A British dog could have set a new world record after naturally giving birth to an astonishing 21 puppies.
Great Dane and American bulldog cross Mary Jane, known affectionately as MJ, caused her owner Jane Hine’s jaw to hit the floor in shock when she gave birth to the extraordinary brood.
Ms Hine, from the Isle of Man, had been told that the pooch would give birth to between six to eight puppies, although a scan close to the due date warned the actual total would be much higher.
The Guiness World Record currently stands at 24 puppies born to a Neapolitan mastiff called Tia in Cambridgeshire in 2004 but, as these were born by cesarean, MJ’s litter may be in with a chance.
British Great Dane and American bulldog cross Mary Jane, known as MJ, gave birth to an astonishing 21 puppies at a vets on the Isle of Man. Sadly only 14 survived, pictured, but the incredible litter may be in the running for a world record
MJ pictured with her owner Jane Hine, left, at home with her puppies and Jane Hine, right, holding three of the dogs. Ms Hine now sleeps in the kitchen with the dogs to ensure they are all alright
Joanne said: ‘When the vets told me it would probably be more after they’d said she would have just six to eight I said ‘no way!’.
‘I’m so proud of her. MJ did it all on her own with Annie and Ruth of Jane Callow Veterinary Practice by her side the whole time.
‘MJ only has nine nipples and 14 pups so bottle feeding them every two hours is a team effort from us all.’
Twenty puppies from Tia’s record attempt survived. For MJ, six of her puppies were stillborn, while one died soon after it was born on November 20.
The remaining 14 pups have been named after chocolate bars according to their personalities.
Although MJ gave birth to 21 puppies, six were stillborn while one died shortly after birth. Pictured above, several of the 14 puppies resting
One of the puppies is pictured being held up by its owner Ms Hine. They were born on November 20
Diligent mother MJ, right, pictured with the puppies father Keith, right. Her owners had only expected six to eight puppies
Joanne sleeps in the kitchen next to a homemade crib, which is big enough for all 14 puppies and their mother, to keep an eye on them.
The majority of the dogs are yet to be re-homed, although two are soon being taken to a new family in Rotherham, Yorkshire.
The all seem to have inherited their mother’s black and white colouring and the face of their father – a bull mastiff crossed with a rottweiler.
The animals need to be fed every two hours so Joanne is being supported by her father Steve, brother Matt and friend Liam – who will soon become ‘fathers’ to the puppies.
She added that MJ will now be neutered – as she’s read that a second litter can be bigger than the first.
The puppies are shown here suckling next to their mother shortly after birth. MJ has only nine nipples so Ms Hine and her family are stepping in to help with feeding. They need to receive food every two hours