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MinasView Labrador Retrievers

Puppy Diary

Puppy Diary

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Happy 6 week birthday puppies!

Posted by minasviewkennels on November 5, 2016 at 6:05 PM Comments comments (149)

Well six weeks has gone by pretty fast! The last two have been especially busy, puppies have transitioned from mommas milk diet to moist puppy mush to almost completely dry kibble. House breaking has been a piece of cake with this litter, Lulu did such a great job keeping everyone clean and dry that they now either hold the urge or choose a spot at the back of puppy pen so their beds stay clean. We take pups outside after naps and after meals so they are learning that thats the human preferred toileting site, Chuck actually scratched and whined at the back door yesterday- he barely made it to the grass before he was squatting! Doctor Dana was visited yesterday, all had wonderful checkups and very healthy weight gain (perhaps a little chubby). Its been a week since we allowed Lulu to sleep with the pups, she was appearing too thin and as with each whelp has started to shed her hair, the first night she cryed for them and i went to her at 2am, allowed her to nurse them for five minuites and then put her back to bed, the second night she did not cry for them at all, i think she is happy to be away from those sharp teeth and nails, and to not be responsible for clean up, she has returned to her place in the pack. Lulu is more relaxed with the other dogs socializing with the pups, Lucy and Beau have been very gentle when playing with the puppies. Raven has been indifferent with this litter, early on she was very curious and wanted to be in the nursery, but now that the pups are lively and running wild, she comes in, looks around, gives a low groan and retreats back upstairs- "not my monkeys, not my zoo". It will soon be time to pass the leash to new owners, I am excited for both the pups and their families. This has been one of my easiest litters to raise, from the very start pups were healthy and content, i was never stressed regarding their weight gain or development, families just seemed to find the right pup at the right time, and i believe all things happen for a reason, and all things are meant to be...Bruce has been filling my kennel boots for the last several days because i had knee surgery, and he is doing a fine job! I think he now realizes how raising pups is a full time job for eight weeks! when my kids were little and if we had pups i remember having to stop them from playing with the puppies, because puppies needed to sleep, now i have to call them at university and ask "can you come play with puppies? bring friends!"

i would like to repost some tips that new families may find helpful, this was originally posted last year in the

So, if you read the previous entry, i thought i might share some tips.....I blogged for an hour straight and then pressed DELETE instead of publish.....

my tips on feeding:When puppies leave minasview they are receiving three meals per day of moistened puppy kibble (eukanuba large breed puppy), they share four bowls at this stage which helps them be competitive at the food source while not being overly protective of food. We suggest you continue three meals per day if possible until your puppys tummy is big enough to digest the daily ration in two meals. As your puppy grows refer to the back of food bag to adjust the daily requirements. We also encourage you to maintain a schedule as to when and where puppies are fed, only allow your pup a set time to eat (this will vary according to individual pups but 10 mins is reasonable), this will let them know that food is only available Now, when your late for work in the morning you dont want to have to wait for puppy to leisurely finish his breakfast, and never leave food out for puppy to graze....this will slow down housebreaking (puppy will be running on a full tank) and at the beginning its the owner who needs to be aware of the times puppy will need to go out (usually right after eating) leaving food out at all times will also encourage obesity which is so bad for a lab, they have a bottomless pit and will eat everything provided....which leads me into my next tip, as you begin training basic commands such as sit and wait, have your pup sit before giving him the food, make eye contact and only on your command should he be allowed to chow down, this will be a safety measure for you, as not all things that land on the kitchen floor should be consumed by dogs- some human foods are very toxic, teach your pup to wait...

