How to Make Sure Your Dog Is Fine After Giving Birth

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How to Make Sure Your Dog Is Fine After Giving Birth
How to Make Sure Your Dog Is Fine After Giving Birth

Knowing how a canine birth works is the best way to ensure your dog is doing well afterwards. Dogs have been giving birth for thousands of years and they know what to do in the right time. While this is a natural process, there are some things you can do to help you and the puppies; one is to take them all to a vet appointment. That way, you will know if she gave birth to all the puppies or not.


Part 1 of 3: Providing Immediate Postpartum Care

Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 1

Step 1. Clean the dog with a cloth dampened with warm water

Get as much blood, amniotic fluid, and stools as you can. Good hygiene considerably reduces the risk of bacterial infection after childbirth.

  • You will likely notice that the bitch is excreting fluid; this is normal and is called lochia. Lochia are the walls of the endometrium being expelled and, if healthy, are odorless and can range from greenish brown to blood red.
  • Observe if the dog licks the puppies after a few minutes of birth. If she doesn't do this, wipe each person's butt with a damp cloth to remove the leftover placenta and give them back to the mother.
  • It may be necessary to encourage their breathing, especially if the mother is not interested in doing this.
Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 2

Step 2. Change bedding after delivery

It's a good idea to take the dog out to pee or poop while someone changes the dirty rags.

  • Always change the bedding so that it is clean and free from bacteria.
  • Prepare a pile of clean cloths beside the bed so they are on hand when needed.
Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 3

Step 3. Let the dog rest

It is normal for her to sleep for several hours after giving birth, while the puppies nurse and sleep. When she wakes up, see if she's awake and interested in them.

  • Disinterest can be a sign of infection. See if she has any symptoms of stress, such as whining, dilated pupils, or a smelly discharge, and take her to the vet immediately if appropriate.
  • Pay attention to whether the dog's sleep is restless or uncomfortable in any way.
Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 4

Step 4. Leave plenty of fresh water available during delivery and beyond

Offer chicken broth if she doesn't want to drink water

Part 2 of 3: Recognizing Postpartum Signs

Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 5

Step 1. In the first few weeks after giving birth, monitor the dog's health

She'll sleep a lot, but when she's awake, it's important to note that she has a good appetite and that her eyes are vivid.

  • Serve several meals a day instead of two or three large meals. It's a good idea to increase the amount of food a few weeks before giving birth and afterward too; a bitch that has just given birth can easily eat between three and four regular serving meals a day.
  • Puppy rations are more caloric and some veterinarians recommend that they be served to pregnant bitches for that very reason. If you want, offer it gradually, always mixing with the daily ration, so the dog won't be surprised.
  • To whet your appetite, give special snacks. Good choices include cottage cheese, eggs, liver and other nutritious treats.
  • Always check that the water is plentiful and clean. Moisten dry food with chicken broth to increase fluid intake.
Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 6

Step 2. Look for signs of infection

Between 24 and 48 hours after giving birth, it is normal for the dog to have a slightly elevated temperature, without necessarily showing signs of illness.

Some symptoms of infection include restlessness, lack of interest in puppies, foul-smelling discharge, and dilated pupils. Take her to the vet immediately if you notice these signs

Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 7

Step 3. See if the mammary glands are healthy twice a day

The teats should be soft and larger than normal due to the presence of milk; if they are red or hardened, be alert.

  • Mastitis is a bacterial infection of the mammary glands and can make the dog unwilling to breastfeed. Take her to the vet, he can prescribe the right antibiotics to get rid of this problem.
  • To check the health of the teats, squeeze them lightly; if the dog feels pain to the touch, or if the teat is hard or hot, it could be an infection.
  • The milk should look white and creamy, with no clots. A change in milk color (to pink or yellow) can also be a sign of mastitis.
Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 8

Step 4. For the first 24 to 48 hours after giving birth, look for signs of metritis

This is uterine inflammation and can be caused by the placenta not being completely removed, or by trauma during delivery.

  • Symptoms of metritis include fever, foul-smelling discharge, loss of appetite, or lack of interest in puppies.
  • See your veterinarian immediately if you notice signs of metritis.
Bring up a Gentle and Pleasant Dog Step 3

Step 5. During the first few weeks after giving birth, monitor for the presence of eclampsia, or “milk fever”

This happens due to the drop in the amount of calcium in the body, causing muscle spasms, convulsions and death.

  • Some signs are restlessness, muscle tremors, weakness and dilated pupils.
  • See your veterinarian as soon as possible if you notice these symptoms.

Part 3 of 3: Helping your dog care for her puppies

Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 10

Step 1. Keep an eye out if the bitch is taking care of the puppies

She will spend most of her time with them during the first week. A healthy dog ​​cares for and feeds her puppies willingly.

  • Provide a clean, safe place for her to breastfeed. Keep the puppies box away from places with intense circulation and use properly clean and dry cloths to line it.
  • Leave the box warm. The ideal temperature is around 30 °C during the first week; if your home is warmer than that, use a fan in the room to cool the mother and offspring. On the other hand, if the temperature is too cold, leave a heater in the room.
  • Cut the puppies' nails so they don't hurt the mother.
Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 11

Step 2. Help with the weaning process

After three weeks, the puppies are able to use their tongue to drink liquids and are therefore ready to be weaned. Start by offering puppies formula one meal a day, this will make them practice using their tongue and increase their nutritional intake. After two days at this rate, mix formula with baby food and make a porridge.

  • Gradually increase the amount of solid food. The texture should be between soup and oatmeal. Serve food like this for a week.
  • As they are weaned, the puppies will nurse less and less. In the sixth week of life, offer soft foods and puppy chow; by the eighth week, they should be fully weaned.
Make Sure That Your Dog Is Ok After Giving Birth Step 12

Step 3. Give stimulating toys

By the third week, the puppies will be more aware of the environment. Teeth will start to grow and with them, the need to gnaw at things. Give them toys to distract them and teach them to play.

Start getting them used to the everyday sounds of the house. Take them one person at a time to play with them and turn on the radio near their room for five minutes a day


  • Symptoms of discomfort or infection can be restlessness, lack of interest in the puppies, smelly discharge, and dilated pupils. See the veterinarian immediately to observe these signs in the dog.
  • If you have questions and need more information, look for the nearest veterinarian in your region.

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