Custom Search
Dog Breed Info Center(R) DBIC
Dog Breed Info Center(R)



Whelping and Raising Puppies: When things go wrong—umbilical cord attached to foot.

Not all whelping situations are joyous occasions for the kids or any adult to witness. Things do go wrong. It is nature. I do a lot of midwoof services and I run into issues often.

The biggest stress is not everyone has whelped several litters as I have had the opportunity to do. I have dealt with different breeds and various people who had me assist in their whelping. A lot do not know what is normal and what is cause for alarm, and feel helpless to help a weak puppy.

Here is yet another scenario of what can go wrong when whelping. However because of my experience this may have a happy ending.

This poor puppy is only a third of the size it should be. Her umbilical cord was attached to her foot. She has a deformed foot and was being fed through her foot and belly with a couple small skinny cords. She was born very dehydrated, could not retain her heat and was very malnourished. I will keep this puppy and litter with me for a while.

This puppy’s survival depends 100% on a human to keep her warm and tube feed her every two hours. In this case, the dam of the litter is taking care of her potty needs. This means 24/7, around-the-clock feedings by a human and loss of sleep. Not everyone can do this, nor be willing to do this. This puppy could grow up to be a normal little dog. The way I see it, we did the breeding. We brought her into this world. We are committed to not give up on her. She didn't ask to be born, but she is here and deserves a chance.

The puppy was born weighing 83 grams, which is a third the size of a normal puppy of the same breed. She is very malnourished and very small. This is a very strange case. She cannot nurse and is being tube fed.


Her umbilical cord was coming out of her foot and there was blood flow to the cord.

To keep this puppy alive I will be up around the clock every two hours to feed her. She has a heating pad under her and heat lamp above her. I allow her to be close to her mother while I am there watching.

Side view of the umbilical cord coming out of the foot—notice the bright red blood flow going to the cord.

Close-up of the umbilical cord coming out of the foot

Close-up of the umbilical cord coming out of the foot

Close-up of the umbilical cord coming out of the foot

Close-up of the umbilical cord coming out of the foot

Puppies at four days old. She is a little Havana brown-mahogany sweetie. I think she is going to make it. She has gone from 83 grams to 108 grams. I am still tube feeding her around the clock. Here she is next to her littermate. See how much smaller she is; clearly the runt of the litter.

Puppy's first week.

Puppy's first week. You can really see her one leg turning inward in this picture. It's unclear at this point if she will be lame. If she is, I will teach her to walk.

Puppy's first week.

Puppy's first week.

Puppy's first week.

Puppy's first week.

Puppy's first week.

Puppy's first week.

  The preemie with her sisters at one week old. She is now nursing on her own 50% of the time.

The preemie with her sisters at one week old; she is now nursing on her own 50% of the time.

At just over a week old the tiny preemie pup is learning to nurse.

We taught her to suck from a bottle. She has moved from supplemental tube feedings to supplemental bottle feedings.

  Shown here at 3 weeks next to her full size littermate. She is doing very well.

Shown here at three weeks next to her full-size littermate; she is doing very well.

Puppy missing toe. Three toes.

This is her foot at three weeks old. She only has three toes, but otherwise she seems like a normal pup.

  Her paws at 4 weeks old. Her normal paw is on the right and her paw with the missing toe is on the left.

Her paws at four weeks old; her normal paw is on the right and her paw with the missing toe is on the left.

Puppy shown here at five weeks old; there were five puppies in the litter. Their weights at the 5 week mark: 815 grams, 790 grams, 897 grams, 980 grams and this preemie pup is 519 grams—still much smaller than her littermates.

Puppy shown here at 8 weeks old. She is doing well.

Puppy shown here at eight weeks old; she is doing well. She has almost reached two lbs., (half of the normal size for the breed). She was named Umbie.

Umbie at 15 weeks (almost four months) weighing only three pounds.

Umbie at 4 1/2 months old

Umbie at 4 1/2 months old

Umbie at 1 year old

Umbie at 1 year old




Story courtesy of MistyTrails (Midwoof)


So You Want to Breed Puppies

Pros and Cons of Inbreeding Dogs

Stages of Puppy Development

Whelping and Raising Puppies: Breeding age

Reproduction: (The Heat Cycle): Signs of Heat

Breeding Tie

Dog Pregnancy Calendar

Pregnancy Guide Prenatal Care

Pregnant Dogs

Pregnant Dog X-Ray Pictures

Full-Term Mucus Plug in Dog

Whelping Puppies

Whelping Puppy Kit

First and Second Stage of Dog's Labor

Third Stage of Dog's Labor

Sometimes Things do not go as Planned

Mother Dog Almost Dies on Day 6

Whelping Puppies Unfortunate Troubles

Even Good Moms Make Mistakes

Whelping Puppies: A Green Mess

Water (Walrus) Puppies

C-Sections In Dogs

C-Section Due to Large Dead Puppy

Emergency Cesarean Section Saves Pups Lives

Why dead puppies in utero often require c-sections

Whelping Puppies: C-section Pictures

Pregnant Dog Day 62

PostPartum Dog

Whelping and Raising Puppies: Birth to 3 weeks

Raising Puppies: Puppy Nipple Guarding

Pups 3 Weeks: Time to start potty training

Raising Puppies: Pups Week 4

Raising Puppies: Pups Week 5

Raising Puppies: Pups Week 6

Raising Puppies: Pups 6 to 7.5 Weeks

Raising Puppies: Pups 8 Weeks

Raising Puppies: Pups 8 to 12 Weeks

Whelping and Raising Large Breed Dogs

Mastitis in Dogs

Mastitis In Dogs: A Toy Breed Case

Why are Toy Breeds are Harder to Train?

