Saga of a woman old enough to know better who lets her life be governed by the ridiculous hobby of breeding and showing dogs, musing on life, the twenty first century, Cameron and his mini-me, and the occasional sheep.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Why do they always do it at night? And at weekends, in what I think of as the "vet desert", with the nearest one miles away and on special call only. No, they don`t come to the house. (Remember the old saying that the words "vet" and "vampire" both begin with v, both are bloodsuckers, but only one of them will come out at night...)

So of course Allegra started labour Sunday evening, not too early. She is young and healthy and I hoped it would be over quickly. But the strong second-stage contractions went on and on, and nothing came. I began to think of the vet, and when I phoned, I got no useful advice, but a horrendous estimate.

Nevertheless, I phoned a friend and arranged transport and went off to get carriers and hot water bottles and all the paraphenalia ready.....and when I got back to the delivery room, Allegra had left the whelping bed and run about, and the result was a little daughter. Clearly moving about had dislodged the puppy from whatever it was stuck against. The poor little thing had a face that looked as if it had gone 3 rounds with Tyson - after all, she had been pushing her way out with it for two hours.

I was very relieved. I brought my friend up to date (but forgot to cancel the vet, leading to a very snippy phone call later), and assumed that all would now be plain sailing with the remaining puppy.

The relief lasted until a large water bag appeared and burst, revealing two enormous hind feet. I was appalled. How was I going to get that out? Allegra obviously totally shared that thought.

There followed what felt like hours of effort as she pushed and I gripped and pulled. It came out millimetre by millimetre. We got stuck at the hips, then the shoulders....then at last the head popped out and a huge second daughter flopped out, apparently lifeless. How could she have survived all that?

But there are things you can do. I massaged, and applied a stimulant to the tongue - and suddenly there was a gasp, and in a minute the purply-dark body had turned pink, muscle tone arrived, and a little girl apparently built on the general lines of a rhino was crawling around, rather snuffly, demanding the milk that had been promised in the Getting Born Manual. I cleared the nose, and she joined her older sister at the milk bar.

4 am, and vast relief. Puppies OK and settled. Allegra is young, and wasn`t too exhausted. And the pleasure of a family was already making her forget.

I knew what would make her forget even quicker. And would provide some much-needed calcium and energy...for both of us.

So at 4am the new mother and I happily shared a tub of ice cream.
I like it, I like it!!!!!!!! Can I be rude and ask what were the birth weights of the monster and the midget?
Actually only 5 ounces and 6 ounces! One ounce of difference, and one seems to be an elephant and the other a mouse.

The biggest puppy my Paps ever produced was 7 and a half ounces.
Congratulations!! I'm so glad everyone is OK.
And those puppies sound HUGE!! Great Dane puppies are usually anywhere from 14 oz. to 28 oz... obviously a lot bigger than baby Paps but considering that the Dane is 10 or 15 times the size of a Papillon I think the Dane mom must have an easier time of it! :-)

Of course, the Dane mom will usually have a lot more puppies to deal with...
Congratulations all around!!

I'm so glad that everything worked out OK.
Congratulations to you and Allegra! Good job, momma!
Allegra says thank you to everyone for their congratulations.

You do find in toydogs that the puppies are a significant size in proportion to the mother. I had a six pound mother who had two half pound puppies - one sixth of her bodyweight. As well that humans don`t do that......
Do keep us posted on their progress.
Congratulations. I hope you managed to cath up on your sleep!
I was sleepwalking for twenty four hours after!
Allegra obviously thinks she is the only bitch in the world to have acheived this and is horribly smug.
How are Little and Large doing these days? Any chance of an update picture and another comment by Mum?
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