Friday, May 24, 2019

SAMMY

Sammy is the newest member of the family. He has a wonderful temperament and seems to love being here. It is now time to learn some house manners. House training is coming along pretty good, although does need improvement. It will just take more time. I am starting to teach him to wait before he comes charging out of his crate in the morning. Actually all the young ones are learning this in the morning. When they all come charging out it is chaos and it is much too early for so much excitement. Sammy is catching on quickly, I open the crate and hold my hand in front of him and tell him to wait, if he starts to come forward he will hit my hand and I tell him to wait. He backs up to wait, with a few kisses on the hand while waiting. He is such a ham!! Then I release him and he comes out slowly, which is my goal for all of them. I do this with each one in the morning and they will soon know what wait means and I will be able to use that command anywhere. It is perfect for not letting them charge out the door before you. That could be a safety issue too. 
I now know that Sammy loves news paper. As the pups are so large now I use paper as it is easy to change and keep the puppy pen clean. Yesterday morning Sammy was able to pull a piece of paper out of the pen and proceeded to shred it into a million little pieces, kept him busy for a long time, before I realized what he was doing the kitchen floor was totally covered in little pieces of paper, of course he had some help, Topaz, Bonnie and Walter had joined in.
I need to keep a closer eye when working on the computer. At least he had fun, it did not make sense to get upset, the deed was done, but now if I even hear a piece of paper rattle I am checking on them.
I am going to miss the pups when they go to their homes but I am ready to take the puppy pen down and put the kitchen back in order.  Very soon. Minnie is going home on Saturday, I sure will miss her, such a character. Coco will be going a week from Saturday. 
Sammy will come along very nicely, he listens and he is proud when he figures out something. I am thrilled to have this little guy who is a very biddable dog.
I have some new photos that a friend took for me and I really need to post them.




Wednesday, May 22, 2019

FRUSTRATION

I just spent the last 20 minutes writing all about going up to Illusion Farm to help with whelping a litter of pups. Well the post just disappeared and here I go again. The lady taking care of the farm needed some help with one of the girls who was about to whelp. It is always less nerve wracking to have someone with you through the whelping process. I took care of my dogs, got the puppies all set with extra food and water as I knew that I might be late. I arrived about one thirty in the afternoon and Deana had been in labor for awhile. We sat down to await the arrival of the first pup. Finally the puppy appeared and as soon as mom finished with him we started to dry him and shake the mucous out so that normal breathing could start. Unfortunately this little guy was not breathing and probably had passed awhile ago, probably it was too long before he was born. Always sad to start with losing a puppy. As the afternoon went by six more pups were born and we were kept busy with drying pups and shaking out the mucous to get them breathing well. Finally by six pm all seemed well and I knew I had to go and take care of my dogs. In every whelping you learn something new, just with raising dogs there is always something new coming up, you never know everything and so many things change. Each litter presents something you never saw before, a learning experience for sure. You always feel good when things go smoothly and the pups are doing well. 
I arrived home close to 8 pm and had a bunch of hungry dogs. They had been so good, no accidents, of course the younger ones were crated. I got busy and fed everyone and got them out to exercise, let the pups run in the kitchen as they were confined all day.
Minnie and Coco are the two pups waiting for their homes to be ready for them. They are like twins, just little differences. They love each other and will miss each other. Minnie is going this weekend and Coco the following. I have become very attached to them but they really are ready to have their own home and people. They are smart little girls and so much fun. I will miss them. But I will feel better knowing they will get what I can't give them now. My Shelties need my time and attention.
Finally the agility area is dry and the grass is cut and I can get everyone out to run and really stretch their legs. They need to do the zoomies, which I love to watch. They run circles and go as fast as they can, they just love to run all out.
I may be showing Walter next month so I need to get busy with working with him. It has been such a long winter and wet spring that he has not been out so need to start going places. He had lots of socializing and classes as a pup. He should be ok. I have been working on his coat and it is looking good. 
Well time for breakfast for the kids and they are being very patient this morning. Sometimes they are very naughty but often surprise me and are very good. They usually are not patient dogs but this morning they have surprised me. 
Shelties are so intuitive and so special.



Friday, May 17, 2019

A BUNCH OF BANANAS

Well here it is ten days since I have written. I have been busy with the dogs, lots of grooming to get caught up and doing well with it. Three puppies have gone to their new homes. Two pups still here until the end of the month. They get lots of play time and attention. They are at the age that they need this. The two little girls, Minnie and Coco are bonding with each other. They are so cute and look like twins, exactly the same size.
Went to help a friend whelp a litter yesterday. Did not get home until almost 8 last night. 
The dogs were really good, waiting for their dinner and no accidents in the house. My little cat Girly, did not know why I was gone for so long. She was sitting in the middle of the kitchen table when I came in. She was thrilled to get her dinner. Even cats like their routine.
I have been working in the dog yard getting it ready for fresh stones, it has been a couple of years or more and they really need refreshing. I was not planning on rain today. Guess I can get the rest of the toenails cut and grooming done.
The other morning I was sitting looking at my emails, all the dogs were in with me. It had been very quiet for awhile so I decided I had better take a look and see what was going on. Well I had a bunch of bananas on the table and each dog had a banana or a piece of banana or skin and they were having a feast. Topaz is my table thief, they must have been just close enough for her to reach. I couldn't believe it, a brand new bunch too. My dogs love bananas but I usually only give them small pieces and never any skin. Hopefully they would digest the skin ok and they did, no one had any digestive issues at all. Learned my lesson, no food at all to be left on the table. Once I got over the shock of seeing my bananas gone from the table it was really funny to watch them chowing down. I tried to take them away but it was useless so I just let them finish.
My Shelties certainly keep me on my toes. They keep me going and laughing and I could not live without them.


Minnie at four weeks, sound asleep!

