I don’t think I am alone as a breeder when I find we can have no pups for quite a while and then – all of a sudden – two litters arrive at once. A new litter is always a big event, usually involving sleepless nights and much excitement for human and canine alike. But these two births were more eventful than most.
Kirra’s started whelping on February 16 and it was textbook – or so we thought at that time. She’s been getting special attention for two weeks and when the day to whelp arrived, everything was running smoothly.
Kirra was in our home in our ensuite and after a few hours of pre-labour reassurance and encouragement, the clever girl had two little pups without any assistance needed. They were born two hours apart on the afternoon of February 16.
Kirra has had a litter before and, despite her more than ample size in the tubby-stakes, she only has small litters. Her first litter in fact was just one puppy, which caused great amusement as we had been anticipating a big litter of five or even six going by her size.
(My experience is about 25% of dachshunds are food inhalers (piggies); Kirra is one of these.)
Anyway, we were thrilled to see the safe and uncomplicated arrival of two delightful little girls.
Others not as lucky
The following day, on February 17, we would not be so lucky. Poor old Tandi had not hatched yet, and we had thought she would go before Kirra.
By lunchtime I decided it was time for a veterinary assessment, so I took Tandi to the vet at Maffra for a progesterone test. After an anxious one hour wait, the test revealed she was effectively in labour – yet despite this result we had no signs of any action. Cindy the vet recommend we don’t take the risk and a C-section followed soon after. Great news was all five pups and mum alive and well after the surgery.
More to the Kirra tale
Two births in two days was quite exhausting for our family, especially with Tandi’s complications whereby one waits, observes, wonders, worries and eventually seeks medical opinion and likely intervention.
Which of course is no big deal and all part of looking after our lovely girls pre and post pupbirth.Both me and my husband were sleep deprived with our two new mums in our ensuite and our girls’ bathroom (they now live in Melbourne). I was getting up every couple of hours to check Tandi’s pups. She was lying on them, worryingly, possibly because she was still a bit lethargic from the anasthetic. And David had been the unfortunate one to discover the accidents of both mums (despite regular toilet breaks) and was duly washing floors at all hours.
With the mums and pups all settled, we weren’t too impressed when we were woken by one of our cats requesting to be let in at 4am. We know which cat, as they each have their own special method of inspiring us to rise from the comfort of bed. Sidney scratches the glass of our bedroom window in a racy paws style, Smudge digs her claws in the flyscreen and rattles it (ripping it as she goes) and Benny … well, Benny vocally expresses his displeasure and desire for action.
It was Smudge last night, and both us humans were grumpy. Dave took the opportunity to check the girls while he was up and he called out, “Didn’t Kirra have two pups?”
To our utter delight and disbelief, Kirra had given birth to another puppy! Two days after the other two! I stand to be corrected, but I have never heard of this and neither has our vet or breeder friends.
Not only did this little girl arrive exceedingly late, but she is – most remarkably – incredibly thrifty and strong. She just latches on and sucks non stop!
Doesn’t get any better
There is nothing like new life and those wonderful unexpected happenings to remind breeders (or indeed, sleep deprived young parents) why this whole business of new life is so rewarding and uplifting.
We were both tickled pink, to put it mildly.