Artemis had her puppies last night! Three girls!
Based on breeding dates, her estimated due date was September 15 (Tuesday). As I mentioned in the last post, I had intended to let her whelp in the field with the goats, but apparently Artemis could not find a suitable place in the field to have her babies, Tuesday, just before dusk, Artemis squeezed under the gate – an incredibly amazing feat given her pregnant self – and ran to the barn where she whelped the last time she had puppies. Figuring that she knew what she wanted, we set her up in a stall with a nice cozy bed of fresh hay.
Over the next two days, she tried out every corner of the stall – pulling back the hay and digging hollows. She was clearly close to birthing: quieter than usual, appetite decreased, whining more.
Then on Thursday, she wouldn’t eat at all and growled at any human or animal that stuck their head over the stall door. Of course, she’s such a good girl that we could go into the stall and she would roll over and present her belly for a good rubbing.
This morning, I went to check on her before taking my kids to school and, looking quite proud of herself, she lay calmly in one of her hollows nursing three puppies!
The last time we bred Artemis and Achilles, they had six puppies so we were a little surprised that there were only three this time, but they all appear to be healthy little girls, for which we are grateful!