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

LATE AGAIN

Seems like I can not keep up this blog. Two of the pups have gone to their new homes and I will keep in touch to be sure that they are adjusting and doing well. It is hard to let them go but to be honest, taking care of three pups is a little easier. The little boy will be going to his home next Monday. That will leave me Minnie and Cocoa for the next three weeks. As far as care this will be easier but much harder to try not to get attached to these pups. They will have each other for company and I will start a little training with them. I will get them outside when there is a nice day. Will teach them to sit and let them drag a leash around to get used to it.
I know that they will bond with me but once with their new owners they will adjust. Minnie is my favorite, full of personality and vinegar. She is an extremely talkative little girl.
I had thought to work outside again today but the weather is looking like rain. So I think I will do some brushing and nail cutting. The senior dogs nails grow so fast, seems like you cut them and in a week or so they a long again. My seniors are so good, no problems with cutting nails, except of course for Rosie, she is very determined that I will not cut her nails. Such a strong willed little girl. She is still teasing me about being pregnant, one day I think she is for sure and the next day I don't know. Guess all I can do is wait. Two more weeks and we will know one way or the other. I would love to have a Rosie daughter, if she is expecting this is her last time and even if she is not, I will not breed her again. She will be spayed and have her teeth cleaned. I always have both done together as she only has to go under anesthesia one time.
I have a couple of adults that do not like puppies so when the pups are out running the kitchen these seniors are put in another room for a little while. Last night Cocoa was doing zoomies around the table, I have a round table so it is perfect for that. I have never seen such a little one go so fast, she was having a ball. You can't help but laugh, makes you feel so good.
It is really hard to have a litter and not keep a puppy but if Rosie gives me pups I know that I will keep one, unless all boys. I have to be careful to not have too many dogs, I need to be able to care for them all as they deserve and when there are too many it becomes hard. 
My Shelties are such good company, it could be very lonely since losing my husband but the Shelties fill my time and are always with me. I couldn't ask for more. 
Now that the weather is getting better I can get back to training outside and that is much more fun than training in the house. Sammy needs some basic obedience, he did not get that as a pup so we have a lot of catching up to do. I started Bonnie at eight weeks and we need to brush up on what she knows. She has not forgotten, one of the benefits of starting training at eight weeks.
My boys Walter and Sammy have been having some words lately, I know that Walter starts the conversation so I am concentrating on getting him to understand that he and Sammy have to get along. They are both intact so I know that is the problem and especially with Walter as he has to share his home and he thinks sharing is something he does not want to do. We are working it out and both a doing better. Sammy is tending to ignore Walter now and that is perfect. Walter can still be top dog but has to accept Sammy into the pack.
As they get out and get more exercise the problem will get better. I have found that tired dogs are good dogs, exercise is so important. This winter was hard on the dogs, no where to run, too much snow and ice. We all got cabin fever. Time for some fun in my fenced agility area. 
I need to pick up some Wondercide, it is a natural product for fleas and ticks, and it works, so much better than using the chemical spot on. Time to get this day started especially while the pups are sleeping. Once they wake all they want is out and they don't hesitate to let me know.

 

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

PUPPY PLAY

Pups are out of the pen and running in the kitchen, a good day for play. Not nice enough outside to get any work done and even though it is gray and gloomy the pups are full of vinegar and happy to play. They have two new toys and they just love them and fight over them. Not real fighting just tugging and trying to take the toy away from whoever has it. 
Tomorrow morning they will all get baths and then in the afternoon go for their health check and their shots. This will be their first car ride and hope they do well with it. Right at this moment they are running around the table as fast as they can go.  Hopefully they will get really tired and take a long nap this afternoon. Now that they have experienced freedom for the past couple of weeks that is all they want, run and play. Once the pen is cleaned and they go back for their lunch, the will cry, bark and howl, they don't want to be in there. 
They are ready for their new homes, time to bond with their new families. I will miss them, Topaz might at first but she is happy to be done with caring for them. Although right now she is up here playing with them. It took her awhile to learn to be a good Mom, and I bet her next litter way in the future, she will be an awesome Mom. The pups develop so fast, they are ready to learn things like sit and lie down, learning at this young age, 8 weeks they will remember forever. Their little brains are like sponges, they catch on so quickly and are so proud of themselves when they do get it. 
The next stage, eight weeks to sixteen weeks, their development is up to the new families.
This is the time that they need to be socialized as much as possible and as much as is safe and not overwhelming. You will find with giving the attention that is needed as this age you will have confident and happy young adults.
Time to clean the pen again and put the pups in for lunch and hopefully a nap! And maybe not!!
Here are a few photos you might enjoy!




Wednesday, April 24, 2019

OFF THE ROUTINE

This morning due to the fact that I had to go for blood work early, really upset the routine for the dogs. They all went out at the same time as usual, around 6 am. Once they were all out I got the pups cleaned up and fed. I went to get the dogs and the young ones went back into their crates. They were confused but were good about going back. I tried to tell them it would only be for a short time and then we would have their cookies. My seniors all went back upstairs, expecting their morning treat, but no time for that. I could see the question on Keepers face, what is going on, this is not right. His eyes showed exactly what he was thinking. I did a quick handful of treats, that helped some. Brooke who always barks at me when I pick up my purse was quiet. I could see her saying, this is not right, its too early for you to be going out. Normally she gets quite rowdy when I leave, but this morning she was quiet as a mouse. My dogs are so into their routine, that when it changes they just don't know for sure what is going on or how to handle it. Their expressions go from questioning to comical. I would love to know just what they were thinking, and they do think. Don't ever think that they don't know how to think. I have watched them think things through and then make choices. Especially in agility training. There is the A frame with the tunnel right next to it. I would tell Jeep which obstacle to take and I could see him considering which was right, very tempting to take the wrong one when they are right next to each other. He always hesitated a moment and then made the right choice and took the correct obstacle. Keeper who does not like to go outside, always thinks about what I am asking. When it is raining he will look at me and I can see him saying "are you kidding me, I don't think so." 
They all have such different personalities but they all show me at times that they think. These Shelties are so intuitive, they seem to know my thoughts and they sure know my body language. It is past their breakfast time but they are all being good and waiting while I have my coffee. The minute I stand up from the computer they will be up and headed downstairs for breakfast.
Jeep is living with a friend of mine so that he can continue to work in agility. He is a fast dog and I am no longer able to keep up with him, actually it was always a challenge to keep up while he was running. 
I hope to continue with Bonnie's training in obedience, then go on to Rally, you can talk with your dog while competing and there is no running. Also Sammy needs some beginner obedience. So a busy spring coming up.
For now the puppies take up a lot of my time. They are most important as they are developing so fast. I want them to be able to handle the transition to their new homes without any problems. They are doing well.
The dogs have been so good waiting for breakfast that I need to stop writing for now and take care of them.

