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Dog pregnancy
by Janne Sandstrm, Kennel Strias Beagle

Pregnancy period:
On average, a bitch is pregnant 63 days from mating, with a range of 56 to 72 days. The variation is due to several reasons but the most important factor is when the bitch has ovulated.

Signs of pregnancy:

  • If the vulva is still swollen after maturity.
  • The bitch can feel bad in week 3 or/and week 5
  • Sometimes there comes a bleeding from the vulva few days in week 3
  • Teats get a slight pink color from week 4
  • Teats enlarged from week 5
  • Enlarged abdomen from week 5
  • Clear, sticky fluid from the discharge from week 4-5
  • Fetal movements from Week 7

Puppies development:

1. + 2. + 3.
After a successful mating carried the egg in the fallopian tube, and cell division begins. After 8-12 days
embryo consists of 16 cells, also called the morula stage, and at that size, it will enter the uterus. Cell division continues in the womb. Foster plant in the coming week is not attached to the uterus, but flow freely. Mitosis continues in the womb.

After approx. 3 weeks, with a variation of between
17-22 days, the foster system freely distributed in the two
uterine pages, and is now in the process of attaching itself to the uterine wall. Foster facility is at this time of about 1 inch long and resembles a small fish with excrescences, which later will become the front and hind legs.

Where the foster system is attached to the uterus, the placenta is formed, which will become the embryo's connection with the mother.




Through the
placenta provides nutrients that the female fetus need in the upcoming developments. All over the placenta, bitch brings nutrients to the fetus scale use in the further development. The fetus is connected to the placenta through the umbilical cord.

    1. Ovary
    2. Uterine Horn
    3. Uterine Body
    4. Vagina
    5. Bladder
    6. Fallopian Tube

Week 4
One can now clearly distinguish between the front and hind legs. Ear flaps are visible as small flippers, and the ears and eyes will be formed this week. Fetal membranes can at this stage know as small bubbles of 2.5 cm. Pregnancy can be detected by ultrasound.

          The image shows a fetus that is 30 days old

Week 5
During this week formed the eyelids, and plants for their whiskers on upper lip and above the eyes are formed. Ear flaps so that it grows almost covers ear canal. Five couples of nipples, and the external genitalia begin to develop. In this week fetal paws begin to form what would later be padded and toes.

Approximately at day 33 is closed gums, so after this date can not cleft lip longer occur. Now is the period in which most risk, where chemicals and other substances can damage fetus over. Now the development of the intestinal system, which at this stage is still in the umbilical cord. Bitch will only now showing signs of pregnancy with changed behavior, but the abdomen has not yet changed shape.

Week 6
Ear flaps and eyelids grow and cover the end of the week ear canals and eyes. The external genitalia begin to change in the direction of male and her genitals. At the beginning of the week separated toes completely, and at the end of the week will be formed claws. Whiskers begin to grow out of the plants that formed the week before. Intestinal system leaves the umbilical cord and begin in the final position in the abdominal cavity. In females seen slight pink coloring dievorter, and depending on the number of puppies in the uterus, the abdomen will begin to grow in scope.

Week 7
During this week, body hair grow out, and color markings could be seen. Paws and pads are now fully developed. The fetus now resembles the finished puppy, but can not survive outside the womb. From this point it is last size change. Ossification in the bones are now such that one from day 49 fosterne can see on X-ray images. It is now for the first time in pregnancy as possible to see the fetal movements. Female abdomen, in most cases be considerably greater, and milk production has started. One should begin to occur with a special feed to pregnant bitches / puppies, but not in large quantities. There is no advantage that the bitch gets too thick before the birth.

Week 8
The fetus is fully developed, and you can feel the baby's heartbeat. Sometimes you can hear the heartbeat and see the puppies move. The bitch is now characterized by its weight and size, and should in this period make themselves familiar with puppy. Milk gland is filled with milk.



Week 9
The last week of pregnancy to prepare the female birth. She is calmer and interested not so much to play,
and may be less sociable than usual. The last 2-3 days before birth, one should reduce the amount of feed
by 30-40%, and the last day before the birth the bitch will not normally eat. From approx. 60 days fetus can survive outside the womb. Bitch should be at least one week before birth is introduced for the place where
she will give birth, the best is a well-furnished puppy crate. Here, she could do some of the natural track construction, which many girls do 2-4 days before birth.

The pelvic muscles relax, and in some females it will be great milk blasting several days before labor starts. Immediately within the birth, she becomes anxious and restless, and it will act in series. These contractions
push fetal membranes to the first pup into the birth canal.

Birth Canal to be expanded and the fetus will be pressed into the pelvis in pressure-contractions begin. During this process the fetal membranes rupture and the contents flow out. It is argued that "water" has gone and
that the birth has started. Opening period will take 4-6 hours but can sometimes take up to 1 day. In order to better predict the exact day, one should take this week bitch temperature twice daily (morning and evening).

The temperature is taken by passing a thermometer a few cm into the rectum of the bitch. You get an idea of how the temperature fluctuates normally. Where ascertainable a temperature drop, you should take your temperature every 3-4 hours. When it is 1 - 1 degrees below normal on repeated measurements within a
few hour intervals, will begin delivery in 12-24 hours.

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