Boxer pups punching above their weight
WHEN Julie Revett's beloved dog went into labour, she had every reason to think it would be a normal birth. But 28 hours and one Caesarean section later, Poppy the Boxer gave birth to five puppies - the largest her shocked family vet had ever seen in a career spanning two decades.
WHEN Julie Revett's beloved dog went into labour, she had every reason to think it would be a normal birth.
But 28 hours and one Caesarean section later, Poppy the Boxer gave birth to five puppies - the largest her shocked family vet had ever seen in a career spanning two decades.
With the biggest weighing 1lb 8oz - which is more than the world's most premature baby - the un-born puppies were so tightly packed inside their mother that two incisions were needed to get them out.
Mrs Revett, of Woolpit, said the over-sized youngsters, who were conceived on Boxing Day, were like nothing she had ever seen before.
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“Poppy is not a big dog herself so we assumed the puppies would be of normal size,” she said.
“She gave birth to the first puppy naturally, and I couldn't believe how big it was. We could see she was struggling, and an hour later she had another one, which was even bigger. But after that she stopped pushing because she was just so tired, so at 1am we drove her to the vets.”
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Gavin Dean, principal vet at the Haughley Veterinary Centre, carried out an emergency Caesarean section on Poppy, and removed a further three large puppies from her stomach.
Although Poppy and her newborn puppies are healthy, Mrs Revett and her husband, Jerry, have been advised not to breed her again for fear of history repeating itself.
“Even the smallest puppy still weighed 1lb,” she said. “We have not bred dogs for nine years, but we knew the puppies were a lot bigger than most and we were absolutely shocked. They are not even two weeks old and the biggest is already 3lb 4oz.
“I felt so guilty for putting Poppy through the ordeal, but she has had her stitches out now and is making a good recovery.
“We have already found homes for all but one of the puppies, but for now they are living in our kitchen and they are all very happy.”
Mr Dean said: “They were absolutely enormous. In 20 years I have never seen a litter so tightly wedged inside its mother, and they are certainly the biggest Boxer puppies I have ever come across.
“They are normally the size of little moles but these looked as though they were already a week old, and I was very surprised when they came out.”
Wendy Brooks, secretary of the Anglian Boxer Club, said in her experience most Boxers weighed between 12oz and 1lb 8oz. “I have seen them weigh as little as 5oz, but that is very unusual,” she said.
“I don't think 1lb 8oz is particularly excessive, although it is certainly on the large side.”