Monday, April 22, 2019

TIME TO CATCH UP

Last week was pretty busy, with  puppy people visiting and family visiting to see the pups too.
I could not squeeze out the time to write. Will try to make up for it this week. 
The pups are growing like weeds and personality is starting to blossom. They love running in the kitchen, I let them run a couple of times a day and then just before bed, they sleep really well. I am really pleased with the homes that each pup are going to. They will be well loved and cared for, exactly what you want for your babies and as they grow I am becoming more attached to all of them. Lots of work now but I am enjoying them so much.
Many chores to get caught up with and the weather is making it hard. I have hay in my dog yard to help with the mud but with so much rain even the hay is soaked and needs to be raked out. I will get a start on that this morning. I also need to make another dump run. Not my favorite job. Will get to that soon so I can get that crossed off the list.
I think I may need to buy some floor decking that is used outside to keep the dogs off the ground, they will need that until things dry up. Sure is not looking very dry this upcoming week.
Groomed two dogs over the weekend and need to get the rest of the seniors finished up. I will do that gradually this week. 
Now that the snow is finally gone the yard is a mess. It snowed early last fall before we could get all the leaves cleaned up. So now double work. I do have someone who will help me with this. Thankfully it is not all up to me.
There is now standing water in the agility area and once that goes I will be able to get the dogs out so they can really run and stretch their legs. Always something to keep them from running
It is a lot of work socializing the pups alone, Len used to help me with that. He loved to take pups on the couch with him. 
A nice Easter day for us. The dogs and I watched the movie Jesus of Nazareth and it sure brings back the meaning of life. Always good to reflect on that. I am thankful for every day that I can get up and take care of my animals.
So many thoughts today but really need to get going on my list of chores and getting the dump run done is priority.
Also puppy pictures need to be updated.
To me Easter is a renewal and time to move forward!
Wishing a good week for all of you!

                                                                     


Friday, April 12, 2019

SUCCESS

Pups moved to the kitchen. Now they are more involved with the daily routine and confusion. I have two small puppy beds that I put in their pen, they are so cute, three in one bed and two in the other and they keep the beds clean.  At first Topaz would run to the other room where they used to be, she is realizing they have moved. Topaz slept in her own kennel last night and that worked out well. I fed the pups at 8 just before bed and then Topaz fed them before I took her to her crate. She still woke up early but not barking as frantically as before. They all go out together which is much easier. While they are out I go clean pups and make their breakfast. They all pooped in one spot which is so easy. They caught on to the beds so quickly. After the pups are fed and all set I make my coffee. Then everyone comes up for our coffee hour. A little bit of normalcy is back. The visiting girls are gone and two less sure helps with the work.
My drive ways are clear, even though my training area is not, I will start with some basic obedience with Sammy. He had come here for me to work with his ears, as they had fallen down, I do have them up and tipped, all the hair shaved off and hopefully they will strengthen. It is so much better to work with ears when the pups are young and teething. I can hope but it is hard to say if they will come back. If not he won't be able to be shown but he sure can do performance, starting with obedience, beginner obedience is something all dogs should go through. Makes them easier to live with when they know their boundary's. Also helps with bonding and confidence building. Bonnie started at 8 weeks and remembers most of it. Walter went through two puppy classes for basic obedience. He also remembers this early training. When Walter is mature with full coat we will give the show ring a shot and see what happens.He is a lovely boy and maybe we can even get a handler for him. I would love to see him successful in the shows. Time will tell.
I will get some photos of the pups running in the kitchen and using their tunnel.
The dogs have been so good this morning, sometimes they get into trouble, but today very good.
Time for their breakfast, and their clocks have not gone off yet. Peaceful until I say the word!
I think I will just enjoy a few more minutes of peace.

                                                                          





Thursday, April 11, 2019

PUPPIES

Now that the pups are on news paper they will need regular baths, the news print eventually makes their white become dull. And at five weeks papers are needed. They are eating four meals a day and pooping allot. The real work has begun. Having them in the kitchen will be so good for them. Several times during the day all the dogs are in with me and the activity will be good for them. I can also get out their little tunnel and the exercise will be fun and good for them. 
They got their usual soft food this morning and after I gave them a small bowl of kibble and they all chewed and were able to eat it. Another week, they may totally be on dry kibble.
Rosie will love having the pups in the kitchen as she loves puppies and is so good with them, she will play but is very gentle. She will grab a toy and get them to play. For a seven year old it is pretty amazing that she loves the pups. She just loves everyone. She is my special friend. She can read me so well, she will give hugs, climb up on your lap and put her paws around your neck. She loves hugging. I know what she is thinking too. When everyone goes out to potty and she refuses I know she does not have to go. She may want to go out twenty minutes later but she does have to go. To show you how smart she is, when everyone is out and it is time to come in Brooke will just stand in the doorway and not come in. I have to go get a piece of kibble to lure her in. It usually works. Since Rosie is such a chow hound she decided she would go back out and stand next to Brooke, she knew exactly what she was doing, anything for an extra piece of kibble. I finally told her that I am not playing that game and if she wants to be in it has to be when I ask, she did come in. She has always come in when called but she saw how she could get a piece of kibble. She thinks! It is so amazing to watch her think and make choices. 
In training my dogs I try to give them the opportunity to make choices and think. They often make the right choice especially if they are well along in their training. 
Another dog sport that is fun for them and mentally tiring is nose work. Some are really tuned into it. I start with three boxes and in one put the treat. When they find it I make a big deal over that and they get excited. They love scenting and surprisingly enough it does wear them out.
So when you can't get out to exercise this is a fun game to play, of course it has to be one at a time. 
For the pups the tunnel will be their first exposure to having fun and thinking. 
Topaz will feed her pups before bedtime but will then be sleeping in her crate. I just need a short break from her 5am mornings. She will be happier. The pups are messy early in the morning and Topaz does not get much space. She is happy to let me cleanup now. 
I am still covered with snow here and it will be at least another week before I can get out to my exercise area. Once it is clear I like to give the pups an opportunity to experience grass. 
This has been a long and wearing winter, we had snow late October and just again on April 8 and 9th. At this rate we will be skipping spring. 
Lots of chores this morning and then will be the fun part of letting the pups run in the kitchen.
                                                                     ROSIE
                                                                    MINNIE
                                                             TOPAZ & PUPS

