Our maltese dog just gave birth to two beautiful puppies in the night of December 26. It really came as a surprise that she was actually pregnant because it has been about four months since she was in heat. We only noticed about a week before she gave birth that her belly and nipples are larger than usual, but we thought she was just gaining weight coz she always have had good appetite since she was a puppy. Well, my husband and I are kinda new to this thing so yeah we don’t have any idea what is going on.
Thankfully, Daisy, our maltese dog, successfully gave birth to her first babies. Both of them are boys born one hour apart.
The first one looks healthy and does good in nursing.
However, the second one is way smaller than his brother. When I tried fixing Daisy’s whelping box, I scooped the smaller puppy and noticed something weird on his face. And it seemed to me that he has a cleft lip and very tiny eyes. He seemed not well-developed compared to his brother.
I did not really have any idea what to do with him, I honestly did thought that he would be just fine in nursing himself like his brother. But in the morning after, I noticed that it seems like he was having a hard time searching for milk and was trying to bury his face towards whatever nipple his brother goes to. He seemed like he did not know how to get his own milk. So I scooped him up on my palm again and noticed that he may also have a cleft palate.
I immediately went to Google ‘ university’ to search about puppies like him and found out some information on what to do. I read some mixed information saying that some vets recommend the puppy to be put to sleep because most likely it won’t survive. They say that these puppies will not be able to nurse on their own and has to be fed constantly using a milk formula through a syringe, tube, or bottle. There is also a tendency that the milk will go to their lungs, and that the only way for them to survive is to get a surgery when they are about 3-4 months old. Since it was already late at night when my husband came home from work, we were not able to buy the things we need to try to feed him. I was so anxious that night thinking about what will happen to him.
Daisy, the mom, also seemed like she knows that there is something wrong with her second baby. She was constantly licking him and separating him from the other puppy. I don’t really understand why she was doing that, and I really felt bad for the small guy. It was so hard to sleep for me that night because my instinct is telling me he will probably not make it by morning.
Right after I woke up, I asked my husband to immediately check on the little puppy. It took him about ten minutes before coming back to our room; and with a sad face, he told me the bad news. He did not make it. I was devastated but I kinda expected it as well. On a lighter note, I kind of felt relieved that he is no longer in pain and struggling to breathe. Her mom Daisy was also very stressed when my husband took away her dead baby from the whelping box. She was digging in the blankets to look for him but he was no longer there. It was truly heartbreaking. I know for some people this is just a small thing. But to me, it was hard to watch a puppy struggling for his own life.
I just wish that I knew more about what to do before it was too late. I am not sure if it will save him, but at least if I have known better then I would have helped him to have more chances of surviving. I am currently pregnant and easily gets tired, and my husband is also very exhausted at work and of taking care of me every single day, so we were kind of not-so-ready for this situation. Still, I am thankful that the other puppy has survived, and that we will be probably be more ready and more informed if it happens again in the future.