my tip on crate training; Just do it! 25 years ago when Bruce and I purchased our first puppy (eeekkk from a pet store) we didnt have anyone to encourage us to DO IT, that dog chewed through our brand new house, jumped on anyone who dared ring the doorbell, and was constantly being scolded....i now realize we were the ones who needed scolding, we failed to provide a puppy with boundries, limits and the security of a den. Crate training is not easy, but it is rewarding, at first the puppy will cry, whine, howl and bark to be let out (its because they love your companionship so much) but like all toddlers they need safety- we suggest a small crate to begin with, it should be where the hub of activity is in the household (you want them to be accustomed to noise), when they begin to show signs of restlessness and have had sufficient play/exercise (which isnt very long for a new pup) put them in the crate, a favorite chew toy reserved for crate time is consistant and dont give up, one night at about 12 weeks old that same pup that fussed about going in will decide its bedtime and just go in on his own and fall asleep (this of course will make you feel like the proudest new puppy owner in the world and you share this huge accomplishment)

my tip on being a pack member: Socializing your pup is one of the most important aspects of raising a good dog! Many communities offer puppy socialization classes, and if there is one near you take advantage of the oppurtunity to meet new puppy families, the classes give your pup a time to not only meet other dogs, but people too! To a puppy we are a strange breed- millions of different smells, some people are short, others tall, hairless humans and humans in hats, some walk while others appear to move via wheels- expose your pup to all new expeiriences and people, so that taking them out in public is something to look forward to. At home set boundries, its important that puppy knows that they are not the leader, if you do not set boundries they may want to take over the pack and become dominant...snuggling a puppy on your lap is wonderful, an 85lb lab sitting on your lap, while your having a coffee....not so wonderful, but if that 85 lb lab is sitting on your feet while you have a coffee...right back to wonderful! In our home we "invite" the dogs to share a spot on the couch, they are scolded if they jump up uninvited, usually Raven stares me down until i say "okay!"

My tip regarding "outside": When your puppy goes home," going outside "should mean- time to pee (or poop), so as soon as your pup does his buisness, scoop him up and come back inside, after a week and housebreaking is going splended going outside can be to play as well. Puppies are very curious and will want to explore the big world outside, but dont confuse them at first, pee outside, explore inside (vise versa is no fun at all). Be aware of everything pup gets into outside, dirt, plants and rocks are all seen as edible to a pup. Actually going out the door should also be a training lesson for your pup, never let pup go out the door ahead of you...puppy should sit, and be trained to remain sitting until you cross the threshold and give the okay command, this tip saves lives, most puppies who go missing or are hit by cars have bolted out an open door without a leash on, again this lesson can be taught with basic commands sit and wait.


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Four weeks old

Posted by minasviewkennels on October 23, 2016 at 7:35 PM Comments comments (5)

It's been a very busy weekend in the nursery! The pups are now four weeks old and full of energy, socialization is in full swing. We welcomed all of our new owners into our home to meet thier new fur babies, it was a very  exciting time for everyone, we feel blessed to know our puppies will be raised in such loving families. Saturday evening was a huge event for the pups, they had thier first meal of puppy gruel, microchipped, nails clipped, ribbons replaced with collars, and their now weekly weigh in. Jack is the heaviest pup at 7 lbs 12oz and Leo is not far behind at 7 lbs 6oz! Puppies are teething and have been given soft chew toys to soothe the gums.

Lulu is getting some much needed rest away from the pups now, she is losing condition of her coat and muscle mass, this will quickly correct itself once she does not feel solely responsible for their feeding and care, and begins to use her caloric intake to meet her own needs instead of the milk supply. She was happy to show off her babies to their new families and greeted the strangers with a " I'm the momma !" Bark followed by a wagging tail once she was secure that they were not a threat. Lulu was very protective of her puppies for the first three weeks and did not care to share them with the other dogs, however hormones are beginning to level out and she is now okay to have Lucy and Beau prance among them, Raven has special privileges and is allowed to lay with them and snuggle! I was asked by a couple of our new families "how does the mom adjust once the puppies are taken away?" It's a simple answer, Lulu will be very content when her pups leave the nest, her job will be done and she can get back to running in the field, and being cared for by her people, she never "mourns" the loss of a pup as we people would, she simply returns to her place in our pack.

