Last night was the first time that Nickel was acting dramatically different.  She was refusing treats and wanted to be in her whelping box.  I’m starting to think that she’s not going to wait for another 5 days.  She slept on the floor again last night… very odd behavior for her (the one who’s usually spooning with me.  She had a full breakfast this morning so it’s not imminent, but I’m now thinking it might be mid-week, 15-17 rather than 19-20.  So much for science.  The problem is that her insemination was 5 days after what we thought was Ovulation when progesterone hit 5.2.  The theory is that it happens any time between 3 and 9.  That gives a bit of wiggle room (no pun intended).

So here we are wondering.. and thinking how will we know?  Well I have one other trick up my sleeve.  I will start taking her temperature 3 times a day and when we see a drop of one degree we will ‘know’ that in 24-48 hours she will start labor.  This drop  is due to a cascade of hormones.  Read below:

“The birth of puppies, also called the “whelping” of a litter, involves a complex chain of events medically referred to as “parturition.” Parturition is triggered by an even more complex cascade of hormonal changes that encourages the uterus of a pregnant female to expel its contents. Late in pregnancy, when the hormonal systems of the fetuses are relatively mature, the adrenal glands of the puppies and their mother start secreting lots of corticosteroids (so-called “stress hormones”). This causes the placenta’s that are attached to each fetus by its umbilical cord to release a hormone called prostaglandin F2 alpha (PF2). PF2 causes the mother’s ovaries to stop producing progesterone, a hormone that is essential to sustaining her pregnancy. As a result, the mother’s previously tightly-closed cervix relaxes, softens, opens and allows the puppies to exit through the birth canal and come out into the big bold world.”

Yesterday we all had a good outing with Claudia and her two poodles Jessie and Ally.  Nickel mostly sat.

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Claudia, Jessie and Mica

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Mica and Ally

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Ally

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Check out the Buddha Belly

After the play date everyone came home for a fresh grooming.  Nickel was shaved down and tidied up.  She was pretty tired afterward and took up residence on the couch in the whelping room.

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Not only is Nickel starting to act differently, TinTin is too.  She is watching Nickel’s every move and is constantly joining her in the whelping box.

In the mean time she is starting to get restless which is a good indicator of ‘things to come.’  She’s still playing so the ‘things to come’ still have ways to travel.  So of course that leaves me wondering WHEN is she going into labor! :P)