Crate Training

Showing, Genetics and Breeding

Trying to Save a Fading Dachshund Puppy

Whelping and Raising Puppies Stories: Three Puppies Born

Whelping and Raising Puppies: All puppies do not always survive

Whelping and Raising Puppies: A Midwoof Call

Whelping and Raising a Full Term Preemie Puppy

Whelping Small for Gestational Age Puppy

C-Section on Dog Due to Uterine Inertia

Eclampsia is Often Fatal for Dogs

Hypocalcemia (low calcium) in Dogs

SubQ hydrating a Puppy

Whelping and Raising a Singleton Pup

Premature Litter of Puppies

A Premature Puppy

Another Premature Puppy

Pregnant Dog Absorbing Fetus

CPR Needed to Save One Puppy

Whelping Puppies Congenital Defects

Puppy with Umbilical Cord Attached to Foot

Puppy Born with Intestines on the Outside

Gone Wrong, Vet Makes it Worse

Dog Loses Litter and Starts to Absorb Puppies

Whelping Puppies: Unexpected Early Delivery

Dog whelps 5 days early due to dead pups

Lost 1 Puppy, Saved 3

An Abscess on a Puppy

Dewclaw Removal Done Wrong

Whelping and Raising Pups: Heat Pad Caution

Whelping and Raising a Large Litter of Dogs

Whelping and Raising Dogs While Working

Whelping a Messy Litter of Pups

Whelping and Raising Puppies Picture Pages

How to Find a Good Breeder

Pros and Cons of Inbreeding

Hernias in Dogs

Cleft Palate Puppies

Saving Baby E, a Cleft Palate Puppy

Saving a Puppy: Tube Feeding: Cleft Palate


Although this section is based on a whelping of an English Mastiff, it also contains good general whelping information on large-breed dogs. You can find more whelping information in the links above. The links below tell the story of Sassy, an English Mastiff. Sassy has a wonderful temperament. She loves humans and adores children. An all-around mild mannered, wonderful Mastiff, Sassy, however, is not the best mother toward her puppies. She is not rejecting them; she will nurse them when a human places them on her to feed, however she will not clean the pups or pay any attention to them. It is as if they are not her puppies. This litter is getting mom’s milk with major human interaction, manually giving each and every pup what they need. In return, the pups will be super socialized and will make remarkable pets, however the work involved is astounding. It takes one dedicated breeder to keep this situation healthy. Thankfully this litter has just that. Read the links below to get the full story. The pages within include a wealth of information that everyone can appreciate and benefit from.

C-Section in a Large Breed Dog

Newborn Puppies... What you need

Whelping and Raising Large Breed Puppies: 1 to 3 Days Old

Things do not always go as planned (imperforate anus)

Orphaned Litter of Pups (not the plan)

Raising Puppies 10 Days Old Plus +

Raising Puppies 3 Week Old Puppies

Raising Puppies 3 Weeks - time to start potty training

Raising Puppies 4 weeks old

Raising Puppies 5 weeks old

Raising Puppies 6 weeks old

Raising Puppies 7 weeks old

Socializing the Puppies

Mastitis in Dogs

Whelping and Raising Large Breed Dogs Main

Whelping and Raising Puppies, a new found respect


Whelping: Close-to-Textbook Case

Puppies' Progress Chart (.xls spreadsheet)

Cuban Mysti Puppies: Full Term Mucus Plug - 1

Cuban Mysti Puppies: Labor Story 2

Cuban Mysti Puppies: Labor Story 3

Cuban Mysti Puppies: One-Day-Old Pups 4

Easy Delivery a Day or Two Overdue



What's New on DBIC Newsletter!

* Email

About Dog Breed Info Center®
Understanding Dog Behavior
Natural Dogmanship
What does it mean to be dominant?
Successfully Adopting a Rescue Dog
Transforming a Rescue Dog
Proper way to walk a dog
Raising a Puppy
Why did my dog do that?
Speaking Dog
Small Dog Syndrome
Dominant Behaviors in Dogs
Jumping Dogs
FAQ about dogs
Alpha Boot Camp for Dogs
The Human Dog
Ready For a Dog?
Dog Bite Survey
Dog Breed Popularity Survey
Dog Breed Quizzes
List of Dog Names
Dogs Caught in the Act
Those Amazing Dogs
Dog Care Training and More
Designer Dogs? What?
Pictures of Mixed Breed Dogs
Puppies vs. the Adult Dog
Chaining Your Puppy or Dog
So, you want to breed your dog...
Feeding Puppies and Adult Dogs
Corn in Dog Food. Really?
Collectible Vintage Figurine Dogs
Success Stories & Positive Feedback


All Breeds - Purebreds - Hybrid Dogs - Understanding Dog Behavior - Raising a Puppy - Find the Perfect Dog - Dog Breed Quizzes - Pets - All Creatures - Care Training+ - Whelping Puppies - Photos - Submit a Picture - Breeders vs. Rescues - Spike the Bulldog - Maguire Farm - Scam Warning - Privacy Policy - Contact Us - Site Updates


Successfully Adopting a Rescue Dog - Adopt a Rescue Dog


DBI Advertiser Policy - Classifieds/Breeder - Puppies for Sale



Custom Search

The Material contained herein may not be reproduced without the prior written approval of the author. Contents & Graphics Copyright © Dog Breed Info Center® (C) 1998- . All Rights Reserved. Our work is not Public Domain.