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Can a dog get pregnant without a hitch?

A purebred dog settled in your house and you were attracted by the idea of ​​breeding?

Read our article for everyone who wants to raise puppies and know the nuances of this difficult process.

A few words about the sex education of the dog

An important role in breeding is played by the sex education of the pet. It happens that the girl-dog flatly refuses to let the dog go or it is with great difficulty that it is possible to mate, but the desired puppies are never born. At the same time, the pet can be completely healthy.

The reason for the dog’s reluctance to mate and give birth to puppies is its improper upbringing. A dog is a gregarious animal with complex social behavior. A puppy can master the necessary skills only by communicating with congeners. And this communication should last up to 4 months. The human family cannot replace the dog with a “pack”, which means that the pet will not be able to correctly understand the intentions of other dogs, will be afraid of them or show aggression. Therefore, puppies intended for breeding are taken from the breeder not earlier than 4 months.

If the breeder has agreed to mate the dog, and you have already acquired a grown-up, well-bred baby, you have every opportunity to bring a dog with a male and after mating to get wonderful puppies. It remains only to figure out when you can knit a dog for the first time, and at what stage of estrus the pet will be able to conceive puppies. Let’s talk about this further.

Signs of a dog’s readiness for mating. Estrus

Techka (estrus) is a natural psychophysiological process. During this period, the dog is ready to mate and bear puppies. Every bitch owner experiences this phenomenon once or twice a year. Heat lasts on average 20-22 days.

Your dog’s behavior changes during estrus, and it’s hard to miss. The dog becomes naughty, active, tries to run away, sometimes shows aggression.

  • Behavior change;
  • Frequent tags;
  • Molting;
  • Interest of males;
  • Aggression towards other bitches;
  • A swollen loop (vulva)
  • Bloody vaginal discharge.

A dog’s sexual cycle is unique. It includes several stages that differ from each other in physiological and behavioral characteristics.

Everything you need to know about dog breeding. Purebred breeding for beginners

Heat stages and the best time to mate

The bitch’s sexual cycle includes 4 stages: proestrus, estrus, metestrus and anestrus. We will describe each of them in more detail.

    Phase 1 (proestrus). During this phase, the dog’s external genitals swell, and blood flow to them increases. The blood supply to the uterus also increases, small vessels swell and burst. There is a bloody discharge from the vagina. During this period, the dog is not ready for mating, does not allow males to approach, but only flirts with them. Stage duration: 7-10 days.

Phase 2 (estrus). It is during this phase that the bitch should be bred. She is ready to mate. Bloody discharge disappears completely or becomes almost transparent. The vulva becomes severely swollen. The bitch assumes a characteristic position for mating: she freezes and takes her tail to the side. Stage duration: 4-12 days.

During estrus, eggs are released from the ovaries into the uterus, where they are fertilized. Ovulation occurs within 48 hours of the onset of phase 2 of estrus. The eggs retain the ability to fertilize for several days after leaving the ovary. Therefore, the most favorable period for mating a bitch is considered from 11 to 15 days of estrus.

    Phase 3 (metestrus). In the stage of metestrus, the dog’s sexual arousal subsides. The loop decreases in size, vaginal discharge disappears completely. The bitch ceases to admit the males. If pregnancy has not occurred, then the female’s body goes into a calm state.

4 phase (anestrus). The stage of sexual rest, which lasts until the next estrus.

There are laboratory methods for determining estrus and its phase. Having donated a smear or blood test, you can find out for sure whether you can take your pet to the selected dog. A mating partner must be selected in advance.

The optimal age for the first mating of a dog

For the first time, the dog can only be knitted when the animal reaches physiological maturity. It should be clarified that puberty and physiological maturity are different concepts. A dog is able to become pregnant already during the first estrus, but physiologically its body will be ready for the birth of healthy puppies much later.

The first heat is an important event in the life of a pet. It usually occurs at the age of 6-12 months, but sometimes later. The time of the onset of estrus depends on many factors: breed, housing conditions, diet, climate. It often happens that the first estrus is unnoticeable for the owner of the bitch, but still be vigilant and do not allow unscheduled mating of the pet. Record the exact time of the beginning of the first heat and mark the dates of the beginning and end of the subsequent peaks of sexual activity of the pet. It is better to mark the date on the calendar and plan mating based on this information.

