Recently we have been fostering a new plan to; ease mowing, avoid mud pits at the entry, deter digging and make our outdoor kennel more appealing to the eye. While we are grateful for the functionality, we’ve felt the need for improvements. Presently, we do have the ability to lock the dogs in the very large concrete area of the indoor/outdoor kennel. While, if we allow, the dogs can have access to a safe grassy play area when we are otherwise engaged. Now is the time for an upgrade.
Fortunately for us, we have Brian who is our workhorse that gets things done. I on the other hand, conjure up all kinds of plans to keep him busy.
We have been blessed by a beautiful spring. Unfortunately, all good things do have their limits and that includes temperate weather. The puppies have figured out that air conditioning is preferable to heat and humidity and beg to be back inside. Considering there are fourteen, there is not enough play space in the living room for them all day. What these pups really need is a safe space where they can run and play or rest safely in the shade when supervision is unavailable.
Tomorrow, if the weather holds, Brian will reassemble the fencing while Cara and I will be traveling to pick up her Haflinger, Sonya after getting bred. Stephanie will be in charge of puppy duty. Thankfully, she has really begun to take initiative in the care of the pups, which frees others to pursue other tasks.
Today we celebrate Memorial Day, remembering those who have given their lives that we may be free.
As I reflect on the state or our nation; the turmoil of the season we’re in, I think of what we were built on. Nation’s without moral character have never stood the test of time. John Adams once stated “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”
Ultimately, our foundation is in Christ. Raising and selling puppies has been a joy bringing both believer’s and nonbeliever’s into our lives and for that we are very thankful.
We are again trying to utilize the Puppy Culture program to best prepare the puppies for their futures. The first couple of days all we do is weigh the puppies ensuring they are obtaining adequate growth.
Beginning with day three we institute the Early Neurological Stimulation (ENS) protocols. Below is a video explaining why and how we perform this on each puppy.
I am sorry for my very long absence. My mother unexpectedly became ill and I had to drop everything to assist in her care. With her passing and the settling of her estate, I forgot how to even access the login page. Now, with the wonderful assistance of my website builder Tony Bierman, I am back!
I will try to update some of the happenings in our absence as I become more proficient. In the mean time the big news is the arrival of Mesa’s new litter. Here is the most recent photo of all the English Shepherds. Well, that’s not working for me right now, but I’ll keep trying!
Saturday morning we butchered our first hog. Brian stunned the pig, he and Sarah got him tied to the bucket of Sarah’s tractor. Then Brian lifted the bucket, Sarah slit his throat to have him bleed out.
We had hoped to do a hog roast, but we don’t have the right set up or knowledge. None of us wanted to risk the pig catching on fire and we couldn’t locate any experienced help. So, we opted to just skin the pig this time.
After gutting and setting aside a bunch of goodies for the dogs. Sarah set to work skinning the pig. Then Brian lowered the pig for cutting.
Then we set to work cutting out the pork tenderloins and removing shoulders, belly and hams.
We cut up some scraps for the dogs and took the organs and other delicacies to the house to cut up and freeze for the dogs in the future. We also washed the pigs feet, head, and ears for the dogs. The English Shepherds will get some along with the big dogs on Raw Tuesdays, our regular raw feeding day. The Livestock Guardian Dogs all got a foot when we finished. We were very pleased to have everything cleaned up by 11 a.m.
I couldn’t stand how much blown coat was matted on Baron. So, after a visit from a friend to socialize puppies, poor Baron’s number came up. He was so very good with all the brushing. It really came out nice and thankfully Sarah joined me later for the better part of an hour.
We have purchased the Puppy Culture program to help us prepare the puppies we raise to become better canine citizens. By nature we have done some of these things, but our goal is to be proactive in the best timing and setting for the puppies.
Initially we postponed the Early Neurological Stimulation – ENS due to the number of puppies and their struggles in the first week while Mesa established her milk supply. On day eight we began to institute the ENS protocols. Here is a chart of their first eight days.
Of course, after I’ve messed up numerous times, I read the suggestion in the workbook to chart in pencil. Between the excitement of new puppies and the anticipation of Ravine’s litter, along with the supplementing and care the first week was pretty much a blur making sure we learned which puppy was which! With the advent of week two we began to formulate a rhythm to the process of weighing and implementing the ENS protocols.
Here is a link that explains the purpose and instruction of each protocol.
We most certainly didn’t perform all the protocols perfectly, but I will say we have a pile of very sweet, calm, receptive puppies that just fall asleep in your hands on their backs now.
The puppies are now toddling around so we’ve tried to designate sleeping and potty areas. With this size of litter I think it is a little more difficult. Although they can all fit on their bumper pad nest, they often overflow onto the pee pads which isn’t making the delineation between clean and dirty as concrete. Overall, they are doing a good job of trying to clear the nest to do their business.
Yesterday we discovered almost all the puppies in line. Cat sprung into action to capture their cuteness. She had a couple of dissidents to contend with, but got them all lined up.
I am amazed at how quickly the pigment fills in on the puppies. Their little feet and faces are so pink when they are born. Already their noses are jet black, except “Journey” who has a teeny pink spot on her nose on the white half of her face.