A scan on Milly the Dalmatian told her owners to expect around four puppies. When 16 arrived they had to get a letter from their vet to confirm they were all part of one litter.

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The average litter for Dalmatians is between six and nine, so when Milly gave birth to 16 her owners were, by their own admission, "very shocked".

What makes the birth even more unusual is that Milly was also one of 16.

Milly's owner, Rebecca Elvins, took the bitch for a scan when she fell pregnant and was told to expect around four puppies.

When they returned to the vet two days after Milly's due date, it was decided she would have a caesarean.

Rebecca said: "The vet pulled out eight and then said, 'Oh, we're going to the other side now.'

"Me and mum looked at each other and were extremely shocked, and then he got to the fourteenth and the vet said, 'This is a small one - I think this will be the last.' But then he went in for another look and found another two.

"We were really, really shocked that there were 16."

When Milly the dalmatian was taking for a scan her owners were told to expect around four puppies. When 16 arrived they had to get a letter from their vet to confirm the birth (Getty)

'Different characters'

The Kennel Club asked Milly's owners for confirmation that all 16 Dalmatian puppies were from the one litter.

Rebecca said: "Luckily she had a caesarean so it was easy to get a letter from the vet, whereas if she'd had them at home it might not have been so easy to get the proof that they were from one litter.

"The Kennel Club just wanted us to confirm that we weren't deliberately breeding for large numbers or that we hadn't put two litters together."

Rebecca and her family will keep one of the Dalmatian puppies, Maisie, and sell the others.

She added: "They've all got different characters, they've all got nicknames: we've got Bertie, Butch and Maisie.

"Some are more quiet while others are more adventurous and their characters really stand out."