They were born a little earlier than we would have liked and sadly, we did loose one during the birthing process but the others are doing fine, with the exception of the smallest one, Widget.
Widget was the second of the five to be born, weighing a little over 300 grams. He made a fighting start, getting in there with Ruby, suckling for milk. We thought he was doing great.
But last night during the family meal, I looked over to Ruby-Dog's whelping box to see little Widget lying there apparently limp and lifeless, One-day Hubby jumped to attention, scooping him into his hands and started stimulating him rapidly but Widget was frightfully unresponsive.
I called the breeder for some emergency advice who told us to keep trying to stimulate the puppy and keep him very warm.
After a few minutes One-day Hubby cried out that he thought he had seen him open his mouth, and would you believe it, he had! and just a few minutes later he made some faint squeaking noises.
In something of a fluster I quickly filled a tupperware tub with some warm water and wrapped it in a towel. We then placed the puppy on the make shift incubator whilst continuing to rub him.
Ruby-Dog did look a little concerned at our intervening as she looked on with fear, We did try to keep her as involved as possible, allowing her the odd lick but Widget was week, his life hanging in the balance.
Then the makeshift incubator started to melt, So he had to be provided with some emergency Kangaroo Care whilst a hot water bottle was located.
With in ten minutes, our breeder arrived with some nutra-drops, a glucosey type mixture that is fast acting.
After tasting the mixture he slowly started to pick up. We tried to get him to take some milk from his Mother but the poor little soul was still weak as he slid off the nipple, tired and exhausted.
Next we tried to express some milk from Ruby to raise his energy levels, but I am not adept in the realms of dog milking and the amounts were insufficient.
Acting on the breeders advice, we continued to give the drops every few hours until the puppy built up some energy. We put him next to Ruby and willed the little fellow on, hoping for the best.
One-day hubby and I decided it would be a good idea to keep a closer eye on all of the the pups, so we marked them apart using tipex, this way we could tell more easily how often each puppy was feeding.
We drew up some observation charts to monitor their progress, noting their sucking and sleeping activity every two hours through the night.
Then, the puppies were officially named. We called them Gadget, Sprocket, Widget and Disqus, with Disqus being the only girl.
And would you believe it, hour on hour little Widget's strength grew and once again he was active, suckling from his Mumma.
Today Widgets suckling away like a champ, sweetly nestled in with his brothers and sister.
We are so proud.