Hana went into the first stages of labor right on schedule, yesterday morning Feb 7th. After a long day and an even longer night of struggling through her labor - crying, moaning, groaning, nesting, pacing, more crying, refusing to be in her whelping box, refusing to even be in the welping room (even though we set up a bed in there so we would be at her side the whole time)...we finally had to let her spend the night in her bed, in our bedroom. She cried, moaned, and groaned through the whole night. I barely spept a wink. In the morning her temperature had risen from a low of 98.5 up to 99.6 - that's not what is supposed to happen - it's supposed to be dropping, or at least staying below 99.2. We were worried - why wasn't her labor progressing? The first few hours of Feb 8 were much like the day before. Finally, around 10am, Hana went into her whelping room - not her box, but her cushion next to it.
At 10:30am she pushed out the first puppy - a boy - white with brown spots, next came a dark-colored girl, then a light tan puppy... . Number seven was another white puppy with brown spots - a breech baby who's sac broke too early...all we could see was the tip of the tail poking out - we were sure the puppy was lost, but miraculously Marc was able to free him and little number seven is healthy and sound. When it was all done in the late afternoon, Hana delivered all 9 healthy baby borzoi. Three white-with-spots, three dark, three tan. I think their coats will evolve a bit as they grow. The rest of the details elude me right now - they are all charted, but I can't find the paper. A few hours ago I tried to mark the fourth pup and forgot - literally forgot - how to write the number "4"....that's how exhausted I am.
Hana is doing well - she's a bit shaken up from the whole process - understandably so - but she's lactating and nursing her babies and clearly has maternal instincts. Poor girl is exhausted, but she's getting some sleep - dozing off during nursing sessions. The puppies have been nursing in shifts, and we are at Hana's side constantly. Literally, laying on the floor next to her while she nurses, comforting and encouraging her. We are all in this together.
Pictures soon - I promise :)