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

ALWAYS SOMETHING

Pups are 5 weeks tomorrow and are really looking like Sheltie pups. They are doing so well. Today they will spend some time in the kitchen. They are really getting into playing with each other. So much fun to watch. 
Well the dogs alerted me to something in the basement. My dog room is down there as it is a walk out, daylight basement. Perfect place for my crates for the young dogs. I also have a kitchen sink and I feed the dogs there. 
The other day Walter was scenting something and running around like crazy. He knew something. I was coming down the stairs and this little white thing ran past into the old part of the basement. Scared me and I could not figure out what it is. I got on line and it is an Ermine, a member of the weasel family. I don't know how it got in here or why it would want to.Maybe it followed a mouse. Anyway it needs to go so I am borrowing a small humane trap and will catch it and take it a couple of miles away and let it go. At least it is afraid of the dogs. It is bad enough that we have more snow that has to be shoveled. Let alone having to catch this critter. It actually is cute, pure white with pink eyes. But I really don't want it here. I will have the trap tomorrow and I understand if I put cat food in it that will lure it in. 
I just have to keep a good eye on the dogs as I believe Walter thinks he could catch it. I really can't wait to get it out of here. Thankfully it stays in the basement. 
It is amazing that he could scent it and realize it does not belong here. Maybe he has a new calling in life, a go to earth dog, that would be very odd for a Sheltie. LOL
The young dogs love the snow and are out  there now, running and playing. Hopefully Topaz wears herself out and will be ready to spend a little time with her babies. She was up and ready to go out at five this morning. A bit early for me but when the dogs are calling you can't put it off. Topaz especially. She has been good about spending the night with her pups so I really can't complain. I hope that when she is older and has another litter that her maternal instincts will kick in a little better. She does care for them when she is with them, it is just that I have to put her in with them. 
Time to cut puppy nails again, I can just lay them on their backs on my lap and clip away. They are really good with that. I am going to start with a soft brush  today and get them used to being groomed. So with that and letting them run in the kitchen for awhile that should be enough for today. I want them to get used to changes gradually. 
A little more snow and freezing rain this afternoon. Well time to get the youngsters in, and dry them off. They don't mind being wet but I do, it can't be that comfortable. 
A few new puppy photos that I took yesterday.
                                                                       







Monday, April 8, 2019

A GOOD DAY

Yesterday was the eye clinic and I took two dogs to get their eyes certified. Both Bonnie and Sammy had clear eyes. The rest of the day was spent helping friends get their dogs in to the Doctor and back out. The Sheltie club had 107 dogs for eye checks. That is awesome!
Bonnie was so good on the leash and walked nicely and even went potty on command. I was so pleased with her, she is only nine months and it was a good socializing day for her. She remembered all the training she had as a young pup. They don't forget.I have decided that she needs a day visiting, the pet shop and then over to Lowe's. More new people to meet. If spring ever comes here we can walk the trails and meet many people and dogs. It has been snowing like crazy here since about 5:30 this morning. And yesterday was such a beautiful day for the clinic, a warm 60 degrees only an hour south of here.
I plan to bring the pups into the kitchen and let them explore, it will be good for them. Hopefully I can get some cute pictures of them playing. In two days they will be five weeks and it seems like yesterday that they were born, the time has flown. 
Sammy is a wonderful boy, very friendly and out going. I have been offered to be a co-owner with him and I have accepted that. He is of the line that I want to work with and I think I will have fun obedience training him. He came here more than a  month ago so that I could help his ears. I have been working with his ears and I am hopeful that they will come up where they belong. Sammy is four months younger than Walter and the two boys get along very well.
My snow had been melting pretty quickly, almost to the point where there was some ground where I could work with the dogs. I am so looking forward to training Sammy, he is a very biddable dog who just loves to please. 
I would like to write a little more but the inner clocks are starting to go off. Patience is wearing thin, it is breakfast time.

Sunday, April 7, 2019

I AM SO FORTUNATE!!!

I had people come to visit the pups yesterday and as I think back to the visits I realize that I have some wonderful family's for my pups. Every one will be loved and cared for her entire life.
I put a lot into my pups and want them to have that perfect life. Sometimes it is hard to judge people and I don't want to make any mistakes with finding homes for my babies, it is very important.  I feel so comfortable that these pups will be getting everything that I want for them.
I try to choose homes where the pups will not be alone for many hours. It is important for 8 week old babies to have human contact during the day and for house training to start.
Today I am taking two of my Shelties to the eye clinic put on by our Sheltie club. This is part of the health testing that is necessary when breeding Shelties. Our club holds a clinic every year and it is open to all breeds. Shelties have the same Collie eye issue and with testing our breeding stock we rarely if ever see the disease again. Other testing we do with our breeding dogs, are thyroid, MDR1 which tests to see if certain drugs are safe to use with our Shelties. We also test for VWD which can be an inherited bleeding disease which we don't often see anymore. The reason we don't often see these diseases is that we do the testing and if a dog carries or has this disease we do not breed them and pass it on. Once the dogs reach the age of two we have hip x-rays done and get an OFA rating. This is the Orthopaedic Foundation of America. Aside from the health testing we look for temperament and soundness in our dogs. 
A lot more goes into raising pups than most people think. The socializing is very important but we have to start with healthy dogs, physically and mentally.
Guess I have digressed from my original thought. I am truly fortunate to have wonderful homes waiting for my pups. Most importantly they will be loved for life.
Will get some current photos soon.
                                                                    TOPAZ                 

