How Many Months Dogs Give Birth: Gestation and Birth
How Many Months Dogs Give Birth: Gestation and Birth
2340 12/06/2024

One of the most exciting times for dog owners is the pregnancy and birth of their female dog. The birth of a dog is a process that requires care and attention. In this article, you can find detailed information about the gestation period, signs of pregnancy, preparation for labor and the birth process.

Gestation Period of Dogs

The gestation period for dogs ranges from approximately 58 to 68 days. This can vary slightly depending on the breed, age and state of health of the dog. In general, the average gestation period for dogs is considered to be 63 days. During this time, your dog’s body and behavior will undergo various changes to ensure the healthy development of the puppies.

Pregnancy Symptoms

To find out if your dog is pregnant, there are some signs to look out for:

  1. Behavior Changes:
    • Pregnant dogs can often be calmer and more introverted. They may sleep more and prefer to rest rather than play.
  2. Appetite Changes:
    • During the first weeks of pregnancy, your dog’s appetite may decrease. However, in the following weeks, her appetite may increase and she may start to eat more food.
  3. Abdominal Swelling:
    • Later in pregnancy, your dog’s belly will start to swell noticeably. This is related to the growth of the puppies.
  4. Changes in the Nipples:
    • Your dog’s nipples may enlarge and become darker in color. These changes are part of the preparation for labor.
  5. Veterinary Controls:
    • To make a definitive diagnosis of pregnancy, you should consult your veterinarian. Your veterinarian can confirm whether your dog is pregnant using methods such as ultrasound or X-rays.

Birth Preparation

Preparing your dog for the birth process ensures that both you and your dog have a comfortable and safe experience. Here are some important steps to prepare for labor:

  1. Birth Area Preparation:
    • Prepare the area where your dog will give birth. Provide a clean, quiet and comfortable environment. The birthing area is important for your dog to feel safe.
  2. Required Ingredients:
    • Prepare supplies that may be needed during labor and delivery. You should have clean towels, hot water bottles, sterile scissors and antiseptic solution.
  3. Veterinarian Communication:
    • Keep in constant contact with your veterinarian during the birth process. In case of complications, your veterinarian may need to intervene quickly.

Birth Process

The birth process of dogs usually consists of three phases: the prenatal phase, the birth phase and the postnatal phase.

  1. Prenatal Phase:
    • A few hours before birth, your dog may become restless, exhibit nesting behaviors and refuse to eat. Body temperature may drop 12-24 hours before birth.
  2. Birth Stage:
    • When labor begins, your dog will experience contractions. The first puppy is usually born 20-60 minutes after the contractions begin. The labor time between each litter can vary from 15 minutes to 2 hours. Be with and observe your dog during the birth process to make her feel comfortable and safe.
  3. Postpartum Phase:
    • After the puppies are born, the mother dog cleans her puppies and nurses them. It is important that the puppies are removed from the birth sac and the placenta is expelled. If the mother dog is unable to do this, you may need to intervene.

Postpartum Care

After birth, it is important to care for the mother and the cubs:

  1. Nutrition:
    • Meet the nutritional needs of the mother dog. Providing a high quality and nutritious diet increases the mother dog’s milk production and contributes to the healthy development of the puppies.
  2. Veterinary Controls:
    • After birth, it is important that the mother and puppies have a veterinary check-up. These check-ups allow early detection of possible health problems.
  3. Cleanliness and Hygiene:
    • Keep the area where the mother and cubs are kept clean and hygienic. Change their bedding regularly and disinfect the area.


Pregnancy and labor in dogs is a process that requires attention and care. By observing your dog’s signs of pregnancy, keeping up with veterinary check-ups and being prepared for the birth process, you can ensure a healthy birth experience. Taking care of the mother and puppies after birth will contribute to a healthy and happy life.

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