The art of raising puppies

Posted by minasviewkennels on October 16, 2016 at 3:30 PM Comments comments (1)

Wow! Three weeks old all ready, the once quiet nursery is now a place of learning and exploration, weak little puppy barks and growls as they learn to socialize with each other and the occasional whinning if mom has stayed away too long has replaced the calm. The puppies now weight between 4 1/2 pounds and 6 pounds, they are cutting teeth and will have their first meal of puppy mush by weeks end, even though Lulu is keeping up the demand for milk, and eating ten cups of high quality puppy kibble, she will soon start to lose condition since she meets the needs of her pups first. Toys have been added to the puppy pen ( a bigger pen the pups have moved into) they were outgrowing the space of the whelping box, and no longer need it's warmth and confinement. Lulu continues to clean up after her puppies, there is never a trace of soiling except wet blankets, which are changed and laundered three times a day now. The big boy Leo is quite interested in people and will sit and watch what they are doing, he is also the one pup ready for that photo op, Jack is very cuddly and likes to sleep, laid back boy, Chuck seems to be very playful with the other pups, he likes to bite their tails and paw them, Timmy is still the smallest but has actually gained the most weigh since his birth, he is just so darn cute! Kira has her official name, it will be Luna, she is also very laid back and usually found sleeping in a corner with Jack. Lulu has agreed to allow Raven within arms reach of the pups, however she is still protective of them over the two younger dogs Lucy and Beau, and so we shall respect her wishes and not force the issue, I think she is aware of their in expierience. Human socialization is very important beginning now, and we make sure to give one on one contact with each pup. Each morning after I sanitize the puppy pen and change the blankets, I take a few moments to sit in the pen and allow the pups to sniff me and climb over me, they now recognize my voice and tails wag furiously as I greet them with "good morning poopers". All the pups have been arranged homes, and they will bring happiness and companionship , the first couple years of raising a puppy can be stressful, and it will seem like hard work,  but like all relationships will require commitment and patience,  near the end of puppyhood you will be rewarded with the most loyal sidekick you've ever had.


Posted by minasviewkennels on October 8, 2016 at 1:50 PM Comments comments (133)

Happy Thanksgiving weekend from minasview kennel! The puppies are two weeks old today and doing great, something i'm very thankful for, its always a concern for a breeder that puppies thrive during this first critical period. The pups are gaining weight- they are thankful for the unlimited milk supply that Lulu provides! Lulu has enjoyed short breaks from the puppies so that she can exercise and just be Lulu instead of "momma", and Im sure she is thankful as well. Just like clockwork puppies eyes have started to open, they only see shapes and shadows right now however they have "found" each other and have started to interact with each other. Two weeks is also the time at which puppies ears unseal and they become very vocal, the purrs are replaced with little grrrrrs and the occational bark. Thanksgiving weekend has brought alot of family into our home this weekend so the pups have been introduced to the smell of new people, and short cuddles by human hands, we do not allow general visitation for another two weeks as we are careful to minimize the amount of germs brought into the nursery. Waiting is also easier on Lulu as well, too many humans near her pups will give her the signal that motherhood is finished and she would just leave their care and wellbeing to her people instead of continuing the journey...These pups still need mommas milk for the next 4 weeks and then we will slowly wean them to kibble, they also need her guidance and teachings, so that they can learn about manners of the domesticated canine- such lessons include "biting hurts" and "no barking". We are sorting out our puppy placements, three of the five are fully spoken for, a fourth may possibly become a resident of the USA, and a fifth is still looking for his forever family. Unfortunately this litter did not meet the demands of my waitlist and was not able to provide the yellow or chocolate pups as requested, i respect those families who have chose to wait longer for the colour puppy that their heart had been set on whether that pup comes from minasview or another respectable breeder.I have not advertised the last available pup yet because i sometimes think its best if the families "find" me, i believe all things happen for a reason, and those can be the best things. Enjoy your weekend minasview families, spend your time surrounded by those you love, and hopefully one of them will lay by your feet and give you wet labbie kisses!

day five in the nursery

Posted by minasviewkennels on September 29, 2016 at 6:35 PM Comments comments (1)

