Sire: GCH Hurricane Ridge's Lorenzo Tesoro Mio "Enzo"
Dam: CH Elfin on the Road From Cathay "Pekoe"
The A-Team lands - Touchdown... there's nothing like an adventure to keep life interesting. At the end of May we traveled to Chicago to show at the Magnificent Mile Classic. I was hoping to breed Pekoe to a handsome dog in the Chicago area so I encouraged her to come in heat so we could multi-task. She got the message...a week after we got HOME. So, two weeks later, we pack up the Sprinter again and re-trace our steps to, get this, Romeoville, IL (is that great, or what!) where Pekoe plays coy but Enzo prevails! We stayed with our friends, Patty & Jimmy, in Munster, IL which was very nice as the dogs had a lovely backyard to play in, rather than be cooped up in a hotel room. Did I mention that my 95 year old mother, who now lives with us, made both trips with us? Fortunately, she's a trooper and a good traveler, too.
As usual, we'd done progesterone testing, which allows us to narrow the arrival window considerably so we knew that puppies were expected Fri or Sat, +/- 24 hrs. Wed night, her temperature dropped and she refused dinner but ate her bedtime 'cookie' so we went to bed and slept all night. Thurs morning, she jumped into the whelping box in the kitchen and started nesting. At 8:05, contractions began and at 9:05, the Ace was born. You never know how a new mother is going to react to whelping so I was expecting some hollering, but none was forthcoming. Pekoe just regularly, and effortlessly, (really, I was jealous after my birthing experience) popped out 5 pups in 2 hrs, without breaking a sweat or a making a single complaint. They all appear to be healthy and vigorous and, of course, gorgeous. Since this is Pekoe's first litter I was looking for an 'A' theme...The A Team...is the best so here they are!
#1Male "Ace" meaning 'unity' derivation English. Ace is black with 4 white feet and a splashy white chest. 7oz
#2Female "Ada" meaning "First daughter"derivation Nigerian (also noble, happy, German & ornament, Hebrew) Ada is black with white markings on chest and hind feet. 7.2oz
#3Female "Aura" meaning 'glowing light' derivation Latin. Aura is shaded gold with 4 white feet, white muzzle and stripe and chest. 6oz
#4Male "Avi" meaning 'my G-d;Father, derivation Hebrew. Avi is a shaded gold with some white on his chest 6oz
#5Male "August" meaning "revered" derivation English or German. August, like Ace is black with 4 white feet and splashy white chest only he has more white on his chest than Ace. 7.2oz
The A-Team is on the scene!
The A-Team - Peaceful Time...this has been such a pleasant, peaceful week. Pekoe has been an outstanding mother, caring for her puppies with calm competance. The puppies have been gaining and growing and plumping up, gaining mobility while getting cuter by the minute. Remember those bright pink noses on Aura & Avi...now they have turned dusky on their way to black and Ace & August's noses are now jet black. So far, the litter dynamic is mellow, relaxed, and laidback. The superpuppy exercises have been met without protest as they are oriented head down, head up, belly up, and then tickle toes. The one I have not done is the 'cold' one, but maybe we'll try that today. For more on 'super puppy' exercises see :
As is natural when there are distinctive colors in a litter the eye is drawn to the 'different' ones so Aura & Avi do tend to grab your attention but, those black babies are so shiny and beautiful. Black coats tend to be shinier than sables...so am looking forward to rich black velvet babies...the splashy white will soon become ruffles and flourishes...we are going to have fun in the coming weeks!
Normally week two is a time to relax as the babies don't do much but grow and wiggle but, we'll soon be busier as Dipper is due to deliver 4 puppies next week. Fortunately the 2 nurseries are right next to each other so I won't need roller skates! Keep tuned for double duty updates in the coming weeks!
How can you not be in LOVE!
Mile 2 - The Road lies before us...another wonderful week in the A-Team world. We have completed the biosensor exercises and their world has expanded because...eyes wide open (except for Avi who has eyes half open but working on it.) Today we had our 2nd nail trim and they were so good for it. Each just sat on my lap and held still (relatively speaking) while I trimmed those sharp little daggers. Ace and August even gave me kisses when I was done. Looking at puppies is always fun but looking at puppies who are looking back at you, even at this stage with unfocused innocence, is just the best. Today also included changing the bed linens (service at this motel is outstanding!)
