Tuesday, April 29, 2014

4 Days to Go

Everyone keeps asking how Ivie is doing.  She looks beautiful, has a pregnant glow, her coat is shiny and lush and her milk is coming in.  She is hungry and I am giving her three meals a day instead of two as she cannot eat a big meal any more.  I am coming home at lunch now to feed her and check in on her  and take her for a waddle down the road.  I say Waddle because that is what it resembles.

She is very careful about staying out of Dallas and Gandalf's way and she spends most of her time laying by the front door.  I don't know if she will hold out until Saturday but no matter what I am prepared.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

One Week to go

Oh my goodness, it is hard to believe we have one week to go before babies are born.  I am so excited and can hardly wait to see what Ivie has.  She looks like a small house on four legs or others have mentioned she deeply resembles a beached whale.

The reproduction vet indicated that because Ivie has had two c sections she will most likely need to have another one.  I had originally scheduled x rays for Monday, however a very wise old time breeder told me that if we were doing a c section there was no reason to do x rays.  We will get all the puppies and that is the main reason to do x rays.  No reason to expose the puppies to radiation if it wasn't necessary, which it wont be.

My other issue was that my regular vet is leaving town at 5am on Friday morning and won't be home until late Sunday night.  ACK!!!  I was panicking.  My vet suggested that we drive to the repro vet in Tacoma but that is two and a half hours away and the last thing I want to do it drive home after a c section with Ivie and a bunch of puppies, what if she goes into labor on the way there, what do I do then.  So I made inquiry's and made phone calls and decided our back up vet will be our old vet, Dr. Wagner.  She did Ivie's first C section and did a great job, she allowed me to watch and be available to help if need be.  We had left the clinic because Dr. Wagner had a baby and was on maternity leave when Frodo had gotten sick and no one was able to help me at that time.  Dr. Wagner was more than happy to be available to help and gave me her cell phone in case I need her in the middle of the night.  The plan is to let Ivie start the delivery process on her own, this will help with her hormones and milk production and then we will go into the vets office when she shows any signs of not being able to deliver on her own.

Today has been shopping day!  Or at least getting dog and cat food day since I will have to work the first part of next week and the store where I get my pet food is the opposite direction from work.  $600 dollars later, my dogs and cat will be able to eat for the next two months.  It is amazing how fast it all adds up.  Then off to Costco - lets just say my check book is looking rather empty right now.  I still have a few other things I have to pick up but the weather was threatening to rain and if I didn't get my lawn mowed today, It may not happen for another month and that would not be a good thing.  So I am happy to say all the dog yards are picked up and mowed.  I still need to weed eat but I couldn't get my weed eater started today, instead Dallas and I went for a nice long walk.

I will try and keep everyone up to date on things as they happen on this blog.  I find it is the easiest way to stay in contact with my puppy homes.  Feel free to leave comments or questions and I will answer them as I have time.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Leaving for the Specialty

Today is both exciting and hard as I am leaving for Hampton Virginia for the US National Specialty.  I am extremely excited to meet up with old friends, share my passion for Bernese Mountain Dogs and see some dogs from the East Coast that I normally would never get to see.

However in order to do that I must leave Ivie and the rest of the crew at home.  I gave Ivie a bath yesterday to get her cleaned up and toenails trimmed before she has her babies.  She is looking somewhat liked a beached whale at this point and she has 3 weeks left to go, she is going to be Ginormous when the time comes.

I also just found out my regular vet is going to be out of town when Ivie's pups are due.  This is terrible news and I am afraid I am going to have to take her over to Tacoma to Dr. Smith's office for a C section.  The thought of driving home with Ivie and babies is not a pleasant one, but I just don't trust the other vets in my area to do the job.

I will dwell on this more as I explore my options.  Meanwhile they are calling my flight so I am off to the best show on earth...at least in my opinion

Thursday, April 3, 2014

She's What!!!

Breeding dogs isn't as easy as throwing two dogs in the back yard and hoping they will get the job done, no it is much more complicated than that.   Or at least breeders and Vets seemed to make it more complicated than that.  There is a magic hormone called Progesterone and basically when your girl comes into season you monitor her progesterone - at about $100 bucks a pop by going into the vets office, they take blood from her and send it off to a lab.  At least here in Sequim they send it off to a lab as my vet doesn't have the equipment to test it in house.  I usually get the results back the following morning.

