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After Scully’s first season in 2014 Carole began to think that it might be fun for Scully to have a litter of pups. Back to the research, our first concern, the risk to Scully and then potential health risks to puppies, followed closely by how it would disrupt our lives and how can we make sure they go to good homes. In January 2016 we made the decision that this would be the year to go for it.  I checked with Julia at Jukee Doodles and she confirmed that her stud Nike is a complete outcross to Scully and that she would be happy to mentor me through the process. The next step was to get CCGB approved breeder recognition, a useful and thought provoking procedure.

Health Tests

There are two genetic diseases that cockapoos can inherit from their parents:
Cocker spaniels can be affected by Familial Nephropathy (FN) a recessively inherited renal disease that has been recognized in the English Cocker for more than 50 years. FN is a form of “hereditary nephritis” which refers to a group of glomerular diseases that are linked to genetic collagen defects. Both Mia, Scully’s mum and Ruby, Nike’s mum have been tested and are clear of FN

Both spaniels and poodles can be affected by the genetic disorder Progressive Retinal Atrophy (prcd-PRA) , which causes cells in the retina at the back of the eye to degenerate and die, even though the cells seem to develop normally early in life. Most affected dogs will eventually be blind. Mia, Ruby and Scully’s father, Uncle Fester and Nike’s father, Pepe have been tested and found to be clear of prcd- PRA

Therefore both Scully and Nike are clear by birth of  these diseases.

 

Nike & Scully 28th May 2016

Nike & Scully 28th May 2016

 

May 2016-05-31 Scully was mated with Nike, not as traumatic an experience for her as I thought it might be, Nike was a perfect gentleman. We were able to confirm the pregnancy at the end of June

 

 

 

 

Whelping

Back to the research and the list making, everything was in place ready for Scully to whelp, we set up her whelping box in the office, a room she is used to spending time in that is away from the main bustle of the house.

Scully five girls arrived on the 26th July 2016, the first, a blond, arrived at 10:45 and the last,a black & white, arrived at 14:00. After the initial surprise for both of Scully and I , everything went really smoothly. She was a natural and very attentive mother. The vet check the next day confirmed that all were fine and healthy.IMG_1707

My only intervention for the first 3 weeks was daily weighing of the puppies, worming them after 2 weeks, and ensuring that Scully was kept topped up with both food and water.

 

Weaning

IMG_1838This is when my work started, we brought the puppies down into the main living room in the house in a pen large enough to accommodate their box, provide a toilet area and a play area. The puppies were quick to take up the idea that there is a separate toilet and sleeping area, but it took a little longer for them to understand there is a difference between the toilet and the play area. Feeding three times a day in addition to regular feeds from Scully and at 5 weeks they were weighing in at 2 + kg each.