They begin to knit girls’ dogs from the age of 3. By this time, the animal should have formed physically. Remember that the first mating should take place no later than 4-5 years. Late childbirth is dangerous for the dog’s health. They are difficult, the dog after mating cannot give birth on its own, she often needs a cesarean section.

Some bitch owners complain about mating problems. The dog does not become pregnant after mating. This is mainly attributed to the disease of the animal, but often the reason lies in the wrong choice of mating time and in the inability to determine the signs of the dog’s readiness for it.

When it is possible to mate a dog?

Each puppy is good in its own way. However, growing up, not all babies become suitable for breeding work. In order for a dog to participate in purebred breeding, it must have breeding value. So, to have titled ancestors or to have outstanding features of the exterior.

You should ask the breeder in advance about whether it is possible to mix a dog that you acquire with a dog.

Can the lack of heat prevent a dog from having offspring??

It is important for a person who is going to breed purebred animals to know if a dog can become pregnant without estrus. After all, it often happens that a bitch without any symptoms of this process is taken to the dacha, allowed to walk without the supervision of the owner, and then she brings puppies. If the animal is purebred, then it may not be allowed to mate with purebred males, refuse to participate in exhibitions, exclude from the dog breeders club.

To avoid such a situation, a person needs to understand in which cases the onset of pregnancy in a female is possible. Knowing the basic laws of this process, he will avoid the appearance of unwanted offspring and, if necessary, will be able to find the ideal time for mating his pet with a thoroughbred dog. It is not at all difficult to do this.

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What is a false pregnancy?

False pregnancy (postdiestral syndrome) is conspicuous maternal behavior when some of the physical signs of pregnancy are present in a non-pregnant dog.

Can a dog get pregnant without estrus??

A prerequisite for the fertilization of a bitch is the presence of an egg. Her exit from the ovary is just signaled by estrus. If there is no egg, pregnancy will not occur. over, males will not pay attention to a bitch that does not have specific secretions, and the dogs themselves will not allow representatives of the opposite sex to come to them. For these reasons, the appearance of offspring in such cases is virtually impossible.

In what situations is it possible for a dog that has no visible signs of ovulation to become pregnant? The answer is simple:

  • the owners did not notice the symptoms of estrus in their bitch;
  • ovulation was almost imperceptible.

In the situations presented, one cannot say that there was no heat at all. Dog breeders need to figure out why they did not notice the onset of favorable days for conception in their own pet.

For what reasons can this be?

You can skip ovulation in a bitch in such situations:

  • If the dog remains aggressive, does not admit the dog even at a favorable time for conception.
  • Not all stages of estrus in an animal are clearly delineated.
  • Allocations are scarce, do not correspond to a certain period of the cycle.
  • The bitch’s noose doesn’t swell, stays tight.
  • The dog’s behavior does not change, it remains calm, does not show interest in members of the opposite sex.

In some animals, the menstrual cycle has its own peculiarities, due to which the breeder may miss the period suitable for conception. These can be:

  • Prolonged menstruation. You need to pay time to it if the dog’s reddish discharge appears within a month. This indicates inflammation of the ovaries.
  • Split heat. They talk about it when the animal has symptoms of menstruation, and then disappear after the stress, illness, moving. Such heat can continue after the bitch’s condition has returned to normal. During this period, pregnancy is possible.
  • Hidden cycle. With her, ovulation symptoms appear in the first days, then completely disappear. In this case, a bitch can become pregnant when mating with a dog.

To avoid the appearance of unwanted offspring in a dog, it is important to protect it from any contact with members of the opposite sex if any symptoms of ovulation appear. During this period, she cannot be walked without a leash. If you have a dog at home, pets should be kept in different rooms.

The absence of menstruation indicates that the bitch has diseases. They can be associated with hormonal problems, abnormalities in the structure of the genital organs, and inflammatory processes. If you suspect a violation of the cycle in an unsterilized dog, it must be taken to the veterinarian in order to establish the cause of such a problem and, if necessary, undergo full-fledged treatment.

Can a dog get pregnant without estrus??

The appearance of offspring in such cases is virtually impossible.

What to do with a false pregnancy?

Most often, a false pregnancy disappears on its own after a few weeks. Usually no treatment is required.

