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A WEEK-BY-WEEK LOOK AT WHAT'S GOING ON
Getting a new puppy is SO EXCITING...and we know, it's near torture to have to look at all those cute pictures and imagine the joy you'll feel when you finally get to pick your puppy up and meet them for the first time! In an effort to make the waiting a little easier, we thought we'd give you a little info on what the puppies are doing each week from the time they're born until the time they can finally come home with you! Each week is incredibly important to their development, and we're excited to share more with you!
JUMP TO WEEK:
WEEK ONE - THE JOURNEY BEGINS
When all goes well, the first week or so of the puppies' lives is fairly uneventful and is mostly colored by eating, sleeping, and well...to put it nicely, practicing using their digestive systems! Their mommas are their main caretakers during this week of their lives. Unless there is a puppy that needs extra care, this includes feeding their babies and making sure they are clean and safe. It's kind of gross, but this means they stimulate their puppies to go to the bathroom...and then eat it. Was that TMI? Sorry if it was, but that's actually their instinct and is helpful to replenish the mother's nutrients post-whelping.
However, we still have a BIG part in raising the puppies at this stage! Our team closely monitors the puppies' growth with two or three daily weigh-ins to ensure puppies are gaining an appropriate amount of weight each day. We are also constantly ensuring that their momma's are provided with everything they need to feel happy and safe with their brand new babies. Often times, this means providing the mommas with plenty of fresh water and yummy, calcium-rich mix-ins to their food to ensure that they are producing enough milk for their puppies. Our employees are also constantly monitoring the moms' lactation to ensure we are clear of any post whelping infections. A healthy momma means healthy babies!
If we have a puppy who is struggling this week, we know it is likely in critical condition and gets round-the-clock care by our experienced whelping team. This often includes tube feeding, very frequent weigh-ins, constant monitoring, and visits to the vet's office when needed. Unfortunately, because the puppies are so young, there are few diagnostics that the vet can run. We've handled more newborns than many doctors, and are lucky to work very closely (like, we just text the doctors instead of call nowadays!) if we have any issue with our puppies. In many cases, we're able to prevent a potentially dire situation. JLDD is proud to boast our mortality rate in our puppies is FAR below the standard for breeders worldwide due to our commitment to each puppy we choose to bring into the world.
We also start the puppies with ENS this week, which is short for early neurological stimulation. This is basically a practice we use to begin breaking the puppies into sensory development and recovery. We know it seems scary to do this to puppies so young, but it's been proven to produce happier, healthier, and more well rounded dogs! It consists of holding the puppies upside down, right side up, on their backs, and using a cool compress on their paws for about 5 seconds on each position. Each day, we can see them getting more and more comfortable with these practices. Every puppy in this litter will be receiving this practice daily until they're a little over 2 weeks old.