Saturday, October 29, 2005

Play Time

At four weeks, our little guys are starting to show some personality. We don't have a kennel mentality so our adult dogs share our house (and sometimes the furnishings: "Get off the couch!") and really enjoy having new "family" members to interact with. When the pups are this young we like to give them their own space as the bigger dogs can be a bit rough in their play, thinking nothing of "pouncing" on the little furballs. But it isn't long before the two groups become one extended family pack.

Monday, October 17, 2005

First Steps!

Two weeks and paws ahead! The little guys are finding their footing, literally, and have begun the transition from rugrats to puppydom. Right around the time their eyes begin to open the pups begin testing out their legs with brief sojourns (sometimes in circles!) as they awake and search for a meal from mom. That's where we're at! A couple of the pups are beginning to open their eyes.

These pups are our most gorgeous yet! What a combination! Big W-I-D-E heads. We're amazed at the distance between their eyes. Of course, it's still very early in their development but these pups seem to be on their way to having big blocky heads with great coats. Our Mingus is a beauty and her best qualities appear to have blended with the best Jonathan has to offer, with the result being the classic English line labrador retriever.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Beautiful Pops

We've been fortunate in breeding our labs to select quality mates for our females. Starting with Broad Reach Ruff Stuff, a.k.a. "Colby", the 2000 and 2001 AKC #1 ranked labrador retriever in North America, and continuing with this litter, Willcare's Prestige, a.k.a. "Jonathan", our pups have stellar AKC champion credentials.
For a photo of Jonathan, check out this site:

Colby sired our Mingus, mother of this litter. A great article about him and his owner, Kevin B., can be found with this link

Although it's still quite early to tell, we believe these pups have the potential to be our best yet. They are shaping up to be gorgeous!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Nine Days Six Pups

Mingus' babies are growing fast! And Mother-of-the-Year award goes to Mingus. Wow! We've been somewhat surprised at how good a mom she is. This is her first litter and she'd not shown the same interest in pups as our other dogs had so we were uncertain how she would handle the job herself. But she's shown herself to be perhaps the most attentive mother of all. She rarely leaves the whelping box and has been quite selective when it comes to allowing the other dogs near her brood. In fact, only Grandma Caicos is allowed in the whelping box. As with Bromley's litter, Caicos feels it's her duty to check in on the grandkids from time to time. She cleans them and then settles in to to let the little 'nes try to nurse on her. Guess she misses the days of motherhood...

Sadly, we lost one of the male pups on day four. "Little Big Horn" stopped eating after the second day and would not respond to our handfeedings either. Always difficult to lose a puppy, but perhaps it was best that it occurred early on. It's not uncommon for such an event, although we've had extraordinary luck up until this point. We now have six pups--four blacks and two yellows. These young 'rangers', Yellowstone, Bryce, Zion, Jewel Cave, Mammoth Hot Springs, and Rushmore, have doubled in size and are just beginning to try to stand. Another week or less and their eyes will be open and they'll become little hikers!

Sunday, October 02, 2005

New Pups! Mingus' first litter

Our black lab, Mingus, gave birth this morning to seven pups--five black and two yellow, four males and three females. All are pretty uniform in size (about 11 1/2 oz). They remind us of little chipmunks! Mingus surprised us with the first pup about 7:45 AM and was finished birthing by 10:30 AM--a very quick delivery, indeed.

We've named the pups after national parks we visited this summer. Our tradition with our litters is to give them temporary names around a theme. Past litters were given patriotic (all born on July 4th) names, or after Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Lord of the Rings, and Vermont ski mountains. It's a fun way of keeping track of individual pups until they're placed with their new owners.

These pups were sired by 3-year old CH. Willcare's Prestige of New Hampshire. He's a gorgeous yellow with terrific show credentials. Our Mingus descends from AKC champion and former #1 ranked lab (North America), Broad Reach Ruff Stuff. She's a beauty and is turning out to be a good mom.

Look for pictures in the coming days. We currently have three puppies available.