playing stops and the second is there is always... ALWAYS!... newspaper torn up all over the pen. Clean newspaper, but it is still messy. As soon as I put new paper down, the pups grab it and play all sorts of games with it... catch-me-and-take-it-away, tug-of-war, who-can-make-the-smallest-piece, to name a few. There is always a sheet or two left in the potty area and it is used for that purpose. The pups never ever play with a used piece of paper. And then there are the stairs... which have been in the pen all along but ignored until recently. Now a couple are big enough and have figured out how to get up the first and second steps. Front feet might be placed on the top, but, so far, no one has ventured all four. The other pups are tentatively trying the first step. Getting up is often easier than getting down, which they discover AFTER they get up.
Candids Aug. 12, 2016
The pups were scattered all over the pen, doing puppy things. Two fussing on the slide, one practicing perching on the first step of the stairs and the other two sleeping against the pen as close to me as they could get. So I picked up the camera and quiet as a mouse, stood up and took one... ONE... step, leaned over the wire and got a picture. Then everyone asleep was awake and everyone awake was in the far corner of the pen (almost 14 feet away.) Eventually, when there were no more flashes, they started moving around a bit and I got a couple other shots. However, they decided I wasn't putting the camera away and retreated back to the far corner where I managed to get one last picture of four of them.
There is a composite, with a couple other shots on the puppies' page.
Non Dog Things Settling Down Aug. 9, 2016
Sometimes, normal life takes over and the dogs, including pups, become just a part of it. Such has been the case for almost a week. Between illness... most likely a summer flu... and just getting regular chores taken care of, there has been little time... or inclination... to be on the computer. Thank goodness, puppy choosing was finished early! Watching the pups romp and play every evening has been about the only enjoyment I've had for the last few days. They are starting to eyeball the stairs, but are still short legged enough to not be climbing them. They did have the slide pushed up against them for a while and several made it up on the bottom step which they used first as a perch and then as a launching pad for leaps into space. Since it is only about 8 inches off the ground none of them made it to the moon... but a few experienced NON soft landings, not that that deterred them from trying again.
Picture taking is on the tentative schedule.
If You Blinked, You Missed It Aug. 3, 2016
Picking was scheduled to begin tomorrow. But the family with first pick knew yesterday which pup they wanted. And the family with second pick knew yesterday which one they wanted. And the family with third pick knew as soon as I emailed them this morning to tell them who was available, which one they wanted. And the family who was fourth in line still got the puppy they wanted. For the first time that I can remember, everyone, including the family who really doesn't get a pick, got their first or second choice. YEA!
AND the boys all have names:
Cola King -- Finn
Lemon Twist -- Ranger
Mellow Yellow -- Archie
Orange Crush -- Zeph
The pups met a person today. Except for Saturday, when we were outside taking pictures and I had human help, they have not seen two legged critters other than me. Saturday didn't count because they were outside for the first time ever... the breeze ruffling their coats and the sun glaring in their eyes... they didn't even notice there were people there. But today, Keri came to clean and she was in the room they are now in. I had to take Peri out of their pen and lock her in a crate in the bedroom because she immediately went into "Touch my kids... even LOOK at my kids... and answer to me" mode. Which, unfortunately made more of an impression the pups than on Keri. They all went to the furthest, most inaccessible corner of the pen and stayed there the whole time she was here. They didn't buy my reassurances. After all, who you going to trust... your momma or The One Who Walks Upright? Poor babies. They've got a lot of learning in store the next couple weeks.
Puppy Weights Aug. 1, 2016
The pups are 7-1/2 weeks old and there is little to be surprised about in how much they weigh. Only a pound and a quarter separates the smallest and the largest.
Cherry Delight (female) is right in the middle at an even 7 pounds.
The boys, smallest to largest:
Cola King -- 6-1/4#
Lemon Twist -- 6-3/4
Mellow Yellow -- 7-1/4
Orange Crush -- 7-1/2 pounds
They even did it in alphabetical order!
After playing practically non-stop Saturday, they slept practically non-stop yesterday. Today they're up, wrestling and chasing around and irritating their mother who has gotten back into mother mode since they moved out of the bedroom. Everybody is happy with the larger living quarters and the new toys. None of them has tried the stairs as yet, but they enjoy JUMPING off the slide... the highest point is only 10-12 inches, so there is little chance they'll get hurt and it is something they have to learn. PLUS, and this is big, the newspaper is in one 4' by 6' area and they are all using it and not "going" anywhere else. That is, the newspaper starts out in that area and then gets picked up and dragged all over. They only play with the new, clean paper. No dummies in this group!