The A-Team members are growing plump and gaining mobility. The coats are just starting to show some variations and length. Ace & August are very smooth, Ada has some visible waves. Aura & Augie are just a fun palette of shades of color. Ada is feminine, Aura & Augie are cute, Ace & August are masculine looking boys. Weights today ranged from 1lb to 1lb 6.5oz.
Pekoe spends more time out of the box now...she was very interested in Dipper's arrival home...I think she thought it would be fun to have all 9 for herself. Dipper would certainly take exception to that! In the meantime, Patty, deprived of her 2 primary playmates, has turned to Pekoe's grandmother, Pala, whose been visiting while her owner recovers from back surgery. Pala is 11 but plays like a puppy!
This should be another easy week for me as Pekoe will continue primary care while I get to play with them, which I am doing frequently for socialization. Patty would LOVE to help but Pekoe's not ready for that sort of assistance yet. She is an easy going, but attentive mother who does insist that the other dogs keep their distance from her babies. The other great difference in Pekoe is her appetite. Nothing like raising babies to stimulate appetite!
We SEE you back!
Mile 3 - Day trippin'...This is the time that the real fun begins on this journey from egg to true love on four legs. Awareness increases to our surroundings and we now respond to sights and sounds. This means that we are ready to interact and begin the transition to dogness. Today, Ada barked! A single woof, but it counts. And Augie decided that fingers are yummy. And we ALL responded when asked to 'smile for the camera!' This is the stage where taking photos is fun (51 today!) and rewarded by total adorableness. Notice that our ears are now pointing in the right direction. We have nice ears!! And we are starting to grow ruffles (and flourishes!)
Today the whelping box was divided into bed and bath as we are beginning to wee on our own and need to learn to separate living quarters from toilet. So, as you can see below, when a bed is place and a piddle pad occupies the other half, and toys are added, and Mom comes to feed us, where do we all end up? Right...not the bed. But this will change as we grow.
This will be our last week in the whelping box. Next week we move into the playyard where we will have lots of room to toddle then romp and lots of new and interesting things to experience and play with. And we will learn to accept new sounds when the sound effects CDs are introduced.
Pekoe's appetite continues to be prodigious so she can keep up with demand and the puppies are fat and content. Weights today ranged from1lb 6oz to 1lb 15oz.
Ok, so the toilet is new and clean, but still...
If you squint you may avert cute OD.
Mile 4 - Urban Renewal... Talk about big changes in the neighborhood! Our cozy little apartment was just getting SO crowded so we had the walls knocked down and expanded our digs. But after only 2 days we decided we needed even more room so we took out the whole building, added new rooms and took over half a block. Not only that but it's expandable so as we grow, we can take the WHOLE block! We were doing really well in the old apartment at separating bedroom from toilet and now we have 3 bedrooms and the whole rest of the house is a toilet, so we don't make mistakes! Over the next week, the toilet will shrink so that we have bedrooms, dining and play area, THEN the toilet...so much to learn but such is the life of a puppy and we are SMART ones!
Today was our first 'spa' appointment. Yes, we've had our pedicures weekly but today we got the bottoms of our feet clipped so it's easier for us to get traction on the floor. We were very good about this, probably cause we were already used to the SuperPuppy 'tickle toes' exercises. Ada got the best puppy award today for being the most cooperative and giving the most kisses during trimming. She also got the best posture award during today's portrait session...'give me the proud look!' Augie got the vocalist of the day award...'what cha doin', Doc, huh, huh? What, why, how much longer??' Ace says his should have been a video cause he wanted to show off his walking ability instead of sitting still. Aura & Avi say they don't have to try...they just can't take a bad photo! And we got to meet some other dogs today! Doc introduced us to Patty, Karma & Pearlie and Dipper came to visit. We have a big family, don't we?
Weather permitting, we will get to go on field trips soon...right now it's HOT, HUMID, high ozone today...hoping for better weather. And then there is food...yes, coming soon to a puppy mouth near us...solid food's on the agenda for this week. We voted for ice cream sundaes but not holding out much hope...sigh.
