Thursday, January 8, 2015

It's Bring Your Puppies To School Time!

Just like every other puppy loving kid, ours ask to bring their puppies to school and we let them!  In fact, puppies are included in the lesson plans for our kids. Our Golden Girl Dallas, had a litter of puppies almost four weeks ago on 12-13-14. It's an easy date to remember. :)


Last night was bath time! Each puppy got introduced to water for the very first time and they all did great. Each family member usually has a job on bath night. One of the kids hands a puppy to Dad. Dad bathes the pup, then wraps it in a towel and hands it off to another child, who passes it off to me to get warmed up and fluffed up with the hair dryer.  After baths are complete, each puppy gets some snuggle time with various family members, followed by some time nursing with their mom.  They are all so fluffy and adorable. Bath time is a favorite activity at our house because we love puppy cuddles when they are all clean and fresh. Their coats are so soft and full. :)


As a home schooling family, we find our passion for Golden Retrievers has been a great way for the kids to learn responsibility, family unity as we all work together to care for the puppies, history...as we have studied how the breed originated, animal reproduction as the kids have been present during many of the breeding appointments, what it takes to be responsible breeders, the importance of OFA clearances, self discipline as they have learned how much diligence and patience it takes to train a puppy, science as we have researched what makes a good sire and/or what makes a good match for the dam to attain the type of breed we desire to produce. We have discussed genetics, how to blend certain aspects of hunting intelligence and drive, with a great companion personality, and the list goes on. As a family, we are sticklers for cleanliness with the pups which is very challenging when you have a litter of eleven puppies like we do right now. Everyone has to be involved when we take the puppies out to go potty. When messes are made, everyone is expected to do their part cleaning up, whether it is inside the house or outside in the yard.


As each litter arrives, the excitement level in our home rises and so does the anticipation of a huge job to be done. My husband amazes me. He gets up early in the morning, takes the puppies out of the crate so they can do their morning duties, feeds the puppies their solid food, feeds their mother and grandmother, and lets them out to do their morning duties.  The kids and I take over from there throughout the day. We have the puppies on a schedule and as they grow bigger this requires taking eleven puppies outside to use the bathroom......a very challenging job that does get wearisome and especially if there isn't a good plan in place as to the best way to accomplish this task. Experience is an excellent teacher and we have had many discussions and done quite a bit of research to come up with an effective plan. Rich built a beautiful whelping box that is much better than the one we had before. The sides are higher so the puppies can't get out as long as we have the door in place, but it allows us to reach in and pick the puppies up one at a time. This will enable us to take two per person, on leashes.....so the kids and I can get the task done all at once in an orderly fashion, while training the puppies on a leash. They are still a little small, so we will see how that goes in a week or two. We just put new collars on them today, so they are all leash ready. I'll let you know how our plan works once we try it out. In the meantime, I took lots of pictures on bath night last night.  The mat on the pen floor got a bit wet after bath time.....but we did manage to get the puppies nice, dry, and warm. Tonight's agenda is to clip all of their nails again.


You can learn more about our puppies here.


I'm off to do puppy duty now....enjoy the pictures and please don't hate me while I am off enjoying puppy breath. :)


 

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We gave a couple of the smallest puppies a bowl of milk replacer. They loved it!


 

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