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Whelping Puppies: C-section Pictures

Pregnant stomach of a dam

Sassy the Mastiff had a textbook, planned Cesarean. As soon as her temperature dropped Thursday night and she was in labor we took her to the vet first thing Friday morning for the procedure. Mastiffs are known to lose 30-50% of their pups when whelping a litter of puppies. All puppies deserve to live, so we did the Cesarean for $2000. An emergency C-section performed after problems start would cost more and be more stressful on the dam, and usually a cesarean is decided after a couple pups are already lost.

Close Up - Stomach of a pregnant dam
Mastiff laying on a Vets bed being prepped for a c-section

Sassy is such a mellow girl, taking all the human contact in stride.

Mastiff continuing to be prepped for surgery

IV is in her front leg. Sassy getting prepped for surgery.

Mastiffs Tummy being prepped for c-section

Tummy prep

Close Up - Mastiffs Tummy being prepped for c-section
Mastiffs Tummy being prepped for c-section, while other vets hold it down

Sassy is put under then a final prep is done.

Vets make final preparations before the c-section

She is moved to the operating room.

Vet has Sassy the Mastiff open and is preparing to grab one of the puppies

She is cut open, and you can see a puppy in a horn. The horn is pulled out of the uterus.

Puppy #1, Big Red Boy, is being cleaned in a towel

Puppy #1, big Red boy, came out SCREAMING, very good.

Puppy #1, Big Red Boy, is laying on a towel

The cord is clamped and cut.

Puppy #1, Big Red Boy, is having its umbillical cord cut
Puppy #2, Yellow Girl, is being cleaned in a towel

Puppy #2, Yellow girl

Puppy #3, Pink Girl, is having its umbillical cord cut

Pup #3, Pink girl

Puppy #4, Green Boy, has to be broken out of the sac

Pup #4 breaking sac, Green boy

Puppy #4, Green Boy, being broken out of the sac
Puppy #4, Green Boy, can be seen through a holw in the sac

Breaking the sac off the face

Puppy #5, Blue Boy, being held up in front of a towel

Pup #5, Blue boy

Puppy #5, Blue Boy, is being posed against the towel backdrop
Vet working on the Dam

Sewing Sassy back up

Close Up - Vet finishing up with the Dam
Dam on a table, with blood on the table

All done. Time to wake her up.

Dam is laying on a blanket and being covered by a blanket

Keeping her warm

Vets cleaning the Dam up

Cleaning her up

Sassy the Dam Mastiff being comforted

Saying, "Good Morning, good to have you back Sassy."

Sassy the Dam Mastiff being given a shot

Receiving a shot of oxytocin to help her milk come in.

Puppies being placed near the teets to nurse for the first time

Checking to see if all pups will latch on and helping the pups nurse for the first time.

Puppies nursing on teets

Home and all pups are nursing.

Sassy's puppies are here. They were all very big. Five pups: 3 boys and 2 girls, 1.5 to 2lbs each.


RED male 1lb 11oz first born, most vocal, biggest boy 774g
YELLOW female 1lb 7oz second born, 650g
PINK female 1lb 10 oz third / fourth 740g
GREEN male 1lb 8 oz . third / fourth 680g
BLUE male 1lb 7.5 oz last born 660g

Putting a paper towel to a puppies back end

Making sure each puppys’ plumbing works by stimulating them to go potty.

Towels with dog poop and pee all over them

All pups are peeing and pooping just fine.

Puppy being weighed

Weighing the pups

Sassy the Dam Mastiff laying in a corner

All pups are thriving and doing well. Sassy the Mastiff is recovering from her C-section.

Close Up - Sassy the Dam Mastiff cleaning a puppy

Sassy is licking her puppies to help them go to the bathroom. Something that must be done, if not by the dam, then by the humans.

Sassy the Dam Mastiff eating dog food

She is eating well...

Sassy the Dam mastiff laying on a blanket with its mouth open and tongue out

And in very good spirits.

The next day all the pups have lost some weight as Sassy's milk is not yet in. This stage is nerve-racking, as you MUST let them nurse and suck till they are exhausted and hear them cry. If you do not do this and you start supplementing then the milk will not come in. You have to keep close tabs, so they don't get too weak and unable to aggressively suck to bring the milk in. So at 10 p.m. I topped them off with a little puppy milk supplement, and then hope for four hours of sleep. This will give them a boost, pick-up, so they can aggressively suck again.

There is so much more to breeding than many think. This is the stage where some people lose puppies from fading puppy syndrome, but this too is avoidable. A good scale is VERY important. You cannot let them dehydrate or get too weak.

This litter is doing very well.

Courtesy of MistyTrails Mastiffs

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