This past Saturday I did something I never thought I’d actually do: birth puppies!! No no, I did not birth them my actual self, but stood as witness and grandmother-figure to a flurry of eight adorable mutt-pups as they came into this world.
The Mama is Charlie, the same dog I crafted a bed for a few months back, and on which she had her very first pup. It was pretty unexpected, as we thought the pups weren’t coming for another week. [Disclaimer: these pups are not at the Vol House. I repeat, NOT at the Volunteer House]. I was about to head off to prepare The Great Buffalo Chicken Wing Dip for a friend’s birthday, when I noticed Charlie was panting heavily and weirdly shaking at odd intervals. I let her out thinking she needed to go do some business, still uncertain what was actually happening. When I let her back in, she proceeded to sit on her bed at an odd angle, panting a little less but still having shakes every few seconds or so. Part of me thought “these are contractions,’ but still never experiencing the live miracle of birth, I was ignorant to what was going on.
Dial Spenser… voicemail: “I think Charlie is having her puppies… uh, I don’t know what to do…”
It was a bit dark in the room since I was trying to block out the ever-shining sun, and when I went to turn on the light- WHOA! What to my wondering eyes should appear but a tiny little sac with a puppy in there. OH MY GOODNESS!!! I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO!!!
Dial Spenser… voicemail: CHARLIE IS HAVING HER PUPPIES.. I DON’T KNOW WHAT I’M DOING!!!”
So what else to do but sit there in amazement as a tiny little life is born. I think Charlie was as confused as I was at first. ‘There is a small living thing coming out of me. What do I do??’
Eventually she got the hang of it. And so did I. Spenser was a much better coach than I was, and he really calmed both her and I.
Just when I thought she was done, out popped another little babe. Five… okay five is good –twenty minutes later– six… whoa that’s enough babies — a half hour later–oh man here’s lucky number seven — another fifteen minutes– eight- omg EIGHT little puppies! Six little black boys and two petite girls, one black and the other a tannish brown.
I learned a lot that day. Apparently dogs lick up and take care of all the ‘other’ stuff that comes out along with the babies. And boy do they cry- just like people! These small, helpless, fragile little beings so new to the world. They have a whole life of living ahead. And I had the privilege of welcoming them!