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  • Writer's pictureHoekema Family

GEM Pups 7 wks old

In the blink of an eye my little Gem babies are on the home stretch. We are now in our last week together before they go off to change lives one at a time. Each pup is so incredible in its own way. I'm ecstatic for each story that they get to write a chapter in. I know these beautiful pups are on their way very soon to do great things. Each pup was very closely observed not only every day but every moment of my days as I carefully assessed, re assessed, double assessed each one. Along with observing, Volhard puppy aptitude testing was performed multiple times. Different tasks, repeat tests, added distractions, ect. to get my final evaluations completed by the end of this week. Each pup was perfectly matched by me with the family I knew that I have no doubt that they were supposed to end up with. I take my process of puppy matching very seriously and work extremely diligently in making sure these sweet babes end up in the right arms. The gratitude and appreciation that I receive from families in this careful process I have in place has been overwhelmingly supportive and filled with love. I thank each family I have the immense privilege to work with for their trust and understanding through this journey.

Each Gem baby has blown me away this week. Looking, watching, telling, asking, moving, initiating, waiting, loving and soul searching. My heart will be heavy watching these miraculous BIG sweet pups move on. Each one has captured me in his/her own way. They have conquered each new skill I've thrown at them. Outside time continued with added in outdoor stairs to maneuver over and around.

Their confidence has really gone through the roof. Tonka continues to show them the ropes of how to do things, what not to do, what to do better and how to act with manners. I've said it before but it deserves to be said again, these pups have really benefited in having him around.

Ice got introduced more than once which they thought was a hoot. Mostly scooting them around the floor without really getting them into their mouths. Deeper water in the pool was also brought out a couple of times this week. They weren't too sure that they loved it but took the task like champs. Looking like drowned river rats by the end was extremely entertaining, enough for me to repeat this task the next

day simply for entertainment purposes. It was a win win!

The temps continue to rise this week so for everyone who has fur babies at home currently, keep a close watch for heat stroke signs. Heavy panting, difficulty breathing, excessive drooling, lethargic, drowsy, uncoordinated, vomiting or collapsing. Lots of water, keep them indoors as much as possible, no excessive outdoor exercise, and limit their time outdoors so they don't get overheated. Pool parties with lots of water are always appreciated by our fur babies, lots of hose play, sprinkler play, lake hopping and river walking are all encouraged. Let's take care of our fur kids as these temps hit us!

As I watch my pack this week and the risks of this heat I make sure each pup is also tended to to a tee and is getting exactly what they need to complete their time here with me. Last minute meds will be administered this week, their head to tail vet check gets completed Thurs. Microchips will be done, nails trimmed, baths will be had and fluffy floofy fluff balls will appear. By Sat. they all will be whisked away into the arms of 6 very incredibly lucky families. It's been an honor to work with these families this go round as their gratitude was poured out to me each week as they came in to visit their new future baby. It's been incredible to visit with them each weekend and I can't wait for their journeys to start.

Now I quickly shift gears, change focus, and re center on what's ahead in our next chapter here. Toys will be put away, baby crates will be collapsed, potty trays will be cleaned and a top to bottom clean will commence. The whelping box will once again be set up and as the nursery space changes the energy shifts. Babies are right around the corner. This all will take place just in time for Meiko to get settled, start nesting, get cozy and rest up for the day she gets to welcome these amazing 'Flowers' into the world.

She's been doing exceptional this whole time, keeping her smile, growing extremely early and quickly, making me think this is not going to be a small litter by any means. I have now completed this litter list and am ecstatic to offer these families a placement in this very special litter list. We'll see if we're lucky enough to stretch this list out even further. If not, I have more pups on the horizon this winter to fill homes and hearts with! Communication with these families has picked up over the last few weeks as each family is getting more eager for the upcoming day. Touching base becomes more frequent, more antsy, more anxious, grasping for more puppy information and I welcome it all with open arms and an open heart. I stay in touch very closely with each of these families as this is way more to me than just raising pups, it's the whole journey from a very long time ago, all the way through this journey, to the point of not only getting pup settled into your home but a lifetime of support and education every step of the way. These families truly become close family to me. From frequent get togethers, to playdates, to a quick drop in to say hello, to brother brawls, to sister romps and everything in between. Photos roll in daily of past pups getting taught how to swim by their brother who lives in a neighboring city, completing puppy kindergarten, consuming grass, being covered with mud, thatching moss, making new fur friends, sunbathing with their humans, doing yoga with their humans, watching the nature channel, doing aerial acrobatics to chomp on the sprinkler water and so many more growing moments, my heart is bursting from seam to seam. Thank you all for blessing me with each of these extended stories that I had the immense privilege to help you start but now get the added privilege to continue to be part of.

As the days turn over with rising heat, we also run into fireworks on the 4th. With this litter of pups, I have run track after track of fireworks into their nursery space to try my best to desensitize them to celebration in just a few days. I am hoping I did enough so they can rest easy and not worry about what’s going on above them. For all the other fur kids that are in your home currently, I encourage you to keep them close. Let them know that you have their back and that you will help with their stress and recovery rate. Play calming music, give them extra snuggles, play new games to keep them distracted, and when you need to take them outside make sure they are leashed securely. It’s astounding how many pups/dogs are lost over the 4th. Enjoy the holiday everyone!

Chapters being closed for me, new chapters opening for others. New stories being started for some, new excitement being planted for others. May this new litter of pups bring more stories to be written, more pages to be turned, more memories being inserted, and fur and fluff being thrown around for all.

Take care everyone!


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