A week today these little chaps (below) came into the world. The first week of their lives is basically eat, poop, pee, sleep, repeat and hit that goal of doubling their birth weight in that time. At day seven they are getting more mobile and are already starting to explore their surroundings more even though their eyes and ears are still closed.
Blottie only has seven teats and producing such large litters like she does, it is amazing to see how she copes with such big broods. They seem to magically rotate sucking from her. It does help that she is a very laid back calm Mum. At this stage she also stimulates them to pee and poop, cleaning up everything after them. My job now is to enable her to be able to provide for her brood. Keeping the pups area clean and most importantly supporting Mum with good nutrition. For such a big brood it is wise to be giving them a calcium supplement, once the pups are born to prevent low blood calcium levels and the real risk of the life threatening condition Eclampsia.
The day of birth we ensure all pups have had several good sucks of colostrum from her. Her first milk is very important, as she transfers important antibodies to her pups via her colostrum. The colostrum contains antibodies to protect her puppies against disease and infection, and immune and growth factors and other bioactives that will help to activate her puppies immune systems, jumpstart their gut function, and seed a healthy gut microbiome in the first few days of their lives. The bioactives found in colostrum are essential for a puppy’s health, growth and vitality.
With such a big brood and Mum only having seven teats, after twelve hours of being born making sure all have had colostrum from Mum, we offer bottle milk to each pup. You have to be careful to not to interfere to much in the process of the pups stimulating Mum to produce enough milk for them, so the feeding is done four times a day for the first three days, then three times a day from day four to six, and now we are on just twice a day with the feeding being done after they have suckled Mum. It is just to keep an eye that they are all getting enough and no pup gets left behind.
As we get to seven days old, we are already starting to see the size difference and see the ones that are going to be the larger or smaller pups at adulthood. Noses are pigmenting out. The darker the pup the quicker the nose pigments out, some may of noticed that a couple of the darker marked pups were born with their noses already pigmented.
In the next few days we might start to see eyes and ears opening, as this can start as early as eight to ten days old with most having their eyes and ears fully open by two weeks old. Eyes though do not focus until around four weeks old, so the world is a bit blurry for a day or two for them.
Blottie and her pups seem to be doing really well. Fingers crossed!
Active, sporting, sound little spaniels
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We ask that first contact to be done by phone. I (Jane) can be contacted by phone at 01769 560969 for a friendly, no pressure chat.
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“Humans are aware of very little, it seems to me, the artificial brainy side of life, the worries and bills and the mechanisms of jobs, the doltish psychologies we've placed over our lives like a stencil. A dog keeps his life simple and unadorned.” Brad Watson, Last Days of the Dog-Men: Stories
Welcome to this blog. I am Jane, a hobby breeder, situated in North Devon, England, UK (map at bottom of page ,shows where we are) on a quest to breed a healthier small spaniel similar to the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.
WE DO NOT EXPORT PUPPIES
Why I don't export
Our breeding dogs are multi generational extensively health tested. With all our breeding stock having recommended and relevant DNA tests for their breed/breeds. We also have breeding stock annually eye examined on the BVA Hereditary Eye Disease Scheme for dogs, MRI scanned on the BVA scheme using the BVA chiari malformation /syringomyelia breeding protocol, and heart examined using The Kennel Club Heart Scheme for Cavalier King Charles breeding protocol