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Discussion Starter #1
We just xrayed our basset hound bitch at day 60 and she will be having one puppy. Very long but head size should be OK according to our vet and xray. We are concerned about two issues.

1) Our bitch will have lots of milk and
2) The lack of socialzation due to no litter mates.

Any advise on these two issues would be greatly appreciated.
 

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I'm not a breeder by any streach of the imagination. But years way back when, when we didn't know any better, we bred our Minnie. It was at the request of a well know obedience trainer named Buzz Taylor. He liked the way our girls moved and their speed. So we bred our Minnie to Buzz's Goober. For whatever reason, they just couldn't seem to connect and Buzz really wanted the mating, so he had Minnie artificially inseminated. Well, the long and short of it was that Minnie only had one pup. She was a large baby weighing over 2 lbs. at birth. Minnie did develope Mastitis and we had to do the hot compresses, camphor Tx. and Zibby ended up on Esbilac. The mastitis fortunately didn't develope until Zibby was 3 weeks old, so we were able to wean her soon. She also had a problem with walking as the vet felt she hadn't adequately used her hind legs to push through the pile to nurse. She had her choice of any spigot. So we had to take her to the interstate ramps and walk her up and down the hill to develope her rear muscles. Buzz continued this exercise regieme after taking her home. She grew into a wonderful girl, but she did go to an experienced basset person with a multi basset household.
 

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Watch out for primary inertia i.e. the bitch doesn`t start contractions because there is not enough pressure from the one puppy. He may also be larger than usual `cause he`s getting all the nutrients to himself and has all that space. ««the extra milk will dry up fairly soon, but in the meantime watch out for mastitis. I haven`t had a one pup litter, but I think the fact that you have other dogs who hopefully can be trusted to interact with the puppy as it gets a bit older will help. A good puppy class (NOT the kind where big dogs just have their way with the small ones) will be beneficial if the puppy does not stay with you.
By the way, did your girl go to any more shows?
 

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Our last wire litter consisted of two, one of which had to be euthanized at birth. Miriam is right; uterine inertia is likely. I would make contingency plans for a section.

Since the remining puppy was a singleton, I left him on his mother until she was good and ready to wean, about seven weeks. She had no problems as all but three of her teats dried up within a week of whelping. I never increased her food as Willie grew, so she didn't over-produce. Normally, I would have doubled her feed by the time the pups were four weeks.

We were able to put him in with his year old half brothers and he has done just fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
We are very sad to announce that our girl had a csection on Monday (day 65) but the one pup was stillborn. XRay on day 59 showed she would be able to deliver pup so, after consulting vet, decided to wait the weekend to give her a chance. When labor did not start, we decided a c-section was in order. We had been monitoring with a fetal monitor for the last week and heard a very strong fast beat but we could not find it on Sunday morning. Bitch was restless so we were hoping that the pup had moved into position. Sunday night, she had a temp drop to 98.

While this is a very sad time, we view it as an opportunity to learn. We believe that a complete vaginal culture and thyroid tests are in order when and if we decide to breed her again (we'll wait at least a year). Any other thoughts are welcome.

Crown Valley Hounds
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Mom slept for 12 hours and was very lethargic until one of our other hounds came to visit her. Although she was laying on her side, her tail started to wag. She was up and walking around by mid day. By the end of the day, she was barking and trying to chase the rabbits. It always amazes us how canines can bounce back after surgery.

Thank you for asking.

Al Crown
Crown Valley Hounds
 

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How sad. I'm glad the mom has bounced back. I know how much you truly care for your dogs.
 

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Sorry to hear the news.
What did her uterus look like during the section? That can tell you a lot. Also, did the vet do a necropsy? My guess is that the placenta detached, but without ample stimulation, your bitch didn't go into labor, causing fetal death.

If you decide to breed her again, I would first have her screened for Thrombopathia, if you haven't already. Bleeding disorders can cause reabsorption of fetuses and fetal death.
If she's clear there, use a progesterone ovulation test kit to maximize fertilization. Confirm pregnancy at 30 days via ultrasound, then x-ray a week before due date. This will tell you whether she is reabsorbing puppies and what the actual number and position of pups are.

If she only has one ot two, schedule a section no sooner than the day before final due date. If she has a normal size litter, give her a chance to whelp. Contrary to popular belief, a bitch who has had a section can whelp normally on her next litter.

Give it some thought and better luck next time. I've had my share of breeding problems the few years and it sure does get depressing.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank all of you for your advise and compassion.

Just back from 30 minutes with a Veterinary Fertility specialist to ask lots and lots of questions. In her opinion, we did everything "right" but I believe last week when we saw only the 1 and suspected re-absorbsion, we should have gotten more aggressive and did the c-section last Friday.

Next time, she will be under the care of this doctor both before and during the pregnancy. For those interested, we'll be doing complete Thyroid panel (not just T-4) to check hormone levels and Vaginal Culture (not just smear) to check bacteria levels. As Roberta pointed out, we did ultrasound at day 31 and xray last week.

Although we were monitoring him with fetal monitor, vet suggested using a new system that you attach to the bitch and is connected via modem to a service that collects the data daily and analyzes it. Good for catching distress early on in high risk pregnancies.

BTW our girl's name is Venus. Juliet is the one we're showing. One good thing out of this is instead of waiting 2 months for showing Juliet again, we've entered her in two shows over the next few weeks. But since her handler is showing her own dog, it'll be my turn to make a fool of myself. Great way to take my mind off this pregnancy!

Thank you all once more.

Crown Valley Hounds
 

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I was so sad to read about Venus' lost puppy. I was looking forward to seeing photos of the litter she produced. Hope she continues to improve and you are all feeling better.
Ingrid
 
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