It seems every birth story is different in some way....but this is one was so unlike the others, I thought I would share it as it happened so you will appreciate our wonderful news as much as do!The day started out as I might expect so close to a due date. Misty refused her kibble, was restless, hiding when she had the chance, asking to go outside, only to run right back so she could scratch vigorously behind a chair. I put up with this for only so long before I confined her in the whelping room. But she moaned so pitifully I had to let her out every now and then Misty is not normally a complainer. It was hard to listen to her groan.
I spent the day keeping an eye on Misty while I sewed a cover for her whelping box. By the time dinner came around Misty was quietly accepting her fate as she hid in the back of her Crate in the Whelping room. With all the commotion of dinner dishes and taking care of the kids, it wasn't until 8pm that I was able to check on Misty again. As I crouched over to peer into her the back of the large plastic crate, I was surprised to see she was in the midst of hard labor. The puppy was clearly full down in the birth canal, but the bag of water was not yet showing.. I watched through several minutes of hard pushing fully expecting a puppy to pop out at any time. How disappointing it was when the contractions paused and the puppy slid back inside.
I let everyone in the house know that Misty was in active labor and we needed to be left alone. I was not going to leave Misty's side, now. I got my paperwork ready to start timing contractions.....but it seemed they were one after another. Occasionally Misty's body would take a break and she would close her eyes. But it seemed to drag on and on with no progress. Around 10 am, she seemed thoroughly exhausted, lying on her side, her stomach contracting one after another and no puppy..
This is not the way it usually happens. With continued straining the bag of water should be forced out within 15 minutes. Misty looked tired....but was not distressed. Nonetheless, I was beginning to fear things would take a turn for the worse if I didn't act soon. I called the Emergency Veterinary Clinic. We arrived at the office at 10:30 pm..
During the initial exam the veterinary was concerned to learn of Misty's hours of pushing and we could still see a puppy was partly in the birth canal. I asked if the puppy was dead. The veterinaries reaction upon examining Misty was not particularly reassuring. We discussed that it was likely a C-section would be necessary. All the potential costs and procedures were laid out. It seemed dismal. But I gave the green light to do whatever they needed to keep Misty safe. He took Misty to the back room to take some X-rays.
While we waited, my husband and I discussed the $$$ amounts for the procedure. We talked about Misty's possible C-section and possibly losing one or more puppies and then having to tell the kids. These were disconcerting topics. Heartbreaking really. It made me very weepy. I tried to be strong. I started to look for a silver lining. The money is well spent considering that we have had many healthy puppies in the past, and we would still go home with our beloved pet, Misty. When you breed puppies over several years, you have to expect there will be an emergency at some point. You have to accept the good with the bad. This seemed to be our time.
I pulled together my courage in time for the doctors return. I was not encouraged by the news that X-rays revealed that there were only 2 puppies inside and one of them was blocking the birth of the other. The Veterinarian had tried to help the puppy along, but he could not dislodge it. His only option now was to prepare Misty for a C-section.
At that point I was resigned for the worst. I sat in the waiting room imagining what was happening in the back, with Misty being cut open for her C section. I didn't expect the veterinary to come back quite so soon but all of a sudden, there he was. He said that one puppy was delivered....but it was still struggling to breathe. "OK", I thought, "let's pray he lives!" Then the vet left us. I was still hoping for something positive, but resigned for the worst.. I imagined we had lost a puppy, but at least one puppy was hanging on to life.
As I sat and waited it was hard to think straight. My body was weary and my mind was confused. Soon my imaginations were interrupted once more. The Vet Technician appeared and announced that we had a boy and a girl! What?!? A boy AND a girl! I thought we only had two puppies and one had died! No. The Tech explained that when the doctor tried to dislodge the puppy, even though it didn't budge, something went right. Because right after he left to discuss the C section with us, Misty delivered the puppy on her own! The Vet Tech described how overjoyed she was that as she wiped away the mucous, she saw the puppy gasp for air! He was alive! That is when the doctor came back to tell us we had a puppy. I wish he had made it clear that it was our first first puppy and that he had NOT done the C section....but I suppose in the end all went well and that is what matters. And of course, after that first puppy came out, Misty's second puppy delivered much more easily.
So in the end, Misty's Emergency visit came out with the best possible outcome. Misty delivered her puppies naturally. She did not have a C section. Both puppies are fat and nursing well! And yes, we still have the ER bill....but it is less than half the cost of the C section. It is a small price to pay for a healthy Mama and puppies. God is Good! My prayers were answered!
Misty is home now enjoying her little babies and just like all good Moms she seems to have forgotten what it took to get here. She stays with them day and night, nursing, cleaning and adoring them. At this point she will not leave their side....except every now and then she has a burst of excited energy in which she runs around to different people in the house looking us with a sparkle in her eyes, and grinning from ear to ear as if to say, "Come take a look! I have BABIES!"
|Left, Apricot girl Schnoodle. Right Apricot boy Schnoodle.|
|Misty cleaning up her pups early this morning.|