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Out into the big world (or at least, out of our bedroom!)

I am so happy to announce that the puppies have moved out- that is, they’ve moved into their new, luxurious Palais du Pup (puppy palace). It’s 8 feet long, 4 feet wide, and 2 feet high. Made of the finest sheets of black PVC, it features spacious eating/sleeping/drinking quarters, and boasts its own bathroom! The new residents have moved in and truly made it their own… toys and balls can be found in every corner, and when those don’t provide enough entertainment, there’s always the water fountain to play in, and even puppy pee pads for hours of shredding fun! I’m sure if asked, the pups would say that they’re “livin’ the dream, baby.”

It was time for a change. Past time. The puppies were noisy at night, and one solid month of interrupted sleep was more than enough for this middle-aged mama to handle. We’ve now moved the space heater downstairs, and the nighttime temperature in our room is again a comfortable mid-60’s. Much, much better.

The only drawback to the pup’s new living arrangement is the location of this puppy pen: it’s smack dab in the middle of our family room. Not exactly the look I was going for when I decorated. However, we simply don’t have another place for it, and I actually think it’s good for the litter to be in the center of all the family action. I’ve already seen that they’ve gotten over being startled when doors slam or kids yell. They also clamor for attention when they see us walk by. Being held and played with is pretty popular with the 5-week-old crowd.

We are giving the puppies 3 meals a day, consisting of puppy food & a little warm puppy formula to soften it. I’m not squeamish by nature, but I have to tell you that the smell of warm, wet puppy food is less than appetizing. Makes it more bearable if you breathe through your mouth and not through your nose, though! Paisley still nurses her babies, but she will only nurse standing up. For the life of me, I can’t figure out HOW that can be comfortable, especially now that each of the pups has a mouthful of very sharp teeth. They are so chunky and cute right now- I love their sturdy little bodies!

The new pen also has started the potty training process for us. Smart pups that they are (I’m so proud!), they naturally want to eliminate as far away from their eating/sleeping areas as possible. So, when they need to “go”, they take themselves through a partition in the pen and into another small “room”. A fair estimate at this point is that they poop in the “bathroom” about 90% of the time, and probably make it there to piddle 60% of the time? I think that’s great, and it is starting to make my cleanup job much easier.

Regarding cleanup: I’m a little odor-phobic, and so at this point I’m cleaning the pen about 7 or 8 times a day- it’s farm work, for sure. Backbreaking! Puts me in touch with my roots, I guess, although I’m told those roots involved dairy cows, not labradoodles. I’ve tried a fair number of cleaning methods. Ultimately, I’ve chosen not to support our current recession, and for my part, I’m singlehandedly keeping the disinfectant wipe industry afloat. I’m pretty sure that the citrus scent is the puppies’ favorite, but I prefer the fresh linen, myself.

We try to take the puppies out of their pen every night, usually 3 or 4 at a time, for playtime. (First, we get them all excited so that they’ll take care of their potty needs before we let them out!) They seem to enjoy running, chasing, jumping, and exploring the areas around the pen. We end up laughing so hard at them- their young age often translates into clumsiness and just plain foolish behavior. I hope today’s video demonstrates what I’m talking about. What a hoot! Please forgive the poor quality- even the seasick nature of my videography. The puppy jumping at my camera was responding to me calling, “Come, puppy!” just to see what he’d do, not because he had any particular grudge against the camera. The puppies who are sitting there so politely were having a little rest while some of the others were out of the house. Also, it was over 60 degrees today, and so the whole motley crew got to spend an hour on our sunny back deck- it sure looked like they enjoyed it! Try not to laugh too hard as they run headfirst into the side of the pen…that would be cruel 🙂 Oh, and I dare you not to think of Lawrence Welk when you hear the music on the video……

I had my first flash of sadness today, thinking of each of these little ones leaving us. Anna and I are doing everything we can possibly do to make sure that they’ve had sufficient exposure to new things, new tastes, new textures, sights and sounds, so that when they arrive in their new homes, they can comfortably ease into the lives of their new families. That day will be here before I know it- in just 3 more weeks!


  1. They are getting so chubby! Such cute babies. I love your description of their new pad.

  2. Okay, that video is the cutest thing ever! Too funny. They are
    sturdy things now, how things have changed in a few weeks. Love the updates!