Can dogs go into labor a week early? Expert Advice

We can’t think of anything more exciting than finding out your dog is expecting! As dog pregnancy only last for around 2 months, you can look forward to bundles of fur filling your home very soon!

When your dog is pregnant, you may find yourself wondering “how do dogs give birth?”. You don’t have to panic as the due date approaches – dog labours are usually much less dramatic than ours, and your pet should be able to bring the puppies into the world without any worries. Mum should be more than capable, but keep her company during labour in case your dog runs into any complications.

Speak to your vet if you have any concerns about pregnancy in dogs or about your dog giving birth. Their advice should help to put your mind at rest. Here are some helpful tips from our PetCare Team to help you be as prepared as possible for when your pet becomes a new mum.

A few hours after the dog’s labour

  • Your bitch has not passed all the placentas you would expect (there should be as many as there are puppies).
  • Your bitch shows signs of twitching, nervousness, restlessness and a stiff, painful gait, or seizures, which may be a sign of a calcium deficiency called hypocalcaemia.
  • She has a fever, is unwell with a loss of appetite, is listless or lacks interest in the puppies. Any of these could indicate an infection within her uterus.
  • Your bitch continues to strain after producing all the puppies you were expecting.
  • She May Want You Around Less

    However, it’s also possible that your dog may not want to be around anyone once she goes into labor. This completely depends on your dog’s preference. Some dogs like to go to a secluded area with no one around when they give birth. Some dogs feel safer this way.

    Another common sign of a dog in labor is vomiting. Nausea can ensue when your dog is about to go into labor.

    If you see your dog is vomiting during labor, clean it up and bring her some water, so she does not get dehydrated.

    Contractions in female dogs usually start forty-eight to seventy-two hours before delivering her babies. Sometimes you may hear whining or yelping during contractions. If your dog’s stomach should feel different or very firm, this means she is about to have her puppies.

    What are the first signs of a dog going into labor?