CANTON, N.C. –  A North Carolina family’s dog gave birth to a neon-green puppy named “Hulk.”

Gypsy, a white shepherd owned byShana Stamey, delivered eight puppies Friday morning. The dog’s three-hour labor went smoothly until the fourth puppy emerged with its lime green fur, Stamey said.

How did Hulk get his verdant color? Liquid from his mother’s stomach likely stained his fur in utero, explained Suzanne Cianciulli, the manager of Junaluska Animal Hospital in Waynesville.

Hulk’s green hue should fade in a few weeks, said Stamey, with a steady routine of baths and licks from Gypsy. By Thursday, Hulk started to look more like an Easter peep than his namesake hero.

“He was very lime green at birth, and now he looks bright yellow with a hint of the green,” Stamey said. Regular baths and daily licks from Gypsy are expected to fade Hulk’s green hue in a few weeks, Stamey said. However the puppy’s newfound superpower, which the family has deemed an “aggressive appetite,” will likely remain.

Born at 15.6 ounces, Hulk now weighs in at a whopping 1 pound, 8 ounces at six days old, Stamey said.

Fans clamor to adopt pup 

Human mom Stamey says she’s shocked by little Hulk’s sudden virality. 

“Actually I am amazed at how many are wanting to own Hulk,” Stamey told the Citizen Times, part of the USA TODAY Network. “I really never intended to have such a following on him. Just thought he was special and unique.”

Stamey plans to find “forever homes” for the litter once they’re weaned at about 8 weeks old.

“If I can not find each a home then we will just add to our family,” Stamey said. “I love them all so much.” 

Contributing: The Associated Press. Follow Elizabeth Anne Brown on Twitter: @eabrown18

USA Today