What Do You Need To Know About Your Dogs Heat Cycle.
What Exactly Is A Dogs Heat Cycle?
A dog's heat cycle is simply another name for the animal's menstruation cycle and is basically the period in which a female dog is biologically capable of getting pregnant. Heat can more professionally be referred to as the Estrous Cycle.
How Can You Tell When Your Dogs In Heat?
The symptoms of your dog's heat cycle are minimal. A small amount of blood will typically excrete from the vagina with a little swelling and increased urination.
Aside from slight bleeding the only symptom may be an uncommon amount of male dogs hanging around due to the very strong and humanly undetectable scent that a female dog in heat gives off.
How Often, How Long, And When Is The First Heat Cycle?
Your dogs first heat cycle starts approximately around the age of six months and can be as late as a year or more. If your unspayed dog doesn’t go into heat by 14 months you should take her to see a veterinarian.
Once it starts the menstrual cycle for dogs occurs approximately every six to eight months with the average length of each heat being from two to four weeks.
There is no end to the menstruation cycle as humans typically have with menopause. If the dog remains healthy their heat cycle will likely continue until death but may decrease in frequency.
When Can Your Dog Get Pregnant?
The dog can only be impregnated during this two to four week period. Tests show that the most fertile days are usually between day 11 and day 15 of the reproductive cycle but this is an average and may vary from dog to dog.
You need to protect your dog during this period from unwanted impregnation; your female is likely to allow any male dog to mount her unless there is some anxiety reason why she wouldn’t.
Precautions To Take When Your Dog Is In Heat.
Your dog can do pretty much anything she would be able to do when not in heat but it is important to realize that you shouldn’t take her anywhere where she could interact with a male dog. Your dog is putting off an extremely powerful scent that could attract any male dogs in a wide radius.
There is no amount of training that you can expect to stop this, your dog will succumb to these hormones and so will the opposing male dog even if you tell them not to.
- If you take your dog for a walk make sure she is on leash and in your control the entire time.
- Even on leash if there are normally a lot of male dogs in your neighborhood or park it might be best to travel somewhere else for your walk.
- Don’t take your dog to any kind of Dog Park or other public dog environment.
- Don’t leave your dog outside alone even when fenced in as she will try harder than normal to escape and male dogs could try relentlessly to get in.
- Make sure that if you take your dog to a vet or a groomer that they know about the situation so they can properly adjust their behavior as well.
When Should You Get Your Dog Spayed?
If you don’t intend to breed your dog I strongly recommend spaying and neutering.
If you do want to spay your animal you should talk to your veterinarian about the proper time in your dog's development. My vet did both my dogs around two months old and I believe that is pretty standard but some vets will want to wait longer.
While your vet will recommend the earliest you can spay or neuter your dog there is no fixed age in which it becomes too late. If you have a dog that is several years old you should still able to get your animal fixed if you are interested.