Kerry Has a Litter
When we decided we would try for a litter with Kerry we already had a stud dog in mind. We saw Billy (Conquistador Des Beldones) at a collie show one rainy Saturday and was instantly taken by the calm and gentle temperament of this dog, and approached Brian Hawkins and Odile Foy to discuss our ideas. We then began the waiting game, in anticipation of Kerry coming into season!
She kept us waiting, but eventually, in September 2010 it happened and a visit to Shropshire to see Billy was arranged.
November 6th - they’ve arrived!
Based on the date of the mating and Sandra’s calculations, we were expecting more than just fireworks on November 5th. We were quite concerned about the noise and bright lights of fireworks which we always seem to get where we live, but Guy Fawkes night came and went without an event. In fact, it was November 6th when it all happened for us.
Just after we decided to go to bed at around 11pm, we put Kerry to bed in the litter box and went upstairs to retire. Sandra was restless and decided she would sit up a while longer, went back down stairs and found Kerry beginning to go into labour..
Six Healthy Pups
Kerry quickly stepped into her new maternal role with enthusiasm keeping her new family warm, nourished and clean! She took great delight in ‘arranging’ her pups and makings sure everyone was just where she wanted them.
We were fortunate to have five new homes lined up for each of the pups, having decided that we would keep one of the girls.
As the pups got a little older and ventured out of he litter box, Connor used to sneak in and sit at the kitchen door to try and see what was going on in the utility room. We soon realised how curious he was, and took him, on a lead, up to the utility room door to see the pups. We had put a two foot board across the door opening so that Kerry could jump out and come and sit with us in the house. And when she did, in would go Connor to watch over the pups. He used to love sitting at the (boarded up) doorway and licking any pup that would go and see him. We noticed that one of the girls used to go and see Connor whenever he looked in, and would sit there while this big gentle dog washed her face. We decided that Connor had chosen who ought to stay, and so we kept Cara!
Unlike our first litter, which we had in the late spring, this litter had to venture outside oand be toilet trained in the winter - and that meant snow!. It was a particularly snowy December that year, and because of the cold the pups could only venture out for short playtimes in the outside world. It was quite a contrast to the warm days of spring when the back door could be left open and the pups could play in the run we had made. This time the run was there, but at times the snow was six inches deep, and the pups were ice-skating!
As December came and the Christmas decorations went up, we were keeping in contact with the soon to be new owners and making plans for the pups to go to their new homes. In the week following Christmas new owners came from Derby, Nottingham, Hinckley, Leicester and Worthing to collect their new family members. One by one the house became less ‘busy’ and we were left with just one pup to look after. Cara soon found here way into the lounge and settled down at the fireside with her family as we looked forward to winter turning to spring and having a new pup to take out and about.
Cara Settles In.
After a cold and particularly snowy winter, it was nice to see blue skies and to feel warmth as spring arrived.
Cara used to love going out in the car. And, here favourite travel companion was Connor! He used to love going out with her and made it his duty to put himself between anything he wasn’t sure of (other dogs, other people etc.) until he was satisfied that all was well.
As Cara learned her place in the pack we were able to regularly take her out with the others. Trips in the car to the Outwoods and Bosworth park showed us she was a good traveller, and so we planned a holiday to go back to Northumberland.
She also seemed to enjoy days out to go showing at the various dog shows and regularly came home with a red rosette. To our delight she also won a few ‘best puppy in breed’ rosettes too and seemed to prance along with pride as we did ‘ a big triangle’ in the showring.