Pregnancy and Whelping

Pregnancy

When Ruby is two years old we will be breeding her with a red standard poodle stud. The two dogs will mate when Ruby is in her second week of the heat cycle or a rule of thumb of the 10th, 12th and 14th day of the cycle. Since we are having a planned pregnancy with Ruby and know that the pregnancy cycle for a dog is 56 to 60 days, we can be ready for her delivery. The dog breed info center has a great timeline of the gestation period month by month, take a look here. Around 28 days from conception you can bring your dam into the vet to see if she is pregnant. The vet will either do abdominal palpitations, x-rays, or an ultrasound to see if there are puppies. If the dam is pregnant this is a good time to talk with your vet about diet, health, and what to expect through pregnancy and delivery. Make sure to get the emergency phone number from your vet for any afterhour emergencies.

Whelping

When you know your dog is pregnant the next thing to do is make a whelping box. A whelping box should:

  • Be big enough for the dam and her puppies to stretch in and be comfortable with blankets or towels.

  • Have a doorway to go in and out of and big enough so the mom doesn’t jump over the box and squish her puppies.

  • Have a guardrail for the puppies protection so the dam doesn’t fall asleep on them or lay on them.

Get your dam accustomed to the whelping box early in pregnancy so she can deliver in the box and knows it is a safe, comfortable place for her and her puppies. Having a heating pad or blanket on half of the box floor is a good idea, but only half so the puppies and mom can leave the heat if need be. (Here is a great list of suggested supplies for whelping.)

Whelping Box

This picture is from a litter of the prospective stud we will be using. The puppies are only a couple days old. This picture just gets us so excited!!!

 Goldendoodle puppies

Do any of you have puppy fever now?

Advertisements

Responsibilities of Breeding

October 23rd marked Ruby’s first birthday so only one more year until we can breed her. (Don’t worry we spoiled Ruby with homemade pupcakes and a squeaky stuffed animal.)

Happy First Birthday Ruby! 20131023_193100

Breeding a dog is a decision that should not be taken lightly by any pet owner and there are many things to consider especially with crossbred dogs.

For example:

  • Crossbred dogs can have a unique look. With goldendoodles you cannot predict their coat, color, or size exactly, but they are all very pretty dogs.
  • Careful crossbreeding can lower the chance of congenital issues if the breeder picks the dam and stud wisely.
  • It is hard to judge what size the dog will be. This can be an issue with some new owners if they have smaller living quarters or wanted a certain sized dog. Goldendoodles will range in size and are dependent on their mothers’ and fathers’ traits.
  • Temperaments can be difficult to predict. Although Goldendoodles are known for their docile temperament, that doesn’t mean that crossbreeding other types of dogs is a win-win situation.
  • There can be a potential for higher risk deliveries, mostly because the dogs are of different sizes. Sometimes the dam will have to have a c-section so her and her puppies survive.

Puppies

Some more serious things to consider with breeding are:

  • A Dam’s health is very important every step of the way. With the dam getting pregnant, there is a chance she might not make it through or there could be complications with the delivery. The dam should have a vet exam to make sure they are in a healthy condition to get pregnant, they will need pre and post-natal vitamins and care.
  • A breeder will need to dedicate at least 130 hours to raise an average litter. The mother  should not be left alone during whelping and a few days after. The breeder will also need time for paperwork, caring for the dam, puppies, socialization, and interviewing prospective families for the puppies.
  • The breeder should not be in if for the money, or lack there of. I found a great website that breaks down the cost of the breeding process, take a look here.

To become a reputable breeder I will need to look into each perspective owner that wants a puppy. They will need to fill out a puppy application and sign a puppy agreement form. If for some reason the new owner does not think the puppy fits with their family anymore or they want to sell their puppy, I will be the first person they contact and take the puppy back. I am responsible for these puppies and making sure they have good homes and a incredible life to live.

Would any of you think about breeding, why or why not?