The Hovawart Club of Great Britain

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Breed Notes - 19 May 2009
By: Elaine Betts

Three and a half weeks later and we still have our nine puppies, although not quite the size and condition they would have been in, given a well lactating mother! Quite an experience, hand rearing, and not one I would recommend, but with Orchid’s help we feel we are winning the battle. She has been an absolute star, happily taking on extra puppies as requested, and not only feeding them, but “topping and tailing” them as well. Whistle has had a little milk, and it is wonderful to see the 2 bitches lying together sharing the feeding responsibilities, without anything more serious than an anxious glance between them. It makes you believe the stories of wild dog packs, where only the alpha bitch has pups, and the other females come into milk and help out.

Now comes the difficult task of disappointing the several people waiting for bitches, as we are aiming to keep one from each litter ourselves, since these pups will be our next mothers, leaving only 3 “spare”. With a rare breed like ours, inevitably there are lots of people who have waited an age for a puppy, come through the rising excitement of the process, from choosing a sire, via the mating and scan, to the birth, only to “fall at the last fence”, so to speak. I feel this is the hardest part of what is by and large an exhilarating and marvellous experience.

I should like to apologise to everyone I have failed to contact or reply to in the last few weeks, as we have managed with very little sleep, and no kitchen facilities. Of course, timing is everything, and we decided to go ahead with both matings and the refurbishment on the sound principle that put off any of the 3 activities, the circumstances would have conspired to prevent it happening in the future!!

Congratulations to Maggie Spencer for her Gracie’s start in competitive obedience. In successive Obedience shows she has been 6th, 5th and 4th out of the usual large classes in Novice…. next stop the podium. Well done to the pair of them.

Good news, too, from John and Simon, who make that super model for us. They have finally rescued the original mould, and we should have the statues available again by next month.

There are currently 2 males in need of homes, a 3 year old, currently living with a family with children, and a 15 month old who's family are due to move to an Australian flag....he is a victim of the 'credit crunch'. I did have a couple of potential new owners on a piece of paper on my notice board, but since the kitchen has been stripped, I cannot find it, so if you thought I already had your name down for a rescue, please get in touch again.
This article was posted on: 19-May-09