A day in the life of 2 week old puppies

What does  typical day look like of us when we have a brand new litter of puppies?
Well lets take a look. This is what an average day with 2 week old puppies looks like in our home:

First of all you may ask where are our Frenchies kept? They are all part of our family and are living in our home. We do not have any kennels on our property nor we do use dog crates inside or outside the house. Very rarely we will use a crate when have have an older puppy and we feel they cannot be trusted for extended period of time when we go outside of the home. but we always strive to keep all our Frenchies roaming freely around our home.
Thankfully French bulldogs are not a destructive breed so there isn't a high chance of you coming home to the staircase being eaten..

Well back to the day of our 2 week old litter:
Mommy and the puppies sleep in our bedroom until puppies are 4 weeks old. They sleep in what is called a whelping den. It looks something like this:

On the bottom there are few layers: a soft base layer, heating pad, and towels.
The heating pad is only on 50% of the whelping den, and is usually turned on at times the mommy is away from her puppies. This is so the puppies do not get cold as they have a hard time keeping their body temperatures on their own at a young age. If they feel too warm they are able to move away to the part of the box where there is no heating pad as well.
The railing that is around the perimeter of the inside of the box is to prevent the puppies from getting stuck underneath their mom, it creates a pocket of space for them so they don't become squished. 
Towels are changed daily so the puppies and mommy always have a clean bedding.  There is always a ton of laundry to do and we spent almost as much on cleaning supplies as we do on kibbles!

So both puppies and mommy sleep in our bedroom, as you can imagine we wake up many time throughout the night from the occasional snoring and puppies squeaking. It is almost as having a newborn baby. You don't get much sleep the first few weeks!

First thing on the agenda in the morning is to check the puppies-are they warm, not crying and then it is time to feed all of the adults, including mommy.
In our home our Frenchies get fed and taken care of before we eat ourselves. 

Our adult Frenchies get 3 walks a day, but when a dam has puppies we don't take her on walks, and she just goes to the bathroom in our backyard. This is for 2 reasons: 
One is hygienic reasons-she doesn't step on something/eats something on the walk that could be potentially dangerous to her puppies. She also wouldn't want to be that far away from her puppies for that long when thy are very young.

After breakfast, it is weighing time. Puppies are usually weighed every day until they are 4 weeks old and start eating a mixture of solid food. This way we can see who is gaining the fastest and who is lacking behind. If a puppy starts to loose weight more than 1 day in a row, they need to be bottle fed in addition to their regular nursing.

At this age puppies sleep 90% of the time and the rest of the time they are eating or very slowly trying to engage their little muscles to lift their heads or scoot over to the other side of the whelping box. 
We try to handle them only when necessary at this age, so the mommy doesn't loose their scent. Happens more in wild animals but just to be safe.

We usually have a second whelping box in the living room that we move the puppies to, so that we can keep an eye on them at all times and so that they get used to being around people and their sounds.

Rest of the day is a lot of checking on the puppies...are they nursing well, and are they always warm.
Sometimes their mommy has had enough and needs a little break and time to herself. But if she is gone for too long we have to put her in with the puppies and close the doors. Motherhood is hard sometimes...
Mommy always has 24/7 access to water that is next to her den, and food is given 3 times a day when she is nursing. 

At this age all poop and pee is cleaned by the mommy. She has to stimulate their bowl movements by licking the puppy's belly. This is why all dogs love belly rubs! It reminds them of their mother's love when they were babies.
Around 4-5 weeks of age puppies start their pee pad training. This is why when you come to pick your puppy up they are fully pee pad trained!

Baths are not given at this age, as all cleaning is done by mom.
When it is time to turn in for sleep, we bring the puppies and mommy back to the bedroom and we all try to get some "good" night sleep.
At around 4 weeks of age puppies are big and strong enough that they can be moved into their own room- still in the whelping box. This bedroom is located right next to ours, but it allows us to have a quieter night. At this age we only check on them once a night. 



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