So based on my last experience with Driving to Utah to breed to Beowulf and having Ivie get bit by a brown recluse spider and losing all but one puppy I decided that my pocket book really needed a break this time around.  Although I would have loved to breed to Beowulf, it just wasn't going to be feasible.  He was going to be spending the Winter in Arizona with his family and although the idea of spending some time in warm weather was appealing I decided that I would breed to a Beowulf Son, Chandler.  Chandler lives in Federal Way and I really enjoy spending time with his Mom and Dad, Marty and Jon Moore.  Chandler just turned two and it was decided that Ivie would be his first girlfriend since she was a proven bitch and had produced nice puppies in the past.

So when Ivie came into season, I got a bit nervous when Jon told me he was going to go to the Arizona regional specialty.  I crossed every finger and toe that I had that she would hold off long enough for him to get home.....That is where this story really starts......

On Tuesday Ivie's progesterone was at .2, remember she needs to get to 5.  So I wasn't too worried.  we decided to wait until Friday and do another draw.  My vet does the draw and the next morning I decide to go to the dump and do some stuff at the office.  Meanwhile in the morning Ivie is acting all antsy and I couldn't figure out what was wrong with her, so I put her outside and then figured it was safer to bring her back in the house while I was out doing my errands.  Around 11:30 I noticed an email from my vet letting me know that her progesterone had risen to 1.9...hmmm this could be a bad thing, so I called Anne (my mentor and very good friend)  Anne says you need to get progesterone done today.  Call Dr. Smith and see if they can get you in.  So I call and they tell me that I have to be there by 2pm for them to get the results back the same day....It is now 11:37 and I am 2 1/2 hours from her office and I don't even have my dog with me....ok then, we will be there.

I race home, change my clothes, grab my toothbrush, an extra change of clothes and a small bag of dog food that I happened to have for this very reason and flew out the door.  Thankfully the bridge wasn't open for any submarines and I made it to their office at 2:01pm...whew!  Linda meets me and while we are waiting for results we go and have lunch, great for taking my mind off of things.  Linda is now getting worried about the time, so we head back over to their office and I ask if they have the results back from her test.  This is the actual conversation.  The young girl says let me look,  It says here that Ivie's progesterone is at 6.3.  My response - SHIT!  6.3 are you sure!  her response, as she looks horrified by my language at this point is - would you like to talk to the doctor?  My response, no need, I know what I need to do - Thanks!

And Out the Door I go (I think that is a line in a song)  I call Linda, she lives close and asks if I need anything to get on the road.  I think I am good.  I call Anne, She says I need to call Jon, so I call Jon.  Jon has left the dog show to visit his parents in Quartzide about 2 hours away.  He says he will pack up and start driving north, which means going back to the show site, load up his trailer and stuff and drive right by where he currently is...Did I say how much I like Jon.  Anyway I start driving south.  Ivie and I spent the night in Oregon and we met Jon the next day just north of Sacramento.  We find an area and let the dogs be together but Chandler just couldn't get the job done.  Being young and all he just didn't quite know what to do.  We tried and tried and I realize at this point that we need help.  All our help is in Oregon, so we start driving North.  I meanwhile am following Jon and making phone calls.  Jon is exhausted and we pulled into Weed, California at a Pilot Truck Stop and park his trailer.  By now I have been coached by the best of the best in breeders on how to help Chandler and I have to say, he got the job done!  Good Boy Chandler!

The following morning we drove to his place and got another tie, I then came on home and worked the next day, to leave work and go over to Federal Way the next day for another tie.  By this time I have put some major miles on my van.  For someone that was hoping for something close to home and simple, well that just went out the door.

Yesterday, I received confirmation from Dr. Smith's office that Ivie is pregnant and she expects her to have 7 to 9 puppies on or around May 3rd.  This is such good news and I am so happy.  Now comes the waiting.  Thankfully I am going to the National Specialty next week, I am sure when I get home, I will see a big change in my baby girl.