A dog pregnancy is a sensitive issue to handle.
The mother dog needs a lot of care during her pregnancy period. And if you’re dealing with that for the first time, it can be tiring.
Female dogs tend to be desperate when they are in heat.
Jumping fences and going to your neighbor’s yard to mate with their dog is a common occurrence.
So, if you’ve just discovered that your dog is pregnant, don’t panic!
Here, Im going to take you through your dog’s pregnancy, step by step.
So, how do I tell if my dog is pregnant?
Notice the change in your dog’s behavior.
She will show signs of weight loss and dormancy. Physical attributes such as a bulging belly and enlarged nipples are an obvious tell.
Sometimes dogs vomitdue to nausea, but it’s a rare occasion.
Another telltale sign of pregnancy is nesting.
She will start preparing a cushion to give birth on by tearing up clothes and rags.
Provide comfortable bedding for your dog to rest on. If she already has a birthing nest, she won’t feel the need to make herself one.
You may also notice restlessness and fatigue during pregnancy.
Your dog’s pregnancy will last from 58 to 62 days approximately.
A dog pregnancy is a quick process, and it’s easily noticeable within three weeks into the pregnancy.
Dogs can get pregnant after two years of maturity. The success rate of a pregnancy at that age is very high.
Take your dog to a vet at this point. They can easily determine the state of the pregnancy through ultrasound and some blood tests.
What happens during the third week of pregnancy?
Your dog will show clear signs of pregnancy by now.
She is going to experience mood swings and undergo bodily changes. Special care should start from this stage and onwards.
Start giving your dog double the amount of her usual meal because now she needs food for more than one.
Liver, chicken, beef, eggs, and anything with high protein is going to benefit her.
Don’t stop exercising with her just because she is pregnant, and you want to be careful. She needs stimulation.
But as the weeks go by, you will notice a change in her energy levels.
Adapt with it and improvise. Take her on slower walks and let her take longer breaks.
How do I handle Week 6-8 of my dog’s pregnancy?
Stop exercising your dog when she reaches the 6th week.
Your dog may start to throw up at this stage. Don’t be alarmed.
Give her freshwater and comparatively less food (whatever she can eat). Occasionally, she will have a fluid discharge from her genitals.
She will develop colostrum (milk) in her breasts within the 7th week. And the fur from her belly will begin to shed.
You can probably notice the movements of the puppies inside her stomach at this point.
Make your dog nesting bed by the 8th week. It’s when she starts to prepare for her puppies to come out.
Week 8-9: How do I prepare for the delivery?
Your dog will show signs of restlessness and anxiety during the last stage of her pregnancy.
Keep taking her rectal temperature from time to time. When the body temperature goes down by a degree below average, it means that she will start delivery in 24-48 hours.
Dogs usually don’t need our help for delivery. They give birth all by themselves.
The mother cuts the umbilical cord and cleans her puppy afterward. Of course, you want to be there during this time.
But give her space. Let her do her thing.
Take a towel and clean the puppies after they are born. They might start to move and cry.
Place them gently back beside their mother after you’ve cleaned them.
Puppies delivered after 58 days are usually born healthy. However, premature puppies that come out before 58 days have a slim chance of lasting more than a day or two.
Does my dog need a C-section?
Not all breeds do. Generally, dogs with a narrow pelvic region need cesarean sections.
Example: English bulldogs, French bulldogs, and Pekingese.
Start preparing for your dog’s pregnancy as soon as you are aware of it. She needs all the help she can get.
And the more comfort and care you give her, the healthier her puppies will be.