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MinasView Labrador Retrievers

Puppy Diary

Puppy Diary

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Six days old

Posted by minasviewkennels on March 9, 2016 at 1:30 PM Comments comments (0)

Good afternoon, well that week went by super fast! Lulu's puppies are doing wonderful, last night the largest pup weighed 1lb 12oz, and by the looks of things he will hit the 2lb mark this evening! Our smallest ( actually only small pup) weighs just 14.9 ounces as of this morning, she has been very slow to gain weight and we picked up on this less than 24 hours old, so we immediately started feeding her dams milk every two hours from a bottle.... Mom treats her just like all the other pups, bathes her and fusses over her, but the little girl is so much smaller than her siblings she doesn't get her fair share of the nipple.... The last 48 hours we have seen this little one blossom and believe she will catch up to the others if we remain diligent. I have called her "Josie" however over social media she has started to be called itty bitty puppy ( when she's an 80 lb lab the name itty bitty may not be appropriate) therefore I'll stick with Josie, we also have a Jasmine, Drake, Hunter, Heidi, Molly, Rocky, and Sophie. Puppies are weighed nightly, biosensor exercises done, floors mopped, whelping bed blankets and papers changed, these tasks are done twice daily. Momma bear is eating well, up to ten cups of kibble a day as well as unlimited treats.... By weaning time at three weeks she will be consuming 16 cups a day to keep herself as well as puppies nourished. To night the pups will have thier nails clipped for the first time- I do this to prevent them from scratching her, and causing mammary gland infection, as they knead the teat while sucking.I will be contacting our perspective owners between now and the weekend to ensure that all pups have placements arranged, we do not introduce the puppies to people until they are at least three weeks old, walking on all four legs and eyes are open, this also gives them time to build some natural immunity to viruses, as well as mom is more accepting of unfamiliar visitors after this time. I will be posting newest pictures as well so don't forget to check the photo album!

48 hours old

Posted by minasviewkennels on March 6, 2016 at 7:25 AM Comments comments (0)

Hello from the whelping box! Mom and pups are getting a routine sorted out, lulu feels safe and her motherly instincts have kicked in, she carefully steps over each pup scattered around the box, and sniffs each one as if to be counting them.... Which is what I do every morning lol. We have one smaller pup who is not as vigorous as her litter mates so we have began to supplement her with bottle feedings to catch up with the big guys, she is a fighter and does not give up on the nipple, however her technique is lacking and instead of finishing with a full belly, she tires out...lulu is happy to have the help. At this stage we give lulu as much privacy as we can with the pups, when we are not physically with them we monitor everything via camera on the whelping box, I've identified each pup with a colored ribbon so that I can't tell who is nursing and when. We also keep the handling to a minimum as well, these are Lulu's babies and if we want her to care for them, she needs the attachment and bonding to strengthen. Tonight we will begin our super dog training with the newborns, each pup is put through a series of neuro stimulation exercises to enhance their resistance to stress and disease, these biosensor exercises mean that we must handle the pups for approximately 30 seconds, which we coordinate at weighing time. The biosensor exercises are done between days three -fourteen, but after that time are meaningless as the natural neurological function takes over once eyes and ears open. This kind of training was adopted by minasview kennel several years ago after reading the benefits that military dogs get from such early stimulation ( infact it's just an excuse so I have a reason to hold each pup for 30 seconds). Hopefully we will get individual puppy pics accomplished when we begin the exercises tonight, each puppy will also be given their temporary name- one pup got his at birth, that is "Rocky" he was the fourth born chocolate male puppy who came out swinging! As his head presented at the opening so did his front paw, he actually punched his way through the amniotic sac to break it before mom or I had a chance.... I wonder if this was the same pup who kicked me as I rubbed Lulus belly for the past week!

2016 Lulu Litter has arrived!

Posted by minasviewkennels on March 5, 2016 at 6:45 PM Comments comments (18)

Minasview kennels is very happy to announce the safe arrival of Lulu's puppies! This is Lulu's fourth and final litter, although she is only six years old she has more then earned her retirement, Minasview was hoping to have the 100th puppy born this time but we finished at number 98!