Hidden estrus

With latent estrus, the dog has no external signs of sexual desire, it can be completely calm, it will not be drawn into the society of males. But if such a case turns up, the cage will definitely happen. But don’t worry right away. Firstly, not every bitch has hidden heat. Secondly, according to some signs, you can still guess about hunting:

  • In almost all cases, the behavior of the animal changes. Let the deviations be insignificant, but they still happen. The dog may become a little nervous or more affectionate, and some animals, during heat (even hidden), move somewhat away from the person.
  • Practice shows that even with latent sexual heat, the animal has discharge. There are few of them, they appear more often after a night’s sleep, and therefore the “suspect” dog must be carefully examined. The presence of secretions is indicated by crusts and “shriveled” hair at the base of the tail. In addition, the pet begins to lick itself constantly.

Finally, it should be trite to remember that dogs should be in heat once a month. If the deadline has come, but there is no sexual desire, there are two options:

  • Or the pet is in heat in a latent form.
  • Or the dog has significant gynecological abnormalities.

In both cases, a veterinarian consultation is necessary! In particular, constant hidden estrus can also indicate problems with the ovaries and hormonal levels, and therefore it is required to conduct a high-quality and complete examination of the animal (including blood biochemistry and ultrasound).

Prolonged estrus

As the name implies, this is an increased, prolonged and prolonged estrus. Those. proestrus, accompanied by a strong change in behavior, the appearance of large amounts of spotting and other “special effects”, can last up to three weeks. The owner, seeing all these manifestations of sexual desire, leads the bitch for mating. And the cage can be successful, but at the moment of mating, the egg is not released yet!

This happens much later, and there are no pronounced manifestations of sexual desire by this moment (most often), and therefore real estrus is wasted. But! In this case, knitting a dog is definitely not worth it, since prolonged sexual heat is always a sign of serious pathologies of the organs of the reproductive system:

  • Ovarian hyperfunction.
  • Cystic ovarian disease.
  • An increase in the amount of estrogens due to a violation of their normal synthesis (tumors, diseases of the endocrine glands, etc.).

With prolonged estrus (even with an isolated case), the dog must be shown to the veterinarian. Otherwise, you will not have to worry about a sudden pregnancy in the near future. So, with ovarian cysts, the dog will very soon become sterile.

Can a dog get pregnant without estrus: when to worry

The pregnancy of a pet (especially a purebred one) is an important moment in her life. And can a dog become pregnant suddenly without estrus adding problems to himself and the owner. So can this happen?

Lingering proestrus

In this case, only the first phase of sexual activity is delayed. Then everything proceeds according to the scenario described above: first, there are all the signs of “bright” estrus, which is why the owners knit the dog, then everything calms down. And the dog at this moment may well become pregnant, since eggs are released at this time.

As in the previous case, the pet must be shown to the veterinarian. As a rule, prolonged proestrus indicates a lack of gonadotropic hormones. It can also be caused by tumors in the brain, parasites. Also, prolonged proestrus is the result of serious poisoning, severe exhaustion and chronic intoxication (all the same parasites). Accordingly, in this case, the pet must be shown to a specialist.

Split estrus

This “phenomenon” can be thought of as a kind of latent heat. In this case, estrus is divided into two stages:

  • “Repetition”. In this case, the dog shows all the signs of “real” sexual hunting. Discharge from the external genital organs appears, the pet behaves accordingly, but. the release of the egg does not actually occur, and therefore, even after successful mating, the dog cannot become pregnant. In fact, it is a prolonged (up to three weeks) proestrus, i.e. forerunner.
  • After one or two weeks, real estrus begins, but in many cases there are no external manifestations of it, or they are very insignificant (a small amount of discharge, slight anxiety).

Thus, the owner may not even suspect that the dog is in “second” estrus, and that the pet needs to be mated with the male at this time. However, even if it is possible to see signs of a second sexual heat, we recommend to postpone with viscous:

  • In many cases, this is due to a lack of luteinizing hormone due to a violation of its synthesis in the dog’s body.
  • Sometimes split heat is a sign of endometritis (possibly chronic).

Can a dog get pregnant without a tie?

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But! Split heat is quite normal for dogs under 2 years of age. Such pets may well become pregnant even without vivid manifestations of sexual desire. This phenomenon is due to the maturation and development of the bitch’s body. In particular, he needs a certain time to normalize the synthesis of luteinizing hormone.

