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Misguided mother
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Cindi    Posted 06-25-2004 at 04:13:33       [Reply]  [No Email]
Girl is driving herself (and us) crazy and I have no idea what to do about it.

Sugar is the mother of the three puppies that we have left. Girl (her sister) is due to have her own litter in less than two weeks. Yesterday, I was checking her over. She has taken to whining and howling almost constantly. She's fat as a tick and has no obvious sign of injury. Trying to get to the root of the whining, we took to watching her. The other day, Fred came up with the answer.

"I know why she's whining." He said.


"Just watch her."

"What do you mean?"

"...just watch her for a minute."

Here she came in all her sixty-pound brindle glory. She snuck around the corner of the house and stood there, just out of reach, whining a high-pitched little whine way in the back of her throat. One by one, the puppies, who were out in the front yard playing, stopped playing and sat up. Now that she had their attention, Girl's whine took on a deeper, more pathetic quality, and she slunk across the yard, and stretched out under the feed trailer. One by one the puppies went to her, lay down with her and began nursing on her!

Girl has tried to insinuate herself into the raising of these pups since they were born. Sugar has kept her in check. Now that they've been weaned, Girl has finally gotten her way, and is mothering them. And she DOES have milk. I checked.

We tried bringing Girl in the house a few days ago, thinking it was the heat that was prompting the whining. Her whining merely went into overdrive and ultimately turned into a keen howling that would shatter glass. Which would get her tossed back out on her ear. Which is what she wanted anyway. She carries on like crazy when she can't find those puppies. Now that we know what is causing it, we are worried.

Right now the pups are out front, and Girl is in back howling. If they don't come to her she will go after them and try to drag them where she wants them to go. There's no penning Girl away from them. Not only can she climb every fence on the place, but she will howl herself to death. I have no idea what to do about this. I'm afraid she's going to jeopardize her own litter.

Linda in UT    Posted 06-25-2004 at 06:18:52       [Reply]  [No Email]
Isn't Girl losing colostrum the new pups will need by letting these pups nurse?

Cindi    Posted 06-25-2004 at 06:26:01       [Reply]  [No Email]
Sure she is. What to do? Short of penning her up in a cage, which can't be healthy either.

Linda in UT    Posted 06-25-2004 at 17:29:03       [Reply]  [No Email]
Arrrggghhh! My post just disappeared when I went to edit it!

OK, how old are the pups? Are you going to keep them or find homes for them?

Do you have a secure wire dog kennel you can put the pups in to keep them separate from Girl? Maybe concentrate on securing the pups rather than Girl?

I'm thinking if the pups go back to nursing after Girl has her pups, the babies aren't going to do so well.

Alias    Posted 06-25-2004 at 05:18:28       [Reply]  [No Email]
Cindi, I may have written about this before here on the forum.

Our dog Gypsy has the mothering instinct like no other animal I've ever know. Once, a neighboring farmer's dog chose to deliver her litter under our corn crib. And, right away, gypsy self appointed herself to the care of the puppies. When they were big enough to come out from their lair, she would guard them even when the mother dog was around.

many a time I would see her pick up a pup and bring it back to the crib when ever they would get too close to the road. And, she would play with the pups to the point that they'd follow her instead of their mother. now, that's what I call bonding power.

So, it's not unusual for another female dog to act in this way. I think your dog will be alright when her litter arrives. But, you may expect her to be overly protective of them. Especially if it's here first or second litter......gfp

KellyGa    Posted 06-25-2004 at 05:05:23       [Reply]  [No Email]
Maybe she has a surplus of milk and its kinda painful? Maybe the pups relieve this. Just guessing. I don't see where it will hurt her to nurse them. When she has her own litter to nurse, I would keep the older pups away then. Just what I would do. :)

RickyB    Posted 06-25-2004 at 04:48:18       [Reply]  [No Email]
thats a tough one Cindi,don't know what to tell ya.maybe someone here can help ya out.

Cindi    Posted 06-25-2004 at 06:22:00       [Reply]  [No Email]
I'm afraid that between the older pups and being pregnant, they'll pull her down too far. Kelly, did you see Sugar when you were here? She looks terrible! Skinny as a rail. And that's just from nursing her own pups. Oh well. I guess I'll just have to keep her very well fed.

KellyGa    Posted 06-25-2004 at 07:42:48       [Reply]  [No Email]
Canned food will fatten them up pretty quick. I switched Tip from Pedigree to Natural Choice for that very reason, and the pedigree is affordable, so go for it! :) She ws thin, but I thought it was just the heat, since they stay outside.

Cindi    Posted 06-25-2004 at 12:19:05       [Reply]  [No Email]
I think all things considered, pedigree is an excellent brand. I have always used it. I'll try that Kel.

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