Growing Wisteria Ranch 1 Week Life Series. The first week of life is usually a pretty quiet week. The first few days the mom rarely leaves her puppies, usually only to relieve herself or to eat and drink. The main activity of the puppies is nursing and sleeping.
Occasionally we lose a puppy during birth, but also during this first week. Sometimes, a very small puppy, will nurse and “appear” healthy on the outside, except that it is very small, compared to the litter. It just doesn’t grow. We had a few with these last litters that this happened. We took the puppies to the vet and he said that sometimes they just aren’t full developed inside and since they are smaller, they may be “premature” compared to the rest of the litter. While, this is something that is part of life, birth and death, it is still very sad, when we lose a puppy.
When puppies come into the world, they cannot hear or see. They are only equipped with their natural instincts of nursing, staying warm, and crying when hungry, cold, or if they have pain. They are unable to eliminate on their own and their mother must stimulate these areas in order for them to get rid of their waste. This keeps their area clean and is the beginning of teaching the puppies the importance of keeping their “living area” clean.
During this first week, we try not to disturb mom and babies too much to give them time to rest from the birthing process. We do pick up each puppy daily and briefly stroke the puppy and rub their belly to begin getting it use to our touch and know who we are.