All new life is a miracle. Some lives, however, have more hurdles to jump over before arriving safely. Our puppy, Miracle, survived an unusual delivery.
We knew from both an ultrasound and an x-ray that Jolly was carrying at least 6 puppies. Our vet said he wouldn’t rule out 7, but he definitely saw 6. After having 6 puppies on July 5, Jolly settled down and started taking care of her babies, showing no signs of distress. We assumed it was a litter of 6 just like her last litter.
As a routine measure of care, we monitor Jolly’s temperature after having puppies. On July 6, her temperature was elevated in the morning. We whisked her and the puppies off to the vet. An x-ray revealed that there were 2 unborn puppies. We were shocked! Somehow these babies had hidden on her previous x-ray.
As we discussed options with our vet, we decided a C-section was best for Jolly. The vet said there is no way to predict if these puppies were still alive. Their last sibling had been delivered 18 hours earlier.
Following surgery, we learned that Jolly was actually carrying 3 unborn puppies, which means she was carrying a total of 9 puppies this litter! Our vet told us one puppy was underdeveloped with no bones to show up on the x-ray. That dear puppy had died in utero long before labor and delivery. One other puppy did not survive the 18 hours in the womb, but one little Miracle did! And he’s a feisty little Miracle! He jumped right into the bunch and made sure he got his fair share of the meals.
The vet said it is very likely that the underdeveloped puppy was the root cause of Jolly not being able to deliver her last babies. Her uterus tore where he was attached. Because of this tear, we chose to spay Jolly, which means this is her last litter.
Though we are sad to have lost 2 puppies in the litter, we are very grateful for the 7 miracles we do have!
One week has passed, and the puppies are growing and changing! Their first week of life is full of eating, sleeping, and being weighed by those pesky creatures that pluck them away from their safe, cozy nest of buddies. Below are individual pictures of the puppies. (Click on their pictures to go to their individual pages.)
The puppies' first week of life is spent snuggling with Mama and their siblings. The puppies cannot see, hear, or walk at this age. We handle them to weigh them, but we don't allow our children to hold or play with them yet.
When we wake the puppies to weigh them, they typically "swim" to find nourishment and warmth. Their swimming motion is sign of health, but it is a bit frustrating when trying to photograph them. They may look peaceful in their photos, but it's only because they settled down to sleep after swimming all over the blanket. Whenever my hand is present, the puppy wouldn't stop searching for friends and food. Below is Ryder determined to find a meal.
Speaking of Ryder, you may have noticed that he's the only puppy with his eyes open. He developed an eye infection. We took him to the vet to have his eyes flushed, and he is on antibiotics, which have cleared up the infection. His eyes opened a bit ahead of his siblings likely due to having them cleaned out. Since the infection was caught and treated early, we have hope that his eyes will be just fine, but only time will tell.
At this age, it is entertaining to simply watch the puppies sleep. I always have to include sleepy pictures - they sleep in the strangest positions. They also twitch in their sleep, which is a sign of good health.
As I mentioned, we weigh the puppies every day, several times a day at this stage. Weight gain is one of the best indicators of health. Puppies should double their birth weight at 7-10 days. All our puppies are on track to do just that. The largest of the crew is Boaz at 15 ounces today, and the smallest is Ryder at 9 ounces. Below, Rocky is getting weighed this afternoon.
Thanks so much for stopping by and reading about our puppies! 5 of these precious little ones have homes already. We have one boy and one girl still available from this litter. As you may have read in my post on Miracle's Story, this is Jolly's last litter. We feel blessed to have these little puppies to raise and spoil for a few more weeks.
The waiting is over, and the babies are here! Jolly and Cooper had 7 beautiful mini schnauzers babies on 7/5/18 and 7/6/18. Mama and babies are doing well, but it was an unusual delivery to say the least (more details to follow). There are 5 gentlemen and 2 ladies in this litter, and here they are!
Miss Liberty is named, in honor of the 4th of July, which is almost her birthday. Liberty is completely black. The reason we will always think of these as our "4th of July puppies" is that we knew Jolly was going into labor on the 4th because a female's temperature typically drops 24 hours prior to the start of labor. So, when her temperature dropped on the 4th, we knew we wouldn't be watching the fireworks with the rest of the nation in the evening. We were happily hanging out near the whelping box, expecting puppies to arrive on the 5th.
Meet Boaz! We always choose one Bible name in each litter to acknowledge God as the giver of life. Boaz is the most black of his brothers, but, truly they are all very black. His brothers just have a few distinguishing white hairs here and there.
As is our tradition, each of our children pick a puppy to name and claim for 8 weeks. Naming puppies with children is always interesting. As AJ, age 8, was musing about name ideas, he said "Rocks!" We tweaked it to Rocky in honor of Daddy's late dog Rocky that he had while growing up. Our little Rocky has a few white hairs on his back left toe.
Chase, who lived up to his name during his photo shoot, was chosen by JJ, age 5. His name was inspired by Chase, who's "on the case" from Paw Patrol.
Our daughter MJ, age 3, immediately declared that she wanted a girl puppy! When I asked her what she wanted to name it, she quickly blurted out "Peanut!" Peanut is MJ's nickname, and she's quite proud to have a puppy named after her. Peanut has a bit of white on both her back paws.
CJ, age 6, chose Ryder as his puppy. Ryder has a bit of white on both his back paws. His name is also a Paw Patrol inspired name. Ryder is the boy who works with all the pups in the show.
The last puppy to introduce is Miracle - a 5oz miracle that was born the day after his siblings. For more details on his story, you'll have to wait for their birth story in an upcoming post. For now, we are busy taking care of our puppies & we wish you a wonderful weekend!
Vanessa from Russell Homestead. Follower of the Lord Jesus, wife of my knight in shining armor, mother of 5 wonderful children, and joint-keeper of the Russell homestead. Thanks for stopping by!
Independent Field Representative