Puppies are growing quickly! three of them are allready over 2 pounds, with the other two not far behind,even little Tim has doubled his birthweight in five days. I have given Lulu a spot (gated off from the other dogs) that she can come and go freely from her pups, with all their weight gain i dont want to stress her milk supply, she is now eating double her prewhelping ration. Puppies have began "superdog training" aka biosensor exercises, this will continue until they are two weeks old, at which time the window of oppurtunity for early neurological stimulation closes. This also gets Lulu accustomed to us handling her pups, exercises last less than 30 seconds and are done when we weigh the pups nightly. The whelping box is washed down once daily, and blankets are laundered however Lulu is doing a fabulous job keeping the mess to a minimum. We will be accepting deposits to hold pups by the weekend, as they have proved themselves to be thriving and we look forward to welcoming five more families into our ever growing "minasview family". This is minasview's 12th litter, and Chuck is our 100th puppy!

Day two lulu and Beau pups

Posted by minasviewkennels on September 26, 2016 at 7:55 PM Comments comments (346)

Hey! It's been two full days and puppies are doing well, lulu is a milk making machine! Every pup is up by 5-8 ounces since birth! Lulu is doing her job, being very protective of her young, we have not let Raven near the whelping box as to not upset mom, and Lucy and Beau have spent a lot of time doing errands or chores with Bruce the past couple days. Naming the pups came easy this time, the first big boy came in with a "roar" and I've called him Leo, also because I had a wish that there would be at least one black male puppy to make a very special person happy. We provided a puppy eight years ago to an older gentleman who has loved a black lab every year of his life since he was a ten year old child, at that time he had all ready loved five black labs and was wishing to have just one more in his lifetime- they became best friends, he notified me of his dogs passing around the same time I discovered Lulu was pregnant, and he made it very clear that he could not live without a lab by his side, this will be his sixth and perhaps final best friend. Lulu is absolutely crazy about balls, she especially loves her bright orange chuck it balls, so as I tied an orange ribbon on puppy number two he was named "Chuck". Our third pup wears a blue ribbon, I called him Jack, because I like the name Minasviews black jack, this big boy has a few white hairs on his chest, which will most likely grow out by eight weeks or sooner, it's a bolo mark and usually reflects good bloodlines.The little guy I called Timmy, or Tim, actually he has been referred to as pumpkin, squirt, tiny.... He is just so darn cute! The only girl is named Kira, I have raised four daughters, and they loved to play with Barbie dolls, at night as I picked up their dolls from the playroom floor there was always one I held a bit longer, she had long jet black hair and beautiful hazel eyes, her name was Kira, when the last puppy arrived with her shines black coat it reminded me of that doll all those years ago. The names I give the pups are temporary, and just a way for me to individualize them, and be able to watch their true personalities develop, the ribbons identify them but the names individualize them.

Lulu and Beau Litter 2016

Posted by minasviewkennels on September 26, 2016 at 7:00 PM Comments comments (3)

