Much like how pregnancy is considered a critical period for humans, dogs also require extra attention and care during their pregnancy stage. Typically, the pregnancy period for dogs is also a time when they are most vulnerable to various health issues, injuries, and other complications. As such, it entails a high degree of cautiousness and mindfulness for owners to ensure that their dog will successfully push through with this challenge. As part of this process, you need to know how to deal with tick bites, how to feed them properly, what exercises should be done, and what things to prepare. With that said, here’s a list of the proper things to do when taking care of your pregnant dog.
Tick prevention and treatment
One of your biggest priorities during this period should be to prevent tick bites as best you can. Ticks carry various transmissible diseases which can affect not only your dog’s health but could also pose dangers to the pups that your dog is carrying. In the worst-case scenario, it could result in an unsuccessful delivery. That being the case, be sure to go the extra mile to prevent ticks from getting to your dog in the first place. Follow vaccination schedules, keep your surroundings clean, and avoid taking your dog to dirty areas. If you observe that your dog is showing signs and symptoms of tick bites, take them to a veterinary clinic for the proper diagnosis and treatment.
Diet and nutrition
Pregnant dogs typically need more calories and nutrients during this stage. Halfway through the pregnancy, your dog will require roughly twice as much caloric intake as compared to the beginning stages of pregnancy. Bearing this in mind, you need to be able to keep track of the amount of food that you feed your dog. Gradually increase the quantity of the food as your dog gets nearer to labor. This diet should be maintained for as long as she is still nursing her puppies. Although your dog should not require any special vitamins or supplements during the pregnancy stage, it would be wise to feed her food that has been formulated for puppy growth. Usually, this means having to feed them with puppy food. Finally, if your veterinarian has given you a specific diet for your dog, be sure to follow that instead as this could be on a case-to-case basis.
You can still continue taking your dog for walks and do other forms of exercise to keep her active. However, you should be mindful of the type of activity that you do. Avoid vigorous activities such as running, jumping, playing fetch, etc. These activities tend to be very physically demanding and tiring which could stress out your dog’s body. Obviously, this would also cause problems for the puppies that she is carrying which could result in injuries, abnormalities, and deformities. As a guide, only stick to mild and light activities within four to six weeks into pregnancy.
Things to prepare
You may begin preparing things for your dog’s labor even at the early stages of her pregnancy. Supplies including a whelping box and whelping pads are essential in keeping your dog safe and comfortable throughout the entire process. Aside from this, you could also prepare other gadgets and tools, such as a thermometer, some absorbent disposable pads, medical-grade gloves, surgical scissors, hand towels, washcloths, antiseptics, and alcohol. You may keep all these things in a custom emergency or first aid kit. Finally, have your local vet’s number at bay if your dog has to deliver her puppies during off hours. In this regard, it is better to be safe than sorry, so you have to be prepared for even the most unexpected scenarios.