Estelle is a Rock Star Mom

Let me just say that four puppies is much less than twelve. And a 30 pound dog is much easier than a 60 pound dog. Sure, those are generalizations, but I do feel a bit like a marathoner who is running a 5K.

Estelle is a rockstar mom. The puppies are fat and shiny and eleven days old, but Estelle already seems restless. I think in human terms she’s one of those moms who has a hundred Pinterest boards and writes three blogs, while making all homemade baby food and teaching step aerobics.

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She hops in the box, does a quick clean up and lays down to let the pups nurse. And then she hops right back out of the box and takes a tour of the tiny room she’s trapped in, checking under the grow light table and in the buckets under the mudsink. When I toss toys in for her to play with, she inspects them and then carries them into the box and nestles them beside her pups. Then she stands guard by the gate, growling at strangers (which include my children) and barking at her reflection in the front door glass pane or the cats moving around on the porch. Each time Gracie barks (which is often as Gracie is paranoid and possesses a remarkable imagination), Estelle echoes her efforts, warning off the garbage trucks at the bottom of the hill, the neighbor’s chain saw, the horses rattling the gate, and those pesky birds chattering in the pine trees. Nothing escapes her notice. Estelle is on top of it.

She remains devoted to me. If I walk past the mudroom door, she leaps out of the box, leaving her puppies scattered and mewling and wondering where the milk bar went. She is always ready to follow me. I bring her to my office for short breaks, where she checks every crevice before lying down next to me, only to get up a few moments later to place a paw on my leg, gently requesting my attention. Then she repeats this routine two or three more times before taking her place in front of the door, glancing back at me expectantly—her way of letting me know it’s time to go check on the kids. I can already tell that weaning this bunch will not be the torturous task it was with Edith or Schuyler. Estelle has places to go and people to see.

The biggest difference with this litter and the last few is that Estelle is not the sharing kind. Maybe it’s because Schuyler and Edith had such large litters, but Estelle is not ready for anyone to handle her babies besides me, and then only under her close supervision. I’ve been torturing people with pictures of these gorgeous pups on Instagram and Facebook, but so far, all anyone can do is look (from a distance) but not touch.

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Every mom is different and I’m respecting Estelle’s wishes. She’s happy to greet new friends when we are outside walking, wagging her tail and rushing to meet all the people we encounter, her happy in full force wag mode, but don’t even think about approaching her puppy box. She’ll snarl you down in moments, protecting her huge babes from every danger, imagined or real.

Like I said, Estelle is a rock star mom.

And for your viewing pleasure, here are a few of my favorite pics from this week –

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This picture really shows how HUGE the puppies are.

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I love this one of Sugar Cookie because she sleeps in the same position I do
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Here’s a yin-yang shot

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If you’d like to see more pictures and catch up on all my foster dogs – past and present – join the Another Good Dog Facebook Group!

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Published by

Cara Sue Achterberg

I am a writer, blogger, and occasional cowgirl who lives on a hillside farm in Southern York County, PA. You can find information about my books and all my writing adventures on my website CaraWrites.com.

6 thoughts on “Estelle is a Rock Star Mom”

  1. What a great report, and fabulous photos! Glad things are so much easier with this group too. 5Ks are better than marathons. Just my opinion.

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  2. How much do these love nuggets( they’re huge!!) weigh? Momma is doing such an awesome job. You did a great job describing Estelle. I can totally picture her day in my mind now! Lol!! Poor thing can’t sit still!
    Has there been any interest in adopting Estelle? I just love looking into her eyes!! She has many stories to tell. I’m so glad this is going to be her last litter and she will be able to live life on her own terms and have all the attention and love be focused on her by her new momma/family! She’s such a special dog! Deserves only the best! I’m so glad that you and your family are the people fostering her and her babies! I know they’re in the best hands having a fun time!

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    1. I haven’t weighed them in a couple days, but I imagine they are all at least 2 pounds and Toddy is probably 3 pounds. Dad must have been a big dog because little Estelle is only 30 pounds. She and the puppies aren’t available on the website yet, so as far as I know there is no adopter interest yet. Estelle will be a great dog, though. She’ll be completely devoted to her new person. Thanks for reading!

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