Double the Cuteness! First Confirmed Identical Twin Puppies Born in South Africa
There's good news for animal lovers everywhere
One small step for puppies, one giant leap for puppykind.
A veterinarian in South Africa recently delivered twin Irish Wolfhounds, the first documented identical puppies in history, National Geographic reports.
Kurt de Cramer was performing a cesarean section on a female dog in South Africa’s Rant en Dal Animal Hospital in Mogale City when he noticed something he had never seen in all his years as a veterinarian.
“When I realized that the puppies were of the same gender and that they had very similar markings, I also immediately suspected that they might be identical twins having originated from the splitting of an embryo,” de Cramer told BBC Earth.
The five other puppies in the litter all looked similar, but each had its own placenta, according to BBC. De Cramer and his colleagues conducted several tests on the pups, named Cullen and Romulus, and found that the two were indeed monozygotic twins.
The group documented their findings in the journal Reproduction in Domestic Animals.
While human twins are common, it is rare for identical twins to exist among other species, according to National Geographic. Although some have suspected identical twin dogs are possible, there has never been a documented case — until now.
Non-identical twin dogs are more common because each fetus has its own placenta, according to NBC New York. And identical twin fetuses have been reported in horses, but a lack of oxygen in the placenta would limit the chances of both horses living.
Naturally, animal-loving social media users are ecstatic about the news. Many have taken to Twitter to gush about the twin puppies.
One tweeter shared an article about the animals and wrote: “The only news I care about today.”
“A good day for humanity,” another person tweeted alongside the article.