Welcoming the Pups
Pups are not considered born until they emerge from the Ice Flats, some time after the celebration of Last Sunset. Where Last Sunset is a fairly somber occasion and a transitional state into the descent of winter, the emergence of the pups is considered a cause for celebration.
The days before the first pups begin to emerge from the Ice Flats (some thirty to forty days after the honoring of Last Sunset) are filled with anticipation and abuzz with activity. Food stores are counted and recounted, and doctors and scientists watch the Flats like hawks waiting for the first signs of emergence. The first handful of pups to break the surface of the Ice Flats are considered to be lucky, and some of them can reach the shores of the Ice Flats before the rest of the pups have emerged to bum-rush the settlements of their clans of origin. At this point, it becomes a week of pure chaos. Newborn pups are often full of nervous energy and excitement, and are more uncontrollable than their somewhat older counterparts. The newborn pups can best be described by the phrase "move fast and break things", although they do slow down long enough for chow (and medical doctors take advantage of this to give each pup their initial screenings). Adults try to prepare by setting out food for them, often fresh from the clan's hunt earlier that month, but this only slows them down momentarily. Additionally, pups often beseige the first adults they see, sometimes in rapid succession; this accounts for just shy of half of all beseigings in a given year. By the time the new pups have worn themselves out, the doctors are finishing up examining them. It is rare for a pup to not be given a clean bill of health; of those, some are flagged for further monitoring in case of Congenital Lipase Disorders and similar conditions. Others are slated for reexamination within a few weeks. However, most pups are cleared to continue making chaos as usual.
Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull
I love the idea of the pups emerging from the Ice Flats to cause chaos. :D
Every pup ever: "Father! I crave violence!"