Monday, March 15, 2010

One month old Puppies

Update on Nola and her puppies:

I had all the intentions of keeping Nola with her puppies until they were adopted, but sadly, this will not be the case. She is so over being a mum; within the last few days she has stopped allowing them to feed off her. Quite honestly, I don't really blame her little did I know these little rascals had their teeth coming in.
Today on day 29, here is what their jaw looked like (don't mind my black fingers):

This little guy hung onto her as she walked away.

From a behavioral stand point, I think, it is imperative that the mother stay with her puppies through their most critical development phases, as her nurture and comfort during stressful experiences has a very big impact on their stability later on.

Here's a great example: Today, as I was lifting up each puppies lips to take photos of their teeth, there was one puppy in particular who just was not going to have it. He screamed, and yodeled and howled and growled just while being handled... I had not even touched his mouth yet. Nola was on the other side of the house when she heard the puppy, and immediately came running up to see what was going on. She calmly walked into the x-pen and accounted for all of them, then she looked over at the one in my hands. She gently licked his face and the top of his head, in an attempt to calm him and reassure him. This is all he needed.

Granted he did not stop whining, I truly believe it calmed him enough to attempt to understand I was not harming him. His whines became lower, and then he just lay there looking up at me. I think this was a critical moment for the puppy, and I don't believe this level of comfort can be brought in absence of mummy dog.

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