How Do You Know When Your Dog is About to Give Birth?

How Do You Know When Your Dog is About to Give Birth? – If you’re an owner of a female dog, you should know that giving birth to younger ones is the most crucial period of a dog’s life. This is the time when the dog needs utmost love and care.

It’s our responsibility to give the dog care and treatment during the time of delivery. How do you know when your dog is about to give birth? Signs like temperature drop in the rectal, nesting, loss of appetite, vomiting, and milk production should be looked out for.

Everything that will help you take care of your dog during its delivery will be discussed here. So keep reading the article to get the information.

What is Labor in the Case of Dogs?

Labor is that stage of a female dog’s pregnancy where she is almost ready to deliver the babies. The babies who were developing inside the mother’s womb will come out through the uterus at this stage.

Meanwhile, at this stage, some behavioral changes occur in the body of the female dog, which the owner can notice to give the proper pet medication and also to take her to the veterinarian for the delivery,

How Do You Know When Your Dog is About to Give Birth?

Many hormonal changes occur in the dog’s body when the womb is set to release the developed embryo through the uterine tract. Some of the significant signs that happen in the pet’s body during delivery are discussed below.

Dropping off the Rectal Temperature

As per research, the dropping of the rectal temperature is the most accurate sign, which signifies that the labor is almost started. Usually, a dog’s body temperature ranges from 101 to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit on the scale.

The dog’s body temperature remains the same during the entire gestation process,

but at the end, when the labor is near, it drops down below 100 degrees, which is almost 96 to 97 degrees. After which, the owner should take his pet to a veterinarian for safe delivery as the labor can begin anytime within the next 24 hours of the temperature drop.

Progesterone is the hormone that remains at its peak during the entire pregnancy in dogs. It is also responsible for maintaining a balance in its body temperature during incubation.

Still, it falls abruptly at the time of labor which reduces the body temperature of the dogs. The owner should regularly take the temperature measurement of their dog’s body at the end of the gestation period to determine the temperature drop.

Trying to Nesting

At the end of the gestation period, the dog will start looking for a safe and comfy place to deliver the pups.

If the owner can notice some behavioral changes like the dog walking around the house all day and getting into the places that seem comfortable to them, it might be a sign that the dog is about to give birth to the younger ones.

In this situation, the owner should provide the pet with a particular place like a box by placing some soft clothes in it so that the dog feels comfortable and stops searching for other comfortable places for the delivery.

Losing Appetite and Vomiting

Due to the sudden fall of the progesterone hormone, which was at its peak during the entire pregnancy, the reduction in the speed rate of various mechanisms responsible for easy digestion like metabolism and catabolism, etc. The organism may suffer from loss of appetite during the last stage of pregnancy.

Along with the loss of appetite, the dog may also suffer from some tendencies like vomiting, and it may happen to your dog that after eating a little bit of food, she may throw it up within a few minutes of eating.

If the dog owners notice this kind of behavior in their dogs, they should take their dog to a veterinarian because some such bodily differences are a sign that the dog will go into labor soon.

The dog will show a significant bowel movement before the time of the delivery, as the developed embryos pressurize the uterine tract to come out of the womb.

Producing Milk

As per the research done on the female dogs that are to give birth, the record was obtained that some of the female dogs that are going to give birth, who have entered the labor period, started releasing milk before giving birth.

It usually happens due to the hormonal imbalances in the mammary gland or the over-filled mammary glands, which occurs in a rare case. But it can also be considered a sign that your dog is getting into the labor period.

The owner should check the dog’s body temperature if they notice such changes in their dog’s body as the period of giving birth can usually start after 1 or 2 weeks after the dog begins lactating.

Lethargic Behavior or Getting Tired Rapidly

During the end of the gestation period, when the embryos are fully developed and are all set to come out of the mother’s womb, the female dog can get tired rapidly. During the end of the gestation period, the abdomen grows more during the period of giving birth. The growth of the core can make the dog tired even by taking a round of the home.

This can also be considered a sign of your dog getting into the labor period. If you notice such behavioral changes in your dog, you should take your dog to a veterinarian to give her proper medication and safe delivery.

Getting Anxious and Restlessness

At the end of the gestation period, various changes occur in the pet’s body, like hormonal changes, the slow down of the body’s metabolic reactions, the tendency to vomit, loss of appetite, and many others.

All these changes in your dog’s body at the end of the gestation period can make your dog restless and anxious.

