Gracie 2005 Litter
Mom & Pups

January 2, 2005:
Gracie was So Big and uncomfortable I was sure she would deliver a little earlier than than the classic 63 days. Neither one of us slept well for days before delivery. Pregnant bitches are hard to sleep with!

Here is a picture to show the enormity of Gracie's situation. I like to call this " How to sit on the couch when you are VERY pregnant" Her belly was So Big it was difficult to get it settled so she often just kept her butt held up.

We weighed them again at 8 days old and they have all DOUBLED in weight! There is one female still available!

Gracie just before the puppies.

Jan. 2, 2005, 10 pm log:
Gracie started hard labor. She started pushing at 00:30 and by 02:00 I was getting concerned. I stepped out to call the ER Vet. when I went back into the room Gracie had removed all 6 blankets and just delivered her first pup at 02:13 on Jan. 3rd 2005.

The Important Thing I Should Have Known/ Remembered: * Laboring females are ALWAYS right and NEED to do it their way! Gracie had 9 beautiful pups , the last pup was born at 08:51. She even got an hour and a half nap between # 7 & 8. That's impressive.

Jan. 3, 2005
There are 5 Girls and you guessed it 4 Boys. They are all doing very well! It never fails to amaze me how strong they are. It was difficult to put the ribbons on at just a few minutes after birth. I keep the same color ribbon on the same pup (new ones every few days as they grow) for the first two weeks or so ~ then I switch them to adjustable collars of different colors. These stay on until they go to their new homes. This way I can get a sense of their different personalities starting just after birth. Gracie is a wonderful Mom. Kitty and I are the doting Grandmas.

5 Girls & 4 Boys

"It was difficult to put the ribbons on at just a few minutes after birth.
Gracie is a Wonderful Mom."

Jan. 11, 2005
We weighed them again at 8 days old and they have all DOUBLED in weight!

4 Boys

5 Girls

Feeding Time

Download the Media Player version of movie here !

Serious Nursing

Jan. 17, 2005
This shows at even two weeks old how intense they are, their tales stick straight out when they are eating and wiggle slightly...

Gracie feeding the pups. She has to sit up now for better access.

Jan. 19, 2005
I just converted them to collars from ribbons on Tuesday. Boys have solid color collars, girls have pattern collars. All are different colors. The puppies are now 16 days old.

"Grandma Kitty" helps out. Kitty is 9 years old.

Now I have papers in 1/2 of the pen.

Soon they will learn to go potty on the papers and sleep on the mat.

Some of My Favorite images

Gracie and Maggie

Puppy and Boot (Negative)

Puppy with Knot toy

All the pups went to Fabulous Homes! I'm very excited that some of them will be trained for Hunt Tests! Most of them will be used for hunting. The best is that they all have Wonderful families to love no matter what their futures hold! Gracie is a great Mom and loved her pups ~ but she has what I call "Retriever Fever" and she is thrilled to be off to Texas to finish her Master Hunter Title and possibly Qualify for Master Nationals 2005.

I highly recommend these three books to everyone who buys my pups, or loves labs.
1) "Just Labs" by Steve Smith & Dale C. Spartas
2) "101 uses for a lab" by Dale C.Spartas
3)"Retriever Puppy Training : The Right Start for Hunting"
by Clarice Rutherford and Cherylon Loveland

9725 283rd Lane NE, North Branch MN 55056 , (651) 674-6104,
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