We were overflowing the old box.
New found freedom
There is just nothing better than Silk!
Mile 5 - Remodeling the Digs...Someone snuck in during the night and replaced my toddler pups with miniature dogs! We have learned the fine art of playing, wrestling, and discovered toys are FUN. We had to get our house expanded so we'd have room for all this dogginess. No more piddle pad carpeting...now we have our bed, our play area and then the incredible shrinking toilet area. We are very good about making the trek from bed to bath without leaking!
Food is another story. Food keeps showing up but we are not really all that hungry as mom is still supplying plenty and we are dairytarians! So a bowl appears with a little food, we go over, lick a few licks then Mom jumps in and cleans it up for us. Good thing someone's watching or they would think we eat a lot! Sooner or later Mom's going to get tired of us chewing on the spigots then we are going to have to start eating solid food...no rush, we're little fatties!
Did we mention the visitors? We have lots of visitors now, both four and two legged ones. Patty is our special friend...she really, really LOVES us and, if no one's looking, will jump right in our house and hang out with us. Mom keeps an eye on her but, so far, hasn't objected to the visits. And Auntie Karma, who THINKS she has puppies (but only has a fake baby to keep her company) comes to visit to get a real puppy fix but she's polite enough not to actually try to take us over. And Pearlie...whenever that food bowl appears, Pearlie's nose is glued to the wall...hoping it will magically slide over so her foot long tongue can steal the food. Even Dipper's come to visit and Mom has visited Dipper's babies...under supervision, of course, but Mom and Dipper are BFFs so they are pretty tolerant of each other. We had more visitors on Tuesday...everyone who sees us just oohs and ahhs over our cuteness...so we're practicing our tail wagging, too...and today, after our pedicures, we practiced our stacking on the table and found out that dried chicken is pretty cool to gum on!
Today, for our portraits, we had a make a goofy face contest and also figured out how to move at JUST the right second so Doc got lots of oops photos...but she managed. See if you can tell what we are thinking! Augie has his 'poor me, I want to RUN not sit' face on!
We are growing up!
Mile 6 - Fresh Air & Sunshine... we made a great discovery this week. There is a world beyond our walls! Holy cow, it's really, really BIG out there. There's a hard rough 'road' a brick patio, and green carpeting that smells very interesting. And new sounds and smells...it's really fun! We can run and play and not bump into anything. Tallest ceiling ever....and it's blue. Awesome! And we had visitors who came outside with us...they were great when we needed some shade. We learned the fine art of wagging and wiggling and getting humans to ooh and aah over our cuteness. Humans are SO easy.
We are finally thinking about expanding our menu options. Milk is still our first choice but lately we've been nibbling on Primal freeze dried raw and Pawtree chicken/sweet potato kibbles. We're civilized puppies...not so into real raw but we'll get there. We are very popular when the food is in there. Aunt Pearlie won't leave us as long as there's a single morsel. Aunt Karma also loves us...a bunch. When no one's looking she sneaks into our house and pretends we're hers. We're alot better than her 'fake baby'!
We got to meet our little cousins, the A-Listers. They came to visit us one day and we thought, wow, real live squeakie toys! They are very cute. One day they might come to live with us but they are too little now. We got this neat play gym that Aunt Cathy & Uncle Les made for us...it's a lot of fun! And they are coming to visit us tomorrow, too. We've been listening to the oddest things coming from the puppy sound effects CDs...whoa, fire engines! Babies crying? Seriously? The best is when dogs bark and the big girls all run outside to see who's here!
We got double teamed today. Nana Pearl held us while we got our nails done, feet and rears trimmed. We had a very close call...we heard talk about 'baths'...but we dodged that bullet because we are the cleanest puppies ever. We just don't get dirty cause we use the potty park and piddle pads and don't pee on the floor then dance in it. We are good puppies inside AND out.
Scroll down for 3 videos. 1st is Patty playing with the puppies. 2nd is a close look at the playgym. 3rd is their 2nd trip outdoors to play.
The great outdoors
Hot sun, finding shade.
