In the wee hours of this morning, Madison started birthing her litter. She went into labor on Sunday evening, and so I figured that we would see puppies sometime that night or Monday morning.
Things were taking longer than I normally expected them to. The first baby was big for a beagle, but not the biggest baby Madison has ever had. However, she showed signs of distress as she had meconium in her sac. This concerned me greatly as I knew that if she breathed any in or ingested any, her little organs could fail. I was encouraged to see she was vigorous and that was a good sign. She was 10.3 oz
Baby number 2 took another 2 hours to arrive – Madison pushed for over an hour on and off. I took her for a walk, and I started to get nervous and wonder if I should take her in for a C-section. Things were really not progressing the way I thought they should. At this time, my mom was with me – we prayed and Maddy started pushing hard. I sat with her, massaging her back and opening up her pelvis – I couldn’t help but wonder if this baby was big. Well, it was. It was big and unfortunately had passed away in the uterus at least 24 hours ago and her placenta was deteriorated. It explained the long labor (lack of hormones for labor) and the hard time Maddy was having.
Now Maddy started having babies quickly. within 10 minutes she had a 3rd girl – this time alive – 9.3oz. Again with meconium in her sack, but vigorous and pink.
Twenty minutes later, another little girl made her entrance into the world. 9.5oz. Again – the meconium – we were prepared and got the sack off her right away.
Fourteen minutes later, a little boy appeared – 10.5oz. Another healthy puppy – much to be rejoicing about!
Then Madison took a break for about 40 mins and then her final baby girl arrived safely into the world. 10.0oz. One again – meconium in her sack, but lively and bright.
The scary thing about having meconium in their sacks is that if they breathed it in, or ingested it, their little organs can just start shutting down and they can die.
So, I have given them Fresh Plasma, and will be putting them on clavamox (as per the vets instructions) to help as much as I can and pray that they survive.
They say “breeding is not for the faint of heart” – and that is the truth. People who do it well, pour their heart and soul into each litter. We bleed when they do, we rejoice when they do, we stay up night after night with the pups and momma. But it’s so worth it 🙂