A three year old Golden Retriever from the Scottish Highlands named Rio recently gave birth to a litter of nine pups — including a little green one. The mint-colored dog was aptly named Forest by his owner, Louise Sutherland. “The first pup was stuck, so myself and my daughter Claire managed to free him and pull him out safely,” Sutherland told The Sun. “It was all hands on deck but then as the puppies started to arrive, we noticed that one of the puppies had green fur. We couldn’t believe it.”She added.
Sutherland had every right to be stunned: the occurrence is such a rare phenomenon, it’s only known to have happened three other times only. According to a 2014 article in TIME, veterinarians believe that exposure to biliverdin — a green bile pigment found in the placenta, which can stain a pup’s coat when mixed with the mom’s amniotic fluid.
Fortunately, there are no known health risks involved with the condition and the color won’t last forever, it typically resolves itself within weeks of birth. “The color has faded quite a bit already and will be gone soon, I’m told,” said Louise.
Mrs Sutherland has managed to find good homes for all the puppies but is planning to keep Forest for herself. Mrs Sutherland said, “Rio had a total of seven boys and one girl and they are all great and growing like mushrooms. This is her second litter but the first was much more normal, a five-hour labor and five pups, two girls and three boys. But this will be her last.”