The world might be a better place if more people watched these videos. They are cute and sweet, certainly, like so many dog videos on the internet. They also demonstrate something about the potential for dogs to do surprising and wonderful things, when guided by thoughtful and loving stewardship. I have watched these videos many times since discovering them a year ago, and I always feel a little better about the world when I am done.
Alison Davison’s YouTube profile notes only that she is a “dedicated wife, mother and animal lover”. She kindly consented to share her videos and pictures with us, and to answer a few questions about her remarkable canine family.
How confident were you that your Chihuahua puppy would be accepted by the Bullmastiff and Rottweiler?
We were really worried about introducing Amber (Bullmastiff) to Lola (Chihuahua) as we were not too sure how she would react with something so small. Our fears were put to rest when she came into the room and started cleaning the puppy. I knew the Rottweiler (Jade) would not be an issue, as she tends to sit back and watch rather than get amongst the action. She is a very loving and mild-mannered dog.
How did it come about that Amber began nursing Lola?
The puppy took to Amber immediately and followed her everywhere. A few days after we got the pup, Amber started to lie down and coax Lola to suckle. I thought it was just a comfort thing but after about a week, Amber started producing milk and fed Lola every time she tried to latch on. This continued for 4-5 weeks. Amber started to get fed up and would not let her latch on anymore. Probably the same length of time her real mother would have fed her pups.
How old are they now, and do they all still get along?
Amber, the Bullmastiff, is now 7 years-old, and Lola, the Chihuahua, is now 2-years old. They are still very much a tag team. They sleep together; Lola runs to Amber if she is in trouble. They still play all the time. When we put them into kennels, Lola spends most of time sitting or sleeping on Amber’s back, much to the amusement of anyone who sees it. It is amazing how gentle Amber is. She has a very mild temperament, and is a very loving dog. She loves people and other animals alike. All the dogs get on well together. Lola does think she rules to the pack, and Amber and Jade are happy to let her.
Has Amber had a litter of her own?
She has not had a litter herself. Her mother died of womb cancer about a year after her litter, so I decided not to breed her. Sometimes I think I have cheated her out of being a real mother, and that’s why she is so loving and motherly towards other animals.