Dog owners begin breeding their dogs for different reasons, some do it because they wish to keep their dog’s puppies along with the adult dogs others do it simply because they believe it is a way of making money. Whether it is done out of love or done out of financial gain it must be understood that breeding dogs is not simply a ‘walk in the park.’
It is hard work and not just physically; breeding dogs can also prove to be emotionally draining. It is not just a case of the female dog becoming pregnant and giving birth to all happy and healthy puppies; if you are lucky then yes this is the scene that you wish to observe but sadly it is not always a true picture to paint.
There can be complications encountered along the way and it can be a heartbreaking event at times. You must ask yourself if you can cope with the possibility of some of the puppies perhaps not making it for one reason or another.
If you decide that it is the path you would like to take with your dog/s then you need to be prepared and the best possible ways for this is to research about the gestation period in dogs and learn the basics about the actual pregnancy. This way at least you know what should be expected and how to act to assist your dog and ensure that she is comfortable.
The average gestation period of a dog is 62 days but it can actually range from 54 through to 72 days so similar to a human’s pregnancy it can be pretty flexible and slightly unpredictable at times! Now your dog will begin to develop a big belly but the problem is that prior to this it can be quite difficult to gauge if she has actually fallen pregnant or not. There are some rather vague symptoms that you can look out for; usually there will be an increase in appetite and this can occur more or less straight after conception.
The female dog may become nauseous during the early stages of her pregnancy and she may lose her appetite slightly due to the sickness. There have been cases of pregnant dogs ‘mothering’ a soft toy during their gestation period almost as though they are preparing for the real event. In the latter stages you will probably witness your dog nesting.
If you do suspect that your dog is pregnant then take her along to your vet and a blood test or ultra sound can be carried out for confirmation.
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