Wednesday, June 16, 2010

One poodle's experience

I'm not sure what woke me. Until I opened our bedroom door I didn't truly hear anything. Once I opened the door and heard those tiny whimpers, I knew. It was time. Our 4.5 year old female was in her crate in the family room and the closer I drew to her the louder those little whimpers became. I turned on a light and sat on the floor in front of her crate and slowly opened the door. Madden glanced at me briefly and then went back to her business. She didn't have time to really acknowledge me. Her puppies were coming! The first one was already out when I arrived and our little mommy was licking it relentlessly. Cleaning it up, turning it this way and that to be sure she hadn't missed a single spot. This being her first litter I had been concerned about how attentive she might be. Well, Madden was doing everything she was supposed to! My husband and I were able to just sit back and watch these little miracles of life appear.
It wasn't long until our girl began to have contractions. Another pup was on its' way out! Madden panted heavily as she worked to produce the next wriggling, squirmy body. This poor guy was turned on his head as his mommy worked quickly to release him from the fluid and membrane that surrounded him. Within fifteen minutes pup number three was ready to emerge. The ease with which she seemed to birth each of these little babies was amazing! If human births could go this easily and swiftly I suspect people might have more kids!
The last pup took a bit longer. Maybe because it was the biggest of the litter, maybe because at this point Madden was just tiring out. I'm not sure, but we waited a half hour for the last little one to arrive. Again, Madden cleaned it up and cleaned herself as well. There wasn't much for my husband and I to do but just watch in awe of the new life that had emerged before our eyes.
They were so very tiny and so fragile looking. We decided as Madden appeared well and so did the pups that we would retire back to bed until the vet's office opened. Fragile as they looked, these little guys and girls were already jockeying for position to gain a spot at the table, otherwise known as their mommy's breast. They suckled and whimpered in turn as they sought a better grip to gain the nourishment that would soon have them growing like weeds!
A few hours later found us at the vet's office. Everyone exclaimed over how small these babies were and couldn't believe our little Madden had produced four babies given how small she is. After a thorough examination, the vet declared all pups to be perfectly healthy. No cleft palates, no hernias, no deformities or abnormalities of any kind. And Madden checked out 100% as well. She had done just great and the vet was very pleased with how well it had gone.
It has been three weeks now since these little ones arrived. They are growing, beginning to toddle around and make little growling noises at each other. They are precious and funny and altogether amazing. Madden is still doing well also, still has milk, still cleaning up after their messes. It will be many weeks before we can send these babies to their new homes, but I know there are going to be some proud new puppy parents when they get these dolls! You just couldn't ask for better temperments and personalities. The fact that they are completely healthy and free of birth defects is simply amazing as well. I had heard so many horror stories from breeders about losing whole litters, losing their female, having to put pups down because of problems. It scared me and made me wonder if we were doing the right thing by letting Madden become pregnant. I have no such doubts now. She is a natural little mommy! Maybe we'll do it again one day.

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