Big Day for the Soda Pops July 30, 2016
The photos that should have been taken yesterday were put off until today because I stared with what I used to call "a sick headache" on Wednesday and ended up spending as much of Thursday and Friday as I could in bed with what I've been informed is really a "migraine." Usually, getting some caffeine... extra caffeine... in my system takes care of the ache and upset stomach and lights swirling and flashing, etc. Sometimes, it doesn't. This one laughed at more caffeine. Today is better. AND I coerced help with photo taking so I could do it outside. The end result of which is the pups have been moved into the main room where they have fallen in love with the slide, the shoe, the stuffed doll, the plastic bottles... but mainly the slide. I caught the first one to climb up on the tall end and have his feet slip out from under him,, sending him sliding down on his belly. He absolutely smiled in delight. Jumped up and ran around to do it again. They have all had the experience now and have also had the joy of moving the slide across the pen so the low end butts up against the water bowl.... They crammed more play in this afternoon that in all of the previous week. But, back to photos....
We were outside, around 3 PM, 90+, direct sun. I could not see on the camera what the lens was seeing so tops of heads... and sometimes the sides of faces... and bottoms of feet have been lost. BUT the color is more accurate... prepare to be amazed... and you can see the pattern of the markings. Once again, the black will fade away... masks will disappear and much of the tipping... and the areas that are lightest now will continue to spread over faces, across chests, down legs and throughout bodys. What you see now is NOT what you'll see in 6 months much less a year.
The female, Cherry Delight
The plan is to get weights tomorrow or Monday.
Now where is that caffeine?
Topsy Turvy July 28, 2016
I have said before that the dogs... and pups... tend to read the blog and whenever they can, do their best to make a liar out of me. In this case, the pups have turned off the good behavior and started the canine version of "the terrible twos!" And Peri has decided she is spending too much time with them, if she spends any time at all. AND today, they made their first great escape. So, since I'm busy tomorrow, on Friday they are moving to the big pen in the media room. At least, when I turn the lights off and go to bed, I won't hear their yells of protest.
Actually, I'm glad they've turned into normal puppies.
Boring is NOT Bad! July 26, 2016
Just to clarify... boring is a good... GOOD... thing. Especially as this is the third group of pups I've had to deal with this year. Of course, the first group were headed out the door when the year started, but they were busy kids. As were Nugget's six who just left last month. It's nice to have some who are somewhat more sedate, if only for the time being!
Here are today's pictures:
Boring! July 25, 2016
If you look up boring in the dictionary there is a photo of Peri's puppies. They are healthy, happy and doing just what 6 weeks old pups should be doing. They, so far, have been absolutely no trouble. Their mom is gone at least 22 hours a day, hopping into the pen to nurse them for a few moments, clean up after them (yep, she's still doing that... she's boring too!) and maybe spending a few moments letting them pull her ears and tail, then hopping back out. All five pups run to the gate and stand there, hanging over it, watching her disappear out of the room. Then, without making a peep of protest, they go back to playing with each other. Boring. They have gotten so big, they could get over the gate... if they tried. But it won't be until one of them accidentally FALLS out that they realize they can escape. They won't be boring after that. But then I'll move them to the big pen in the media room... with a MUCH higher gate... and they'll go back to... you know.
Neither Freezing Rain nor Snow nor Sleet nor Hail July 22, 2016
Will be enough to cool me off! Our normal number of days above 90 every summer is 17. A few days ago we were at 25 with 10-14 more... in a row... predicted. The a.c. is working great... just ask the dogs who run outside and right back in in less than 5 minutes.
So... pictures. The pups were unusually cooperative for pups their age. Actually they've been that way since they were born. They are still in the puppy pen in the bedroom and all of us are still happy with that. But both their parents are pretty easy to live with. Well, with restrictions... Peri climbs out of every pen and jumps every gate and Boon doesn't like other dogs too much, especially males. But those things are easy fixes. (Peri has her very own crate and Boon his very own pen.)
Here are the soda pop kids...
Cherry Delight (the girl)
Checklist July 21, 2016
First individual photos: tomorrow.
The OTHER Pups Who Live Here July 18, 2016
Thanks for being so patient, waiting for new pix of the younger babies!
Two of the males
The other two guys
As a point of interest, the pup on the right is what is considered "a good snake dog" in Georgia because he has a back dewclaw on each hind foot. Exactly why that increases a dog's prowess against snakes, no one has ever been able to explain to me.