Thursday, April 4, 2019

TALKING TO THE PUPPIES

First thing in the morning once the adult dogs are out, I check on the pups and spend time talking to them. They get pretty excited and talk back with tails wagging furiously. The tail wagging has really come on this week. Personalities are beginning to really emerge. This is the fun stage of puppies but also the work stage. Mom is getting tired of cleaning up and now that work falls to me. They need to be changed several times a day and the puppy laundry mounts up. Soon we will progress to papers with blankets in the corner for sleeping. They basically try to be clean and not poop where they sleep. You probably wonder why I talk about this but the amount of work is so much more than you think. It is on going all day. Aside from the feeding and cleaning is the socializing, which is so important. There is so much for them to experience and their little minds take it all in. Each week there is so much progress and by the time they are 8 weeks old their little minds are like sponges and will absorb as much as you want to teach them. I usually start house training at 8 weeks and I also teach sit and a couple of basic commands. Within a couple of minutes they understand sit so well and get so excited, praise them profusely. They will never forget this time. 
Once pups get into their new homes 8 weeks to four months is a critical time.  They need the most socializing during this time, they need to do things that build their confidence.The pups have a basic foundation and now it is up to you to take over and help them become awesome pets and well adjusted. So much of their development now depends on you. Socializing should continue through their lives.
I am getting ahead of things here. Next week I will get the little cat tunnel out and let them play with running in and out. They love this and don't forget the tunnel as they grow. 
I hope to get more pictures when they turn five weeks. Their coats are coming in and they are looking more like Shelties. I love watching them develop and their instincts are amazing.
Mom still spends time with them as their interaction with her is very important. She teaches them so much, they need her to learn to be dogs. 
Raising Shelties is an on going learning experience, something new always comes up.
Seeing pups turn out as you hoped that they would when you planned the breeding is so rewarding.
                                                                      

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

BACK TO NORMAL, IF THERE IS A NORMAL!

My sister returned to California yesterday. We had a wonderful two weeks, we felt like we were in a time warp as the time just flew by. It was so nice having someone in the house that could speak more than dog! Thankfully her flight was yesterday as it is snowing here this morning.
The dogs will get back into their normal routine, although they were not out of it by much.
We spent time with the pups and had so many laughs over their antics. They are getting more steady on their feet but more comical. They are beautiful pups and have such wonderful calm temperaments. They will be wonderful companions for their new families.
The pups are four weeks today so time to get busy socializing and getting them used to new things and experiences. I have my work cut out for me but I love it. I will be busy but it will be good for me, since spring does not want to stay, I need to be busy.
It has been a long winter for me but also for the dogs. I know they have cabin fever. I put a couple of bales of hay in the dog yard to cover the ice that is still there and that gave the dogs good footing so they could run some. My large area is still snowed in, it will be awhile before I can get them out to really run. It will be soon I hope. 
I did breed Rosie to a son of Ch Jesstar Raseri and I am hoping it worked, but Rosie is a little older and it may not happen. This is a line that I really want to bring into the line that I have.
I spend a lot of time researching pedigrees and trying to find pictures of the dogs in the background. It is very rewarding and gives me a direction to go in my breeding program. I try to breed closely to the standard to improve the breed but mostly I want to produce healthy and sound pups, mentally and physically. Most of my pups become family companions and the families deserve pups that will live out their lives, healthy and happy.
Health and temperament are priorities whether show potential pups or family pups.
It is amazing to watch instinct take over with the pups. They know mom is in the room before she even gets through the door. Pretty amazing.
The breakfast time clocks are starting to go off. They definitely have inner clocks and they are now ready for breakfast. They don't have much patience.
Hope to get some more current pictures soon. I should get going before the little yips turn into full blown barks. They have been so good while I was writing, so time to end.
 
                                                                 
                                                                        3 weeks

Friday, March 29, 2019

NEVER LAUGHED SO HARD

The pups are developing so fast and finding their feet and attempting to play. My sister and I sat and watched them and just laughed, they are so funny, trying to play, barking, growling at each other, trying to grab tails and howling. One little girl loves to howl and it is the funniest sound you ever heard. Nothing like puppies to boost your spirits.
They are doing pretty well with their puppy mush, mixed with goats milk, best thing to use for weaning pups. Mom has quite a job cleaning up after, as both front feet go into the food, then one will walk through it and quite a mess. Topaz loves the food so she cleans them up so you would never know they had made a mess. It is amazing how fast they do develop. They are responding to " puppy,puppy" , tails beginning to wag.
By next week the visiting girls will be going home, hopefully to have pups in the summer.
We will have peace here again, the boys will calm down and it will be one happy pack of Shelties again. 
Our snow is very slow to go so still can't get out to our large exercise area. I believe that the Shelties suffer from cabin fever just as I do. I have a smaller fenced area off the house and they do run and play some but really need the space to run flat out. 
My sister and I are heading to Illusion farm this morning for a short visit to see the lovely English Shire horses and Kathleen's stunning Shetland Sheepdogs. I purchased my foundation girls from Kathleen years ago and that was the start of my beautiful Shelties. 
Kathleen has been fighting cancer for two years and recently had scans and she is all clear, we are thrilled for her. 
The dogs are reminding me that it is breakfast time and their inner clocks are never wrong.
All for now. More photos soon.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

GROWING SO FAST

The pups had their very first meal yesterday. Today they will have two meals and I will be using goats milk along with puppy mush food. This weekend they will get their first worming. They did quite well with lapping their food. So they are ready even though a little young, it is normal to start food between three and four weeks.
Their personalities are coming out, they try to play with each other and it is so funny, they are still a little wobbly and often just fall over. They are starting to climb on the rail of the puppy pen, they will soon be very agile. They bark, they growl and they howl which is the funniest thing you have ever heard.
It is so nice to have my sister from California visiting. It has been a year and a half with no one in the house but my shelties and that is ok but really nice to be able to carry on a conversation.
I do talk to the dogs all the time and sometimes I think they know what I am talking about. 
Another week and the pups can have visitors and that will be good for them to meet more people. My granddaughter will be here on Saturday and they will get all kinds of attention.
Two girls that I have here for breeding will be going home next week and we will have a peaceable kingdom again. My Shelties are very much routine oriented and when out of their normal schedule things get a little hectic around here. 
We are still buried in snow, it is melting slowly but still not enough to get out to the exercise area. Soon I hope.
We have bred Rosie but I am not sure this will work and I am not counting on her but if she should have pups one of those will stay here. She is the last of a very old line that I would like to keep.
Need to get started with morning chores and wishing a wonderful day for all.

