After much (delirious, feverish) deliberation on puppy names (whilst laying in a semi-coma of flu on my sofa), I have decided to go with the candy theme in honour of Halloween. Christmas reindeer – had that litter already. Snow White and the 7 Dwarves? Had that litter too. Dance names – ditto. But candy – we’ve never done candy names. And oh my goodness, are these little chubbos ever sweet! It seems fitting.
So let me re-introduce the family to you.
and her kidlets
The “black” puppies are actually not all black, they have brown (not red) running through their coats. I hope this makes them more palatable to applicants, as the all black or mostly black puppies are always the last to go. Remember how not a single applicant chose Dexter?
I came |thisclose| to naming them after flu- related things, like Nyquil, Juice, Soup, Fever, Tears, Whiny etc.
I am still trying to get a bead on how old the pups are. Their eyes just started opening the day before I picked them up, which made them anywhere from 10-14 days old, but they are very active for 2 week old puppies – they already follow me around a little bit in the pen, they wrestle a little, and they are trying to eat from Ruthie’s bowl at meal times. Ruthie does not like that one bit. She needs all the nutrition she can get, since the pups are sucking her dry! She still looks like a commercial sow though.
Poor thing. She is not a young dog – I would guess 3 or 4 years old, and I doubt this is her first litter. That’s criminal. She is a very nice dog though, super eager to please, and she gets on just fine with my dogs, provided they don’t go near her puppies. Before we worked out a good enter/exit plan for exercise and potty breaks, she kicked ten kinds of holy hell out of Tweed for looking at the XPen – he just curled into a ball and cried. Now everyone goes out, then she joins me on a leash, and we do it in reverse when we come back home – she goes inside first to her puppies, I go back outside, yell at TWooie for slinking alongside the chicken coop, and get everyone else back inside.
The hens are mostly over their TWooie Terror and one of them even laid me an egg! Unfortunately, she also stomped it into smithereens before I could get to it, but at least it’s a start. I am now bribing them with the leftovers from my garden that are now going to seed, and a friend is going to give me a couple more actively laying hens to see if I can’t kick start the others into a competitive egg laying contest :)
Anyway, Ruth’s only real vice is her propensity to simply … leave when the mood strikes her. If we are out for a walk and she decides to go, she’s gone. The fact that until today she had no name has not helped me at all either, as she doesn’t seem to think “HEY YOU! GET BACK HERE!” is a command worth listening to. However, she DOES think that liver brownies are a paycheque worth coming for, so with every walk her recall gets better and better. And she seems to be really enjoying getting the opportunity to get out there and run some
I’ve been thinking on her possible breed mixes and I think I’ve come up with what is as likely as anything else.
I was at the trial this morning very briefly, just to say hi to some friends and also to pick up a generous amount of raw food that Mark (you know, the gay Australian cowboy?) brought for me. Ruth is sucking back about 3-4 lbs of raw a day, plus a couple cups of Evo, so this was greatly appreciated. Thanks Mark! And while I am thanking people, thanks to Joe who comes in while I am at work and potties mum, and cuddles puppies for me!
Anyway, a gal there had a dog that was a border collie X cattle dog, and her head shape and tail, and body shape, really reminded me of Ruth. I have heard that first generation cattle dog crosses are always spotty, but I also know that merle is dominant, so I think it’s plausible that she is an Aussie X Cattle dog.
I have no idea what the daddy was, of course, but he sure made some beautiful puppies.
When you’re as sick as I am, puppy therapy is the only way to go. I sometimes just crawl into the pen with them all, lay down, and nap amongst the tiny furry bodies. It doesn’t last long, because they are loud, but it’s heaven while it does.
But all that exertion has exhausted me, so I am going back to bed for a little while.
Happy Halloween everyone! Stay safe and watch out for those pesty firecrackers. Halloween is a busy time for shelters because frightened dogs are always running off to escape the scary noises, so don’t leave your dog unattended in the yard – better yet, safely crate them until the hullabaloo is over. This has been a public service message from your friendly shelter worker :)