Thursday, 12 March 2009

Dachshund diaries day 12: wash day

The puppy above is JACK who has not yet opened his eyes but still loves a cuddle, which is part of our weighing in routine.
They have ALL now TRIPLED their weight as compared to the day they were born.

Today I want to talk about this most amazing of doggy routine: that of washing the puppies bottoms prior to feeding. I knew nothing of this until I read about it in my whelping book and then whenI observed it actually being done several times a day, well it's just so clever!
There's no mess at all in the whelping box as Pippa washes the puppies bottoms and in doing so stimulates them into their wees and poos or number 1's and 2's if you prefer. She actually drinks it all up as it happens so they stay amazingly clean at all times. No nappies for these pups!
It starts with a nudge at their hind legs with her nose, then nudge nudge NUDGE she tries to roll each on it's back which works for Jack and Lucy but Tom doesn't roll so Pippa just licks under his tail and pushes him around a lot.

Here she is nudging Tom

Harder nudge , nudge, NUDGE!!!

You can hardly see him, Jack is on his back being bathed by mum, her nose is in between his rear legs.....

She's still at it, very thorough she is and here's the view from the side...

And this is Jack still half on his back recovering his composure. Usually this wakes them up and they then want to feed again straight away.
This leads to feeding and then towards the end of a feed Pippa will wash each again and then leave them to sleep.
She has an inbuilt instinct as to who needs to feed next and who to leave to sleep. They have all gained about the same % of body weight day by day on average and when one of them has a low gain day one day , that puppy then doubles the gain the next day to catch up. Amazing!!!!
As stated above they have all now gained 200% of their birthweight and the difference between the 3 puppies has stayed the same over these 12 days.
It is expected however that the boys may catch up a bit more to Lucy when they start being weaned onto solids. Topm especially may gain from this as he is still not especially adept at feeding, he was found to be lustily sucking on a flap of skin yesterday , making poor Pippa very sore!!! ( nowhere near a teat)

Ps : First night since Saturday in a bed last night- LOVELY! No more sofa , they can cope with less vigilance now. Pippa still wanted feeding at 5.30 am though.....

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