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  • Gail DeMasi

Life with Darling

The night My Darling Two-Face was born was filled with trauma and sadness. Her beautiful mother, Munsonville Stella, did not survive the emergency C-section. Instead, my daughter and I drove home with a box of twelve 5 ounce puppies and the body of Stella. My husband buried her whilethe rest of us set to the task of hand raising vulnerable, yet curiously vigorous, Bernese Mountain Dog puppies.

After our first night home (taking turns every three hours feeding the puppies) life fell into the routine of crisis management. With resources from our vet and other breeders we became proficient at caring for our little charges. Fortunately, my older children were home on college break. I was on the "boys team" (three to a team) as the girls would not tolerate their brothers' rather surprising squeamishness (wearing plastic gloves and grimacing througout the more unpleasant tasks.) After three weeks we had lost three of the twelve. The remaining nine, all named and known, continued to thrive and grow. Life settled into a less stressful routine as the feedings were not as frequent and the puppies flourished.

Of the bunch, My Darling Two-Face was the most determined, sweetest and best overall survivor. Here she is at six weeks:

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