Reproductive Season, Heat, Oestrus, And Pregnancy Tests
Puberty or sexual maturity in the female dog usually occurs around six months of age. The smaller breeds tend to go into oestrus 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.
How often does a female dog come into heat?
Most dogs come into heat twice per year, or about every six months, although the interval can vary between breeds and from dog to dog. Small breed dogs may cycle three times per year, while giant breed dogs may only cycle once every 12 months. When young dogs first begin to cycle, it is normal for their cycles to be somewhat irregular. It can take up to two years for a female dog to develop regular cycles. There is no time of year that corresponds to a breeding season for (domesticated) dogs except for Basenjis and Tibetan Mastiffs which typically tend to cycle in the spring.
What Are The Signs Of A Dog In “Heat”?
The most notable sign is vaginal bleeding. This may not become apparent until a few days after the female has actually come into oestrus. Vulvar swelling should be taken as the first sign in addition to the female paying increased attention (such as licking the area) to her rear end.
From the beginning of the heat period she will be attractive to male dogs, but will usually not be receptive, or allow mating, until about 7-10 days later. The discharge will usually become less bloodstained at this time.
Some females experience heavy vaginal bleeding during oestrus. If you are concerned, please consult your veterinarian.
You may also find that she is passing small quantities of urine more frequently. The urine contains both pheromones and hormones which signal any interested males that she will be receptive soon.
How long after bleeding is a dog fertile?
Is your dog pregnant or has she gone into heat for the first time? You are here: