Pocket-sized pups could set record

What could be the world’s smallest pup was born in Lissarda near Macroom recently.

Out of a litter of four Chihuahua pups born on Nov 11, two weighed a normal 85g (3oz) each at birth but the remaining two weighed just 28g each. Owners Julie and Richard Banahan have failed to find a record of a smaller Chihuahua — the smallest they can find was 37g at birth.

In a matter of days, one of the smallest pups had outstripped the other.

“Pups are usually 3oz at birth. Ours have always been 3oz,” said Julie.

The Guinness Book of Records looks only at adult dogs at a year old, and it’s height and length that counts. If the pup grows to be a particularly small dog, the Banahans may enter him.

Originally from Nottingham, the Banahans have lived in Lissarda for the past 11 years.

Living in Richard’s grandfather’s cottage, they inherited Rover, an 18-year-old Labrador cross. They’re got two racing greyhounds — Banahan’s Boy, which recently came third in the Midleton College Race Dog Stakes, and Sherwood Forest, who is just starting out on its racing career.

A Dalmatian, peacocks, chickens, and a goat complete the menagerie. There are five shelves of trophies from shows over the years.

The pups’ mother, Sophie, aged five, has won many trophies.

While the other puppies will go to new homes, it is likely the family will get attached to the smallest, as it will take it four to five months until it is fit and healthy and a good weight. “We’ll probably get attached to him and won’t be able to let him go,” Julie said.

Chihuahuas originated in Mexico. The breed became fashionable among Hollywood celebrities in the 1940s as they were small enough to fit in a handbag.


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