Thus anxiety and restlessness can be considered a sign that indicates that your dog is getting into labor. The period of giving birth can start after 2 – 3 days after your dog starts to get anxious and get mad over silly things.

It is suggested to the dog owners not to ignore these minor signs that the dog is giving to signify that she is going to labor soon. Dog owners can even use CBD oil to calm them when they get anxious, as it was scientifically proven that this oil was made to calm down nervous animals.

Panting of the Dog

Panting is the most critical sign that a dog gives just before the labor starts. Panting can start suddenly, like if your dog is resting and she suddenly starts to pant, hold it for a minute, then again starts it is the sign that she is going to give birth to the puppies.

The dog used this to put a  downward force on the abdomen so that the embryos could come out of the stomach.

Although the owner was expected to take the dog to the veterinarian before the dog starts to pant, if somehow this can’t happen, the owner can still call the veterinarian or take the dog to the veterinarian for safe delivery.  

The owner should especially look over his dog at the end of the gestation period to ensure if she was panting or not.

Starting to Push the Abdomen

If you notice that your dog has started doing squats and is trying to push her entire body for the secretion of the embryo, then it’s the beginning of the birth procedure. They started pushing after they realized that the birth pain had become excessive.

Dogs usually don’t need help from anyone during the time of breeding. Still, it’s too necessary to call a vet to handle the situation if the dog gets some complications in the delivery.

Emerging Embryo Sac

A female usually gives birth to almost 6 to 7 puppies after the dog starts pushing the embryo sac filled with the placenta. The embryo begins to emerge at the vulva of the dog.

The emergence of the embryo is the beginning of the process of giving birth, and this happens when the embryo sac tries to find out its way through the uterine tract to come out of the mother’s womb. The dog usually retains the placenta, but it comes out along with the delivery of the second pup.

 Most dogs don’t bleed at the time of delivery, but it may happen due to severe complications if your dog is bleeding. The owner should instantly call the veterinarian if they notice bleeding during the birth procedure.

There is no other process to identify if your dog is ready to give birth. All you can do is go through all the signs mentioned above. This is because it was the only way that will help you to identify in which stage of pregnancy your dog was or if she was getting ready to give birth or not. 

What are the Signs of Complications During the End of the Gestation Period?

Most of the dogs don’t face complications during the time of delivery. But in some rare cases, some complications can occur, which can be life-threatening for the dog. The signs through which the dog owner can detect complications are discussed below.

  1. If you have noticed the temperature drop in your dog’s body, but she has not gone into labor within the 24 hours of the temperature drop, then it was a sign of danger. The owner should take his dog to a vet during this condition.
  2. If the female dog is contracting for the last 45 to 50 minutes and still not able to give birth to a puppy, then it can also be a sign of delivery complications.
  3. During the birth process, if half of the baby is out of the vulva, but after putting in lots of effort, the mother is not able to give birth to the whole baby. It is also a sign of significant delivery complications.
  4. If the dog stops giving birth after the delivery of one baby, and you are aware that more babies are inside, then it can be life-threatening for your pet.
  5.  If your dog seems to be in extreme pain, the owner should understand that the pet will not be able to give birth on its own and should prepare to take the necessary steps to help her give birth, like calling a vet or encouraging her to do that.
  6. Suppose the gestation period has lasted over 70 days. In that case, it can also be a major delivery complication, as dogs used to give birth around 65 to 67 days after the pregnancy had started. 

All the above-discussed points were based on the research done by the scientific authorities on pregnant dogs. So a dog owner can entirely rely upon the above steps to discover if the dog is having some delivery complications or not.

How to Help Dogs to Give Birth Faster?

Giving birth to younger ones is a natural process for dogs. They usually don’t need anyone’s help while giving birth to the pups. But if you notice some complications in the pet, she might need your help.

The birth process may slow down if the dog faces some complications. Otherwise, it goes on at an average rate. The difficulties might include a lack of strength to give birth.

If you notice that your dog does not have enough power to push the embryo sac, all you can do is inject her a dose of oxytocin, but the quantity might range from 2 to 20 units. This will help the dog speed up the process by increasing the strength of her contraction to facilitate the birth process.

Aapt Dubey
Aapt Dubey

Aapt Dubey, a devoted canine enthusiast and experienced dog Owner, brings boundless passion to our team. With a heart full of love for our four-legged friends, Aapt is dedicated to sharing insights on dog care, behavior, and training to make every pup's life happier and healthier at

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