Minasview kennel welcomed five black lab puppies into the world sept 24th. Lulu was acting quite normal and not showing any signs of labour Friday night went we put her to bed, she did have the significant temperture drop which all breeders look for to tell them that whelping is within twenty four hours. Midnight came and as I glanced at my ipad which has a live stream of her whelping box, she appeared a bit restless, and with very little room left in her abdomen I just figured she needed to relieve herself, I got up, went to the box and let her out.....she dribbled. I hurried back up the stairs to bed, I had a feeling tomorrow might be a busy day birthing puppies. Within an hour I was back down to repeat the process, however this time she was very restless and had a steady dribble- Lulu's water had broke, it could be within four hours now, I didn't see any contractions, and over the years I've learned that "a watched pot never boils", I made my trek back to bed and watched my IPod, at 2am I gave in, went back to the puppy room, and rested in the rocking chair beside Lulu. Contractions started at 3am, Lulu pushed for a half hour and with each contraction, the puppy would appear and then disappear back in the birthing canal, at last he presented enough that I could grab and pull down gently, He was HUGE! A full fist of puppy, blacker than black weighing 20.5 ounces! Momma was bit overwhelmed by this big brute, so I helped sever the cord and clear away his membranes, Lulu's hesitation soon faded and motherly instincts kicked in, when she was finished bathing her baby he creeped to a nipple and began to nurse. The next half hour was restful for Lulu and as contractions picked up she very easily pushed another large puppy into the world, 17.3 ounces, and just as black as the first. So by this time it's four in the morning, I had texted "sleeping beauty" AKA Bruce twice to let him know that puppies are here but had no response- I quickly ran up the stairs to our room to wake him in person- he did not hear his phone when I texted, and could not believe that we all ready had two pups! At 4:17 am our third black male puppy was born, another big boy at 18.7 ounces, I thought to myself if they're all this big we must be almost finished! A prenatal xray done one week ago led me to believe that this would be a smaller litter. I had now been up most of the night and reallllly needed a refill on my coffee, Bruce was on watch in the rocking chair and Lulu was lying peacefully nursing her three puppies. My ipad sat by the coffee maker still streaming live video from the whelping box, as I stirred the cream in my coffee, I glanced at the screen to count FOUR black puppies! My sprint to the whelping box made Usain Bolt the Olympian look slow! There lying under her tail was the cutest little black puppy I've ever seen, he was perfect in every way but miniature compared to his siblings he weighed just 10ounces, Both Bruce and Lulu were unaware of his arrival and he seemingly just "slipped" out....his cord had broken away on it's own and he was not in a sac, as I dried him off to stimulate him, he cried louder than the rest and was feisty getting to a nipple. I returned to the kitchen now to get my "iced" coffee- sigh. Our last little blessing arrived at 5:35, another black puppy but this one was female, she weighed 15.6 ounces (the average size of a lab pup). Lulu began grooming herself, had a light lunch (she enjoyed vanilla ice cream between puppy births) and went out to do her buisness, these are all signs that the whelping is over, but like always I can't tear myself away just incase there's a puppy still hiding, after many checks with my doppler and stethoscope I finally agreed that she was done- it was 2pm, almost twelve hours since we started and I climbed those stairs to my bedroom for the final time, and nested for three hours. 


Posted by minasviewkennels on May 2, 2016 at 5:25 PM Comments comments (1)


It is with great sadness that I announce the passing of Southrocks Hershey Kisses, Hershey's health and quality of life had been progressively declining over the past few months, and although we wanted her to live forever, we loved her enough to let her go. She had lost her ability to control both her bladder and bowel, and although we did not scold her for this, she did feel shame. Her slow gait became more of a wobble in the past week, and the loss of mobility must have felt like being chained to an imaginary post. Hershey had lost most of her muscle mass and was thin, I could now easily pick her up to carry her up the steps, her coat had become course and thin, the dark chocolate replaced with silver....Hershey was also becoming forgetful and at times would just be staring off, her eyes cloudy and blank.... But when I could get her attention back and look into those beautiful eyes, I saw the most beautiful Labrador retriever that god ever created. I told her it was okay to leave us if she was ready, that we would be okay, I didn't want her to suffer just to please her people. Getting to heaven is not as easy for some as it is for others, it's a long road that she strolled down many times these past weeks only to turn around and come back to us, I think eventually she would become too weak to make the trip home, and be left alone in the middle of here and there... Bruce and I decided we needed to take part in the journey, be with her, just as we are for all the pups who come into the world, we would be with this special one leaving it.



She is survived by her natural daughter Raven, adopted fur siblings, Lulu, Lucy and Bo. Hershey will also be missed by her human family, Lisa, Bruce, Katie and Matt, Moira, Stephanie ,Nicole, as well as Nanny and Poppy. Hershey was nearing her 15th birthday and brought joy and love to all those she met, she left a legacy through her offspring and provided more then forty families with puppies over her four years of breeding, she retired at age six and has spent the last eight years teaching Raven and lulu how to be good moms, as well as stepping in to help rear pups. Hershey enjoyed family gatherings and Christmas seemed to be her favourite holiday. Summers were spent roaming the property and visiting Poppy at the barn. Hershey was predeceased by Chelsey, Rambo, and Duke, it was Hershey who got us all through the loss of those precious souls. My wish is that someday we meet again, that as I watch the miracle of life come into the world that she will somehow let me know that it's her spirit returning to Minasview. She will be missed and remembered for the rest of our lives, her gentle kindness, and the peaceful energy that she gave us when we stroked her fur, RIP my wise girl....I love you now and forever��

