Reba it seemed was bound and determined to have her puppies in my room... I was equally bound and determined that the mess accompanying birth would be contained in the easily cleaned whelping bed. It was a battle of the wills that Reba very nearly won. As I sat with my book I watched her back arch. Leaping up, I grabbed her collar and hustled her into her pen. Almost immediately she began to whelp.
I had planned on giving her some space and just checking periodically to make sure everything was okay. That was plan A. What really happened was Reba had a bit of a freak out when puppy one began to cry. She immediately began to dig like mad in the newspaper nest burying the pup. I fished it out and placed into a rubbermaid container. To help it stay warm I wrapped gel heat pads in towel and placed the puppy on top. After each puppy, I moved them into the "nest" and tossed more paper towel into the whelping bed to try and keep it relatively dry. I was a bit worried because Reba didn't seem to be overly interested in her babies.
The fourth and final baby was quite listless when it was born so I moved it closer to her face and she began cleaning it, which helped it out enormously. I sat gazing at these little creatures that had been placed in my care. I realized if something were to happen I'd be the be all, end all for them. Cleaning out the mess, I put down fresh newspaper and placed her babies in beside her. And she began to dig wildly, causing a shriek of unhappiness from the puppies.
Quickly grabbing them, I pulled the paper out and placed dog and puppies in the bare swimming pool. This seemed to be okay for about a half hour when the shrieking started again. Going back to check, Reba was out of the bed sitting on the floor beside. Thinking maybe she had to go to the washroom I opened the gate - only to have her go running into my room.
So we compromised. I grabbed the bed beside mine and placed into her bed. She settled into it, and I placed the puppies beside her. And pulled my stool and sat beside her which seemed to relax her. So far so good. Puppies look like they're nursing and she's not as wired or stressed as she was. Pictures to come soon.
Make that SIX little puppies - we just had two late arrivals! Not sure who was more surprised me, or Reba...