For any of our readers who follow our whelping diary, i"ll get you up to date before telling you about the birth day. 2015 was a busy year at minasview, a few human kids left the nest, and a couple canine kids joined it! Lucy who was a puppy of Lulu born last winter rejoined our home at 16 weeks old, her family were finding it difficult to cope and i was to rehome, of course as soon as she came back i knew i wouldnt be able to say goodbye twice in one life time, and this was to be her forever home...we love Lucy! Lucy went camping with us most of the summer and slept upstairs in the living room...our grown children accused us of "spoiling" her, I guess we did feel the need to make up for the eight weeks with her that we lost. Late October rolled around and Bruce came home from work and said "Southrock labs has a puppy, wanna go look at it?" I replied that we allready have one puppy, one geriatric dog and two hitting middle age-we do not need another puppy! "but we are just going to look" he said........of course two hours later we returned home with an armful of black lab puppy, we introduced Southrocks Mr Bojangles to the human kids and his canine sisters, it was a good mix, lucy had someone to tease and play with and the other two each had a puppy to mentor. Bo is a laid back, sweet puppy, he is the first puppy to wiggle his way into our bed to sleep (again our daughters said -your spoiling the puppy) Bo housetrained very quickly and was sleeping downstairs with his sisters by christmas.

The new year we found ourselves with both Raven and Lulu in heat, the decision to breed both was made ( this was decided carefully with input from both other breeders and veternarian) Unfortunately we learned just a couple weeks ago that Raven was having a psuedo-pregnancy, she thinks she is having pups but there are not any, she builds nests and makes milk, gained weight etc.

Lulu gave birth on March 3rd, a beautiful easy delivery, she whelped a puppy about every half hour, never seemed to be uncomfortable, she is a good mom, when i check the whelping box there is never any mess from the pups, she has them clean and fed, however her own appearance looked haggard this am (too worried about cleaning puppies she neglected her own grooming) I filled the baby tub with warm soapy water and gave her a sponge bath myself....but it was a quickie, she needed to get back to her babies and i did not want to make her anxious.

Congratulations 2015 families!

Posted by minasviewkennels on April 26, 2015 at 6:50 PM Comments comments (0)

The last puppy left for his new home today! It's been ten weeks of puppy bliss here at Minasview, and I will dearly miss each and every one of my fur babies. From the moment each one comes into my life it is my "job" to help them become well socialized canine members of a family, it is my "job" to ensure they get proper nutrition and are in best health before going to their new homes, it is my " job" to  find them the perfect family who will love them and care for them as much as I have....well I have to say my job is done, but never finished as I will be connected to these families for hopefully the next 10-15 years.

Thank you for finding us 2015 families! Enjoy the puppy years as they fly by quickly! Cuddle as much as you can, be patient and kind when your fur baby is having an off day and forgets everything you've taught them ( this is the teenage years of rebellion), look forward to the " middle" years, when your puppy has become your bestest buddy ( the one who will listen to you complain without giving advice, watch you cry and actually feel your pain, and keep your feet warm when you've lost your slippers)  The senior years fly by way too quickly also... You find yourself mentally connected to this furry creature, he knows what your going to do before you do, and vice versa. The time we have with our canine kids enrich our lives so much, but we must slow down long enough in this fast paced world to realize it. Canines live in the moment... Such a wonderful way to live! They don't worry about tomorrow because they are busy with today, they do not multi-task, they just do what they are doing very well....(when it's time to walk, we walk... Time to fetch, we fetch) they do not plan their days away as we do.

Congratulations 2015 families, I wish you one hundred dog years with you new buddy!

Ravens happy healthy puppies

Posted by minasviewkennels on April 19, 2015 at 7:35 PM Comments comments (0)

Saturday was immunization day for the puppies, the appointment was for 8:30 am, this early morning trip confused the puppies, it meant waking up early for their breakfast (to make sure it was well digested, before piling them into carriers), playtime was cut short, and the strangeness of their first car drive made them howl! The pups were very well behaved at the vets office, and were all given perfect bill of health! no murmurs, hernias, or overbites! they accepted thier needles without so much as a whimper, they allowed the vet to inspect their eyes and ears...and put the thermometer in awkward places! Jackson is our largest boy, he weighed 12 lbs 6oz and this has been consistant for the past 6 weeks of weigh ins.The 2nd largest pup was Paisley at 11lbs 2oz, all the other puppies weigh between 9-10 lbs (all have gained between 2 to 3 pounds since last week). The weather has been ideal for getting the pups outside to play and explore, today they enjoyed four trips to the backyard, running under bushes and climbing snowbanks, they have dug out the mulch covering my peonys (it was great to see a promise of summer blooms).

Happy 6 week birthday puppies!

Posted by minasviewkennels on April 17, 2015 at 8:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Its hard to believe the pups are six weeks old allready, its 9:05 as I sit down to write this. I have shaved one hour off my early morning kennel chores since the first batch of puppies went to their new homes. Dog beds are in the washing machine, kennels floors are drying from their latest scrub, pens are washed out and new shavings added, water bowls washed and filled, 8 little fur balls have been fed and brought outdoors to do their buisness (beginner house breaking in progress), and the three big fur babies (Hershey, Raven and Lulu) are in the outdoor runs getting some fresh spring air! 

