Star" - Jim Brickman
Midi sequence from Sunncity.com
BICHONS ACROSS CANADA
IN THE NURSERY
Did you ever wonder what's happening while you're preparing for that very special puppy to be a part of your life? The following photos, with narrative, may help you understand the process of breeding and raising puppies while you are anxiously waiting for news.
The Waiting Game
From the time of breeding, the gestation period is 63 days, however a breeder must be prepared for those puppies to arrive before or after that time. Time of day (or night) means nothing and many breeders spend sleepless nights either delivering a litter, dashing off to the veterinarian if there's a problem, or tending to the mother and puppies after birth, to ensure that the puppies get off to a good start without mishap.
See How They Grow
The first photo below (left) shows newborn puppies, still wet from birth. Newborns usually weigh between 5 and 8 oz.
The middle photo is at 2 days old and the photo far right at 4 days, so you can see how quickly healthy puppies grow. Note the noses already blackening at this stage.
The next series of photos again shows the continuing development of puppies at 6 days, 10 days, and eyes just opening at
approximately two weeks of age.
continue to grow and develop and by three weeks of age are up on their
feet and mobile. Weaning from their mother
begins some time around 4-5 weeks of age, depending on circumstances and a breeder's preference. At that time, the
puppies are interacting with littermates (socialization in the litter) and it's also important for a breeder to check and handle
each puppy often, not only to ensure that all is well, but to begin the socialization period with humans. Safe toys may also be
placed in the puppy area (see photo above right) for play. Puppies should be allowed to walk on different textured
surfaces and be exposed to normal household sounds, voices, music, etc. It's all part of their learning curve.
The photos below show a puppy at six weeks of age (sleeping) and puppies
being socialized with children closer to the time
of either leaving for their new homes, or remaining with the breeder. Pictured on the right is a puppy all ready to go to its
new home. Prior to leaving the breeder, puppies should be vet checked for overall health, strong knees, etc. given their initial
puppy vaccination, microchipped or tattooed (as the breeder prefers) and a health certificate provided by the veterinarian
that all is well.
To repeat the words of advice from the Profile elsewhere on this website: "Shop well; visit breeders; ask many questions; and buy only when you're satisfied with the quality of the puppy you are purchasing. Don't create a market for the
puppy mills......BUY FROM A REPUTABLE BREEDER!"
(text by Norma Dirszowsky; photos are not necessarily from the same litter, but all are copyright Snowmann Bichons, all rights reserved)