Bring your A-Team!
Mile 7 - Exercising our wings... so soon we can fly. We have been honing our skills this week, learning how to properly interact with other dogs, both young and old. We've been going out daily with our little cousins, the A-Listers and, while it's fun to pick on the little kids, we are beginning to respect their boundaries. We are also practicing safe bitting and finding out just how far we can push each other. Yesterday Ace & Augie found out that Ada will only take so much and when she squeals it means "NO MEANS NO!!" and she put Augie on his back and 'splained things to him. Gotta show a girl a little respect, dude.
Much as we hate to accept it, I THINK we are about weaned. Pekoe's milk is drying up and she's giving the kids wide berth, avoiding all those sharp little needle teeth. She's SO happy to be back in bed with the other dogs and me. The door is open so she has the option to visit the A-Team but I think she passed on the privilege last night. Yesterday was a day of great protest as Pekoe sat just out of reach, with a non-contact visit. As a result, little appetites for solid food have grown considerably. Another $600+ worth of food arrives tomorrow which I hope will last the month.
The weather has just been spectacular and we've spent a lot of time outside. Ada has mastered the front steps in BOTH directions...quite precocious and much to her delight as she thumbs her nose at the boys and gets out of reach. Today was first bath day and more practice in stacking in preparation for next week's soaped photos. I have to say they were amazing. I've been doing this for so many years and I think it can't get any better, then it does. Just like Dipper's A-listers were great for baths, the A-team was so good, I am ever so grateful. They got nails done, feet trimmed, rears, eyes, bellies...not a peep of protest. Of course then there were the baleful, priceless,poor pitiful puppies looks when it came time for portraits. All part of growing up.They continue to be spot on in hitting the pads and potty parks and also cooperative about pottying outside. I love these puppies so much...and am enjoying their progress, as is my Mom. Here are the A-Team kids!
We are clean, we smell sweet, we are not pleased.
Mile 8 - Seriously? Tests, already?...you are SO not going to believe what they put puppies through here at our tender age! I guess we are prepping for graduation or something but hooboy, the things we went through today. (Although I hear we dodged a couple of bullets cause we ran out of time for BAER testing, which has been rescheduled for when the A-Listers get theirs, and mercifully, microchips are also going to wait until then, til we've grown more body...whew.)
So this super nice and cute lady came to see us. One at a time she took us to a strange room, then she put us down and called to us, ever so sweetly. So of course we ran over to see her. Then she walked away and called us to follow...which we did...wagging, cause she seemed so nice. So then what does she do? Turns us on our backs and holds us down...we said, 'xcuse me, can I get up now?" Uh, no, not yet...after a jillion (30) seconds, she let us up then said, "Sorry, do you forgive me?" Oh yes, so we kissed and made up, then guess what? The next minute we were suspended in the air for another jillion (30) seconds...seriously? But then she was nice again and we played a great game. She threw a little crumpled piece of paper and we brought it back to her...twice! That was fun. And the thanks we got for bringing her paper back was to get our toes pinched. Then she told Doc how many seconds before we pulled our leg back. Ok, it wasn't a HARD pinch, but still. All of a sudden a gong went off..KaBONG! We jumped...but nobody was afraid, just surprised. Then the lady pulled a rag on a string to see if we'd chase it. We humored her by following along but I guess we failed the prey drive test...wolves we are not. Then she put us in a corner and backed away and when we tried to follow, whap, an umbrella flipped open right in our faces. Rude, don'cha think? But, we're smart little puppies and we just walked around it and looked up at her with our 'Gotcha' look. We heard 'Puppy Aptitude Test' and I guess we have great aptitude cause Doc said we were a bunch of little Goldens.
Just when we thought we were in the clear, we had to do soaps...wet, slathered with shampoo, all our beautiful coats smoothed and flattened then mug shots happened...face front, turn around, sideways...almost enough to make you want to be a Beagle. I mean why bother growing hair if they want nekkid pictures of you. Puppy porn, I tell ya. Harumph! But, ok, really, it wasn't THAT bad and before long we were dry and fluffed and ready for a nap. And MORE visitors. Gloria & Chris came to visit and they said we were precious...you bet...clean and sweet smelling, too. And Chris took a jillion pix of us. I guess we are beautiful, smart, and important!
