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.