                                                                


Monday, March 25, 2019

PUPS ARE GROWING FAST

Just a quick update on the pups. They are growing fast and eating so well. Mom is beginning to learn what it is to be a  mom. By her next litter she should be all set, hopefully!
I should have more pictures soon. They have their eyes open and their ears are open and now for socialization. They hear us come into the room now and get right up. They are walking but a little wobbly. Just way too cute!
I hope to have time to write a little more this afternoon.
It is very busy now, my sister is visiting and I have two girls visiting for breeding. 
Looking forward to the weather really warming up.
All for now and hope to be back soon.

Friday, March 22, 2019

CATCHING UP

I have been busy teaching Topaz how to be a good mother and she is getting better. She is a young dog and just wants to be with me all the time.With new babies that does not work, so I spend a lot of time sitting with her and the babies and that works well. 
I will not be writing here for a little while as my sister from California is visiting and we have lots of catching up to do. When I have the time I will write a little about the pups.
I wish that I had a pup for everyone on my list but mother nature had other ideas.
They are doing well, and growing like weeds. Eyes have just opened and they are trying to get on their feet. Going into the really cute stage. Will start them on mushy food so mom does get a little free time from them.
I will try to keep the pups progress updated whenever I get a few extra minutes.
Check back for new pictures soon.




Friday, March 15, 2019

DID NOT REALIZE HOW LONG

It has been quite some time since I have written.  Topaz was due mid to late February and I was beginning to worry about her, she was past her due date, yet all seemed to be fine and she was not in any stress. I started sleeping on the couch so I could hear her, but nothing happened.  So I got out the baby monitor for my bedroom and set it up next to the puppy pen where Topaz sleeps at night.  This way I could get some sleep and still wake up when I heard sounds down stairs. Every time I heard her I would get up and go check on her. Needless to say I was not getting the sleep that I needed. As we headed into March I was quite worried but she was not in distress at all. The pups just were not ready to come.
Finally the evening of March 5, Topaz still seemed fine, I put her to bed and at 11 pm heard a lot of digging and moving around. She was in labor, and now to just sit and wait and watch. Finally by 1 am I could see a little foot poking out.  This pup was coming breech but we needed both feet to come. Just what I needed  in the middle of the night. Fortunately I had recently read Myra Savant Harris's book on reproduction and the section on stuck pups. I put on a glove and went in to feel for the other foot. I could feel it and was able to pull it down some. Topaz was also pushing, finally both feet appeared, I was so relieved as I knew that the pup would come now. It was a larger pup and Topaz was really pushing, I had learned a method to help massage the birth canal to help move the pup down, it worked and shortly the pup arrived. The first one always seems to be the biggest and the hardest to deliver. Thankfully all was well. It was a little boy. Between 1 am and 3:30 am she delivered four more pups. Only one was a little large but had no trouble being born. Finally we were on our way. I would give Topaz a little vanilla ice cream between pups, the ice cream gives her some calcium which helps  to keep the contractions going, also a little fluid for her and glucose for the pups.
A little after 3;30 all was well, Topaz was resting and the pups were trying to nurse.
Now the pups are a week and a half old and growing like weeds. A few more days the eyes and ears will open and they will become aware of the world. It is so wonderful to watch them when they first see and hear. I will post when that event occurs. Topaz is very young and not too sure about being a mom so I spend a lot of time sitting with her while she cares for the pups. She is learning but it is slow. I am tired but all so worth it.
                                        TOPAZ AND PUPS, MARCH 6, 2019
                                               FOUR GIRLS AND ONE BOY

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

PATIENCE, PATIENCE, PATIENCE!!!

It has been seven days since I have been on here, don't know where the time goes. I wish the weather was leaving here just as fast.  I actually have to take Keeper by the rough and guide him out the door, he hates the cold so much. He has been house training so well but with it so cold the last trip out at night, he just stands and scratches at the door. Once this cold goes I can leave him out longer and he will not have an accident during the night. It is not all the time just when it is so cold. I usually leave them all out for about half an hour before bed and that works well for everyone. The last few days with the wind and the temperatures I have not been able to do that. 
Topaz is taking her time and she seems to be following the book and hopefully she will follow it right through whelping. It would be nice for her to have a very easy whelping for her first litter. I believe that there are more than two pups, just from feeling and that would be a good thing. They may not be as large and that would be best. Very large first pups are hard for the girls to deliver. Fingers crossed this is not the case. Waiting is so hard and I feel like it has been a long time. Mother Nature knows what she is doing and I just need to be patient. 
Will do a little brushing today, it is peaceful and takes my mind away from Topaz.
They are all shedding and have been for awhile. It is very unusual that the dogs start to shed in January. To me this has been an unusual winter and very long. 
Once the pups arrive I will be busy with them, handling them even before their eyes open and just enjoying the miracle of life. Puppies are so precious and you can just sit and watch them for hours. They need supplemental heat for the first two weeks as they don't regulate their body temperature.  They get a lot of warmth from mom but we do run a heat lamp above the whelping pen to keep the room around 80 degrees. I also use a heating pad and they will search out the heat and pig pile on the pad. Instinct is an amazing thing. 
Hopefully by Saturday I will have news of the pups arrival.