Prolonged estrus

This phenomenon can also be considered a type of latent heat. At the same time, there are no external signs of sexual heat in dogs, and the eggs leave the ovaries with a very long delay. Sometimes this does not happen at all, and therefore, even with the manifestation of estrus, the dog remains “empty” over and over again.

This happens with increased production of estradiol. This is dangerous for the health of the pet, since if untreated, it almost inevitably leads to cystic ovarian damage and infertility. In some cases, it all ends in cancer.

A dog without estrus can become pregnant, but it must be remembered that pregnancy is impossible without sexual desire. It’s just that in these cases, estrus for some of the above reasons does not manifest itself, and without good experience it is impossible to recognize it.

What is estrus

It is important to know that there are “special days” for a dog and how long they last. Having understood this, it will become clear whether the dog can “fly in” during this period or in its absence. Let’s try to define the basic concepts. So, on average, a dog’s estrus lasts 20-25 days. Her first onset ranges from 6 to 12 months old. What are the “subsections” of estrus:

  • Proestrus, or the first stage. Its duration ranges from 1 to 10 days. At this time, you can see pink discharge from the loop.
  • Estrus. The main stage. And it lasts from the 10th to the 20th day. It is at this time that gametes are formed and pregnancy is possible. What are the signs of estrus? The loop becomes soft, the discharge from it is yellowish. The bitch changes her behavior towards the males. Flirts with them, pushes the tail in front of the male canine sex.
  • Metaestrus. Lasts from 20th to 25th day. At this time, the bitch returns to her usual behavior, the loop hardens and the likelihood of pregnancy is extremely reduced. However (if ovulation occurs on these days), pregnancy on the 25th day of estrus may occur.

How to protect a bitch from unwanted pregnancy

There is nothing complicated about it. If the owner and his favorite live in the city, do not let go of the leash for walks at this time. Even in fields and forests where the chances of meeting another dog are minimal.

The second point: if a dog and a bitch live in the family, then for the period of heat “ladies”, they need to be kept in different rooms. This is difficult, especially in a city apartment. But in order to avoid unwanted mating, these are the main precautions.

For those who live in the private sector, it is advisable to take your pet into the house during the “red days”. This is if she lives on the street. Otherwise, the line of males in the yard will be like in Soviet times for sausage.

Her complete absence

Could it be that estrus was, and then abruptly disappeared? Unlikely. Most likely, the dog has entered a stage where estrus is hidden. But a specialist examination is a good idea in such a situation.

Can a dog get pregnant without estrus: what are the odds

People went to the dacha, took with them the thoroughbred favorite of the family. The dog is in good health, there are no signs of “female malaise” at all. And it must happen, at the dacha a neighbor’s dog popped in. Like animals were playing. And after a little over a month, after returning home, the owners realize with horror that their pet will soon become a mother. How is that? There was no stream. Let’s talk about this in more detail. Can a dog get pregnant without estrus??

Prolonged estrus

And there is also such a subspecies of “red days” in bitches. Such estrus is dangerous because, most likely, the pet has started inflammation of the ovaries, and hormonal imbalance occurs in the body. In this case, it is undesirable for the owner to hesitate to visit the veterinarian.

Pregnancy out of heat

We have considered all its types. And gradually we come to the most important issue that so often worries dog owners. Can a dog get pregnant without estrus? The answer is obvious. not. Just as a woman cannot conceive in the absence of critical days, so a dog cannot please the owner with puppies if she does not have “estrus”.

over, a bitch without estrus will never allow a dog to come to her just as a sexual partner. Play and communicate in your canine language. this please. Allowed myself something more. got a slap in the face. Even at the last stage of estrus, the bitch is no longer interested in males, to say nothing of her absence. Therefore, when they say that someone’s dog brought puppies, but she was not in heat. it is not true. Either the owners did not see its manifestation, or the estrus was hidden.

Hidden estrus

What is this? Normal estrus, only without pronounced signs. This happens in the dog world. At the same time, hidden estrus is not displayed on the behavior of the bitch. The animal behaves in the same way as usual, does not suffer from loss of appetite, as is sometimes the case with habitual estrus.

Approaching the answer to the question of whether a dog can become pregnant without estrus, one should take into account just these very hidden “critical days” of the pet. And the most important thing is that the owner, especially a beginner, will not even notice them. Only a male dog is capable of identifying a similar type of “red calendar days” for a friend.


