Trevor Mosher and his wife Audra were expecting their three-year-old valley bulldog, Freya, to give birth to seven puppies after the ultrasound revealed seven fetuses several months beforehand.
On Jan. 27, Freya had those seven puppies, each 20 to 25 minutes apart, “like clockwork,” said Mosher.
Mosher began cleaning Freya with hot soap and water as the mother began to settle in with her new litter. Suddenly, Freya went into labour again. This time looking much different.
A black sac was encased around the body of the puppy, unlike her siblings, who were all in translucent sacs. The couple thought something was terribly wrong and believed that the puppy was stillborn.
Then they noticed she began to move and started making noise.
“We started to dry her off and noticed she was green and immediately again thought there was something wrong. So we googled it, ‘my puppy is green, what’s wrong,’ and apparently it is very rare and it has happened a few times all over the world,” says Mosher.
The rare discoloration is thought to transpire when light-coloured puppies come into contact with a green pigment, which is found in bile.
Dr. Bronwyn Crane, a specialist in veterinary reproduction at the Atlantic Veterinary College at the University of Prince Edward Island, said in an email that the occurrence is “quite rare.”
“I don’t know if I can find an exact rate of occurrence, but I would suspect it is <1:10000,” she said. “I have not come across a green puppy before.”
Mosher, meanwhile, says he is fortunate to have witnessed the rare discoloration.
“I’m kind of amazed, really. As rare as it seems to be, I feel very lucky to have witnessed it and be a part of it. I know you hear stories about things like that but to be there and witness it, it was good,” he says.
Since the puppy’s birth, the green pigment has faded significantly and will continue to do so until she is older.
Mosher says he posted about his green pup on his Facebook account, asking for recommendations on what to call the unnamed canine.
“A lot of people came up with some pretty clever answers. A few of them were Wasabi, Fiona, Hulkette and Pistachio…. kind of like that one, it’s cute,” he says.