The Fat Lady Sang July 17, 2016
People ask me all the time if it bothers me to send puppies off to their new homes. "Don't you get attached?" The answers are "yes and no" and "yes and no." Sometimes the home just seems absolutely perfect for a puppy. Sometimes the puppy seems absolutely perfect for a home. Sometimes the match seems absolutely perfect. And sometimes the home and/or puppy seems like there is going to be some work involved before it's perfect. And every once in a while, I have doubts.... As for getting attached, they're MY puppies! Of course, I'm attached. But while I love them all (they're MY puppies,) I don't like them equally. Like a teacher with a class of 6 year olds. And sometimes there is A puppy who spends his... or more often, her... first 12 weeks trying to convince me it is MINE.
Occasionally, one pup is unspoken for, even after picks have been made at 8 weeks. Inquirers will ask what is wrong with it, why wasn't it picked by somebody else. The answer is there is nothing wrong with it... and it wasn't picked already because the right person for that puppy hasn't shown up yet. Generally, if I am planning to keep a puppy from a litter, I don't pick one. I let everyone else pick and I keep the "leftover." It has worked out every time! So much for all the articles and theories on how to pick the right puppy!
So yesterday, Monkey moved to Georgia. He really enjoyed his two days of being the only puppy, of living large with the big dogs, of getting all the attention without even having to ask for attention.
Peri's pups will move into the spotlight after the weekend... as soon as I get caught up!
Did I already say that?
Down to One Nugget July 13, 2016
Well, one Nugget PUPPY! Monkey is the last to leave and having been alone since about 7 this morning, he's wondering where everyone else has disappeared to. He's actually been quite good... only crying a couple times... but he is definitely not a happy guy right now. I'm going to let him sleep in the bedroom... loose for the first time... tonight. Don't know how much sleep any of us is going to get since Patsy is still in there and she's not used to puppies. Have to tell you, this morning she was sleeping with her butt pressed up against the wire of the puppy pen. One of Peri's babies woke up when I turned on the light and noticed Pat's hair sticking through the fence. He reached out and tapped her a couple times. She woke up and jumped about 3 feet! Then she whirled around and tried to see what had attacked her. Of course, the pup had been startled when jumped, so he backed off and was sitting there with an innocent look on his face. Pat spent maybe 5 minutes searching around the pen, before settling down again... this time, next to the bed.
So Tan Bear (now Baxter) left, and then Hippo/Cal... who walked away willingly ON lead with his three new kids... and Fox, this morning, all snuggled up with his new mom and not his Broadway star dad. Fame doesn't mean much to puppies!
Peri's pups will move into the spotlight after the weekend... as soon as I get caught up!
The Pups Gave Peace a Chance July 7, 2016
And we were pretty much back to normal last night, with the pups sleeping in The Pen. Peri stayed in there as well, although the gate is open... blocked with a foot high barrier to keep pups in (should they ever get out of the box.) Then, this morning, after the rain stopped and the first gang came in from outside, Peri hopped right back in the pen, got in the box and fed the Pops. Now she's stretched out where they can see her and they are content. By the way, the girl gets back IN the box just as easily as she gets out. And nobody else has even tried to "escape." Good thing she's a puppy and not eligible for the US Presidency!
Soda Pops - 1, Me - 0 July 6, 2016
The puppies cried/howled/barked and/or yodeled for 10 straight hours. Sometimes all at once, sometimes just one or two at a time. BUT they were never all silent at the same time. Thank goodness, I was on the other side of the house with the tv on and a couple air conditioners masking the racket. I checked on them and there was never anything wrong. Peri was always in the pen, just not in the box. Also not in the box was... the female pup. She was also not making any noise. I put her back a couple times, but to no avail. When I went in to go to bed, she was roaming around the bedroom, happy as a lark. Patsy is in the bedroom and didn't seem too impressed. 'The pup is too big to eat and too little to play with, so what good is she' seemed to be Pat's take on the situation. Not exactly what I would have liked... I'd rather she be enchanted with puppies and want some of her own.... Anyway, I gave in to the squalling and put all the pups back in the crate for the night. When Peri came in from her last time outside, she looked in the pen, then asked to be put in the crate with the young'uns. Too bad for her... she ended up staying there all night long. But the pups nursed, then slept... ALL night long.
So, the girl is the first "first to... " winner, since she got out of the box. Several times!
And the Pop-puppies ARE back in the box in the pen today. Quiet. Guess they've had time to think it over.