Dogs can easily become pregnant during their fertile period, also called estrus, which occurs every eight months on average and lasts up to three weeks. At this time, your pet can often enter into active skirmishes with a dog sticking to her. This happens if the dog feels that it is not yet ready for mating. That is why during estrus, in order to avoid such hassles, as well as mating with unfamiliar males, it is recommended to walk the dog on a leash, keeping it under control all the time.

The pregnancy of your pet can be associated with significant financial costs, and is also an extremely exciting period not only for you, but, of course, for your dog, so it is better to leave puppy breeding to breeders and other professionals. If you want to make sure that your pet does not have offspring in advance, we recommend that you consider spaying your dog. You can find more detailed information on this topic on the corresponding page of our website. Sterilization of dogs.

How many times does a dog have to mate to get pregnant?

In dogs, gestation usually lasts 61 to 65 days, but until very late, there may be little sign of your dog’s expectation of offspring. Unfortunately, there are no home pregnancy tests for dogs. The question arises: how to determine that your pet is pregnant?

Below are some signs that indicate your dog is expecting offspring.

How to tell if your dog is pregnant?

  • The dog has a small amount of mucous discharge about a month after the intended mating.
  • 30 days after the intended fertilization, your pet’s nipples may grow in size and look brighter than usual. In addition, it is possible to separate from them a certain amount of translucent liquid.
  • As with pregnant women experiencing toxicosis, your dog may experience nausea and vomiting in the early stages of pregnancy. If this does not go away for a long time or if you for one reason or another are concerned about this, try to consult with an experienced veterinarian as soon as possible.
  • Your dog will begin to gain weight from about 35 days of gestation and will have gained almost 50% by the time of delivery.
  • At about 40 days of pregnancy, an increase in your pet’s abdomen will become noticeable. Keep in mind, however, that in dogs that are pregnant for the first time or are expecting a small number of puppies, the abdominal enlargement may not be as noticeable.
  • During pregnancy, your dog may be calmer than usual and may also eat less. However, be on the lookout. this may also indicate serious health problems for your pet, so if you have any doubts or questions about this, immediately contact a qualified veterinarian.
  • In the later stages of pregnancy, the expectant mother’s appetite will begin to increase rapidly, so be prepared to make appropriate changes in her daily diet.
  • A veterinarian can confirm a dog’s pregnancy by measuring its hormonal levels and a special pregnancy test (starting from 21-25 days after the intended mating), as well as by means of ultrasound (from about 20-22 days of pregnancy). And from about day 30, the veterinarian will be able to conduct a medical examination, which will determine the estimated number of puppies in your pet; however, it is not always possible to determine with absolute accuracy how many there will be, so be prepared for the fact that more babies will be born than you expected!
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While your dog can handle pregnancy and childbirth on its own, it will be much easier when you are around. Plus, if something unexpected happens, you can always take appropriate action and help your pet. The main thing is, do not worry. the body of the expectant mother will definitely give you a lot of clues indicating the onset of labor, that is, that the puppies are about to be born.

Can a dog get pregnant without a hitch?

Signs indicating the approach of labor

  • As labor approaches, you will notice that your dog is looking for a quiet and secluded place. You can help her by setting up a special bed in a warm and secluded corner of your home. You can find additional information and useful tips regarding caring for a pregnant dog on the corresponding page of our website.
  • The closer you are to labor, the more restless your dog may be. for example, scratching the floor or its bedding. Don’t worry. this is normal behavior for a pregnant dog.!
  • A drop in body temperature (to about 37⁰C) suggests that labor should begin within the next 12-24 hours. As soon as this happens, the pet’s temperature will rise again to 38⁰C.
  • When contractions begin, the dog’s body will tremble, and its breathing may become more frequent.
  • Soon, strong abdominal contractions will begin, after which water will begin to recede. About half an hour after that, the first puppy should be born.

As a rule, childbirth in dogs is quite calm and does not require human intervention. Nevertheless, there are some signs that indicate certain complications during childbirth, for example, abundant colorless discharge or a situation where the dog is struggling, but the puppies never come out. If you notice anything like this during your pet’s birth, or if you have any other cause for concern, try to contact your veterinarian as soon as possible. You can find more detailed information about the birth of puppies on the corresponding page of our website.

