Preparing for childbirth is an exciting and important process, both for the owner of the dog and for his pet. Special experiences cause future childbirth, if the animal that gave birth for the first time and the owner does not have experience in monitoring the condition of the pet. You can prepare by recognizing the signs of childbirth from a special literature, or you can consult a veterinarian. The second way of obtaining information is preferable, since the literature describes an ideal case or an example of one animal. The vet will be able to give information based on practical experience.
Stages of pregnancy
Each animal has an ancestral memory that will help it to give birth to a healthy offspring. The question arises - why is it necessary to follow the development of pregnancy, if the dog itself is able to cope with this process? Pregnancy is the period when a rearrangement takes place in the dog's body, which contributes to well-nurturing, development of offspring and childbirth.
These changes can have various, including, and negative consequences for the health of the animal - exacerbation of chronic pathologies, the emergence of new diseases. Therefore, in order to detect all negative changes in time, it is necessary to know the criteria for assessing the condition of the animal and the course of pregnancy throughout its life.
The entire period of pregnancy from the moment of fertilization to the appearance of puppies, averages 63 days. The fluctuations of the terms in one direction or the other depend on many factors:
- in case of multiple pregnancy this period is shortened, and during pregnancy 1-2 fruits - lengthens. This is explained by the fact that with a large number of fruits, they intensively stimulate labor activity, actively moving towards the "exit";
- in dogs of small breeds, the pregnancy period is reduced to 59-60 days, in females of large and giant breeds, a delivery of 56-72 days may be timely;
- the period of pregnancy may depend on the age of the dog. With age, the number of puppies in the litter decreases, which means that the terms also increase.
The period of pregnancy varies even for the same individual, therefore it is necessary to be guided in the signs corresponding to each of the three stages, on which the entire period of pregnancy is conditionally divided:
- Early period (0-3 weeks) - at this stage there is no change in the habitual way of life of the dog. Its activity remains the same, but in some cases symptoms of toxicosis may occur and the sleep time may increase. Do not limit the dog in walks or games. Also the usual mode of feeding does not change. In a hot period of time, you need to ensure that the bitch does not overheat, and there was no dehydration of the body. During this period (15-17 days) there is a risk of failure in the formation of the fetus, so it is worth taking a close look at the unusual behavior of the animal.
- Medium (3-6 weeks) - during this period, the body's proportions are visually altered, physiological signs of preparation for childbirth appear - swelling and pigmentation of the mammary glands, and the stomach is rounded. At a period of 22 weeks, you can already conduct ultrasound . In the body, there is a release of hormones, which is accompanied by mood swings, the appearance of signs of toxicosis. Food should be reviewed - increase the number of feeds, while reducing the size of the portion. Some bitches may have a discharge from the birth canal that is transparent or slightly whitish. By the 6th week the movement of the puppies in the dog's stomach is visible. From this time, it is necessary to limit the active games of the female to prevent injury to the fetus.
- The final period (6-8.5 weeks) - the weight of the dog increases, it lies more than moves. The animal looks for a secluded place for childbirth. A characteristic sign of the approaching genera is the reflex "digging" of the burrow and the device of the den - dragging rags into the "nest". In some cases, there is a disorder of sleep, increased anxiety. By the 35-36 day, the dog's appetite increases, it should be transferred to a diet with a high protein content. The total amount of food is increased by 10%. The meal should be divided into 3 doses so as not to overfeed the dog. By the end of the period there are signs of approaching births.
At the end of pregnancy, the nutrition of the dog is of great importance. Some animals refuse food, others have increased appetite. At this time, the female should be fed in small portions. The behavior of the animal also changes - some future mothers become wary, hide. Others have a desire to caress. At the last stage, the first signs of readiness for childbirth begin to appear.
Learn more in the article about pregnancy of dogs .
Signs of approaching delivery
The dog's body is gradually preparing for childbirth - because of the increase in intra-abdominal pressure, the animal experiences discomfort and mild pain, which leads to restless behavior. The nearer the time of birth, the more pronounced the signs become:
- For 1-1,5 weeks before delivery, pups move closer to the birth canal. In this case, the abdomen falls, on the sides below the ribs appear cavities. If you look at the animal's back from above, it seems to have lost weight - you no longer see the rounded sides. In bitches that have already given birth, liquid can be released from the nipples.
- 2-3 days before delivery, the ligamentous apparatus of the sacral joint and pelvis relax. Most of the time the dog licks the external genitalia and nipples. From the vagina leaves a viscous slime - cork.
- The day before the birth, the rectal temperature decreases (in norm it is 38.5 ° C). In dogs of large and giant breeds, it drops to 37 ° C, while in small breeds it drops to 36 ° C. Normal body temperature comes after giving birth.
- For 0.5-1 days before delivery, amniotic fluid of yellowish-straw color. The uterus opens, the loop loosens.
- On the day of delivery, hormones are released, which leads to the onset of labor. If the bitch is shredded in the box, then during the bout she pushes against the front wall, and her back rests on the opposite.
The dog behaves restlessly before the fights, so the master should calm her down, talk to her. At this point the animal needs support and participation. Often the owner is nervous along with his pet, and this condition is transmitted to the animal, aggravating anxiety. Therefore, it is so necessary to have information and calmly prepare for an important event.
It is very important: how to properly take delivery in a dog .
What you need to know before giving birth
Serious preparation for childbirth in a dog should include not only an introduction to the step-by-step changes in the behavior and physiology of the dog. The host must prepare the place for the birth of the puppies in advance. This can be a sturdy cardboard box with a low front edge, so large that the dog can comfortably rest against its walls during fights and attempts. If possible, it is necessary to make a "nest" with your own hands made of wood or plywood, so that there is the possibility of fixing the inside of the restrictive bar, which prevents the pups from injuring themselves.
The bottom of the box should be lined with a natural cloth, or put a removable hard mattress, which can then be removed and cleaned. Next to the box, you need to think through a heating system, for example an infrared lamp, in order to provide the dog and her offspring with a temperature of 28-30 ° C in the first few days. Next to the main box should be placed smaller in size, which will put the born puppies. It must also be heated. To do this, you can put a warmer under the diaper or a bottle of warm water.
For the future: what to feed the dog after delivery .
For 2 weeks before the expected delivery, it is necessary to accustom the dog to the box in which it will be catered. It is necessary to prepare the necessary items and medicines, a veterinary phone, in case the birth will be difficult. Ideally, the first birth should be taken under the guidance of an experienced specialist. With proper preparation, the birth will go well.