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Lab puppies

The lab found alone and pregnant on Nov. 14 outside Ovando recently gave birth to 12 pups. Above, the mom is pictured with her litter.

HELENA – The pregnant Lab found alone and in freezing temperatures outside Ovando on Nov. 14 delivered 12 puppies the day before Thanksgiving.

The mother, Divine Miss M, gave birth over a five-hour period to the dozen puppies, which were all healthy, the owners reported Wednesday.

Miss M was found outside Ovando by Travis Thurmond on his drive home from work. Only after the Lab mix jumped into his truck did Thurmond realize she was pregnant. Despite their best efforts, Thurmond and his wife, Kathy Schoendoerfer, were unable to find Miss M's previous owner and decided to care for the Lab through the remainder of her pregnancy.

Shoendoerfer said she planned to weigh and name the puppies Wednesday evening.

"We're thinking names surrounding thanksgiving, including Thankful! Or the 7 dwarfs cuz we have some that really identify with Sleepy, Grumpy, Sneezy ... " Shoendoerfer said in an email Wednesday.

The couple will care for the puppies and Miss M for at least the next eight weeks.

Shoendoerfer said they are working with the Humane Society to find permanent owners for the litter and Miss M. Several people have contacted them with interest in adopting the pups, but Shoendoerfer said they have not made any commitments and are just taking it one day at a time.

"You never know what may happen with our household in two months as we've gotten quite attached to Miss M and the pups," she said.

Independent Record

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