How can I ensure the well-being of my pregnant dog?
First away, as with any dog, we need to make surely that their health is good in general. If you know that you have plans of breeding your pawl, make certain she ‘s test ahead. Make sure she ‘s in good physical health enough to withstand the rigors that come with pregnancy. indeed, that would be step one .
footfall two would be to consider getting her tested for any infectious diseases beforehand, things like brucellosis. That ‘s the main one that comes to mind for me, but equitable make surely that she is a good candidate for pregnancy and does n’t have anything infectious that could be passed on to the male or her puppies. And then the third and concluding matter, and again, this goes along with equitable good checkup care in cosmopolitan, but we ‘ll want to get a good parasite screening on her. Certain intestinal worms can be transferred either placentally or after give birth to the puppy. You want to make sure she ‘s scavenge advance. And that normally makes for a drum sander parturition process and the first few weeks of a puppy ‘s life .
Dr. Scott Broussard
The Waggin Train Veterinary Clinic
How long will my dog be pregnant?
The gestation period for dogs is about 63 days. Some people break it down to the trimesters. If you do that, it ‘s 21 days per spare, but it ‘s 63 days. So we ‘re looking at about precisely two months for pregnancy .
How soon should I bring my pet in to see a veterinarian if I suspect my dog is pregnant?
good interrogate. The beginning stages can be hit or miss because, if you think she ‘s meaning, she just came out of heat. Well, sometimes, when dogs are coming out of inflame, they can go through a delusive pregnancy at times that mimics an actual pregnancy. And sometimes, even barely the hormonal changes that they ‘re getting over can fool you. And indeed, the cause I ‘m prefacing the answer with this information is that I normally would tell you credibly three weeks, possibly even closer to four, if you think your frank ‘s pregnant. And separate of our reason for answering that is because, before then, there ‘s not much authoritative examination that I can do to confirm that she is fraught .
There is a in truth good test. It uses a hormone called relaxin. Relaxin is released by and large in the beginning 21 to 27 or sol days after they are bread. And so, normally, that ‘s goodly, but do n’t bring them in during that time period because I do n’t want there to be any confusion. But after about day 30, if that animal is meaning, they should have that relaxin hormone present. And as I said, we have tests that can detect that hormone. And that ‘s about the earliest that you can definitively confirm a pregnancy in a female .
What are some signs of pregnancy in dogs?
again, the very early stages are a little slippery. still, as it progresses credibly into that irregular, or possibly evening early third base trimester, you ‘re going to see some of the changes to their mammary glands. You ‘ll have enlarged and possibly flush engorged mammary glands, where they ‘ll be producing milk. In the heat cycle, of course, their external genitalia, the vulva, if you will, will be swollen. That subsides a little bite during pregnancy, but it ‘s credibly going to however be a little big .
And then when you do get a little morsel further along, again in that 30 to 40-day range, you ‘ll start to see some abdominal swell. It ‘s not in truth swelling, but you ‘ll see abdominal enlargement just from the swerve size of the uterus that ‘s expanding within. If it ‘s a bantam litter, she may hide that pretty well. If it ‘s a in truth big pawl or an fleshy female, you ‘re not going to see that until the identical latter stages. But those are some of the things that you can expect physically to change in your pregnant female andiron .
Will my veterinarian use diagnostic testing to determine if my dog is pregnant?
I kind of stole my thunder on this answer a little bite, but the relaxin pregnancy test is one. And again, that ‘s a little morsel earlier, so you can do that one credibly around day 30 or so, or late. It does n’t have to be on day 30, but no sooner than that. The big one that a bunch of people like to do is X-rays. You can get radiogram of a fraught female ‘s abdomen, and you can detect reasonably of a puppy count or the number that can be expected .
now, you ca n’t do it equitable anytime during pregnancy. The skeletons of those puppies do n’t ossify until about day 50 or so. So anytime before that, I ‘m not saying you wo n’t get any glimpse of bones and possibly get a boisterous appraisal of a puppy count, but I do n’t recommend doing it until they hit day 50 or late, just for that reason. I do n’t want to do it early, and then I ‘m still scratching my point think, well, this might be a puppy, or that might be a puppy. If you wait a little bit later, that can help you out there .
