I have only five days left with these puppies.
And depending on the weather that will go by in a flash or it will seem like forever.
These babes have decidedly outgrown their tiny puppy room. We finally got them outside for some extended time and they loved it. I invited my favorite photographer to stop over and she got some amazing shots of these pups.
Before I share a few of my favorites, I need to give a shout out to Nancy Slattery! She donates extensive hours to OPH photographing pups and then uploading and editing and posting the pictures to help us get dogs adopted. My pups already have adopters, but I asked her here because a) I knew she’d love to come play with them and b) I wanted these pictures for an upcoming project and c) I haven’t gotten the chance to hang out with her in a while, so it was the perfect ruse.
Nancy brought her daughter Casey with her as assistant lighting director and Casey held a remote flash which is partly how these pictures came out so great. Mostly they came out so great because Nancy is Nancy. (AND if you are ever looking for a professional photographer for your own dogs or yourself, ask me for her contact info. Nancy took my headshot long before I discovered her gift with pet photography. She’s quick, talented, and very reasonably priced.)
Despite my grumbling about the messes they make, these five weeks have flown by and their happy energy and adorableness have gone a long way towards easing us out of the winter that never ends.
Early on, I made a few bad guesses as to their breed, after all they were fuzzy, fat, and delectable; they could have been anything. They are labeled blackmouth cur, and that seems likely—as one person commented on their pictures, they look as if their tails are dipped in chocolate.
The other breed I’m becoming more convinced we’re dealing with here, though, is bloodhound.
Here’s a photo of bloodhound puppies at four weeks from the Fishing Forum next to a photo of a few Chocolate Factory pups at four weeks:
The first clue is the mess in the puppy room.
I. have. never.
In fact, if this was what all puppy litters were like, I’d be out by last week. It’s not that they poop any more than other puppies. No, it’s that after they poop (occasionally on the puppy pads), they have no qualms about playing and running and wrestling in their poop. This means the poop is tracked EVERYWHERE (sometimes I find myself scrubbing it off the walls). Toys, water bowls, and bedding have to be changed almost every hour, and just this week they upped the ante when they discovered that they can shred their puppy pads to create unending fun.
Oh. the. joy.
Their messiness speaks to the hound nature, as does their all-in attitudes when it comes to food.
Feeding them is tricky. I used to have two feeders (Christmas cookie trays with five divided sections that I bought at Dollar General), but they’ve eaten one (really), so now they share the other one.
As you can see, the days are numbered for my remaining feeder. In reality, I hardly need it since the food is only in the sectional for moments because as soon as I set the dish down, it is upended and there is a frantic free-for-all.
Start to finish, it only takes this crew about one minute to eat the 3 cups of food they share 3 times a day. I’m thinking all six of these pups will be candidates for the slow-feeder bowls (Frankie has one too).
Beyond the food-obsession, it’s the wrinkles and the lengthy ears that really say ‘bloodhound.’ When I compare their pictures to some of my other pups – it’s clear that they are winning the ear race. Here’s one of Edith Wharton’s lab litter, next to Violet:
And those wrinkles! Augustus has the most, but all of them have a few.
So, I’m going with their daddy was a bloodhound or some seriously houndy-hound.
Unlike her puppies, Willow is a perfectly mannered guest. In 106 fosters, I’d be hard-pressed to find a better one. Housebroken, crate-trained, quiet, and friendly, Willow not only wrestles full-on with Frankie, she even gets along with Gracie.
She has destuffed more than her share of toys, but she has yet to chew anything inappropriate.
She is my shadow all around the house. Her favorite nesting spot is on top of her crate.
This weekend I took her to have a bath at the Pet Valu and she even walked herself up the steps and into the wash basin. She wasn’t thrilled to have a bath, but she stood perfectly for it.
As my adoption coordinator for these pups put it, she’s a ‘turn-key’ dog. I can assure you that she’ll be WAY easier to bring home than any of these puppies!
I’m weighing my options on my next foster. These pups have worn me down more than most of my puppies. It always seems to be the hounds that get to me. I swore them off after we fostered Lucy and she nearly ended my marriage. And yet, I find their tri-color, olfactory-driven, happy-go-lucky enthusiasm irresistible. Still, I’m thinking a nice lab or a heeler would be fine by me.
We shall see. It’s puppy season after all.
Thanks for reading!
If you’d like to know how you can volunteer, foster, adopt or donate with OPH, click here. And if you’d like more regular updates of foster dogs past and present and extra puppy pictures, be sure to join the Another Good Dog facebook group.
COMING AUGUST 2018 from Pegasus Books: