First Aid for Dogs: Caring for a Pregnant Canine


If you're a dog owner, you most likely have heard the news: your canine is pregnant. Now what? As exciting as it is to hear that your female pup has had puppies, there are some things you need to know about caring for her during this time. The good news is that as long as you take care of her properly, your pooch will experience nothing but joy in having her litter of pups. Read on for some tips on how to make sure that happens!

Preparing for the baby

Once you've given your dog a thorough examination, it's time to think about what she needs during her pregnancy. Dogs are pregnant for an average of 60-63 days (though it can be shorter or longer), so you'll need to prepare yourself and your home for the arrival of your new family member.

Be sure that your dog is eating a balanced diet during this time. By all means, give her treats if they're something she likes; just make sure they're soft enough that they won't hurt her teeth or gums when she chews them up! Don't give her any bones--no rawhide either--and don't let her drink from the toilet (this may seem obvious but we've seen it happen!). Only give toys made out of soft material like fabric or stuffed animals; never anything hard like rocks (even if they look harmless). If there are other dogs living in your house who might try playing with her while she's pregnant, keep them away from each other until after the pups are born--it could lead to one party getting injured unintentionally by another! Finally: never leave any pregnant female alone outside without supervision due to increased risk factors such as predators attacking both mother/pups together rather than just one at a time.

Dog Health & Pregnancy

There are several factors to consider when caring for your dog during pregnancy.

  • First and foremost, it's important to keep your pet as healthy as possible. Take her on regular walks and ensure that she gets plenty of exercise each day. Not only will this help her maintain a healthy weight during pregnancy, but it will also help her prepare for labor by strengthening her muscles and improving circulation.
  • You may notice that your dog's appetite increases during this time--this is normal! However, if she experiences extreme hunger or refuses food altogether (especially while nursing), contact your veterinarian immediately because this could be an indication of another health issue requiring attention (e.g., hypoglycemia).

Dog labor and delivery

Dog labor and delivery are similar to human labor in many ways. It can last from a few hours up to several days, depending on how far along the dog is in her pregnancy. During this time, she will experience contractions that cause pain and discomfort as her uterus pushes on her other organs. If you notice that your canine companion seems uncomfortable or agitated, take her temperature with a thermometer (if available) to check if she has any fever symptoms--dogs can have fevers during pregnancy just like humans do!

After the baby is born

Once the litter has been born, it's important to keep the mother and her pups together as much as possible. The mother will be very protective of her pups and may try to bite anyone who attempts to touch them or move them away from her. If you need to separate them for any reason, be sure that they can still see each other through a door or window so they can continue bonding.

The first few weeks are crucial in helping your dog recover from labor and delivery; she needs plenty of rest while nursing on colostrum (the first milk after birth). Caring for a dog after giving birth to puppies is critical to ensure both the mother and the litter are healthy. First, offer a quiet, warm, and secure area where the mother can nurse with minimal interruption. Provide regular meals that are high in nutrition, particularly those that support lactation and promote puppy growth. Monitor the mother's health regularly for any signs of infection or postpartum complications such as mastitis. Additionally, keep the area clean and sanitized for the puppies' wellbeing and provide plenty of socialization opportunities to help the puppies gradually adjust to their new home. Finally, make sure that both the mother and puppies receive regular veterinary check-ups to ensure all are receiving the proper care and attention they need.


If your dog is pregnant, it's important to know how to care for her. It can be difficult if you're not familiar with canine pregnancies, but it's not impossible! 


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