Can A Litter Of Puppies Have More Than One Father?

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Can a litter of puppies have more than one father?

I’m not sure when I first heard about a litter of puppies having more than one father, but I do recall hearing that it is a true statement…A litter of puppies can most definitely have more than one father.

Why was I thinking about this? Well, last Saturday at the pet adoption I saw two puppies at the Cuddly Canines booth that looked totally different, but were said to be siblings. Here’s a picture:

Chow Chow Labrador Retriever Mix

Koa and Sequoia

Picture from Cuddly Canines Website

Here are some photos I took at the Orange County Super Pet Adoption:

These precious baby boys were born around June 1st to what appears to be a Chow-Lab combo. They are indeed brothers, although they look nothing alike. Koa looks like he just hopped out of the clothes dryer after a quick spin through the fluff cycle, and Sequoia has beautiful short flaming red hair! Both boys are sweet & cuddly.

By the way, I looked today and these two are still up for adoption. If you’d like to adopt one or both puppies go to the Cuddly Canines website and fill out an application.

Now I’m going to go out on a limb here, but I think these two puppies may have had different fathers.

Another Multiple Father Example

Here’s a picture of a litter of puppies we rescued from the Riverside Shelter a couple years ago:

These puppies were German Shepherd mix, but two of them looked more like Labrador Retriever then German Shepherd. Once again I think there were multiple fathers involved with this litter. DNA test anyone?

Answers From Yahoo Answers

I read this on the Yahoo Answers site and also on many other sites across the internet:

A female dog can have as many different fathers for her puppies that bred with her. Dogs can release multiple eggs and they can be fertilized by whichever dog’s semen is present. If more than one male bred her, that’s how many fathers the puppies can have. the main reason everyone gets a fair shot at the eggs is because the semen wait a day or two before fertilizing the eggs.

When a dog ovulates the eggs are not totally mature. They finish maturing as they enter into the uterine horns. Then whatever dog’s semen is present releases from the uterine lining and heads for the eggs.

Now one single puppy cannot have two different fathers. Each puppy will get half of it’s DNA makeup from Mom and one Father, but since often dogs have litters it’s possible for two puppies from the same litter to have 2 different sires.

Have you had or seen any litters of puppies with multiple fathers? If you have some stories or photographs please send them to me. I’d love to post them to my blog.

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  1. I gave 3 chihuahuas. The female is black and white smooth coat. The two males are tan long haired and a red Merle longhaired. Both have bred with the female.
    It will be interesting to see what the pups turn out like. I will most definitely know who each pup’s father is.

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