                                                                     


Wednesday, February 20, 2019

MAYBE IT IS THE BEAUTIFUL MOON

The dogs have been off the wall the past few days and I know it is cabin fever. Then again it could be the full moon that we have had for a few days. Maybe it affects them in some way I don't know about. Once the moon wanes we will see how the dogs are behaving. I know they need more exercise for sure. It has been snow covered here since before Thanksgiving and almost impossible for them to really run. They need to get out and just run for the fun of running.They need to do zoomies and burn off the energy that has built up through the winter. It will be awhile before we can get into the agility area and with the temperature at minus eight this morning it will be awhile before we have any significant melting. They got me up at 5:15 this morning and it must have been the light of the moon that woke them up so early. I am thinking that next summer I should enlarge the dog yard that is right off the house so when they play out there they will have more room to run.
They all went out first time this morning at 5:30 and within a few minutes Keeper was scratching at the back door. He gets  such a sad look on his face when I make him go out into the cold. He will be nine years old in a few days and I can't say that I blame him in the least for hating the cold. I hate it too. They have so many feelings and expressions that we have. Dogs are a lot more intuitive and smarter than you think. They do think, sometimes you can just see them thinking and making choices.
Topaz is doing well, she is uncomfortable and her temperature is dropping. By Friday I will know more what her temperature is doing and hopefully will have the pups in a few days from then.She did not finish her dinner last night and I think just not feeling hungry and not enough room for a full meal. It is always so exciting to see new life and realize what an amazing event it is. 
                                                                     

                                                         Think spring!!!!

Saturday, February 16, 2019

SATURDAY MORNING COFFEE

Another weekend rolls around and I know all of you who work are happy for it. For the dogs and me it is just another day. The dogs especially who live in the now, they don't care about which day it is, yesterday they don't care about and tomorrow they don't think about. It is hard to live that way but I sure do try. They have had their morning treat and are now laying around the kitchen in their favorite spots. Every now and then they jump up and ask for breakfast, I tell them it is not time yet and they are good and go lie down. Sometimes Bonnie and Bling play for awhile, I know that Bling is going back into her puppy days by the way she rolls around on the floor with Bonnie. Yesterday she again chased her empty breakfast dish all over the floor, she makes me laugh. Walter is fascinated with my cat Girly and is getting better with her and she is much more brave as she will go right up to him, if he gets too rough  she will let him know that behavior is not acceptable. I have finally found a treat that Bonnie loves, so now her training can continue in full force. Hot dogs and she gets so excited, the little tiny dog treats did nothing for her. Some of my dogs do not like hot dogs, the texture bothers them, they will chew like gum and then spit out. Bonnie will do anything for a piece of hot dog. I expect our training will move along quickly. 
Now if I could get rid of all the snow they could start getting the exercise that they need. I have a huge fenced area with agility equipment and I am looking forward to setting it all up and getting the dogs out. We probably still have about ten inches of snow so I guess it will be awhile. In the meantime I need to set up the whelping area and pen for Topaz. I expect that we will have pups by the end of the month. She is looking like a stuffed sausage. It has been nineteen months since our last litter and I am really excited about the pups.I love raising and socializing the pups. I could sit and watch them all day.  New life is so amazing, you can't help but believe in a greater good out there. I definitely will have photos when the pups arrive. 
Well Rosie is letting me know that it is now time for their breakfast and if I don't get going they will all start complaining. 
Guess that I need to end for now.
                                                                     
                                                                Topaz

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

INDEPENDENT BROOKE

I have had Brooke since she was 8 weeks old and she is the most independent Sheltie that I have ever had. I kept thinking that as she got older she would lose some of her independence . If anything she became more and more determined to have her own way. No matter what I do it is how she wants it. Now at 9 years she is as stubborn as my 7 month old Bonnie. I think that Bonnie is just testing and she sees Brooke doing certain things then she is going to do it too. Brooke hates to go out in the weather, she hates to get her feet wet and like today with the snow I have to actually give her a little push to get her out. You would think when it was time to come in she would run right back in but no she has to play games. Every one will run to the door and come in. Brooke and Bonnie will stand at the door and just look at me .  There are times that I have to go out and basically herd her in. She is barking and wagging her tail and thinks it is a great game. So Bonnie sees this and does the exact same thing. I have started using a treat to get them to come in and I hate doing that as they will get so used to it. Brooke has had basic obedience training and she knows what come means, but if she feels like playing catch me if you can she will do just that. The treats are working and I hope that I will be able to wean them off of them. The others know what is going on, especially Rosie, she does not miss a thing. I have to get every one else up stairs or they will all be looking for a treat. Rosie sneaks back down and the minute the treat hits the floor for Brooke, Rosie steals it. I put Rosie behind the gate, put the treat on the floor and Brooke comes in. So Brooke goes behind the gate. Brooke has taught Bonnie well,   she is standing in the open door waiting for a treat to hit the floor, I put it down far from the door and she comes in. I have spent a lot of time training Bonnie as a young pup and am now getting  back into it with her. She is not as independent as Brooke, she is just watching and doing what works to get a treat.
Shelties learn from each other and they often copy behaviors, good and bad. I know that Brooke will not change, she is 9 years old and very set in her ways. When she won't come in with the good weather I can just close the door and leave her out a lone for a bit. I can't do that in the winter. Thankfully, her son Walter does not have this independent streak.
I don't think I could take another one trying to rule the roost. He has a very good recall and has had several obedience classes. His come is awesome. Maybe he can teach his mom to be a little more obedient.I know she would just snarl at him and tell him to mind his business and he would respect that. When you live with a pack of dogs they do develop their own pecking order. Max, my 13 year old just has to lift a lip and no one bothers him. They all respect him, the next is Rosie, she knows she is special and she is top dog. She never lets you forget it. 
I guess I need to get this day going, there are 8 inches of snow waiting for me. I am not thrilled, I would much rather brush dogs. 
All for now, wishing you all a happy day.
                                                                  
Brooke  at one year!

