Sunday, March 24, 2013

Hello World!

Miss Red Says, "Hi!"

The Max litter has kept us quite busy over the last 10 days!   The pups are growing like weeds.  A few of them weigh slightly less than four pounds and others are just about to hit three pounds.   Miss Red says hi!   As you can see, she, like her littermates, are doing well!

There were some other exciting events that have happened since I last blogged - the pups’ eyes and ears opened.   They attack each day as though they are saying "Hello, World!"  This time in the life of the pups is so cute - they are truly discovering the world.  They put each other’s mouths in their mouths and chew on each other and their mother.  The other day their teeth buds started popping through their gums. They are playing with toys and really getting around quite well, as you can see in the video below!

Mr. Black says, "Hello, World!"

We decided to move them into a larger box so we could add a potty area, which we did yesterday.  Some of the pups are already going into the potty area to do their business.  Was it intentional?  Coincidence?   Luck?   Probably all three came into play today.  But in a few days it will be more intentional than luck or coincidence.  The first step in potty training - woo hoo!!

Peach continues to be a wonderful mother.  She, too, had a little problem with some early mastitis, but we have that under control, as well.   As I said, it has been a busy week!

I have put up a lot of pictures in the weeks 3 and 4 folders.  I will be adding video, too, but it takes a long time for them to load, so be sure to check back often.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

One Helluva Week!

For those of you following the Max litter I extend an apology for not blogging this past week.   Once you read this, I know you will understand.

Miss Red sleeping
Their second week started out much like the other litters.  They spent most of their time sleeping and nursing.  Each morning they would be transferred to the laundry basket to allow me to clean the whelping box.   (Here’s a Gaylan’s factoid for those who may not know this - we do not use any detergent when cleaning the pups’ whelping box, just vinegar and hydrogen peroxide.)   As needed, Peach would diligently clean each pup.  How she knows when it is time is still a mystery to me - their noses are incredible!!!    Each night we did biosensor, along with a new scent.  Everything was going well until Monday.

On Monday morning we noticed that Miss Red was a little quieter than the other pups, but it often happens that one pup will have a day when they are “sleepier” than normal.   We marked it in the diary, but did not give it any more thought, that is until late Monday afternoon.   She clearly was in distress, so I scooped her up and off the vet we went.    After being examined I was told that her heart was good, lungs were clear, that she likely was a puppy with colic.   Meanwhile, Gayle was doing research to see if we could figure out what was going on.

Later that night Miss Red was struggling to breath so we went to one of the 24-hour emergency clinics where they whisked her into the back room.   A short time later the doctor came out and said she was clearly having trouble breathing, but her lungs were clear.  They could shoot an x-ray, but it likely would be too difficult to read on a pup this young.   We pointed out some swelling in her throat.  She had no idea what it was and said that the best place for her was with her mother, so the emergency vet gave us some antibiotics and we went home.  

Raz trying to find a nipple
On the advice of the ER doc Miss Red spent the night separated from her littermates and Peach alternated between boxes.  Each time Peach went back to the rest of the litter we scrubbed her down with Nolvasan® solution, dried her off and let her nurse Miss Red’s littermates.  Peach was clearly stressed with the situation, as were we.

Gayle was already planning on visiting the pups on Tuesday.   When she arrived she agreed that we should call Dr. Cummins and see if he could fit us in.   We were all very worried about Miss Red, who by that time was really struggling to breath.  He called right back and had us bring the entire litter in.

Mr. Black climbing Mt. Mama

After careful examination of all the pups, doing a bit of research and a needle aspirate on Miss Red, Dr. Cummins said although he had never seen nor heard of it happening in a puppy this young, he thought she had juvenile pyoderma, also known as puppy strangles.  The only treatment was cortisone and antibiotics.  Giving cortisone to a pup this young is risky, but without it we were pretty certain she would not make it.  He prescribed just antibiotics for the rest of the litter.    The good news is by the time we got home Miss Red was feeling better and continues to improve!

Mr. Blue and Miss Red catching some ZZZZs

So we are flying under the radar, so to speak, staying away from the outside world while Miss Red is on prednisone.   Uncharacteristically, we are not allowing any visitors, so I have uploaded the pictures that we took this week into the Week 2 folder.  I will be uploading more video tonight.   I have set up the link for Week Three and will be posting photos there as of tomorrow.

Other than the challenges of the week there is much good to report.   The pups are growing like weeds!   Their eyes have opened, even though they have that Mr. McGoo look.   They are quite active, having found their legs.  Even though they walk like drunken sailors, they still climb up onto the puppy rail, over each other and over their mother.  Today they started  playing with each other, too.  I just love watching them develop!!

