A dog that is pregnant sitting in front of a door.

How Long Is A Dog Pregnant?

4 mins |

Although there is particular information about our pets that we should ask for from the veterinarian at an appointment, there are general parameters that are useful for us to know to help our dogs have a calm and safe pregnancy. One of these is knowing how long a dog is pregnant. So, how long is a dog pregnant?

Pregnancy in dogs lasts 60 days plus or minus 5 days, so it could be as low as 55 and as high as 65 days. That means you have very little time for pregnancy pictures and memories, and you will have puppies in a very short time.

Before The Pregnancy 

In order to deliver healthy dogs, you should make sure your female and male dogs are healthy animals in excellent body condition by taking care of these points:

  • Physical examinations at least twice a year
  • Keep them updated on preventive medicine such as vaccines
  • Balanced nutrition
  • Continuous exercise

It is also convenient to wait for the second period of the female dog’s life before mating, so her reproductive organs will be mature and better prepared for pregnancy.

After mating, it is important to make a diagnosis of pregnancy too. An ultrasound will do this, which does not pose any risk to the dog mom or fetuses. In order to ensure the result is 100% accurate, have the ultrasound done 23 days after the mating.

During The Pregnancy

A radiograph (for example, an X-ray) should be taken after seven weeks in order to know how many puppies your dog is going to birth. That way you will be prepared for the exact number of babies that are coming.

Food is important too. With well-balanced food that’s energetically and nutritionally complete, you won’t need supplements. Below is a good breakdown of the needed nutrients: 

  • Proteins 27–34%
  • Fat 18–20% including omega-3 and omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids
  • Carbohydrates 20–30%
  • Calcium 1%
  • Phosphorus 0.8%

Also, the first ingredient should be animal meat. It doesn’t matter if it’s salmon, pork, cattle, or chicken meat.

You could check this in the content nutrition table and in the list of ingredients of the dry dog food.

How Long Is A Dog Pregnant?

Pregnancy in dogs lasts 60 days with a plus or minus of 5 days. So, the pregnancy could last anywhere from 55 days to 65 days.

Compared to other mammals, like humans, this is a short time. That is why it is very important to get the ultrasound done to confirm the pregnancy and the radiography to be prepared to determine the exact amount of pups.

Delivery Day

A pregnant dog getting checked out by a veterinarian.
Hope she’s doing okay!

Always follow the instructions of the veterinarian, and ask for all the information you need to help your dog. Here are some things for you to consider if the assistance of a veterinarian is needed during the delivery: 

  • Normal parturition (the act of giving birth) is between 6 and 24 hours, possibly up to 36 in a primiparous or very nervous dog
  • Although there may be a longer interval between the first and subsequent pups, births usually occur every 15 to 120 min, depending on the size and breed of the mother and the number of puppies
  • The placental expulsion occurs immediately or within 15 min after the birth of each pup, however, several placentas may be delivered at once

After The Pregnancy

Healthy dogs normally don’t have complications after the delivery. Focus on making sure your dog is eating and drinking regularly. It is important you provide a special and clean space for the new family to be calm and comfortable, with a big bed for the new mom and her pups, fresh water, and enough food available.

However, if you notice fresh blood in the vulva, the mom vomits, or she becomes apathetic and does not take care of her puppies, you should go to your veterinarian to get her examined.

First Care To The Puppies

Wean puppies at 3-4 weeks of age. Many puppies will start to eat solid food before this by exploring where they live and finding their mother’s food. In the first days of solid food, you can soak their kibble in water to allow them to chew more easily.

Your dog will teach her puppies how to eat, play, and socialize. That is why it is important they stick together for at least 8 weeks.

With the advice of the veterinarian, you should plan the vaccine schedule before weaning the pups.

Key Takeaways: How Long Is A Dog Pregnant?

Being part of the arrival of a new life is always magnificent. There is the knowledge that only veterinarians possess in these areas, but learning as much as you can before mating dogs will assure you will have healthy dogs. It will also help you to know when something goes wrong and if professional help is needed. 

So, what do you think? What surprised you or didn’t surprise you the most? Let us know your thoughts and why in the comments below!

Mexican Veterinarian, born in Guadalajara. I am a passionate reader, I like all kinds of literature, scientific, romantic and mysterious are my favorite topics. Since I was a little girl I loved be arround dogs, even as a young girl I was curious about animals so it became pretty obvious what will be my profesion, I graduated in 2019 from Universidad Nacional Autonoma de México (UNAM) and started working at public and private clinics for small animals.