The puppies are at their most playful stage now, they respond to the sound of my voice and run eagerly to me for a pick-up and cuddle. Raven and Lulu have begun co-parenting the litter, Raven will still allow a quick drink of mothers milk and Lulu is teaching them how to respect older dogs, she will gently guide them with her nose away from objects that they have no buisness with and rolls them over in a submissive position to show who's boss! One of our new families suggested a book they are reading "the art of raising puppies" it is written by monks who raise German Shepperds...the book is awesome and I recommend it, many of the monk philosophies are how we rear our own pups, its very supportive to read that your pup is behaving exactly how it should at a certain stage and digs into the psychology of why he or she does it. the book is available as e-book.

Tomorrow is vaccination day for the pups, it will be their first car drive as well as being away from the nest (momma mind this more than they do). We have started to arrange puppy adoption dates and all puppies have great homes waiting for them! I have decided to refresh myself with a quick getaway in early may...the puppies will be at their new homes for a week by then and any initial problems or advice will allready be addressed, but I will be checking my emails while away and stand by our promise to have lifetime breeder support to all our new families.

I enjoyed a great visit yesterday from another breeder (Stud owners) he was impressed with their offspring and its always great to share stories about whelping and rearing puppies with someone expierienced with it.

My the puppies are sweet, The large yellow male "Jackson" is laid back, he still has a couple pink toes and a little pink chin, the yellow girl is a beauty, she has great expression, she seems to have eyebrows perfectly arched over her puppy dog eyes, the black female with green ribbon (Ruby) is a spitting image of her mom, she has a very stocky build and pretty face, a real cuddler! Our pink ribbon lady (Paisley) has taken to house breaking quite naturally, she loves being outside and continues to "watch" everything, yesterday she was watching me throw the ball for the older dogs from about 25 feet, she began to mimick their actions by jumping into the air and catch her imaginary ball! Adorable little Abby Cadabby is play, play, play! she walks proud with her head held high, she is very keen on coming when called, she must like her chosen name! The biggest black boy (Levi) has a beautiful sleek black coat, he "mingles" one minuite he is preoccupied with chewing a rawhide the next he is at your feet whining for a snuggle, you no sooner pick him up and he is wanting down to chase a tail (oh look a squirrel! comes to mind...perfect puppy attention span, very curious, so much to see and do) The first twin (blue collar boy) is a favourite of the family (oh how they have begged for me to keep him!) but its not the right time for me...this is something I STRESS with new families, just because the puppy steals your heart doesnt mean your life is ready for a pup, there are so many things to consider to make sure the commitment a puppy demands does not distract from the joy of having him. Both of the twins are stocky boys, nice square heads and otter tails...the little patch of white fur is just a few hairs now and my friend breeder agrees that it will most likely disappear, although I like the distinction, The later twin (Maverick) has longer fur then his brother and a more pronounced stop, the twins are much like Abby, they play, play, play...but always stop long enough to have a quick cuddle.

Prison Break!

Posted by minasviewkennels on April 14, 2015 at 8:30 AM Comments comments (0)

Once again I found myself in a state of chaos, every litter soon discover that they do not always need human assistance to get free of the puppy pen! Yesterday was that morning....usually when this has occurred I would find the puppies curled up to Grandma Hershey on her blanket, but yesterday morning Hershey was enjoying fresh spring air in the outdoor kennel. I noticed it seemed a bit quiet in the nursery so I went to investigate, puppy puddles every where! the door to the pen wide open...and eight exhausted sleeping pups scattered about, a few nestled close to mommas run, one under the rocker, one in the crate, another under the whelping box stair. Needless to say kennel floor needed heavy duty scrubbing and puppies needed baths! with no cedar shavings to soak up little accidents, they must have run through the puddles! I took advantage of the lovely spring tempertures and gave Hershey, Raven and Lulu baths also, this should help with the amount of shedding the moms are having, although they are maintaining their weigh (almost back to pre whelping weight now) they have lost muscle mass from not getting exercised as usual, A Dam will shed most of her coat while lactating, but when it comes back in it is beautiful! The pups have now been microchipped, nails are clipped regularly and we have begun initial house breaking, they follow me outside after naps and meals, and after only a few days of this i am seeing less messes in the puppy pen! Labs are incredibly smart dogs and like for their enviroment to be clean, so house breaking is easier with their breed then some. I have posted the 2015 photo shoot for this litter, I hope you enjoy them!

Oh My Goodness! Ravens pups are five weeks old!

