When her German shepherd Roxy, a first time mom, went into labor on a Monday, Mary Heffelfinger thought she was ready to greet the new litter. The delivery, however, came with a few unexpected surprises, 12 in fact, over an 11 hour period.

The Schuylkill Haven, Pennsylvania, woman is a registered nurse with a background in maternity care, home care and hospice work. Her resume could not be more impressive, but not even she was prepared for the task at hand, just a few months after bringing home a new dog.

Mary brought home a 5 month old German shepherd puppy that she named Roxy, hoping that she would make a good companion for the 8 year old German shepherd, Rebel.

After the loss of Mary’s 13 year old husky/lab, Nela, the grieving dog owner thought Roxy could help fill the void in Rebel’s heart.

Not only did the dogs get along immediately, but Roxy and Rebel quickly formed a love connection and Roxy got pregnant.

Roxy was the first female dog Mary had ever owned who was not yet spayed. And Rebel had never fathered any puppies before.

Mary, who is not a breeder, had never owned a pregnant dog and had to learn the ropes as the weeks passed. The average litter size among German shepherds is eight.

When Roxy went into labor at home, Mary thought she had done all the prepping she could have possibly done, both physically and mentally.

But over the course of Roxy’s 11 hour birth, Mary was met with an unexpected surprise, 12 in fact.