A STUNNED dog owner has ended up with 14 bloodhound puppies after being told by a vet to expect just “two or three”.
Judy Jenkinson is being eaten out of her East Lothian house and home after the huge litter was delivered by two-year-old Corrente.
Two pups sadly died but the remaining 14 are thriving, drinking their way through 1.5kgs of yoghurt and three litres of goat’s milk every day.
Bloodhounds usually give birth to around eight pups and Judy was told Corrente, having her first litter, would probably deliver no more than three.
So the 62-year-old was astonished as one pedigree Bloodhound after another came yelping into the world over the course of 12 hours on October 26.
The puppies are worth around £850 each, giving Judy a theoretical payday of almost £12,000.
The four-week-olds drank £20-worth of formula milk a day for the first three weeks and Corrente – Corrie for short – recouped her strength by eating four times her normal amount of canned food. Judy cleared out the local pet shop of all milk formula and had to make a bulk order to make sure she had enough to feed the ranous puppies.
The puppies have graduated to a diet of nutritional food mix, Greek yoghurt and goat’s milk.
Judy said: “The puppies are getting through 3 cartons or 1,500 grams of yoghurt per day and three litres of goat’s milk.”
The dog lover, who has another seven-and-a-half-year-old Bloodhound, Andante, has been consumed by the demands of the black and tan coloured puppies.
She said: “I’ve been sleeping on the couch in the kitchen so that I can be on hand to look after them. I’ve never felt so tired.”
Judy, who refers to herself as the puppies’ granny, said: “Corrie’s looking very well considering she’s now the mother of 14.”
Corrie was mated with Cammonstone Justice, a three-year-old from Hertfordshire, whose owner speaks to Judy on a daily basis to learn of the puppies’ progress.
Judy said: “The father’s owner will get first pick of the litter and because I am going to keep one too, it means that I cannot give my heart to any of them until she has picked her puppy.”
In the first few weeks Judy spent 10 hours per day helping to feed the litter of six boys and eight girls. She said: “Corrie just wasn’t able to feed them all, she simply didn’t have enough milk. Now they’ve got teeth, Corrie doesn’t really feed them, but she cleans them and looks after them.”
The puppies have started to lap milk out of a bowl and Judy can feed two pups at one time. She feeds the pups every six hours, she said: “I’ve got it down to an hour.”
It’s an amazing result for Judy, who has owned Bloodhounds for 14 years and always wanted to breed them.
She said: “Previously I couldn’t or wouldn’t. One had bad eyes and breeding with her would have passed the condition on to her offspring. You must be very, very careful to breed responsibly.”
She said that the Bloodhound gene pool in the UK is relatively small which can cause medical complications for offspring.
“Bloodhounds tend to be a little interbred and this can increase the likelihood of bad eyes, epilepsy and other health issues,” she said.
“Corrie is 100% pedigree but is a new blood line that is already highly sought after. Her brothers and sisters are all show dogs and do very well in competitions.”
The puppies can be viewed in two weeks time and sold at eight weeks which will be December 22 but Judy will not be letting any puppies go before Christmas.
She said: “It’s such a busy time I don’t think it is the right time for a puppy to be introduced to a new home and I want to make sure that the new owners care about the puppies beyond Christmas.”
She added: “I need to vet them out. You have to be very, very careful who you are selling the puppy to. I have to make sure they will be properly looked after, and won’t be locked indoors during the day.
“Christmas is somewhat cancelled, I am doing puppies this year,” she added.
Judy said she had already received a great deal of interest in the puppies, particularly from breeders who know the quality of the puppies blood line.