Sunday, November 28, 2010

Coming to Utah In Search of the Perfect Stud: UPDATE 7!

October 11, 2010.  Yes, females actually come to Utah in search of love. Or at least a little roll in the grass. No meetup, no seedy bar, no online dating website.

Meet Xena. This Princess of Power made way to northern Utah with her owners, incidentally my cousin Bob and his wife Susan, in search of a lock up with Ed.
Xena (left) and Ed (right) getting acquainted in the soft, cool grass.
Xena and Ed each come from a distinguished line of Fox Red labradors of the finest pedigree. Ed is an experienced stud with 119 pups to date. A busy guy, I wonder how he finds time for hunting. Xena is a quiet, shy princess who took her time in getting to know Ed. The vet said she was “ready” when she arrived, but it was a waiting game. Tap, tap, tap, tap, tap … The text messages that went back and forth amongst the family during regarding Xena and Ed were a bit spicy (wink).  I tried my best to distract Bob and Susan with a hike and picnic at Silver Lake in Big Cottonwood Canyon.  And it worked, for a while.

Ed makes his move for a smooch.
At first, Xena showed Ed interest by flirting with him and flagging her tail, but it didn't go further than that. She's a female … she wanted to take things slow, make sure the mood was right and the stars were aligned. The two were together for several days before Xena really let Ed into her world.

My cousin Bob holding two of Ed's other pups.

Now the waiting really begins. A lock up or two for dogs yields puppies just two months later. November 30th +/- a couple days is the expected arrival date.

November 24, 2010.  Xena shows off her maternal "glow" in the photos below, provided by Susan. The family and close friends were invited to guess date, time, and number of puppies.  I guessed December 2, 11:47 pm, 4 males and 2 females.

November 28, 2010, 4:51 pm.  I should've used my crystal ball. Puppies are on the way! Two are born so far.

November 28, 2010, 7:30 pm.  Susan emailed to say that the excitement started this afternoon about 2:40 pm with the birth of the first puppy (male - 8.1 oz). My cousin's family was eating lunch at the time and apparently Xena was spotted carrying the puppy about the house til she was sent back to her birthing quarters. About 45-50 minutes later, puppy #2 arrived (male – 11.1 oz).   Puppy #3 came 50 minutes after puppy #2 (4:45 pm) … but was dead on arrival.  Princess of Power, Xena, has been for a potty break and has had a drink of water. Now she is cuddling with her two puppies.  She tried her best with puppy #3 -- she took to cleaning it immediately --- but he was lifeless from the start. Stay tuned ...

November 28, 2010, 8:57 pm.  No more news.  But aren't they adorable??
November 29, 2010. 6:19 am.  Go Xena go.  Two puppies were born at 12:20 am (one died) and one was born at 12:41 am.   The first female was born at 1:35am OUTSIDE when Xena went out to pee!  Two more males were born at 2:19 am and 2:35 am.  So far, nine puppies total, seven living.  Six males and one female.

November 29, 2010. 12:39 pm.  Maybe more?  Bob and Susan don't know for sure. Pictures will be updated tonight.

Photos courtesy of Susan Hale

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