Got up early this morning so I could view the lunar eclipse. Took the dogs (and Ted the cat) down into the back fields for a walk while I was watching the moon. It was beautiful! Well worth getting up early for.
The puppies all got beauty treatments this morning. First they were brushed, then had their ears checked, then their nails trimmed with fingernail clippers. After trimming the nails, I used my Dremmel (on a slow speed) on their front claws for a couple of seconds. No one cared too much about any of this handling. I was always very negligent with kittens and nail trimming. Trimming the claws of kittens and cats can be notoriously difficult (and sometimes outright dangerous!). When I moved to the country and my cats were allowed access to the outside, I justified not trimming their claws by thinking they needed the protection of their long claws. That can’t be the case with my dogs, but I’m still bad about doing nails. I mentioned earlier that both Gel (and likely Midge, although I’ve only made a half-hearted attempt at messing with her nails) were bad about having their feet handled. I really need to crack down and start maintaining their nails, especially Gel since he’s doing agility.
Yesterday during the day, one of the puppies got out of the kiddy pool and was loose in the run. He couldn’t get back into the pool. Today I took the pool out and left them on the ground. I first sprinkled a layer of diatomaceous earth (fossilized remains of diatoms, a type of hard-shelled algae) on the ground, then put a pile of hay on top of that for bedding. Diatomaceous earth is a natural insecticide; it works by puncturing the insect’s exoskeleton and absorbing the moisture in their bodies. When I checked Midge and the puppies right before I left for work, they all seemed content with the new arrangement. The puppies are getting around quite well on all fours, especially when on a surface that isn’t slippery.
If Midge brings food near the puppies, they are trying to take it out of her mouth. I’m surprised they are interested in food so early in life. The kittens I raised usually didn’t express any interest in eating until they were about five weeks old. The puppies are getting plenty of milk and I know they are not hungry. I do not plan to actually offer them food until Midge expresses an interest in weaning them herself. I’m hoping she’ll regurgitate food for them. So far I think her natural instincts are intact and eventually that will happen. We’ll see.