A question for any of you experienced RN's- is there any danger or value to this practise?
Ananova: Woman breastfeeds puppy
A New Zealand woman is breastfeeding her Staffordshire bull terrier puppy because she wants it to protect her baby daughter.
Kura Tumanako, of Hastings, started breastfeeding the pup after her own baby stopped taking her milk, reports the New Zealand Herald.
Her baby, Honey Pauline Philomina Flo, was born on August 29 and is now on bottled milk.
"I wanted to raise the pup with my baby," Ms Tumanako said. "I wanted to bring it up with a baby. It will protect her as they grow up."
"He drinks more than the baby. It doesn't hurt, but it's a little bit ticklish," she said.
Ms Tumanako, who is pregnant again, said she did not care what people thought about her breastfeeding the pup.
"It's my life, my responsibility. I make my own choices," she said. "I'm going to look after me, my baby and my puppy."
Hastings veterinarian Sharon Marshall said it was uncommon, but not unheard of, for one species to provide milk to another.
Dec 31, '04
There probably isn't any danger in it per se, but the baby should definitely have priority in feeding at the breast. Putting the whole weirdness of nursing a dog factor aside, there are a couple of specific reasons that come to mind:
1) There are advantages for babies in feeding directly from the breast (oral, facial, eye development, better speech, less need for orthodontia, lower risk of TMJ syndrome; composition of milk varies during the feed; a small amount of the valuable fats, vitamins, and immune properties of milk are lost if milk is stored before feeding; see links if interested)
2) Milk is species-specific. Dog's milk and cow's milk and human's milk & all mammal's milk are different and created especially for that animal. As a matter of fact, milk is unique from person to person and from feeding to feeding! While the dog may be ok on human milk, there may be something more well-suited and healthier for it. We get much less protein and more lactose in human milk because it's needed for our brain development. Maybe it will grow up to be a very scrawny but intelligent dog! LOL
The Influence of Breastfeeding on the Development of the Oral Cavity
(also great info on dental caries, otitis media, SIDS, sleep apnea, and more)
What is the big deal about milk?
Milk Composition comparison with other mammals...scroll down for chart:
Basic comparative anatomy of the mammary gland.
Don't Shake the Milk:
Biological Functions of Lactation (lists differences in species):
...and it goes on and on...
Last edit by mitchsmom on Dec 31, '04