Dog breeding questions

Two dogs

Many dog owners have breeding questions. Share some here, and maybe you`ll find the answer to some of your own questions.

Dog Breeding Questions

Can One Tie Ensure Fertilization?

Hi,My bitch shows very little swelling when in season. On a recent attempt to breed her, the dog managed a good tie of over 20 minutes. The stud was not interested on the second attempt at breeding, even though my bitch was standing. Do you think he was put off after the first mating, or do you think my bitch might have gone beyond her fertile time? Do you think one tie is enough?

~~ Gary

Expert Reply

Hi Gary,

Your bitch`s scent may have already begun to change, and perhaps this is why the stud refused her on the second breeding. Do you happen to own the stud dog too, or does he belong to someone else? If he belongs to someone else, there`s a chance he was being used on another bitch during the same time period. If so, he simply could have been too tired to perform.

This does happen from time to time, although I believe it would be better to limit how many bitches the stud is bred to during a given week.

Yes, I do think one good tie carried out on a clearly receptive bitch is more than likely to result in a litter if the stud has a normal sperm count. It`s not a guarantee by any means, but you should be hopeful.

Good luck, and thank you for your question~~ Kelly

Too Late in Cycle for Further Breeding?

My two-year-old Boxer came into season on 9/9/07. She was bred on 9/18/07 and the dogs tied for about 20 minutes with no problems. We took her back for a second breeding on 9/20/07, but this time she sat down as soon as the stud tried to mount her.

She is now on the 14th day of her heat cycle, and I`m not sure if I should take her back today to try to breed them again. She was still bleeding during the first breeding, but it was light in color. Her bleeding is now very slow and a watery pinkish color.

I don`t want to take her back if she may already be pregnant or if this last trip would be wasting everyone`s time. We already have owners for the puppies, and in fact, the list is so long it`s on a first come first serve basis. However, my main concern is for my dog.

~~ Dawn

Expert Reply

Hi Dawn,

My initial hunch is that she may have been a little further along in her season than you originally calculated. Sometimes it`s very hard to catch the beginning of the season before the blood flow is significant enough to notice. This might explain why she was no longer standing for the stud on what you thought was her 11th day.

Since her color is beginning to darken up again, her fertile time may be over. However, that good tie achieved with her full cooperation should hopefully do the trick. The sperm can live up to five days and would be ready to fertilize any eggs that came down during those few days after the breeding. I would skip another attempt at breeding unless you really feel the need to try. To me, there`s no harm in seeing if she will stand one more time- it just doesn`t sound likely.

Best wishes for a healthy mom and litter. Thanks for your question.

~~ Kelly

Is It Safe to Spay a Pregnant Bitch?

I have a two-year-old Great Pyrenees bitch. We actually have a breeding pair and that was our original plan, but it has proven to be nothing but a pain to deal with it all. Our bitch had a heat cycle last year that was confirmed by our vet, but she actually ended up pregnant from a heat cycle she apparently had but showed no signs of only two months after the previous cycle. This resulted in a litter of puppies.

Now she is heat again and I am certain she bred with our male. I really don`t want another litter. I have a 14-month-old daughter now, and it`s too much for one person to handle well. I was hoping to get the 72-hour abortion shot for my female on Monday morning, but my vet`s office isn`t sure they have it in stock, and the vet is on vacation until Monday. All other vets in the area either don`t know about it or refuse to give it. Is it safe to have my bitch spayed when she comes out of heat, even if she might be pregnant?

~~ Cherisa

Expert Reply

Hi Cherisa,

Every vet makes the choice whether spaying is safe based on a case by case basis. Although it is possible to spay during the heat cycle or even during pregnancy, the procedure does carry an extra risk for increased bleeding at this time due to the elevated blood flow through the uterus.

I am hearing that a growing number of vets are refusing to use the abortive shots because they are seeing too many side effects, so I`m not surprised you`re having difficulty finding a vet willing to use one on your bitch.

All things considered, I think you should schedule an appointment to see your vet as soon as possible so you can discuss the options in person. Your vet will give your bitch a thorough examination and advise you on how best to proceed.

Thanks for you question and best of luck with your situation.

~~ Kelly

When Should Discharge Stop After Whelping?


My bitch had her puppies on Halloween, and she still has bloody discharge. Is this normal?

~~ Billy

Expert Reply

Hi Billy,

Actually, at over two weeks since the birth, your bitch should be finished discharging.

Try to answer these questions:

  • Is it a large amount of discharge, such as right after she had the pups, or is it just a trace amount in her urine? A trace is likely nothing to worry about, but more than this is cause for concern.
  • What color is the discharge? Is it bright red, indicating fresh bleeding, or is it kind of brownish? Brownish discharge in small amounts would indicate that she is nearly finished.
  • Finally, have you noticed an especially unpleasant odor? If so, your bitch may have developed a uterine infection. This is not entirely uncommon after a delivery, but it does require treatment to clear it up.

For your own peace of mind, you might want to take your bitch`s rectal temperature. A dog`s normal temperature is between 100 and 101 degrees F. Anything above this generally indicates a fever.

All things considered, it would probably be a good idea to ask your vet to examine your bitch. He/She can palpate the uterus to see if it has gone back to its pre-pregnancy state. This could be why she continues to have some bloody discharge. Once your vet assesses the cause of the bleeding, he/she will determine what treatment, if any, is necessary.

Thanks for your question, and I hope your bitch gets back to normal soon.

~~ Kelly

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