Articles

Breeding

  • Puberty or sexual maturity in the female dog usually occurs around six months of age. The smaller breeds tend to go into estrus or "heat" earlier and some females can have their first "heat" cycle as early as four months of age. On the other hand, the large and giant breeds can be up to two years old before they come into heat for the first time.

  • Breeding cats and raising kittens can be an extremely rewarding experience or it may result in frustration and failure. The following information is provided in order to increase your chances of success and make the experience more enjoyable and safe.

  • You can place most puppies in their new homes at around eight to ten weeks of age. Puppies should remain with the litter this long to ensure proper weaning and social development. Puppies that are separated from their mother and littermates earlier than this may have an increased amount of behavioral problems.

  • For the next two months, even if everything went smoothly with the birth, you have a lot of work to do! After the birthing process, clean up the mother as much as possible without upsetting her. Remove any soiled newspaper or bedding from her whelping box.

  • During the first three weeks of life, puppies require little care from the owner, provided the mother is doing her job. Puppies are born with their eyes closed but they open after one to two weeks. If you notice any swelling or bulging under the eyelids, they should be opened immediately.

  • Although the majority of dogs will give birth without the need for veterinary assistance, problems can arise which require veterinary attention. It is important to closely monitor your pet during birthing and seek veterinary care if you have any concerns.

  • Puberty or sexual maturity in the female dog usually occurs around six months of age. The smaller breeds tend to go into estrus or "heat" earlier and some females can have their first "heat" cycle as early as four months of age. On the other hand, the large and giant breeds can be up to two years old before they come into heat for the first time.

  • Pregnancy, also called the gestation period, normally ranges from 57-65 days with an average of 63 days. With a planned breeding, you should record the date of mating. If there are two matings, make a note of the exact dates and expect birth to occur between 63 and 65 days later.

  • Many owners find the companionship of their dog so rewarding that they feel they would like to breed their dog, to continue the bloodline and/or to keep a puppy. Others, especially first time dog owners, will acquire a female dog with the intent to breed her when she is old enough.

  • After mating, many females will show changes in behavior, often becoming more affectionate. However, some pets will become uncharacteristically irritable and may even act aggressive during pregnancy. Be sensitive to your pet's behavioral changes and be sure to alert your veterinarian if you are concerned.

Location

  • Our Hospital

    24650 South Point Drive, Suite 140

    Chantilly, Virginia, 20152

Location Hours
Monday7:30am – 7:00pm
Tuesday7:30am – 7:00pm
Wednesday7:30am – 6:00pm
Thursday7:30am – 7:00pm
Friday7:30am – 7:00pm
Saturday8:00am – 1:00pm
SundayClosed

For after-hours emergencies, please contact Emergency Veterinary Clinic of Fair Oaks at 703 591-3304
Or TLC in Leesburg at 703 777-5755