Every intact female dog (a female that hasn’t been spayed) goes into heat every six months when her reproductive system is working normally.
Even though the majority of female dogs go into heat twice a year, there are slight variations regarding breed and the size of the dog.
While our blog’s mascot is a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, these tips apply for any breed.
The Dog Heat Cycle – When Can a Dog Get Pregnant?
Once the heat cycle starts it lasts for about 18 days to 3 weeks and during this period there are three stages the dog reproductive organs go through. The bitch is receptive to the mail during the estrus period which occurs from the 9th day to the 20th day of the cycle.
If your dog mated during this period there is a big chance that she is carrying babies. In human medicine, the fast pregnancy tests are an easy tool to determine if a woman is bearing a child. However, it’s not so simple with dogs. Whenever an owner suspects his dog might be pregnant it’s best to visit his veterinarian to have the dog checked. Since all the pregnancy tests for dogs are time-sensitive, every owner must describe the exact time frame when the dog entered the cycle and when she mated.
How to Tell if your Dog is Pregnant
There are few methods veterinarians use to determine whether a female dog is pregnant or not. Tests for the placental ‘relaxin’ hormones in the dog’s blood are pretty accurate, but can only be effective when the animal is already 30 days into gestation. Performing x-ray allows the veterinarians to detect pregnancy in dogs after the 42nd day of gestation. On the 55th-day x-ray images provide enough information for the vet to determine the number of newborn puppies to be expected. By far, ultrasound is the best method of diagnosing pregnancy in dogs and can be used as early as the 25th day of the gestation period.
Gestation Period – How Long are Dogs Pregnant?
We mentioned the gestation period a lot and now it’s time to explain how long it lasts. The medial time of gestation from the moment of conception in dogs is 64 days. But this period can vary by a few days and sometimes even a week. Just like humans, female dogs can give birth to puppies sooner or later than expected. It can be difficult for an owner to detect the exact moment of conception as the sperm can live inside the male for several days after the bitch mated with a dog. If you want to know approximately when your dog will deliver it’s best to make an appointment with your vet to have her hormones tested.
The fetuses develop quickest during the second month of pregnancy. During this period it’s highly important to make sure everything is okay with your dog and look for any signs of abnormal behavior. What you can expect from a pregnant dog and is considered to be a normal alteration of behavior is increased appetite and weight gain, increased urination, clear vaginal discharge, enlarged abdomen. After the 45th day of gestation, pregnant bitches tend to have decreased appetite and there is a noticeable puppy movement in the abdomen.
Republished by Blog Post Promoter