Posted by minasviewkennels on April 9, 2015 at 9:05 PM Comments comments (0)

These pups are growing like weeds! last week we introduced solid food to the puppies, this weeks weigh in has shocked me, the smallest pup weighed 3lbs 7oz last wednesday night, tonight...6 lbs even! most of the puppies gained approximately 3 pounds this week! The largest one is Elmo (yellow boy) at 9 lbs 5oz, all of the girls weigh 7 lbs, and the twins are both 6 lbs. Oscar weighed almost 8 lbs as does Tasha (yellow girl) The little puppies do not realize they are smaller than the older puppies and play well together, its sweet to see how the older pups do not play as rough with the little ones, they have slept together in the big pen for past two nights since Lulus puppies have started to go to their forever homes and I did not want them to be lonely. The puppies have started to expierience the outdoors now, Cookie was the first to poop outside...let the house breaking begin! at this age the puppies show signs of urgency right after eating so we quickly get them outside and praise them when they do the job, we scoop the puppy up immediately so that he does not associate outside with play...we want to establish the toileting first, after the pups are brought back in they play, play, play...until they drop! Elmo and Cookie are still laid back (enjoy cuddles) but love to play now. Tasha and Telly have teamed up as double trouble on the puppy playground, one attacks a tail while the other grabs an ear, they even had all 15lbs of Chip (from lulus litter) backed into a corner whinning! This is a very important stage in puppy development, this is how they learn that biting hurts! Each tail bite is retaliated with an ear bite until both pups walk away, tails wagging and heads held high! The puppy learns "if I bite, I will be bitten back". I make sure that at each mealtime and playtime that each puppy is given individual human contact, the pups have gotten very comfortable with being cuddled and pet, they now return the gesture with puppy kisses and nuzzles.

Lulu puppies are leaving the nest

Posted by minasviewkennels on April 6, 2015 at 10:50 AM Comments comments (0)

So unbelievable that its time to say "see ya later" to the 7 week old pups! We don't say" goodbye" at Minasview because we hope to see our pups again someday, as they grow into happy, healthy adult dogs. Over the years most of our families have sent us updates or pictures about how our pups are doing, in fact last summer I recieved an email from a lady who took home Hersheys' very first born over 11 years ago, I chuckled when I saw the grey whiskers on her face, she was once just one of the pups but now is enjoying her senior years just like her mama. This morning when I completed the kennel chores and fed all the canines, Lulu seemed overly enthusiastic to socialize with her babies (she has been running away from their sharp teeth to avoid them nursing for over a week), when she was aloud to run free with them they did not attempt to nurse and engaged in gentle play fighting with her, she rolled them all over and licked at their bellies spending some quality time with them. I think she knows its time to let them go, and I believe her playfulness this morning was because she knows her role as mom is finished, that she can relax and be a "puppy" herself once again.

A very busy Easter weekend

Posted by minasviewkennels on April 6, 2015 at 10:15 AM Comments comments (0)

Hello from the kennel! We have had a super busy holiday weekend here at minasview, Ravens puppies were introduced to their new families! The first visit was Thursday evening, followed by seven more visits spread over friday, saturday and sunday! I am so thankful for these wonderful families choosing Minasview, they will all make great families for my puppies. The little pups have developed rapidly since last wednesday when they were given their first puppy chow, they are now eating three meals and nursing at night. The puppies associate food and play with being out of the whelping box, thus they now whimper to get out as soon as they see me. To keep the little pups from being trampled by the bigger pups I built a "play pen" out of closet shelving that not only allows them to play on the kennel floor but keeps them safe. We enjoyed many play sessions this weekend with all 14 pups running around together. The first puppy pick was Cookie (green ribbon black female) she is going to have three children to love her forever. Friday morning Oscar (black male red ribbon) met his new family, although I think this family would've taken them all, as they are such great dog lovers! Raven even laid down on the doggie bed to nurse pups with the boy lying along side her lol. Friday afternoon Abby (black female purple ribbon) chose her new family, and it was love at first sight for all involved (thank you Emily for visiting again on sunday to give Abby a few extra snuggles). Saturday Elmo (yellow male red ribbon) was introduced to his new best friend and will have an older canine brother to teach him the ropes in his new home. Easter sunday has never been so great for the next happy family, Telly (black female pink ribbon) was cuddled and loved by two little girls and their parents who will have access to lots of green space and water! Telly's new name is Paisley! A few of the pups have not met their families yet, either because of our historically bad weather or the travel distance. We have not placed one black male puppy yet as the right family has not found us, but Im sure his home is out there and sometimes the best things are worth waiting for. I will be updating the photo gallery with lots of pics now that the pups are more alert and starting to get their "lab" features. Oh and remember to check out Instagram for adorable video clips!