It is an ironic fact that, no matter how high tech dog breeding may have become, it’s mother nature who still calls the shots. I’ve been hauling Sailor to the vet office for daily blood draws and smears and Draminskis, but it all comes down to timing – when she’s ready, she’s ready. And, like all things related to dog breeding, she’ll take her own sweet time getting there.
I shouldn’t be surprised, either. Sailor has always danced to the beat of her own drummer. She cycles when she wants, whelps when she’s good and ready, and makes veterinarians toss their hands up in despair when it comes to evaluating her progesterone results. She’s a rebel, yes she is.
So, I sit here, waiting for the phone to ring, so that the vet’s office can tell me “Yes, we’re breeding her today. Can you be here in 20 minutes?”. Sailor sleeps through all of this, lounging on a pillow next to her daughters, Journey and Penelope. Ellie is hunched over top of them like some sort of mythic gaurdian gargoyle, her bat ears flying at half mast. Outside, Tessa warms her stomach on the patio, and Tula patrols the yard in a state of high alert, on the watch for low flying finches, rogue garter snakes and unwary chipmunks.
We’re all waiting, but when this is how you get to do it, there’s really nothing to complain about.
A phone call from the vet, and off we went. Sailor has been officially bred (technically speaking, she has been artificially inseminated, and surgically at that). She’s made me very happy by conforming to the mental time line I had set for her, and for myself, namely “If she doesn’t come in season by the end of the summer, she’s being spayed). So, this is it – her final breeding. I have very high hopes for it. I don’t envision selling anything from this litter, but as anyone involved in dogs will tell, you can never ever say ‘never’.
Dr. Boyd isn’t overly optimistic about Journey’s chances of conceiving. In spite of all the timing tests, and in spite of her best efforts to pinpoint J’s optimum breeding date, things can and often do still go very wrong. In this case, her follow up blood test of Journey’s progesterone levels returning alarmingly low levels. This doesn’t bode well for her chances of having conceived, but we’ll still have to wait 21 days to know for sure. Fingers crossed…