December 23, 2020 was a rough day for us. I had gone to the vet with Kuna’s Cattle Litter and they all received their 8-week vaccinations and were set to go home the very next day. After I brought them home, I was trying to do a photo shoot as I figured they would be tired from their vaccinations. I was wrong. My living room was puppy mayhem and the photo shoot was an epic fail. During the chaos, I noticed that my senior bully, Smudge, was stumbling around. He then started vomiting and his right eye was droopy. Having had an older dog during my younger days who had several strokes, I immediately recognized the signs. I asked my kids (maybe ask is too polite of a word, but you get the idea) to catch the crazy puppies and put them away while I helped Smudge outside where he continued to vomit. I didn’t even see Creed sneak out of the house….
When Smudge appeared to stop vomiting, I came back into the house with him and noticed that Creed was not in the house. Not normally a big deal since he runs around the horse farm at liberty. But Tiva was outside in the pen area and she was having her first heat. The crazy thing about little 15-pound Tiva is that she can literally jump 4′ straight up in the air, and pull herself over a 4′ solid wall like a ninja course pro.
15 minutes after I had let Smudge out, I went around the back of the house only to find that Creed and Tiva were in the back yard together and they had bred. I was mortified!!! As a breeder, it is my responsibility to ensure my dogs are well cared for. While the AKC allows female dogs to be bred as early as 8 months, it is not a practice I would ever intentionally do to a young dog. Our Pomsky breed clubs dictate, and my own standard of practice is that my girls are bred no sooner than their second heat cycle and no early than one year of age: Nootka (first litter at 1 year 7 months, 3rd cycle), Shasta (no litters after 3 breeding attempts from 2nd heat cycle onward, retired), Kuna (first litter at 1 year 8 months, 4th cycle), Zia (first litter at 2 years 2 months, 6th cycle), Ayasha (first litter at 1 year 3 months, 2nd cycle). I felt incredibly guilty and even more so astonished that both dogs, who had never bred before, had figured it out so quickly. I panicked and called my vet and they said the only thing they could do was to ultrasound Tiva in a month to see if she was pregnant.
So, of course, when a month passed and we did an ultrasound on Tiva and found out that she was indeed pregnant with what the vets saw as 5 puppies, my heart sank. I asked the vets what my options were. My vet (a renowned repro vet) said there was an abortion shot that could be safely given to Tiva. It would need to be done that day, then again the next day. Then a couple of days after that, they would need to ultrasound Tiva to see if she still had “remnants” left in her for a possible third shot. Maybe because of my own battle with IVF and infertility the thought of “melting” puppies in Tiva turned me completely off of the idea, but more likely it was that my vet looked at me and said that Tiva was a small dog, and was finished growing. If she was a larger breed she would recommend the abortion shot, but she felt that as long as I was with Tiva every step of the way, she didn’t see a problem with Tiva carrying the puppies to term. And then she asked if Creed was the father. I said he was. Then my vet mentioned that she would happily take one of their puppies off my hands haha!
Fast forward a little…. Tiva’s pregnancy was going very well. She was eating and happy and full of energy. She loved having Sakari and Jersey snuggle up to her when they were all outside.
Tiva’s pre-whelping x-ray showed 4 puppies. Then came time for her to have her puppies. I checked on her every 2 hours and was with her when her waters broke. She was so brave and enjoyed the massages and belly rubs. Her first puppy arrived quite easily and she allowed me to dry it off, cut the umbilical cord and place the puppy on her to nurse. She took to him immediately! She cleaned him and snuggled him so gently. Puppy #2 came and again, she took to him right away. Then a scary 2.5 hours passed with no puppies or active pushing. I was so worried that Puppy #3 was stuck. I waited for Tiva to push 3 times, but when nothing but a sack appeared the third time and I could not palpate a puppy in the birth canal, I called the after hours vet (it was around 6:50am by this time). Amazingly, as the after hours vet called me back just after 7:00am, Tiva had pushed out Puppy #3 and was already cleaning her. Puppy #4 came shortly afterwards. Tiva took to her puppies better than any of my females I’ve seen so far. She let each of them nurse, she cleaned them and she kept them corralled in a smaller part of the huge whelping pen so they wouldn’t be too far from her. Her puppies gained weight and Tiva recovered perfectly! Her appetite was great, she was happy and went outside to potty briefly, and she had no temperature.
We’ve waited a little while to introduce these pups to ensure that they and their first time young momma were all doing well. I know I might receive some backlash from other breeders, but after Tiva successfully delivered her puppies, I called Tiva’s breeder to tell her what had happened. To my surprise, Tiva’s breeder was so supportive and appreciative of the call. She told me that she had a similar experience with one of her young Doodle females, but luckily she did not become pregnant. She went on to tell me that Tiva’s mom is such an amazing mom and she wasn’t surprised to hear how great of a mom Tiva was as well.
Tiva has been so cheerful, welcoming me and the children in to her pen to pet and play with her puppies. But what touches my heart the most is she allows Creed to come in to the pen. The two of them are the sweetest parents I have ever seen! Creed will sniff and gently lick his pups. He even tried using his nose to gently push some of the bedding on top of the pups to almost try to cover them up, as if he was tucking them in. He lays by Tiva and gives her kisses too. I have honestly never experienced this type of behaviour before. Zia, on the other hand, growls at me, growls at my kids, growls at other dogs, all while her pups are squealing for food because she doesn’t like to lay on her side to nurse. Tiva’s pups do not even make a peep because she tends to them non-stop.
We are so so so proud of Tiva and Creed and although accidents do happen, this has been a wonderful accident that we hope to never ever repeat ever again!
The solid black boy, Spotless, is currently on breeder hold. The other 3 puppies will be offered to our Wait List first. Spotlight and Dumpling are little girls. Domino and Spotless are our boys.
As always, thank you for joining us and our amazing pack!