Tuesday, August 13, 2013

I Don't Think He Knows About Second Breakfast

In the mornings Rosie and the kids come up on the big bed for snuggle time and second breakfast.

Probably fourth or fifth breakfast, if you want to cut it fine.

I poof the edges of the eiderdown into a puppy containment field and let them soak up all that human scent and presence while they hit the milk bar.

 Once they have full bellies and are passed out in a milk stupor, I pop them off to snuggle on my neck while I check email and return phone calls. The puppies twitch and occasionally squeak or groan or chortle in their sleep -- tiny nervous systems growing and developing, pruning and branching.

They are fat, shiny, contented and are growing like broiler chicks. Rosie is milking like a Holstein. I'm pretty sure it's impossible for a dam-raised puppy to get too much food at this stage.

Not true of Momma, though.

Perfesser Chaos and I were away most of the day Saturday for a family event. The dog family was left in the capable hands of one of our young teammates.  I fed Rosie her second breakfast before we left, and doled out a heaping bowl of boiled eggs, meat, yogurt and vegetables for teatime.

When we got home, late, I fed all the dogs a dinner of mostly canned fish. Rosie got a big bowl.

Around 1 a.m. she started to get restless. Anxious. Nervous. Weird. Panting on a cool night. And it was not centered around the puppies. She left the puppies to act weird. And kept it up.

I let her out and she ran right back inside to stare at me anxiously.  Do something about this!

Took her temperature. No fever.

But something was not right.

Back of my sleep-deprived mind kept echoing milking like a Holstein.


Did her hocks look just a little bit stiff? Maybe? Yes? Maybe?

Was I going to wait for tremors and fever and ataxia and more critical signs to develop?

Oh Hells No.

Our usual emergency vet* told me that they were full up; if she needed hospitalization, which a diagnosis of eclampsia would require, they had not a single cage open. They foolishly recommended the practice that is known far and wide as the Pirate Ship of Camp Horne Road. Erm, no. Not if I was bleeding out on their polished granite doorstep.

So off we went to Northview. I shook Perfesser Chaos awake at about 0400 and just said "We are going to the vet."

He leaped up and went to start the car, no questions. Off we went, with a box o' puppies to boot.

Short version: The huge smelly dump that Rosie deposited in the waiting room 30 seconds after we entered was a big clue.

Her blood calcium levels were normal.

She had a weak positive on the in-house (not terribly reliable/precise) Lyme test. We will revisit that in a few weeks. I assume that all of my dogs have been exposed to Lyme at some point.

But mostly, it was a very expensive and panic-inducing case of overfeeding and the resulting GI distress.

Do not know why she wasn't able to relieve her discomfort at home. Maybe the inactivity of being a 24/7 milk bar had stopped her up even as she most needed her innards to move.

Your reward for suffering through a breeder's panic-by-proxy is two and a half minutes of today's second breakfast.


* Owning Suicide Sophia means that we have not only a regular vet, but a regular emergency vet.


  1. Heavens, they look like they're about to tear the nipples off poor Rosie.

  2. Thank you for the puppy breath fix. Delightful.

  3. OMG! The video is so much better than still shots. Thank you so much! The one that fell off and got back up there for more gets the determination award today. too damned cute!

    Judy Hase

  4. Oh My Goodness... I think I'd keep an eye on that dot-top, teat-terror... Can't imagine what damage she'll (he'll) do once her eyes are open...
    Do they have names yet?
    Nancy Putnam

  5. oh thank you, we're happy now. You may temporarily go back to posting about tomatoes
    Wendy and the expectant Rose

  6. Adorable, although it did make me wince a bit. Who was the chatterbox?
    Social Mange

  7. "He leaped up and went to start the car, no questions. Off we went, with a box o' puppies to boot."

    Got yourself a keeper there. :-)

    -Shannon and Dandy and Bridget


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