It’s an exciting (and apprehensive) time when your female pet dog is expecting its new babies later in the year! Dogs have a fairly rigid pregnancy process, and a simple dog pregnancy calculator can help you to predict their due date and prepare for your new arrivals!
There’s a lot to be done when puppies are expected, so having an accurate idea of the delivery date can help you to prepare your home for the influx of adorable yet needy pups that are on the way.
In this article, we take a look at the best ways to tell if your dog is pregnant before demonstrating a simple yet effective dog pregnancy length calculator to predict the due date!
Is my dog pregnant?
It can often be difficult to know if your dog is pregnant or not. From the first mating date, there might not be any visible signs for several weeks - and it’s entirely possible that you won’t realize until just a few weeks before the puppies are actually due!
You can avoid the worst surprises by knowing what to look out for when your dog is pregnant. After all, the earlier you know in the dog pregnancy calendar, the sooner you can start preparing for the puppies.
Look out for the following signs:
- Sudden gain of weight and an increase in appetite
- Enlarged or discolored nipples
- Visibly swollen belly
- Morning sickness
- Low energy, lack of interest in activities
- Sudden changes in mood
- Attempts to build ‘nests’ or birthing areas
A female dog can give birth at any point in their life, but it’s more likely to happen when they are younger (roughly between the ages of 2 and 6 years old). If your dog falls within this age range, it’s a good idea to keep an eye out for signs of pregnancy.
In addition, female dogs also go through a regular heat cycle. This occurs roughly once every six months. This is a three-week period when a female dog is most fertile, and pregnancy is likely to occur if male dogs are around. You might not know exactly when this is, but watch out for signs of activity, mate-seeking, or a pinkish discharge.
How long are dogs pregnant?
Dog pregnancy is always a stressful time (for both the female dog and for the owners), but you can somewhat alleviate the stress if you know when the puppies are expected. This is the basis of any due date calculator, so it’s important to be accurate.
So, how long is a dog pregnant?
The gestation period for dogs is approximately nine weeks or 63 days from the date she first mated. This gestation period can vary slightly but isn’t likely to be any less than 58 days or any more than 68 days.
It’s easy then to formulate a dog pregnancy due date calculator to predict the delivery date. But only, of course, if you know roughly when your dog first became pregnant.
Dog pregnancy calculator
A dog pregnancy timeline calculator is an easy yet accurate way to predict the due date. As we already mentioned, though, you need to have a rough idea of when your dog first became pregnant.
If you are breeding your dogs, then you should have a good idea of when this occurred (you may have even caught them in the act!). If not, you can often guess by looking back and recalling when your dog may have been in heat or when they may have had an opportunity for an encounter that you didn’t see.
Canine pregnancy is fairly predictable, after this, and so a simple dog pregnancy calculator goes as follows:
Date of first mating + 63 days = Due date of your new puppies!
How accurate is the dog pregnancy calculator?
It’s a simple formula, but it’s surprisingly effective if you do know the mating date or have a rough idea of when mating occurred.
Of course, no pregnancy is ever entirely predictable. Larger litters can take longer to be born, while some pups might not want to come out when they are supposed to! The pregnancy calculator does give you a good window of time, however, in which to make adequate preparations for the arrival of your new puppies.
But what happens if you don’t know the mating date? Things get a little more complex, but there are still ways to calculate the due date if you suspect your dog is pregnant.
- Palpation Test: your vet can administer this test after 28 days of pregnancy to confirm that your dog is pregnant.
- Ultrasound: your vet can administer an ultrasound to look at the size (and health) of the puppies. From this, they can estimate when they are due.
- X-ray: your vet can perform an x-ray to spot puppies and judge their due date once they are well-formed enough to be seen.
If you do suspect that your dog is pregnant, but aren’t sure how far along they are, then the best option is to take a trip to the vet. They’ll be able to run tests and make surprisingly accurate calculations to predict the due date. They’ll also be able to offer valuable insight into the canine pregnancy process and what to expect when the puppies are born.
How to help your dog through pregnancy
The dog gestation period is rather short compared to human pregnancy, so the due date can come about rather quickly! It’s important to be prepared early on so you know how to help your pet through the pregnancy, to deliver happy, healthy pups.
Here are a few tips and tricks to get you and your dog through the pregnancy process:
- Nutrition and hydration are incredibly important, so ensure that your dog has access to lots of food and lots of water. Pregnant dogs are hungry, and they’ll need up to 50 percent more food than usual to ensure their pups are healthy when born.
- Help your pregnant dog out by installing a bed ramp for dogs to help them onto the sofa, up the stairs, or around the home. This is a tiring time for her, so try to make daily tasks and movements easier!
- Limit exercise, particularly if your pregnant dog is already struggling to get around the house. While exercise is still important, long, intense walks are unnecessary and discomforting.
- Set up a whelping box for your pregnant dog. This is where they’ll gravitate to when they are expecting and where the puppies themselves will likely be born, so they should get used to it early on.
You also need to start thinking about the welfare of the puppies too. Before their arrival (while you have time on your hands!), start investigating puppy training methods and working out how best to potty train and house train them.
You’ll need to invest in new crates, new leashes, and work out when they can be vaccinated, walked, and socialized. If you’re planning on selling or giving puppies away, it’s good to start finding new owners who might be interested in raising them.
Remember, if you’re ever overwhelmed or concerned, take your pregnant dog to the vets for a check-up and for some sage advice from the professionals.
Dog pregnancy calculator: the final stage
Dog pregnancy calculators are a great way to predict when your new puppies are going to be delivered, although if you don’t know the mating date, you’ll need your vet to run a few tests and checks, too.
It’s worth having the dog calculator. Pregnancy can be a stressful time. Knowing when the puppies are going to be born helps you to make preparations for their arrival and for their future. You can prepare the home for the new litter, start searching for new owners to take them on, and line up potential start dates for potty training, house training, vaccinations, and eventually, puppy training classes.
If your dog is expecting, then why not use our dog pregnancy calculator to predict their due date?