One of the tests that some people like to do, and possibly not so much for the count but the life force of the pregnancy, is an ultrasound. Again, it ‘s challenging to count puppies. If you have a litter of 10 or 12 puppies, it ‘s going to be pretty doggone hard to count. And in fact, it ‘s going to be virtually impossible to count 10 to 12 puppies on an sonography. But you can tell the energy of it, checking affection rates and things like that on the puppies to make indisputable that they ‘re nice and viable .
What are some possible complications of dog pregnancy that I need to be aware of?
You constantly have to worry about milk output. This is in the female herself, not sol much the puppies right now, but in the pregnant female when she starts producing a distribute of milk. Well, that calcium comes from somewhere, and she ‘s typically pulling it from her bones. I do n’t like beginning calcium supplement until after the puppies are born if it ‘s needed. But I want to increase their thermal consumption, and in that font, calcium inhalation, advance, normally in the form of feeding a commodity, well-adjusted puppy food .
I do n’t see it frequently, but dogs can get gestational diabetes, very alike to what happens in humans. And probably some of the more common complications occur either during or after the delivery themselves. You can have a retained placenta, and that ‘s never good, as that can lead to a uterine contagion very promptly. You can besides sometimes have mastitis. The ducts are very open, and sometimes they can have an ascending bacterial infection that ‘ll get in there and cause mastitis. You ‘re going to see what about looks like bruising or discoloration to the mammary glands with mastitis. The milk that comes out is nobelium long going to be white. It ‘s going to be this yellow tan, sometimes evening darker than that type of substance .
In some cases of uterine infections, you ‘ll see a very putrid, night, just disgusting vaginal empty that will be coming out. And the reason I ‘m hemming and hawing on the answer is because you ‘re going to get some vaginal discharge for the adjacent few days after birth anyhow. We all know what pus looks or smells like. If you see anything that looks like that, that ‘s not normal. convention vaginal drop after parentage would be a blue green bordering on black. And that ‘s from the placenta from the puppies themselves. But if you start getting that kind of brown, tanish, or yellow type discharge, that normally is not a estimable gestural .
What are some things I can do at home to prepare for my dog’s labor?
Some people call it a whelping box or whelping playpen. Get them a spot where they can go aside from the noise, the chaos, the confusion, and get off by themselves. normally, you want an area that ‘s well-cushioned, well-padded. It will be nice and warm, preferably dark, because many dogs do n’t want to do this with an audience. They want to do it off by themselves. therefore just give them a smudge that allows for that .
Depending on the dog ‘s size, some people like a kiddie pool—you can use that and put blankets or towels or cushions in it. That can work well. sometimes, it ‘s vitamin a simple as a cardboard box that ‘s hidden in your water closet or something like that. That can work just a well for possibly smaller-sized dogs, but barely have something like that prepare. batch of ardent towels, and then when it does get closer to the whelp clock itself, I would have plenty of towels, possibly some warm water, things like that. You might have to clean things. You might have to help clean the puppies or warm them up a fiddling bit. sol just be prepared with those kinds of items if you can .
How can I help my dog recover after giving birth?
After giving give birth, I ‘ll be honest with you guys ; I ‘m a big advocate of letting mother nature do her matter. She knows how to do it. And for most cases, the frank knows how to do it angstrom well. So I try not to intervene at all unless I am forced to intervene at all. So I do n’t aid the cad with delivering the puppies unless one is stuck and they need me. If they ‘re in straiten, then I will intervene .