Did I mention we got even, just a little. While Stephanie was out picking up lunch, Doc tried to hurry and get our portrait pix. Ace & Augie played a switcharoo on her and she did Augie twice. You should have seen her staring at pix and thinking how alike we'd become. She finally figured it out and poor Ace had to go do his bit, too. It was so funny...haha, we ARE smart (alecks.)
So that was our day today...yesterday, by the way, was a lot more fun. The sun came out and we got to go outside and run and play and romp and roll...now THAT's the kind of day that makes a puppy glad to be alive. Oh, and the A-Listers moved in with us...scroll down to see Nana Patty come play with us all. They're good lil kids but they still pee on the floor...ick...so they have to sleep in their own room at nice so we don't accidentally step in a puddle in the dark. Just to be fair, Doc bathed them, too, today...and they really needed it (unlike us, the clean Team.)
Aura run in the sun.
Ada fun on the run!
Sound in Mind & Body...The A-Team!
Mile 9 - Happy Days are Here Again...
The sun is shining,
The cut grass smells,
No more whining,
Patty is the leader
And we try to get past
but no way to beat her
she's way too fast!
We are making up for lost time and spending lots of time and energy outside running and playing and chewing on whatever we find (which is a lot!) Doc mowed the lawn so we are not pushing through a 'forest' anymore...we can go really fast now that we can see where we are going. We elected to get our photos taken outside, on the fly, way too nice to have to sit still on the couch!
This is our last week before we get ready to begin our life's journeys. Some of us are getting used to new names. Ace is Muggles, Avi is Suede. Aura & Augie are keeping their names. Ada hasn't decided yet. This is a carefree week for us...all we have to do is eat, sleep, grow, and play. We are getting good at teeter-totter and skateboard...clever puppies. Next week we are going to hide...BAER tests, microchips, vaccination...ow ow ow! What a way to make us wanna run away from home!
Patty, puppy magnet.
Aura on the fly!
Fresh air, fresh puppies!
Mile 10 - And so we go... the last 10 weeks have literally flown by and so it comes time for the A-team to begin the journey of their new lives. We have been very busy this week spreading our wings and learning to fly (which will be good for Aura & Suede as they are literally getting ready to fly.) Yesterday we had our BAER tests and we were so good and brave. And then we got shot...at least that's what we were told cause none of us noticed at all. You know how when you go to the dentist and they ask 'does this hurt' and if you say no, they keep trying until it does? Next time we get shots we're gonna scream our heads off so no one decides to microchip us again. OOwie, owie. Considering it's a needle the size of the holland tunnel, I'd say we did really, really well. Augie didn't even flinch...what a guy! Suede didn't squeak...smooth. Ok the rest of us said UNCLE! but it was over so quickly and NONE of us turned down our chicken liver treat...Yummers!
After that we got to sit around and snicker at the A-Listers who were getting puppy porn, aka soaps done. Nekkid kids...haha. We have had lots of outdoor time...it's just the best fun ever. And that horse, Smoky Joe...he drives the big dogs crazy...it's too funny! We're excited, and sad, about getting ready to go live with our new families...Augie's the first one to go, leaving on Sat, then Suede on Sunday, and Aura on Monday. Muggles is staying another week to keep the little kids in line. Ada's just staying...for now. Pekoe asked Doc for special dispensation not to send her off just yet so, for now, she's gonna hang with the big dogs. Ada says her name is Elfin Ada Way To Go Girl! and we all have to call her Ada! (with an !) We all have our 'special' names now...cause we are special dogs and our puppy books are made, our blankies and tuggies are done and Doc is rounding up all our 'stuff' for our trips. She thinks we weren't listening but Doc says we are about the best puppies ever...apparently she is partial to cheerful, waggy, enthusiastic kids!
Even though Ada & Muggles will still be here, this is the last update for the A-Team...it's just not the same once the teammates go...we hope you have enjoyed watching these special babies grow. It has been my pleasure to guide their path. The final video shows Pekoe & Patty teaching the kids to be tough!