After ten days, remove the pups’ heating pad. They do not need it if the room is warm. Most breeds can regulate their own heat at eight days old. (Some toy breeds need a heating pad for four weeks.)
By giving them more room, removing the one source of heat (heating pad), and supplementing, they are now going three to four hours between feedings.
They are not waking each other up. Puppies cry for three reasons: too hot, too cold, or hungry. Mine were too hot and still hungry after nursing.
Day 10—she is actually putting her head in the buckets and licking her puppies.
At 11 days old, I find there is not enough milk; they are crying and crying. Last night was the worst. The pups wanted to eat every hour! So I am giving goat’s milk a try.
Goat’s milk is 14% fat—wow! Gonna buy me some sleep tonight.
Looks like I need higher-sided bins soon...
Day 12—she will help me clean some.
Sassy the English Mastiff and her 12-day-old puppies
Sassy licking her puppy
Sassy kissing her puppy
I pre-potty and poop them, and then Emily gave each one to her, to polish up.
Three boys have the blue teddy, and eight girls on the right have the pink teddy. At 12 days old, they are all 2 to 2.5 lbs., gaining lots. They were waking each other up all night long, so they got a bigger room this morning, as feeding them every two hours all through the night is brutally hard on me.
Sassy the English Mastiff and her two-week-old puppies
Finally, the puppies are two weeks old.
With a top-off feeding just at bedtime (goat’s milk, or puppy replacer), at 10-11 p.m., they should be able to go five to six hours at night, and things should be a little easier.
You should try to get them on a routine of every three to four hours in the day, and every five to six hours at night.
REMEMBER to trim the nails every couple days so they do not dig out mommy's tummy.
Also, this would be the time to give them a mild wormer.
Eyes should be opening very soon, and as soon as they do, a paper potty station can be added, along with a shallow water bowl. Also, you can start slowly adding solids. Mush.
At two weeks old, puppies should be content enough to not cry, and sleep most of the night. If they are not, then you need to find out WHY. Remember puppies only cry for a few reasons: hungry, sick, too hot and too cold.
I am sooo pleased. This is a new breed for me, and if it wasn't for my mentors, I could have lost puppies.
I have a BRAND new respect for breeders that whelp giant breeds.
Feedings last night—8 p.m., 10 p.m., 4 a.m., 8 a.m.—ALL content and I only supplemented on the last three days, on the last feeding of the day with 2 to 2.5 oz. of goat’s milk on top of the nursing. (Pups weigh 2 lbs. +, so I offer 2 oz. If pups were 1 lb., offer 1 oz., etc.)
I have NEVER been so sleep deprived in my entire life, even with childbirth.
In my case, I had a sick puppy. It was the red girl, in pain, uncomfortable, and whiny, combined with not enough space for them to find a spot to stretch out, and too much heat for this breed. (Some breeds like more heat.) AND, most breeds will die without it. Heat is one of the most important items needed to make a litter survive.
Because the dam would not care for her puppies, I had to intervene. TOO MUCH human intervention is not a good thing. Whenever possible, nature works best. In my case, I had no choice.
I obviously did not stimulate the puppies enough, and the temperature was too hot, so I got constipation; between the crying puppies and my giving enemas by rubbing them to poop, I got two very sore, diaper-rash bums, which meant two uncomfortable puppies and antibiotic cream.
Then, after the dewclaws were done, and because of the dam not cleaning, one puppy got an infected dew claw, so I had one uncomfortable puppy and antibiotic cream.
On about day three, I discovered two puppies had blood in their urine; I was rubbing them to go potty too hard, and with too much abrasiveness. Fingers are more abrasive than the dams tongue, so I had two uncomfortable puppies and liquid antibiotics.
Then red girl got an eye infection, so I had one VERY cranky puppy, liquid antibiotic drops, and warm compresses.
All in all, these were all minor ailments, and will not affect them in the long-term. All these things usually happen in human babies, but your time spent caring for them is about a year or more like this, whereas these puppies needed intense care for only two to three weeks.
At two weeks of age, the pups are wormed with a mild dewormer; this will be done again at three weeks.
Courtesy of MistyTrails Mastiffs
Although this section is based on a whelping of an English Mastiff, it also contains good general whelping information on large-breed dogs. You can find more whelping information in the links above. The links below tell the story of Sassy, an English Mastiff. Sassy has a wonderful temperament. She loves humans and adores children. An all-around mild mannered, wonderful Mastiff, Sassy, however, is not the best mother toward her puppies. She is not rejecting them; she will nurse them when a human places them on her to feed, however she will not clean the pups or pay any attention to them. It is as if they are not her puppies. This litter is getting mom’s milk with major human interaction, manually giving each and every pup what they need. In return, the pups will be super socialized and will make remarkable pets, however the work involved is astounding. It takes one dedicated breeder to keep this situation healthy. Thankfully this litter has just that. Read the links below to get the full story. The pages within include a wealth of information that everyone can appreciate and benefit from.