When those enate instincts kick in, she should clean the puppies. She is normally going to eat. Yes, it ‘s cruddy, but they eat the placenta themselves. then if they ‘re doing that, they ‘re going to normally take manage of snipping that umbilical cord while they ‘re chewing the placenta off. I know this all sounds crude, but it ‘s how it works. And they normally do a pretty well job of it.
so I guess where I would need to intervene, or you potentially as a node, would be if she ‘s having difficulties with the give birth work. And what does that mean ? If she ‘s pushing for 30 minutes or more and nothing is being produced, that ‘s a problem. If she ‘s taking longer than three to four hours between puppies, that can be a trouble. I ‘ve seen some dogs go overnight with it, but on average, if she ‘s going that long in between puppies, it ‘s at least worth a call address to your veterinarian and find out if there are any issues. And if you see a puppy passed, but there ‘s no placenta that follows, be very mindful of that and make surely that finally, that placenta does legislate .
Again, is that intervening ? not so much. It ‘s good observation very close and being mindful of what she ‘s doing and what has n’t been done. So those are the kinds of things that I would prepare for or do as a fraught dog owner .
If you still have early questions and you ‘d like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at ( 337 ) 223-9581, you can email us, or you can reach out on Facebook. But please do reach out, and we ‘ll get back to you arsenic fast as we can .
Dog Pregnancy – FAQs
Dr. Scott Broussard
The Waggin Train Veterinary Clinic
How can I tell if my dog is about to go into labor?
Number one, pregnancy duration is 63 days, give or take. It ‘s a huge aid if you know when your pawl was bred, and so that whelping date can be established that way. So that ‘s number one. Number two, on the assumption that you ‘ve done some of the other preliminary quiz ( you ‘ve had x-rays and a pregnancy test and all these other things to confirm pregnancy done ), the best manner to know when they ‘re going into labor is to regularly check their soundbox temperature .
For approximately a week to five days before the expected due date, start taking their temperature at least once daily, and you would typically see a temperature drop to anywhere between 97 to 99 degrees. And that typically happens roughly 24 hours before they go into parturiency. If their temperature is low, retake it in a pair of hours. If you get to back-to-back low temperatures in that range I barely mentioned, there ‘s an excellent casual that you ‘re going to have puppies in the following 24 hours. So that ‘s probably the most accurate indicator that I can think of adenine to when your andiron ‘s going to go into tug .
Is it safe for my dog to give birth at home?
absolutely. Where else is she going to have it ? Unless there is a veterinarian situation such as dystocia, preeclampsia, or another kind of medical condition that would warrant a veterinarian getting involved, then there ‘s no reason for me to get involved. Assuming you have the proper preparations at home—a whelping corner, towels, a good dark, and a calm point for the andiron to go. We covered the preparations in the previous video, so if you did n’t, go back and watch it. But if you have those things ready, a chase can have their puppies at home. You ‘re just looking for any abnormalities. If the andiron is in active undertaking, contracting for 30 minutes or more, and no puppy, I need to know about it .
If they ‘re going multiple hours between puppies, I credibly ought to know about that besides. One of the things that helps is how to know when they ‘re finished. How do you know if they ‘re finished ? Well, that ‘s when roentgenogram derive in, and you can do x-rays after about day 50 of pregnancy and get a good idea of how many puppies that she has to deliver because otherwise, you ‘re good kind of estimate. So possibly she has four, and she stops—are you going to know if that ‘s all she has ? If you did n’t do x-rays, you are not going to know. That ‘s one of the benefits of checking x-rays before they go into labor .
Where should my dog give birth?
In a whelp corner. so what does that expect like ? What ‘s a whelp box ? It ‘s a tranquillity, dark, and comfortable spot—preferably one that the cad is comfortable with because they do n’t want to have puppies in the middle of your live room floor. You might want them to because, “ Oh, look how neat. There ‘s one, there ‘s two. ” She does n’t want to be around all that. She wants to be in the dark where it ‘s quiet, and you have no theme what ‘s happening. So prepare that spot for her. And if you have that topographic point prepared, show it to her before, let her sleep in it before, and get her comfortable with it. That should be her dependable seaport. That should be where she knows she can go, and she ‘s going to be left alone, tranquillity, and cipher ‘s in her way. Show it to her for a couple of weeks leading up to give birth, if possible .
