It’s been quite a while since that Week 7 pupdate, but as it turns out raising puppies is quite a bit of work! Who knew?
The good news is all of the puppies are in their new homes and continuing to grow physically and emotionally. And if you didn’t guess by the title of this post, yes, one of those homes is ours. The red girl, formerly knows as Purple, is Fuchi (full registered name Kamui Fuchi Go Hokusei Kashinoki) and growing up with Umma by her side. She is named after the Ainu goddess of the hearth. Those who know Ainu legend will definitely question the spelling; in Ainu it would be Kamuy Huci, but we went with the Japanese spelling and pronunciation because I just can’t be calling for “Hoo-chee” in public.
Umma and Fuchi are getting along well and I’m sure we will delve more into how their relationship grows and changes as time goes on.
Back to the rest of the litter, for now. As they grew older, it seemed to become more and more work. Older pups are definitely not easier! As each pup went to their forever home it was bittersweet because we miss them all, but there was no way we could give each pup the individualized attention and training they needed to excel.
Blue was the first pup to go home, the black and tan boy, at right about 10 weeks. He is now known as Akuma and lives in Northern California with a Shiba sister and a tiny human brother. See him on Instagram!
Orange and Pink, the brindle boy and girl, were the next to leave, later the same week. They went up and spent the night at Hokusei Kashinoki before going to their homes.
Green, the brindle black and tan girl, was the last pup to leave us, right about 12 weeks. Now named Arashi (it means storm in Japanese, a nod to Grandma Genko’s kennel in Hokkaido), she moved to Michigan to join the Kai Ken of Mijikai Kensha (link opens in Facebook).
Thankfully social media exists so we’ll be able to keep up with everyone as they grow up. It would be great to someday have a family reunion, but given the geographic spread it’s not very likely.
At eight weeks of age we took them to an eye specialist to check for juvenile cataracts and evidence of collie eye anomaly (we did a swab test for CEA earlier, but they were lost in the mail!). None of them had cataracts, but the doctor believed all had evidence of CEA except for Arashi; a second swab test done that day validated his preliminary findings. We had hoped to get 2-3 CEA carriers of the five since Umma was a carrier, but instead there was only one. Arashi went to Mijikai Kensha as a part of the HANA project and should hopefully produce some nice pups in two or so years.
We are not going to spay Fuchi – even as a CEA affected pup – to keep options open in a very small gene pool. Should she develop into what we think would be a good mother and should the right male be available in a couple years, perhaps she’ll be bred. Two years is a looooong ways away! Right now the humans need a break from litter raising to focus on raising just one puppy.
More on that in the next post!