|Zimzala Gemstone Litter|
Puppy Diary - Pregnancy Progression - Week by Week
- Click on the weekly link to read more about the weekly development and pregnancy progression
| Week 1 - 21 to 28 February 2021|
Date of ovulation and surgical insemination was on Sunday 21 February 2021. Now we have to wait and see if there will be puppies.
Week 2 - 28 February to 7 March 2021
Delft is now out of season and deffinately not in the mood for nosey noses at her neather ends.
Week 3 - 7 to 14 March 2021
If there is puppies the embryo's are now embedding in the uterus. Delft seems to feel a bit nauseous. This could be a good sign.
Week 4 - 14 to 21 March 2021
We are now counting 4 weeks since insemination!! This means we are 1 months away from welcoming babies into this world!! Dr Shuttleworth gave the predicted due date as 21 April 2021. We need to get busy, as there is a lot to get in place before then. The fourth week of foetal development is considered to be one of the most formative stages of the pregnancy.
We will be taking good care of our little girl, to ensure that everything progresses as planned.
- 17 March 2021 - Today we paid a visit to Dr Rachel Shuttleworth, she did a scan and confirmed that she could see at least 5 puppies, possibly more!!
Week 5 - 21 to 28 March 2021
Week 4 scan (not our babies, but they should look about the same)
Eyelids are forming, toes are separating. By the end of this week we'll start to increase Delft's food intake, slowly increasing her portion size, and change from the Doggobone Classic Complete and an occasional Turkey&Tripe mix, to feeding Gemma's Beef and Turkey&Tripe mix only, which will provide the higher energy required. We paid a visit to Caleigh at Pet's in Balance for a thorough physical examination - checking her muscle tone, tension, ability to strech, tightness or indication of muscle or structural pain. She was declared in fantastic shape. We will continue with exercises at home to build core muscle strength and add a bit more dips in the pool, as this non-weightbearing exercise is really good to maintain fitness without adding strain to the body and joints.
Week 6 - 28 March to 4 April 2021
Only 3 weeks to go!! By day 40 the claws and toenails are forming. The pigmentation of the puppies are developing. During this week the puppies continue to grow. Their eyes now have lids and remain sealed until approximately ten days after birth. I can't really say that Delft is looking bigger, she is in fantastic shape, still has her waistline, though her teats certainly has filled in. I've also noticed a clear fluid discharge from her vulva - which is normal for this stage of pregnancy. She has a huge appetite, and gobbles down her food, which is new for her, as she is usually a very dainty eater. She still loves to work, loves to retrieve and has great drive and entusiasm to play and participate in the activities with the rest of the gang. I am very excited, as from next week on, we can expect to feel the puppies moving about :)
Week 7 - 4 to 11 April 2021
What a week it has been!! With Cosmo not well and then crossing the rainbow bridge, we are all extremely heartbroken. It is sad to not have our Nana around to raise this litter of puppies! It is with imense gratitude that I can report that Delft and our babies still seem to be on track. They are kicking away and some very active movement in her tummy!! We have now increased her food even more. Delft is now constantly hungry and counter surfer of note!! Her weight is really looking good, and I hope everyone inside is doing as well as mommy is looking from the outside. Wednesday was 2 weeks to go, and suddenly we are starting to run out of time!!
Week 8 - 11 to 18 April 2021
Our final week is behind us, due date is 3 days away!! If I compare Delft's size to my girls in the past, she definitely seems smaller around her tummy, but a lot of development in her teats. They already seem heavy with milk. If you squeeze gently white droplets appear. Her weight is spot on. She really is looking sooo good. We gave her a good grooming and tomorrow we'll give her a good wash. We are taking her temperature daily and will now increase this to 4 times a day. Her baseline seems to be a solid 38,1°C. She is very loving, very much her mommy's girl. When I am out, she tends to hang around inside, not wait at the gate as per usual. We had a couple of visitors, potential puppy owners who came to meet her and the gang. To my utter surprise, Delft actually barked at them. I will expect this behaviour from Legolas, and also at times from Phoebe, but it is unusual behaviour for our mom to be. She is certainly a bit more on guard and “thinking” about safety!! Whenever and wherever she settles she first digs, digs and digs some more, before plopping down to rest. Surprisingly she has not attempted any nest making outside. Usually by this time my other girls presented me with a brown nose or two!!
Week 9 - 18 to 22 April 2021
By the start of week 9 our girl was still very relaxed. I commented that she did none of the crazy nest building that our other girls participated in. She's yet to present me with a brown nose!! Her teats were definitely ready for pups, expressing milk when gently squeezed. Het vulva was very large and flaccid, ready to deliver. I monitored her temperature and it was a constant 38,1°C. It remained steady. On Wednesday 21 April we had a drop to 36,8°C. Thus, we should count 24 to 48 hours from this point forward, as from there on it started to climb again. Through all this anticipation, temp taking and general excitement, Delft remain as oblivious and calm as can be.
Wednesday evening, basically on the dot 24h00, she started panting and out of the blue some serious digging/nest building. This continued all through Thursday. I was thinking well, OK, maybe puppies by Friday. After numerous walks in the garden, where she had one purpose, after a quick wee and bowel movement, was to dig in under that deck. That is the place she chose. She was not very impressed with my box.
In the end we came to a compromise – she could use the lower shelf of my cupboard. We put some dog cushions in and that is where it happened!! At 17h17 she gave birth to a beautiful black girl – Red Pup weighed in at 400g, 17h30 she delivered the next, another black girl – Purple Pup weighed in at 445g. She then took a bit of a break before the straining resumed another black girl entered the world at 18h04 – Green Pup weighed in at 390g. We had another longish wait and at 18h41 she strained one last time and another big black girl was born – Orange Pup weighed in at 465g.
And that was the end of it, the labour stopped, she wiggled away, cradling her pups to a drier spot, and started licking and cleaning them all in earnest. I gave her some time, and then realised, if any more puppies were forthcoming, it would not be soon. Better to get this little family dry, warm and settled.
The final count was 4 black girls born on 22 April 2021.