Adoption day

Posted by minasviewkennels on April 22, 2016 at 1:35 PM Comments comments (341)

Congratulations 2016 families! Thank you for choosing a puppy from Minasview, we have enjoyed bringing you into our lives and are blessed to add you to our minasview family. May you have 15 years of love and companionship with you new fur baby, our Hershey is 15 this year and is the very reason we chose to become breeders, Hershey has enriched our lives more than words could ever express, and now this second generation of offspring will as well. Lulu is officially retiring, and her daughter Lucy will become the third generation of minasview moms in 2017/2018! Enjoy your puppyhood, they grow so quickly, celebrate every accomplishment, because it is indeed you own accomplishment! Xo- Lisa and BruceBruce

The sixth week of life...

Posted by minasviewkennels on April 19, 2016 at 12:35 AM Comments comments (1)

It's an absolute miracle how eight tiny puppies, weighing about a pound each, unable to hear, see or keep their own temperture regulated, can grow into perfect little labs in just six short weeks....but it's a miracle I get to witness once a year at the kennel. The puppies now have a well equipped "tool box" they have learned to tell me they are hungry, they are hurt, or I need to pee! When they are approaching meal times the whinning starts, it begins softly until the whole choir is singing for their supper.... The "I need help" squeal is a frantic plea for help and cannot be confused with the other vocalizing  heard from the pen, it's usually caused by someone's tail being bitten ...We have begun housebreaking now, the pups are catching on quickly, some will run to the door and bark to go out! From clumsy first steps and creeping across the whelping box six weeks ago, the puppies run full tilt, and it's not unusual to have a wipe out, as they haven't learned to stop abruptly yet! I tell everyone to hold on tight to the pup when they pick them up, you see gravity is not something these pups fear, and they will attempt to fly! Puppies will jump off the step until you teach them to go up or down it.

This morning these beautiful creatures were full of energy! They ate their breakfast, went outside To do their buisness, then I herded them back inside where they chased each other, played in the ball pit, teased the older dogs and attacked each other with their sharp teeth, playtime lasted an unusually long time.... They just didn't seem to tire ( but I did) so after about two hours of mayhem I lulled them to sleep with the hum of a vacuum cleaner, they line up in the pen, propped up on the railing and watched me sway back and forth with the by one they dropped off to sleep (.shhhhhhhhhhhh puppies sleeping)......( less than two hours and they are ready once again to eat and play) from upstairs I can once again here the choir calling, all goes as usual (eat, poo, play) however, I notice puppy #2 pooping on the floor, and puppy #3 running straight towards it, so I quickly grab my selecta size hoping to beat puppy #2 to the mess, out of the corner of my eye I spy a little black butt going out the doggie door (at first I'm excited- how cute Heidi figured out the doggie door!) except now she is outside whining because she doesn't know how to get back in...I have a bounty fist full, but I squeeze myself into the wire crate and open the doggie door to call her back in, I'm half in and half out, my half in part is being tugged at by piranhas at my ankles, so I back out of the cramped space and send lulu out for the pup( I'd go via the man door but with 7 other pups running free, they would slip out too) momma dog goes out the doggie door with three more pups following behind.... Except ten seconds later she returns, just her, I now have four pups outside in the run. I put the other four pups in their pen and decide the best way to get them back is one by one....yayyyyy! Eight puppies back in the nest, I sigh, pick up the scattering of toys, and ask myself " isn't it five o'clock somewhere?" As I'm turning out the lights to return upstairs I look over my shoulder to see Rocky walking towards me, I guess there were only seven in the nest...