Is your female pooch pregnant? If this is your first time caring for a pregnant doggo, you need to know the changes that your pet will go through. Take note this will include physical and behavioral shifts, so you have to be informed so you’ll know what to expect. In this post, we will discuss a quick timeline of dog pregnancy signs week by week.
Puppies are exciting, but before your expectant doggo give birth to cute little babies, you need to take care of it first.
The pregnancy cycle of dogs
Most dogs will have a gestation period of up to 63 days. Pregnancy detection is done through hormone tests, ultrasound, palpation, or X-rays. Take note that human pregnancy test kits won’t work in dogs. You need to take the pooch to the vet to perform the confirmatory tests.
Over the course of 63 days, your dog’s tummy will become large, and you may notice some behavioral changes.
Due to hormonal changes, expect that your dog may get grumpy than usual. Also, they may scratch at the floor or even hoard food since pregnancy triggers their nesting tendencies.
Remember, though, that each dog is different from the other. Some may become edgy, while others will become clingy to their owners. The same with pregnant humans, dogs can have mood swings too.
Aside from that, your dog’s appetite will also change. Early on its pregnancy, most dogs will have a poor appetite and may exhibit morning sickness. Meanwhile, as the dog progresses into pregnancy, their appetite may grow stronger. Still, you have to factor in hormonal changes all over the course of pregnancy.
Dog Pregnancy Signs Week By Week
Week 0 to 1
At this point, your dog’s pregnancy may not be detected yet. It’s the point where the sperm fertilizes the egg. No physical or behavioral changes may occur just yet.
ON the 8th to 14th day of your dog’s gestation, the fertilized egg would be implanted into the uterus. This is where behavioral changes will occur on your dog. Some dogs become moody, while others seek more affection. If you notice that your dog is being depressed two weeks after mating, it may be already pregnant. We recommend bringing the pooch to the vet to confirm.
On the third week or 15th to 21st day of pregnancy, physical changes like swollen nipples may occur. Also, you may notice a change in appetite and intensified mood swings.
At this point, the embryo is now starting to grow bigger.
On the 22nd to 28th day, you may start to notice mild enlargement of the belly area. Also, the fetus can now be seen through an ultrasound. At this point, the pup will start to grow its spinal cord and facial features.
Moreover, your dog’s uterus will start to fill with fluids to prepare for the fetus’ growth. And since the puppy inside the tummy is growing, your dog will surely have more cravings, so you see to it that you offer more food than the usual serving.
The moment your dog’s pregnancy reaches its 29th to 35th day, the fetus has developed its sex organs. Also, it will look more like puppies during an ultrasound test. Since this is already halfway through the pregnancy, your dog’s belly would be much larger.
Take note that as your dog’s belly gets larger, you need to spread their food servings throughout the day. Remember, small amounts in multiple servings. You have to ensure that you’re giving ample food for your dog and its pups without serving everything in one go.
During the 36th to 4nd day of pregnancy, pigmentation will start to occur on the fetus. The pups’ eyelids will also start to grow, though it will remain sealed until the first 10 days of birth.
Since the fetus is now much larger, your doggo will more uncomfortable. There’s also a chance that your pooch will be irritable and may become aggressive toward strangers.
Moreover, it’s normal to see vulva discharge from your dog.
At the 43rd and 49th day of gestation, the pups are starting to reach its full size and are nearing birth. It’s also the time when the puppies will move inside your dog’s belly.
Your dog will also have more developed and swollen breasts. You may also notice traces of milk on its nipples. Also, your dog will become restless as it looks for a place to whelp.
At this point, you should set up a comfortable whelping box where your doggo will home in. You should place this box in a secluded area with limited foot traffic so your dog can give birth with less stress.
On the second to the last week of pregnancy, all the pups inside your dog’s stomach are all covered with fur. Also, it’s already crowded in the uterus, and there would be more noticeable activity in the belly as the pups position for whelping.
The pregnant doggo may start digging on its bed, which is a normal sign of nesting.
In the final week of pregnancy, the pups are ready for birth. Anytime this week, your dog may start to be restless and uncomfortable.
You should take rectal temperatures throughout this week to check if your doggo is already in labor. If the temperature drops somewhere near 96F or 97F, for at least two consecutive checks, it’s a sign that your doggo will give birth in the next 24 hours.
Make sure that you have enough towels to wipe any discharge. Also, avoid crowding the pooch while giving birth since it will only cause more stress. We recommend letting the master stay with the doggo so it will be more comfortable.
These dog pregnancy signs week by week will help you know what’s happening inside your pet’s tummy during gestation. Aside from observing, you should also bring the doggo to the vet for regular checks. Also, you can ask the assistance of the veterinarian during your dog’s whelping.