A photo of a woman breastfeeding a puppy (yes, a puppy) is circulating on the Internet, leading many to wonder how in the world that came to be.
"I just did it. I never thought I would do that. That's just something it was taboo to me as well," she said. "I guess you could call it a maternal instinct."
The foster mom chose not to be identified because she says she fears the backlash from that maternal instinct. But the photo has quickly gone viral.
It was the runt of the litter, in any case, just days old. A lab mix, whose mother was killed. The little dog wouldn't eat from the bottle, nor eat formula.
"He just wasn't taking it. I didn't know what else to do, I was desperate and I just couldn't bear sitting there, watching him die," the woman said.
"Literally what clicked in my head was like put him on you, just pray to god he will take something and not die," she said, and Tubbs did just that.
"It really reaffirmed what I did was right because I was for myself, quietly, in my mind embarrassed. I was ashamed, I felt weird, it felt weird," she said.
Veterinarian doctor Amber Williams said she is less concerned about the taboo than the potential health risks that could be incurred as a result.
"I'm more concerned about zoonotic disease because there are things that can be passed from puppies to babies," Williams said of the breastfed puppy.
"In an emergency situation, I don't think it's a big deal, but for them to grow appropriately I think it would be important for them to get on a K-9 formula."
Done and done. The foster mom adds that her 15-month-old baby is weaned off her breast milk and so is Tubbs, who now wolfs down the formula.
However, she has no regrets about what she did in a pinch. She adds:
"I've seen the results. That dog is alive because I took that initiative."
Ladies: Would you breastfeed a puppy to keep it alive?