Does my dog need human help during labor?
entirely if there ‘s a problem. She knows what she ‘s doing. even if the dog has never given birth before, it ‘s called genetics ; they ‘re going to figure it out. so I try not to intervene unless I have to. And again, I kind of concisely touched upon it earlier, pushing for 30 minutes with no puppy, and those kinds of things might require interposition. If things like that are happening, then absolutely get on the call, call me and let me know, or, better however, bring the dog in, and we ‘ll do what we have to do. But early than that, stay out of the means and let her do her matter. She ‘s going to eat the placenta. She ‘s going to lick the puppy clean .
She ‘s going to lick the puppies to make them go to the toilet for the first gear time. They need to nurse on her immediately to cause not only for milk letdown but it besides causes a release of oxytocin. This exhaust helps the uterine to involute and start to either abridge more, or when pregnancy is done, it makes the uterus collapse and empty blood clots and extra placental weave. And equitable the elementary act of a puppy nurse does that. so again, stay out of the way a much as possible. Call me if you need to, but otherwise, let the pups do their matter .
How do I know how many puppies my dog would give birth to?
You ‘ll know the number of pups due to the x-rays. Ultrasound is another test that you can do leading up to it that might tell you about the viability of the puppies and how vigorous they were. It ‘ll check their heart rate, and that ‘s kind of neat to see, but it ‘s identical, very difficult. I would argue about impossible to give an accurate puppy count on sonography. X-rays anytime after day 50 will be when the skeletons are visible on an x-ray, so that will be the best information you can have to know the number .
How long does labor usually take?
I ‘m going to be honest with you ; equitable from personal experience, I can tell you that this is a highly varying answer. I have seen some dogs where they are over and done in a matter of 30 minutes to an hour—even with a Labrador-sized litter where they might pass 10 or 12 puppies. I besides owned a frump that came from a litter that was born over three days. This female would have three or four, and then she ‘d stop and think she was done. And the following day, the owner would come home from work, and there were four or five more. And then it happened for three days .
Is that normal ? No. Would I be anxious ? Yeah. Had that dog been brought to me as a veterinarian, I probably would ‘ve done x-rays and said, “ Oh God, there ‘s still three more. Let ‘s go get them. ” But there ‘s a lot of variability. I would tell you, on average, a match of hours is about right. But there ‘s therefore much variability depending on the size of the puppies, the size of the female, the size of the litter, and the breed of dog. There are certain breeds like English bulldogs that are screen of the poster child for dystocia. Those guys have a hard clock time passing through the parentage canal naturally so that it can take a little bite longer, and sometimes people do n’t even want to take that casual, and they ‘ll do a schedule cesarean delivery. For certain breeds, that ‘s not a bad mind excessively.
Read more: Why Is My Dog’s Poop White? | Great Pet Care
What do I need to do once my dog has given birth?
once the frank ‘s given birth, again, stay out of the manner and let Mama do her thing equally much as you can. But what does that look like ? All I want you to do is be a conscientious observer at first. so I want you to ensure that those pups, soon after parturition, are nursing. If they ‘re not, encourage them to nurse. If you have to, that ‘s one way you might want to get involved. You can squeeze a little bite of milk out and try to put some on the puppies ‘ lips or tongue and encourage them to latch. You should n’t have to, as most puppies figured out with the help of ma, but you should observe that they are nursing properly. You should observe that each placenta passes. If there ‘s one puppy, that equals one placenta, so you should see that. You might have to look closely because ma might take concern of that real quick. But you want to make indisputable that that passes .
You besides want to make certain that she ‘s cleaning them adequately. Again, I ‘m not implying that you jump in there in the foremost five seconds. Oh no, she did n’t do anything. I ‘m going to dry it. But you know, after the first gear 10, 15 minutes or indeed, if she ‘s not houseclean or drying that puppy, then possibly you can stimulate them a small spot with a warm towel and dry them a little bit, so they do n’t start getting cold. I would do that, but immediately try to put them right back with ma and let her take over that function, if possible .
If you distillery have other questions and you ‘d like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at ( 337 ) 223-9581, you can email us, or you can reach out on Facebook. But please do reach out, and we ‘ll get bet on to you a fast as we can .