Guess it's time to get Ritz acclimated to the set up that she and I will share with her pups for the upcoming month or so. And what better time to do it than Christmas night... Remedy enjoyed Christmas eve and morning with me in the comfort of my bed as she has for the past couple weeks. Her pups are weened -eating four solid helpings of kibble a day. So... we're playing revolving doors. Or gates.
I graduated Remedy to the "maternity" -now "postpartum room" aka my computer room and Ritz into the whelping room -aka my bedroom. Things are going pretty smooth. An easier transition than I anticipated. But... it was well thought out and planned prior to Ritz's mating. My first overlapping litter. I've always said I'd be able to swing it, giving each all that they need and deserve, as long as I has at least a month between litters. I've been lucky to get six to seven weeks!! Remedy's pups remain in the mud room within the safety of their corral and will have frequent passerby's by Auntie Ritz until they're ready to join their families. Ritz has given them a friendly hello but other than that... that's all she's offered.
Ritz hasn't shown any signs of nesting or other preparatory behavior but I assume it won't be long. I figure the earliest she could whelp would be tomorrow but I doubt her pups will come that soon based on her behavior. It's a waiting game.
Taking a break from the couch.
Enjoying the view.
Soaking up some rays.
Getting some exercise and definitely loosing her girlish figure.
Wasn't sure this litter was going to happen based on timing and progesterone levels but I'm happy to report I'm not faced with making a bunch of disappointing phone calls following our ultrasound yesterday. I trusted my boy on this one despite the Vet telling me we were likely too late. Turns out Serious is a better indicator of things than lab values are.
Although ultrasounds are basically just used to confirm pregnancy, they can give a rough estimate of litter size. Our estimate, 6 to 8 pups. Could be more but generally not less. As I know though, and learned from Remedy's litter, unfortunately things can and do happen. That's something I don't want to think about or consider at this point.
I sincerely hope Ritz comes through for everyone on her list, but that we won't know for about a month. Ritz's official due date is New Years Eve. Likely as is typical, pups will come a few days early.
I'm gearing up for a bit of a hair raising time. Truth be told, I'll more than likely be running around like a chicken with it's head cut off toward the end of December. This will be a first for me... a litter that overlaps the preceding. I'll be somewhere in the early to middle stages of meeting people for selection of pups from Remedy's litter when Ritz's pups arrive. Ritz and her pups will obviously have to take priority but I foresee no trouble managing all that lies ahead. I may be pulling my hair out but the dogs will be fine and everything will get done. I'm up for the challenge as they say. And maybe... just maybe I'll reward myself with a luxury I almost never consent to. A full body massage may be in order!
And thankfully midterm elections are a thing of the past!
I celebrated the event with the addition of the much missed and needed shiny new iMac! Seems I waited the length of time though for nothing as the anticipated "new" models didn't materialize. Apple upgraded much of their entire line with an end of October release... with the exception of the iMac. Just as well I suppose... at least this one feels and works the same as the old.
Now I'm left with some catching up to do... And lots to do going forward. It's great to once again have the tools at my disposal to make that happen.
Remedy is doing great. Getting fat with pups due in just over a week! I must say though, with the unusually early signs of pregnancy I saw from her, I'm a little surprised she's not bigger that she is currently. She's eating well and seems to be feeling well but huge she's not. Time will tell what she's hiding within. With her due date rapidly approaching, today seems like a great day to set her up with her whelping box. As moms before her, she'll become my full time sleeping partner graduating from my bed to her own in the next few days. We're gearing up!
So it appears my beloved iMac, purchased not all that long ago, has decided to call it quits on me. Ugh! So for now I'm left to figure out plan B as I consider how to document my upcoming litter. To make matters worse, the laptop I purchased off Groupon for the purpose of transmitting Holter data is also out of comission. After about 5 hours of use I received notification that i needed to update windows. It went about its business installing but at completion dispayed a big blue window stating "device in need of repair". That simple notice, on top of having to re-acclimate to Windows after a few years of being away from it, was nearly enough to make me throw yet another device to the ground and stomp on it! Once again! But again, I didn't. I spoke with customer service who directed me to get a removable flash drive, down load Windows (from some computer somewhere) insert and reinstall windows to the laptop. Another Ugh!!! I'll give it a try and hope for the best... and then -if I keep plugging away maybe my memory will somehow miraculously resurface regarding Windows. Currently I'm using, have been reduced to using, a little tablet. And this is my third attempt with as many computers to provide an update. Tough going from 27 inches down to 5x7! Right now, at least for this immediate second, things are running pretty smoothly! But I miss my Mac... for it's big screen and the slew of photos that lie buried within it! While I somewhat hated Mac when I first got it, I've learned the system and it's now what I'm used to. The most simple things, cut and paste etc etc are now a challenge because I've forgotten everything Windows. When they called to tell me the motherboard on my Mac was fried, they also informed me the new models are due to come out at the end of the month. The techs recommendation was that I wait. Wait I will but only if, and that's a substantial if, they release them on time! I've got an upcoming litter to document. And this 5x7 tablet isn't going to cut it.
Now for the good news! Remedy is doing great and my guess says she's carrying a slew of pups. I went ahead with an ultrasound at her 30 day mark. Not quite sure why I did in hindsight because even at thirty days it was pretty obvious to me she was with pup. While ultrasounds are really only used for confirmation of pregnancy they can sometimes give a somewhat accurate count. Their estimate... "a bunch" clarified to "at least 8-10". Looking at her at this stage I'm going to say the "at least" part is right.. Hopefully, factoring in sex we'll have a good mix of males and females and be able to satisfy all who are currently on the wait list. Fist things first though... a continued smooth pregnancy, an uneventful delivery and a pack of healthy pups. Our anticipated due date is November 15th. Historically I've learned to be set up and ready a few days early.
Well ok, maybe not stars... but they did have their first, and likely only, Music Video debut. Being used to being handled by myself, they were a little out of their element with another handler. Especially with little time for dogs and person to become acquainted with one another. I guess it's safe to say they could have been a bit more cooperative. All in all though I think they did well. Ritz a little more comfortable with the proceedings than Serious who flat out refused to put his ears up. Funny thing actually... at home, on the range, he rarely ever puts them back. My happy go lucky boy!
On YouTube for your viewing pleasure!!! Claire Vandiver, accompanied by Serious and Ritz brave the wilds of an old Cemetery in Cassadaga Florida! Perfect for a Halloween release. The town itself is reportedly known for paranormal activity and is dubbed the "Psychic Capital of the World". The cemetery, known by locals as home to the Devils Chair, lies just on the outskirts of town. That chair... "The Devil's Chair" is subject of urban legend in and of itself. All of this unknown to me until I received a brief synopsis and did a bit of research before committing to participate. A little spooky? Yep. But by design. Being included, having my dogs included, was an honor and a unique experience. It was an opportunity to get a glimpse of the behind the scenes components that go into creating video from makeup to camera to sound. And then came the editing process as I anxiously awaited release to see if Serious and Ritz were able to deliver. I wish Claire and crew, all the best in future endeavors. Claire, with a voice that seems never to disappoint and the crew, each bringing to the table their own talents. Cassadaga joins Claire's lineup on YouTube and is available for your listening pleasure on iTunes and Spotify. In the flesh she performs locally and beyond. Check her out.