Is the spayed dog in heat?

The presence or absence of estrus in a spayed dog depends on the method of castration chosen earlier:

  • Complete castration of the internal reproductive system. never again in heat.
  • Ligation of the fallopian tubes without removing the uterus and ovaries. the menstrual cycle will continue throughout the dog’s life, but without the possibility of becoming pregnant.

Dog’s mammary glands are swollen after estrus

This is normal in dogs after estrus. If a bitch has swollen mammary glands, then this indicates several factors:

  • After mating with a dog. A clear sign of pregnancy. The dog’s body prepares to feed the offspring.
  • If there was no mating with a dog. A sign of the appearance of a false pregnancy, the appearance of a tumor in the body. In any case, it is recommended to see a doctor.

What to do after heat

After the end of such a difficult period as estrus, the owner must closely monitor the health and well-being of the female. If she managed to mate with a male, then the first signs of pregnancy will be noticeable.

Also, after two months, symptoms of a false pregnancy may appear if the mating is unsuccessful. In this case, competent advice from a veterinarian will be necessary, prescribing medicines to terminate a false pregnancy.

When dogs are in heat

There is no exact data on when your female will begin estrus. Depending on the size of the dog, the first heat can start at different ages.

  • in small breeds of dogs and miniature. this is the age from 5 to 6 months;
  • in medium breeds. from 8 to 12 months;
  • in large and giant dogs, estrus begins between the ages of 18 and 24 months.

Determining the signs of first heat is quite difficult even for an experienced dog breeder. Most often, it passes hidden, imperceptibly and quickly. At this time, minor discharge from the genitals may appear. But their number is not enough to attract the opposite sex.

Important! According to physiological norms, the first estrus occurs in a dog after the loss of milk teeth.

Can dogs be sterilized during estrus?

It is possible to neuter a dog during estrus if it is an emergency to save the animal. As a rule, veterinarians suggest waiting until the end of the menstrual cycle, and only then sterilize.

Why does a dog have a fever during heat?

It is normal if during the period of estrus the temperature of the dog rises by no more than 0.5 C. This indicates the natural process of maturation of the egg and its release from the ovaries.

If during this period you observe lethargy in the animal, the temperature rises higher, the dog refuses to eat, discharge with a pungent odor is clearly visible, then you should consult a doctor. Such symptoms indicate an infectious disease requiring surgery.

Duration of estrus

The total duration of sexual activity in a female is from 12 days to three weeks. In some dogs, this period can take up to 4 weeks. However, heat never lasts more than one month.

How long does estrus go in dogs of various breeds. table:

Duration of estrus, days Representatives of breeds, for example:
In large dogs 22 to 30 German shepherd, labrador, staffs, St. bernard, great dane.
Medium breeds 21 to 22 Laika, husky, beagle, spaniel and others, rottweiler.
In small breeds 10 to 15 Pekingese, York, Spitz, Chihuahua, Dachshund, Italian greyhounds, Toy Terriers.

Signs of onset of heat

It is not difficult to understand that the dog is in heat. The main symptom is bloody discharge from the genitals of the knot. As a rule, they appear after a couple of days from the beginning of the cycle.

The onset of the period suitable for mating can be determined by the behavior of the animal. Signs preceding the onset of estrus:

  • Change in behavior and mood. The female shows great playfulness, activity, more often she approaches other animals in the house, especially male dogs, sniffs them and allows herself to be sniffed. The dog stops responding to the commands of the owner. If you show strength or severity to her, then she will respond with aggression.
  • Frequent urination. Hormonal changes in your dog’s body cause it to urinate frequently. This happens in the wrong places, past the tray or without waiting for a walk. Female urine contains special pheromones that make it clear to males that she is ready to mate.
  • Change in taste preferences, lack of appetite, or, conversely, constant hunger.

On a note! The intensity and amount of spotting may vary from dog to dog.

Signs of heat in an animal are also manifested at the physiological level:

  • the female’s body temperature rises by 0.5 C;
  • the vulvar ring swells, bloody discharge is visible;
  • on the floor, on the litter or in other favorite places where the dog lies, you can see characteristic red spots;
  • the female often licks herself under the tail.

Important! Some individuals may develop an unpleasant odor from under the tail during estrus.