Samantha is getting big. I'm worried that this may stress her, so trying to ensure she doesn't over-exert herself, but is exercised enough to keep good circulation and reasonably good health. She gets walks now, instead of running with the team, which doesn't make her overly happy being excluded from the team.
Two more weeks until we will need to start taking her temperature every day in anticipation of labor, but I think we may have to start as early as next week. She is spending more and more time out in the dog house on the porch rather than sleeping at the foot of my bed. Not sure if she is going to try to whelp in the house or outside, so keeping an eye on her. When she's not in the mood to nap outside and when I'm home, she is my constant shadow, and I reassure her as much as possible. She's been getting puppy food every day now when she wants it (I keep a bowl of it on the foot of my bed where she likes to lay and the other dogs will not go), but has been more interested in eating as many bones and treats as she can steal first. This has not earned her any favors with the other dogs.
She and Freya had another argument yesterday about a piece of left-over bone that each had stolen from one of the other dogs at one point in time or the other. Again, it was not a real fight, more of a yelling match over which dog stole it first. The boys merely let the girls get away with stealing their treats most of the time. But the two girls hang out together a lot more than they used to. We will have to keep an eye on their behaviors as the time draws closer. She loves the extra belly rubs as not only does she get her usual amount of spoiling rotten, but now she gets extra attention and reassurance that she is doing well. Once in a while she will whine softly for no apparent reason, and I'll pet her and rub her belly some more to be sure she is ok. She's probably uncertain and a little scared, so I try to be her mental support as well as her loving caregiver. We have to be careful not to overreact though, as dogs pick up on your reactions and assume the magnitude of the situation by your reaction. A calm and loving reassurance goes a long way.