Enjoy the photos/vidoes and send good vibes and prayers out for the litter - we are thrilled with their progress, but are not taking anything for granted!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Can It Be A Week Already?

It is hard to believe that the Max pups will be a week old tomorrow.   They are growing so quickly, almost doubling their weight in just a week.    Peach continues to be a wonderful mother.  She spends most of her time in the box with them, but also enjoys some time out with the other dogs and with us.  

It's A Stretch!
A day or so ago Peach started sitting up for them to nurse.   How she knows it is time is beyond me - but they respond at first struggling to reach her and now have no problem at all.   The pups are starting to walk a few steps - they look like drunken sailors!

My husband Jim gave me a new lens for Christmas.   It has really helped my photography - that along with some advice from my friend and photographer extraordinaire, Chris Zink.     

New photos and video are up in the Week One folder.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Finally - Gaylan's Max Litter

Of course many of you may be thinking that "Finally" refers to Peach delivering her pups.  Alas, I am referring to the Max Litter blog getting started!    

Gayle, Lise and I have jokingly said over the years of breeding together that the first rule of breeding is if you plan a big event months in advance your bitch will be sure to add a little stress by either coming into season or going into labor.   Corey did it for the Wind litter and Peach did not change that rule!  As some of you may or may not know, Gayle, Lise and I (Marcy) launched a new business, Avidog International LLC (, at an event in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada this weekend.   So we were getting ready for the launch and for the arrival of Gaylan’s Max litter at the same time.  Now that things have settled down a bit, I finally have time to write the blog.

So here's the story:

Last June Gayle and I discussed breeding Peach with Al and Irene Lamphere (Peach’s owners) and decided that we would breed her on her next season, which was supposed to be around Thanksgiving.  The search began for Mr. Right and we decided on Karen Hollender’s wonderful boy Jack - Marathon’s Being Just Jack MH MX MXJ WCX VCX ADHF CCA.  Thanksgiving came and went and she still had not come into season.   Was Peach going to time this so Ottawa would be a problem?   She came in a week or so before Christmas and we did the breeding during what is traditionally known as the Christmas break.   Peach and I spent a few days with Peter and Karen Hollander during that time and I have to say that Christmas in New England truly is beautiful!!  They were wonderful hosts and I left with new friends and fingers crossed.

Now the waiting begins - first for the ultrasound to confirm the pregnancy at the end of January and then for the delivery at the end of February.  Peach spent the time between the breeding and the whelping with Al and Irene.   Two weeks before her due date Lise and I met Irene in Pennsylvania to pick up Peach.
We expected Peach to deliver sometime last Wednesday or Thursday.  Her temp dropped early Wednesday morning, so Gayle, Lise and I all settled in at Lise's house for the delivery.  We spent lots of time preparing for the weekend in Ottawa while we kept on eye on Peach, who clearly was in pre-labor.   On Thursday night we called our good friend Cindy Groveman to let her know we were going to take her up on her offer to help with the whelping, since it looked like Gayle and Lise might have to catch a plane either before she started, but certainly before she was done.

At 4:30 Friday morning Peach’s water broke.   By 6:30 the first pup had arrived.  A few hours later Cindy arrived to help me as Gayle and Lise left for the airport.   Peach delivered her 8 pups in 7 hours.  Nature is an amazing thing - despite the fact that Peach has never had a litter before, took no classes, read no books, when that first pup came out, she was not sure what to do at first, but figured it out quickly.  By the time puppy number two arrived she had the hang of it! 

Gaylan's Max Litter
So please join me in welcoming The Max Litter:

Mr. Blue, born at 6:30 am - 12.1  ounces.

Mr. Black, born at 6:47 am - 13.1 ounces.

Miss Red, born at 7:42 am - 13.0 ounces.

Miss Yellow, born at 8:03 am - 8.7 ounces.

Miss Purple, born at 8:34 am - 11.75 ounces.

Miss Green, born at 9:43 am - 13.1/2 ounces.

Miss Rust, born at 10:46 am - 13.1 ounces.

Miss Raspberry, born at 1:19 pm - 13.1/8 ounces.

Al and Irene arrived Friday night and Peach was very excited to see them and introduce them to her babies!  

Saturday morning we took the litter in to see the veterinarian for a checkup.  We knew that little Miss Yellow was small, and she had lost rather than gained weight and we were not sure why.  Sadly Dr. Cummins found that she had a severe cleft palette, so we loved her up, let her spend some time with her mom and let her go.   Although it is hard to lose a puppy, we focus on our blessings  - seven wonderful puppies and a mother totally focused on caring for them. 

I will be uploading photos and video and will be posting as often as I can.   For those who are on Facebook, be sure to “Like” Gaylan’s Golden Retrievers so you can follow their progress there, too.