On September 29, I posted a blurb (check out the photos and video!) about an emergency C-Section on a bulldog that had been surrendered to us the week prior. It was open hours during a busy Wednesday afternoon when several staff and volunteers were called into the surgery suite to help the vet. It was an exciting but nerve-racking event. We all feared for not only the survival of the pups, but the eight year old bulldog mom (a bit of an old age for a bulldog to be giving birth!).
The bulldog, named Peanut, made it through the surgery, in spite of the trauma a C-Section has on the body of an "old" girl. She came out of anesthesia slowly and completely exhausted. Sadly a couple of the pups did not pull through. Mom and the pups were watched closely and 48 hours later went off to recover in a wonderful foster home. Susan, who most often fosters kittens (and currently had a litter already) had been here the day of the C-Section and couldn't stop thinking about Peanut and the pups. She had to help. I asked her to fill me in on how things were going with the new family. Here is her update:
I was at Nevins with my foster kittens, when I heard the news: an old English bulldog ("Peanut") was about to have a c section. Everyone was excited and rushing around in preparation for the operation. I left with my kittens, but couldn't stop thinking about the dog and wondering how her puppies were doing. When I emailed Mike (the shelter's director) and told him I would like to foster them, he explained that the most important part of their care was to make sure Peanut didn't roll over on her remaining 3 kids--one of the pups had already died that way and fostering this crew meant constant vigilance.
|Being a mom is exhausting..||..but these faces make it worth it!|
I picked up the new family 48 hours after the C-Section. Peanut was ill with pneumonia and so tired that she often dropped all 45 pounds of herself on her pups. She couldn't walk and needed to be carried to the car and then to the house. Although she hadn't been eating much at Nevins, she discovered that American cheese and Paul Newman Organic Dog Food (expensive!) were a fabulous combination and worth the effort. She was terrific with her kids, except for her habit of falling over on them in a deep sleep.
After two nights of sleeping next to her and having no real problems, I eased up a bit on my vigilance. Big mistake. Watching tv that night, I heard Peanut get up for water, then go back and lie down. It occurred to me a few minutes later that I should see that all the pups were ok. They weren't. I saw only two pups, then dug around and unearthed the runt, a little spotted female. She wasn't breathing. I put her on the counter and did mouth-to-mouth and chest compressions. After what seemed like an awfully long time, I thought the pup moved a bit but was so scared it was just my imagination. But then she coughed-she had decided to come back! From then on, I was more neurotic than ever, constantly checking to make sure nobody was squashed under mama.
Since that night, the pups have made steady progress. The big white one--the only male--weighs over 5 pounds already. The little girl who looks like a boxer weighs 4 lbs and the spotted pup (nicknamed "Lady Lazarus") is not far behind her sister. They caught their mom's cold but antibiotics are clearing up the infection. Peanut is well enough now that she doesn't fall over on them and she is feeling better. The steady diet of Paul Newman, cheese, and cooked chicken have made her much happier, also. She likes walks and loves leaves under her feet. She is a good sport when the pups chew on her ears or bat at her face. So now the fun is watching the pups' personalities evolve: the big white male is a coward, the miniature boxer is fearless, the little spotted one is a cuddler. All three of them snore, just like their mom!
|Kittens observe the process||Pals|
Questions or comments? Email me, Michelle, at firstname.lastname@example.org.