Last Tuesday when Miles was 9 weeks old we traveled back to Birmingham Alabama to pick up another one of his brothers. One of the people there that had pre-adopted a pup backed out and we had someone in South Carolina wanting a pup. I had already planned a trip over with a friend so it worked out well. She had lost a greyhound to cancer recently and wanted to pick out her next greyhound from the boys that were available in Alan's kennel. Raider Gilligan, a small, friendly, calm, 3 year old brindle male ended up being the one she chose. Then we headed over to the adoption kennel to pick up our puppy.
We were afraid it would be a hard choice since all the pups are so well socialized and are very outgoing. The largest pup there caught our attention right away though. He made great eye contact and seemed to be a mid level energy pup. On his vet records he was listed as Pup One so that is what we listed him as on our website temporarily. I am sure his new mom, Kathy, will pick a more suitable name for him soon. He is a darker brindle than his brothers Otto and Miles and so tiny compared to them.
The difference in the size from the pups that we had taken 4 weeks earlier and the pups that were still at the kennel was dramatic. Pup One was 9lbs and the other pups looked like they must have weighed about 7lbs or so with the female runt being only about half that size. Miles weighed over 15lbs and Otto was just slightly under 15lbs. What could have caused that big of a difference in growth rates in pups from the same litter that had been the same size just 4 weeks before?
You can see the difference in size between 15+lb Miles and 9lb Pup One.
The SC pups and the AL pups both had weekly wormings but both groups of pups still had some worms at their last vet checkup so that shouldn't have been a factor. Both groups of pups had had their first round of puppy shots. The AL pups had been been battling a staph infection on their skin and had all lost a good bit of their hair. Our SC pups didn't have that. Our SC pups did get to nurse a little longer than the AL pups since I we had the mother but only for 2 of the 4 weeks. She was already weaning them when I got the pups. They already ate on their own and were quickly weaned from a few nursings a day down to one a day. The SC pups got mainly raw food and were fed 4 to 5 meals a day. The AL pups were free fed ProPlan. Those were the only differences but one of those things made the SC group of pups grow 40 percent better.
In case it was the food, the AL pups were changed to another puppy food - not sure which - and are starting to put on some much needed weight. Antibiotics for their skin infection were started the day we picked up Pup One. Otto's family stopped feeding him raw shortly after they adopted him at 8 weeks. They are feeding him ProPlan now (what they feed their other dogs) so it will be interesting to see if he is able to maintain his weight and growth on it. Pup One has been switched to another food on the advice of our vet and is also on antibiotics for his skin infection. I fed him Evo while he was with me but am not sure what his adopter is feeding.
Miles joined us on the trip to Birmingham so the people that had taken care of him for his first 5 weeks could see him again. He slept most of the trip and did really well. His brother, Pup One, and our other passenger Gilligan were angels too and the trip was a long but pleasant one. Only one small pee accident in Pup One's crate.
Pup One stayed at my house overnight and all day last Wednesday. I wondered if he would remember his mother, Sara, and doubted he would. Boy was I in for a surprise. As soon as he got near her crate he started whining, jumping all over it and scratching trying to get in. Even after being separated for 4 weeks he definitely remembered his mom. Sara was very excited to see him and obviously remembered him too. She played with both pups and laid in the puppy area with them for quite awhile. Pup One didn't try to nurse at all. Otto and Miles haven't tried to nurse either since their mom was spayed. We had that done while we were in GA for Sandy Paws.
Mama Sara playing with her two boys outside the day Pup One arrived.
Pup One wasn't so thrilled about seeing his bigger brother Miles. He screamed, growled or ran away every time Miles tried to get him to play. Pup One didn't seem to like being the small pup and having the roles reversed. He gradually warmed up and after a few hours he and Miles were playing like the brothers they were. Hopefully I will get to have Pup One over to play with Miles the way we do with Otto. Otto comes over at least a couple times a week and spends the day.