Friday, June 25, 2010

Winnie has the blues - part 3

6/21 - Well, thanks to the “Love Dr.”, Miss Kim Otero, we got an AI breeding on Winnie and Rhythm. Rhythm’s daddy came over to show Rhythm how to ‘woo’ a lady and we think Rhythm might be getting the idea finally. He has since started to try and breed her naturally, it could be he’s just a very smart boy and knows that she’s not ovulating yet. Thanks ladies for all your help ;)
6/24 - YAY, Winnie and Rhythm had a natural breeding this evening. And, as I expected, Debbey took a picture of the ‘act’ and sent it to us :) I had a feeling she would do that. Winnie and Rhythm have really hit it off, they are such a cute couple and Rhythm took a few days to court Winnie in his own fashion, he really wanted to get to know her before he got to physical. So, if she catches at this breeding she will be due late August, she would be due the week mom is up in Canada racing so she will miss Winnie whelping yet again! Winnie has had two previous litters and mom has missed them both due to work, so again I will be whelping Winnie’s litter by myself. It’s a good thing she’s always been an easy whelper, and I actually prefer to whelp the litter by myself as mom adds stress to the situation by being stressed herself - LOL So it all works out for me :) So everyone think, blue blue blue! I want to see lots of blue babies in August!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Winnie has the blues - part 2

6/17/2010 - Winnie arrived at Debbey’s house on the night of June 16th and the following day she had a little play time with Rhythm. She’s being a hussy as usual and doing all her flirting tricks, but he’s a bit confused by it all. They are getting along great and he’ll catch on soon enough. Winnie has always been breedable early and stayed breedable for quite some time. She was introduced to her new ‘digs’ - she got her own bedroom and is being treated like a princess. I’m afraid she’ll return a total diva and demand her own bedroom instead of sharing the bed with me and several other Whippets.
6/18/2010 - Miss Debbey is going to work on making Winnie a special new collar because apparently Winnie is complaining about the one that we sent her in, which is fairly old and getting a bit ragged, so she wants a brand new one before she comes home. She’s settled right in and is flirting a lot with Mr. Rhythm but we think he continues to be a little confused.
6/21/2010 - Winnie and Rhythm are still in the courtship stage - I have some adorable pictures of them to share. Debbey has made Winnie a brand new collar which suits her quite well. Thank you Debbey for everything, I’m sure Winnie will return a spoiled rotten diva with an attitude - LOL Liz Littlejohn (owner of Marius - an Anna x Tigger kid) went over to Debbey’s to meet Winnie and fell in love. She will be getting one of the puppies from this litter, she is hoping for a blue boy and I am hoping for a blue girl so we hope for lots of blues to appear! Enjoy some pics.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

New Rabbit Hutches!

Well, FINALLY, we got some rabbit cages made for my 4 New Zealand Rabbits. My father made 3 of them - 24" x 36" and I put the doors in and made hay feeders out of the scrap wire. We still need to make one more but need to get more wire. The sides and top are made of 1" x 2" wire and the floors are made of 1" x 0.5" wire, it takes one of each to make 3 cages. So we need one more roll of each to finish making a cage for the buck (and hay feeder from the scrap) but for right now he's got a temporary cage. Then we have to build a frame to permanently raise them up (right now they are raised but it's only temporary until we actually build a frame). They are growing quite a bit, my buck "Bialy" is quite a good size now, probably around 10#s but I need to weigh them all when I get the scale out. Now that my does are separated from one another they should grow a little faster. They are handling the heat quite well, no problems at all, they are under shade ALL day, sun never hits that spot and they have a tree limb that kind of hangs over the cages so they have additional protection with all the branches and leaves over top of them. I took some pics with my mother's iPhone and our crappy little digital camera - our good camera is in the shop AGAIN, so will take better pics when we get that back. In 3 months, we have spent just over $200 on the rabbits which isn't bad at all - considering this includes all their food, hay, all the materials to make their cages so far, feeders, water bottles or water bottle converters and the actual purchasing of the rabbits. Most of that $ has come from purchasing the wire, j-clips and the j-clip pliers just this week and then a decent portion of that actually came from the purchase of the rabbits themselves. They really don't cost much in food, will be spending more on food once they have kits and we'll need more pellets and hay to feed them but all in all I don't think that's bad at all :)

Enjoy some pics!

3 new cages, hand made by my father :) Hay feeders made and installed by me!
This is what Bialy (the buck) thinks of the girls new cages
Zurina in her new hutch (before hay feeder was installed)
Vanora in her new hutch (before hay feeder was installed)
Jeneva in her new hutch (before hay feeder was installed)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Winnie Has The Blues - Part 1

I have forever wanted a blue Whippet, I have envied all the breeders who have produced blue puppies in the last several years. We bought Byelobog who is either blue or blue fawn, but he’s pretty much solid white with just a few freckles on his ears and it’s hard to tell whether he’s blue or blue fawn, either way - he’s mostly solid white, so that just didn’t do the trick for me and settle my craving for a blue. I was hoping with a few of our past breedings that the parents would carry the dilute gene and we might get a blue. I thought that if Bosley carried the dilute gene there was a high possibility of having a blue pup or two out of Winnie when they were bred back in 2007. But alas, Bosley obviously doesn’t carry the dilute gene as we didn’t have one single dilute in that litter and Winnie herself is a blue fawn. When we bred GiGi to Infineon in
2009 I was expecting solid or parti colored red puppies, but I was surprised when she produce a blue fawn. In my excitement I was thinking she might be a blue, she was so vividly blue when she was born, but after thinking for a minute she couldn’t possibly be blue because she had two red parents so she had to be blue fawn. Though she’s a gorgeous blue fawn color, probably much more ‘blue’ than ‘fawn’, I am still left craving for a blue. So I kept waiting and waiting, and looking at pictures of blue puppies and blue dogs just waiting for the day when I would have one myself. When it came time to think of who we would breed Winnie to for her last litter we discovered Rhythm. Rhythm is a handsome and speedy solid blue boy with a sweet temperament. So now we have a dilute on dilute combo that SHOULD produce some blue puppies and blue fawns with the possibility of black and red as well. So I sat and waited and planned to breed her early 2011, but she took so long to come back in season since her last litter that we figured we would go ahead and breed her this season instead of next time because right now was good timing since we thought she would be in season much earlier. So on June 16, 2010 she caught a flight to California to meet her betrothed.

I will continue with this story in just a few days - at the very least I will try and post a part to this story every week as we follow the breeding, pregnancy and whelping of Winnie and Rhythm.



Okay, I have made up my mind :)

It's been difficult keeping up with the blog because I basically post everything on the website as far as news goes so it seems pointless to post everything in two places. But I have made up my mind to devote the blog to other things involving the Shannon Down family, stories and events that aren't mentioned (at all or in full) on the website. I'll be writing little stories about what is going on around Shannon Down starting with a several part story called 'Winnie Has The Blues' which will follow her breeding, pregnancy and whelping of her last litter. I will also be posting on my New Zealand meat rabbits, we will soon be making their hutches and I hope to take pictures as they are constructed as well as taking new pics of the rabbits themselves. Our camera is currently in the shop but I have another small digital camera that I can use, though the quality won't be nearly as good.

So for now, if you would like news on what the Shannon Down Whippets have been doing over the weekends at shows, lure coursing trials, race meets, etc., check the News page on the website, if you want more of an inside look into the family of Shannon Down, come to the blog :)

And so we begin with the first part of "Winnie Has The Blues" in the next post!