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

MY SPOILED SENIORS

I will try this post one more time, there must be some problem with blogger as I typed it yesterday and lost it, I retyped it and posted it and then it disappeared again, after it showed in the blog. Not sure I can remember all that I wrote but I did talk about my seniors and how I have spoiled them.
Before I get into that I have to tell you how funny Bling was this  morning. We were downstairs and I was making their breakfast.  I have a gate between the kennel room where I make the food, because if I did not the seniors would be in there all over me.
So since they have learned to open the gate I use a bungee to keep it closed.  The young ones are in their crates so not a problem. I looked over at the gate and there is Bling, her front feet on the bungee and it is sliding down the gate and she is sliding with it. She did it again, she finds the funniest things to do,  she can really entertain herself. 
Now back to my spoiled seniors. After they have their breakfast they go out to potty and then come back in and up into the kitchen while I have my breakfast. I usually have oatmeal with a banana, but I split the banana with them. They each get a chunk of it and they love it. I put aside some oatmeal to cool for them after I eat. After my breakfast they get really excited and start barking. I split up the extra oatmeal between all of them, they each get a small plate and are pretty good about not stealing each others. They eat their breakfast and dinner in their own dish and they respect each others dish, they do not try to steal food. Although Rosie will  stand next to Max while he is still eating and when he is done she licks his dish hoping for a crumb. 
They have been getting their oatmeal for awhile now and once the young ones are good at not stealing from each others dish I don't know if I can keep up this routine. That would be a lot of oatmeal to make each morning. Time will tell on that. Once the dogs have a routine it is really hard to change it. They are very routine oriented. When it gets to be about 4 pm they know it is time for dinner and they don't hesitate to let me know.
I understand routine, as I am a very routine person too. I would really miss my coffee hour in the morning, with my shelties, it gets my day off to a good start. 
More snow coming and I am so ready for spring, I would be very happy if I did not have to run my snow blower again this year. 
The dogs are ready for spring too, at minus two this morning they did not want to go out and it did feel so cold. 
Hopefully this does post this time, I don' think I can rewrite again, the rewrites never come out the same.
                                                               
                                                         Cookies Anyone??

Saturday, February 9, 2019

TOPAZ

Well today Topaz is finally showing that she is expecting. I am really excited for this litter and I am praying for an easy time for Topaz. I know she will be a good mother as she is a sweet dog and gentle. Sometimes she will grab my arm and she never puts any pressure on it. Kind of like a cat and its love bite. She went off her food for a full week and I suspected that she was pregnant but I was not positive. Now I have no doubts. I will start getting her whelping pen ready and all the supplies that I need. It has been a long time since we had  puppies here so this is a big event for us. 
It is cold and blustery today and the dogs really do not want to go out. I put them out for a few minutes just to potty and they are immediately scratching at the door to come in. Especially Keeper as he hates the cold. Keeper is the sire to this coming litter but I am sure that he could care less. The tips of the pine trees are all frosted with ice and they sparkle in the sun, it is a wonder that the ice does not fall off with the wind. 
Bling was so funny this morning, she loves to rub against the pen that I keep around the furnace, so that they don't get too close, she is rubbing her back along the pen and you could see it just felt so good and she is really into it. All of a sudden her legs went out from under her and the look of shock on her face was so precious. She righted herself and continued with the back rub. She is a funny girl and keeps me laughing. She will play with Bonnie who is her granddaughter, and plays just like a puppy. She is going to be 9 in June and she seems to be going backwards in age. I am so happy for her that she is having fun and is becoming a very happy dog. 
My seniors are all aging well. Keeper will be 9 on February 23, Max will be 13 on March 4 and Bling will be 9 in June. Brooke turned 9 last December and Rosie was 7 last October. I still hope for Rosie to have a litter. She is a lovely girl and has such a wonderful personality. We will try one more time before she is actually too old.
My three young dogs have great personalities and do keep me laughing but often get themselves into trouble. 
My seniors keep me laughing, they can be so funny and they rarely get into trouble. 
So I guess what I need to say is that the puppy you get, will some day be a senior, and he needs to be a senior with you. The puppy that comes to your home is for life. Dogs are not disposable items, they are special, with spirits and souls.They are another species and they do adapt so easily to our life styles and they give their all for us. We owe it to them to keep them through their senior years. Some breeders retire their dogs into wonderful homes where they can live out their senior years and this is a good thing. If they did not do this there would no longer be a nice selection of pups from your favorite breed. The adopt and don't shop thing has gone a little too far. When you purchase a well bred pup from a reputable breeder you know that you are getting a healthy pup, with health tested parents and you know what the puppy will turn out to be, not only in looks but in temperament too. You know that you will have many good years with your puppy and your breeder will be there for you to help out with any questions or issues for the life of your dog. Most definitely that is worth a lot.
Guess that is it for now. I need to get busy and do something a little more productive today, maybe like brushing shelties. 
Keep warm!
                                                            A PREVIEW

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

LITTLE LISA

Lisa is not one of my Shelties but visiting to be bred. She is the sweetest of all Shelties.
She had many things to learn while here. Most importantly coming up the stairs to the kitchen. She had never used stairs before, so I started carrying her up. I did not want to leave her downstairs when everyone else was up in the kitchen. They have all learned the words "go kitchen" and they fly up, as there are always treats waiting for them.
It was getting difficult to carry her up all the time. So I started to teach her the stairs. I would put her down at the first step and help her up that one step, praising all the while she was moving a  foot up. Finally she would go up the first five steps and she was so proud of herself. Her tail wagged and she barked as I made a big deal of her going up. Now for the second five, there is a landing between the two sets of steps. The second set seemed harder for her to do. I would encourage her to put a foot up and she tried. It took her a little longer to master this set. When at last she did all the steps at one time we had a party upstairs and she was so excited. Just about turned in side out and was so proud. I love seeing the dogs accomplish something that was a difficult task. They were all coming up after their supper last night and Lisa got to the second set, put up one foot and made the cutest little yodel I have ever heard. She wanted help so I went down and started one foot on the step and up she went.
Yesterday was brushing day and I completely brushed, trimmed long hair on feet and did their nails. Lisa loves brushing, even standing on the table. She would have stood there all morning as long as I kept brushing.  I wish that all the dogs enjoyed brushing the way she does. I did get five dogs done and only three more to go. This is an ongoing process, in two or three weeks you start all over again. Brushing keeps their coats so pretty and healthy looking. And I always feel good when I have accomplished so much.
Lisa will be going home soon and we will miss her. I think that she had a good time and maybe someday she will come back for a visit.
Oh and by the way the dogs loved the warm weather.
                                                                        
The grooming table makes grooming your dog easy and it sure saves your back.