The two Nuggets who've moved out
have sent good reports on their new living arrangements. And pictures.
I've Created Monsters July 5, 2016
Usually, I move pups from the newborn "nest" which is a German Shepherd size crate (on top of a Great Dane size crate for easy access for ME) when they are around two to almost 3 weeks old, depending on how big the litter is. At two weeks, Peri's puppies where perfectly comfortable in the crate. And why not.? She was still spending 23 hours a day with them and cleaning up every little drip or dropping they produced. They never made a peep. However, a day or two before they turned three weeks, she began spending a lot more time away from home and the very moment the first of the five turned three weeks, she decided making appearances at meal times and maybe spending a few hours in between was what they needed. As a result, the bottom of the crate wasn't as dry as before and the little darlings were damp between mom's visits. So today I moved them to the puppy pen in the bedroom. Now, this is much bigger than the crate but MUCH smaller than the pen in the "media" room. It's plenty of space for three to as much as five weeks old pups, depending on how active they are. BUT the pups start out in a box nest in the pen, a box with just 6 inch high sides so they very quickly learn to get out, then back in. The purpose is to keep them confined for a day or two, until they get used to the new smells and lighting... and dogs other than mom being at nose level. Peri's pups have always been so content, they have seldom made a sound. Well...
There WAS the night they turned 3 weeks old. The night Peri fed them, went out for a potty break and then parked herself under the bed rather than asking to be put back with them. No problem for the pups. They woke up, mom still not home, explored the familiar confines of their living quarters and waited. But then I got in MY bed and turned out the light. And they were alone... in the DARK... for the first time. Pups know instinctively how to howl. Which they did. But only for a few minutes. When neither mom nor monsters arrived, they shut up, piled up and went to sleep. And they haven't howled since. Well...
Until this afternoon. Now they're in a new place and mom hasn't spent much time with them. She's in the pen, but outside the box. They can smell her. They can see her. They cannot reach her. And she doesn't care. She steps in the box, licks some bottoms, lies down for several minutes for nursing, then steps back outside the box. The food bowl is in the box, so the pups have food. (Did I tell you they started eating mom's kibble... which is puppy food... at 3 weeks, right on cue?) And there is a small bowl of water if they get thirsty, although water isn't real high up on their desirable liquids list right now. But they are not yet comfortable with their environment. So they are howling. Rather insistently. And CONsistently. When Peri gets tired of it... which isn't often... she steps back in the box. Which shuts them up. Sooner or later, they'll wear themselves out and all five will take a good long nap. And when they wake up, they'll be much happier with the change in their circumstances.
At least, that's the plan. MY plan. For getting some sleep myself tonight.
Hot and muggy here! Rain over night has the humidity way up there!
But that didn't deter Panda-Nellie's new people from meeting her and taking her home bright and early this morning. Nellie greeted them with a wagging tail and kisses, always a good sign! By the time they put her in the car, she was looking for them to join her. I love it when a pup seems as happy as her new people do! This is Nellie's departure photo.
The four boys are leaving in the next week or so.
Which reminds me, I will be taking them off the website. Their photos are on their own litter pages. You can go to http://breeders411.com/wholitpix.html and click on their link to see them.
Peri Pup Pix July 3, 2016
Five three weeks old puppies are too many to handle in one picture. Actually, two seemed about the limit, but that's not the way I went. The two biggest boys are in the first one and the two slightly smaller ones and the female in the second. The girl, by the way, probably should have been with the other two, size-wise. The big guy on the left is already into cameras and flashes of light. Everyone else, not so much. The smallest pup, right now, is the one in the middle of the three. And the girl is the attention seeker... something I have the feeling is going to be a lifelong trait with her!
In case you missed it on the website, all these babies are spoken for.
A Little Behind July 2, 2016
Yes, I know. The Soda Pop kids turned 3 weeks on Thursday and I haven't posted a birthday picture of them yet. Tomorrow.
Things have been exceptionally busy around here. Everything from beaucoup email to more plumbing issues (the joys of owning an oldie but goodie house) to 90+ heat to getting the two girls ready to leave this weekend. Panda/Nellie is going on Monday, early and PrayerBear/Wicket left today. This is a shot of her at the vet's office which shows the tremendous amount of silver... AND TAN... shading she is getting. I think she... and a couple others... may actually end up more silver than black. Yea!
And this picture, also at the vet's office, is her official departure photo.
She weighs in at 10 pounds 3 ounces, 12 weeks old. Still the smallest in the litter!