As a first time breeder or even if this is not your first time breeding a dog but you are breeding probably a different breed of dog, you will have lots of questions such as how much should she sleep? Should her diet change? Should the quantity of her food change? Will she bleed? Will she have discharge?
Pregnant Dog Discharge At 4 Weeks
When will she have discharge, at 4 weeks? What type of discharge should I expect ? These are all normal feelings and suspicions you get when you’re breeding your dog, because you want to be sure if she is breeding properly or not. Below are the things you can expect from your dog when she’s breeding.
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Pregnancy symptoms in dogs
Pregnancy symptoms just like in humans vary from dog to dog, especially in the earlier days of the pregnancy some dogs may not even show any symptoms of pregnancy and sometimes in cases or unplanned breeding you will have absolutely no idea until her belly starts to swell.
One or two of these symptoms does not indicate that truly your dog is pregnant, but it is the collective presence of all of these symptoms in a short period of time that will tell or assure you that your dog really is pregnant. The signs listed below are ranging from first week of pregnancy to the last weeks of pregnancy.
- Slight change in her behavior; If your dog is pregnant, there may be slight change in her behavior although this does not happen with all dogs, but in most dogs they change behavior for example, she may stop eating even her favorite treat, or she may want to play a lot or want to lay down through out the day, or may become easily aging but anyhow there will be change in her behavior at the earliest stage and it may continue till she have given birth.
- Change in appetite/ loss of appetite; Pregnancy in dogs is really not any different than in humans, in the first few weeks of your dog’s pregnancy, she may start to eat less food or even attempt to not eat at all, this may be because they lack appetite and they way you feed her will have to change you may need to reduce the quantity of her meal per section giving her small portions of food. Eventually by her second trimester or third trimester she will regain her appetite completely and may even require more food that she usually eats.
- Morning sickness; the inevitable queen of any pregnancy in mammals, morning sickness, all dogs will eventually experience morning sickness during her pregnancy at some point. The difference is that some dogs experience more severe morning sickness while others are lucky with minor sickness. Some dogs can vomit all the contents of their stomach from time to time during pregnancy, in this period when your dog is vomiting a lot do not serve large portions but smaller portions throughout the day. Do not make the mistake of believing such sicknesses will happen only in the morning, be prepared for dog vomit any time of any day.
- Breast enhancement; If you are and attentive dog owner, you will know that during the heat cycle of dogs their breast may seen to enhance and look fuller but will later go down when heat is over just like in humans. But if a dog is pregnant, there will be enhancement in her breast size, and the swelling will not seem to stop or go down, so this is definitely a sign of advancement of pregnancy in your dog.
- Increase in the sleep pattern; This is the increase in the amount of time your dog spends sleeping, normally dogs do not sleep for too long or sleep too mindlessly, but when your dog starts to sleep for hours and very peacefully and when she wakes up she usually eats and goes back to sleep this means she is pregnant. This usually happens either in the early stage of pregnancy or in the later stage of pregnancy, around the mid pregnancy, she may seem to be okay and sleep normally. However every pregnant dog is different and yours might be a mid pregnancy sleeper.
- Vaginal Discharge; This brings us to around the 4th to the 6th or 8th week vaginal discharge. Vaginal discharge in pregnant dogs is a very normal ordeal and should be no cause for alarm. You should only be alarmed and contact your veterinarian immediately is the discharge suddenly developed a bad of our or changes color to a black or brownish color. But if the color of the discharge turns green around the later stage of the pregnancy, it is nothing to be alarmed about, it just simply means one or more of the puppies has dedicated inside the uterus of the mother.
- Enlargement of the belly; Every pregnant female will eventually start to show when her belly starts growing bigger, usually in dogs increase in the size of the belly is not really noticeable until around 30 to 31 days into pregnancy because the puppies has started to develop and this will naturally cause the stomach to enlarged and grow bigger and harder.
- Nipples producing milk; Milk production is bound to happen as the breast and nipple grow larger as the weeks go by and milk will appear at the tip of the nipples around the last few weeks of pregnancy. However, dogs differ in terms of pregnancy so if your dog does not happen to produce milk at around the last week of pregnancy it is okay. Some dogs will not produce milk until after the puppies has been born and are wanting to nurse, and even at that the amount of milk she produces may not be enough for all her puppies and in this case, you will have to make use of milk replacement products or get milk from another nursing dog, you will most probably find one at the vets office.
- Checking for moving puppies; Now this is done around the later stage of the pregnancy and should be done only be the veterinarian and no one else because only a veterinarian will know how to feel the abdomen of your dog very carefully to avoid causing harm or discomfort to your dog and her puppies. If you’re really fascinated with your dogs growing puppies, you can kindly ask your veterinarian to show you how to carefully feel for the puppies. You should feel the puppies after your dog has done a little exercise like walking if not when you feel the puppies may be asleep and you won’t feel any actions in the uterus.
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Various veterinary tests for pregnancy
While some dog owners whose dogs has health conditions may want to be sure it is a pregnancy and not another health problem with symptoms such as pregnancy. Your veterinarian can give you the news that your dog is pregnant through the following:
- A blood test; A blood test can be carried out by your veterinarian around about 2 to 3 weeks after the ending of her heat cycle. When fetuses has been implanted in the uterus if a dog that is when a dog is pregnant, her body releases a certain type of hormone into the blood and with a blood test a doctor can detect the presence of this hormone. The name of this hormone is hormones “relaxin”.
- Palpation; This is the attempt to feel the abdomen of a dog with the hand for tiny embryos. At around day 28 after the end of your dogs heat cycle, an experienced veterinarian will be able to feel the abdomen of your dog to check for small lumps of at this point pea sized embryo embedded in the uterine horn of your dog. Again, not just any person should be allowed to feel the abdomen of your dog, not even you because this must be a gentle action against the abdomen of your dog and touching with just the slightest amount of pressure can cause a miscarriage of the fetus.
- An ultrasound scan; If you are a female dog owner, you will know what an ultrasound scan is even if you haven’t been pregnant before, this is the same thing pregnant women does in the doctors office where the doctor puts gel on her stomach and apply pressure with a hand device, when this is done the puppies in the uterus will be seen on a screen with white and black color and with this, the veterinarian may be able to count the puppies and give an estimate on the number of puppies to expect.
- An x-ray; At around 55 days of gestation, all the parts of the puppies would have already been formed and the skeletons of the puppies will be properly seen by using an x-ray. The number of the puppies will be accurately known by the number of skeletons shown on the x-ray machine and this will help during whelping.
Some dog owner may not want to wait and watch for the positivity of the pregnancy to unfold and may want to know right away so they will be able to start preparations such as building a whelping box or saving money for sudden medical expenses if they do no have an insurance for their pet.