Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Chloe is a big girl, RIP Verizon

I took Chloe with me the other day to Pet Supplies Plus to pick up dog food. They have a scale there that the dogs can walk right onto. She was reluctant, but after some coaxing (whereby I realised I really have to lose some weight) we got her weight - 86 pounds! She is a delightful dog, she entertains herself out in the yard for hours, loves the cold, and is very eager to please.
She loves the rabbits and guards them vigilantly, but I don't think she realised she had to guard them from her own "brother", our Springer, Banjo. I'm not sure exactly how, but the dropped nestbox came open on the cage containing Verizon, who was due next week. We didn't even know she was loose, and she couldn't have been loose for long, because I had just fed about a half hour earlier. At any rate, I went back to bed and Bob let the dogs out. We heard a squawk, and Bob ran out to investigate, but too late. Banjo was standing over Verizon's body, directly under the cage. Bob brought her in and got me, I held and soothed her as she struggled to hang on, but she died in my arms. :(
Verizon was my last doe with any Giant bloodlines. Evergreen's Guess is the only buck I still have with Giant bloodlines, but he is an Otter, and is dedicated to the Tan Giant Angora project. So, I'll just have to continue building my own unique Giant bloodline with Lear and the German gals, of which all the mature ladies are up at Cheryl's, being bred to Oscar. JG's Joy would like to be bred, but she isn't even 5 months old yet, although she weighs 8 3/4 pounds already. :) So Lear will have to wait a bit for his next opportunity.
Meanwhile, Guess' first litter will hit the ground next week, he was bred to Sunrise, my blue tan doe. This is my first tan pattern to tan pattern breeding, and I am eager to see if a theory of mine holds true. I have had great difficulty in getting tan pattern angora bucks, until last summer I've only ever had 2 born, and both died in their first month of life. So all my breedings have been tan pattern does to self bucks, and the tan pattern has not been all that great, often the eye circles are incomplete, the collar is nearly indistinguishable, and the chest markings are not very broad. A far cry from the splashy pattern of the Tan breed. I *think* it is because the bunns are heterozygous for the Tan gene, being ata instead of atat. So I'll be looking this litter over very carefully to see if I can figure out which babies are atat by looking at their markings. Yeungling, my black tan doe, is also expecting, I hope. I can't be sure, she went through what I thought was a false pregnancy, but refuses to be rebred, so maybe she was just excited to be preggers. We'll see, if she was bred successfully the first time, she'll be due the same day as her mom, Sunrise. She was bred to Santonio, my black tan buck, also out of Sunrise. I'm expecting blacks and blues out of these litters, and if chocolate or lilac show up, I'll be estatic!


Katie said...

Oh, Jan...I'm so sorry! I know how hard it is to lose a special animal.

We have a "Chloe" too. Her name is Poppy and she's a lovebug.

Jan said...

Thank you, Katie!