You might be wondering ” How Long Does A Dog Stay In Heat ? “. Dogs are one of the most trustworthy pets one can ever have. They can become a part of your life within minutes and you would not even know when you fell in love with them. However, having a dog as a pet needs you to be well informed and updated towards various conditions that dogs are induced with at different stages of their lives. Only being a dog lover would not help you. You must have ample knowledge in context of dogs. One of the conditions that are very important to be known with is heat conditions in dogs. This is when you wonder how long does a dog stay in heat? Well, heat cycles are an essential part of the reproductive system of dogs. Nevertheless, it should be kept in mind that heat conditions are prevalent only in female dogs and not male dogs. If your male dog is having heat, he might be suffering from a disease or he might be a female dog mistaken for a male dog. Make sure you have clear and substantial knowledge regarding such conditions. It would spare you the efforts of visiting a vet every time your dog has a problem.
How Long Do Dogs Stay In Heat?
The heat stage is very important in a female dog’s life. It consists of various stages and is connected to hormonal changes in body which is mainly concerned with the reproductive system of the female dog. This is the time when they are getting ready for breeding and producing its young ones. At this stage of heat, the female dogs are highly receptive and are in desire of mating with its partner i.e. a male dog. If you are well updated with the heat cycle, there are ample chances of you controlling the process of its reproduction because having unwanted puppies in your house can be a real mess. There are certain queries regarding heat conditions that almost every dog owner has. Here is everything you need to be updated about the dogs in heat cycle:
Here is the answer to your question — how long does a dog stay in heat. Understand that this cycle usually continues for a period of long twenty one days. However, it can differ with variations in dogs. The cycle can last for a period of seven days too or it can continue for twenty one days. It all depends on the kind of dog you have. The average cycle of heat in female is supposed to be of six months which makes it quite clear that they can be induced with heat two times a year. Having the knowledge of different phases that are a part of this 21 days period will help you know that which phase of the cycle your dog is in and provide you with the opportunity to evaluate the overall situation and prepare yourself. The heat cycle is usually divided into 4 different phases. They are explained below:
At what age do female dogs go into heat?
This is the stage when the process of heating begins. It continues for a period of 5 to 7 days. However, in certain female dogs it can last for a period of 9 days too. You can get an idea of the initiation of the stage by seeing a visual change in the vulva because of its swelling. Though, the swelling of vulva can begin one week before the start of bleeding too. In addition, there are certain symptoms that are visible if the dog is facing the heat:
- A Drastic Change In Behavioral Traits: If the dog is in heat cycle, there are certain mood swings that she is induced with. It can range from mild and severe mood changes. At times you can witness the dog being very soft and affectionate towards her owner. At the other hand, she can be seen to be angry or irritated and at another times they just show an extended behavior towards their normal behavior.
- Change In Desire For Food: The food habit of the dog changes to an extent. She can be seen not feeling much hungry when the food is given to her. If you witness such changes, you can understand the sign of her being in the heat period. Furthermore, there are times when the dog has increased craving for the food and she can be seen wandering in search of food everywhere.
- Swelled Vulva: The heat leads to the swelling of vulva which can vary from one dog to another. In some the swelling is slight and in others the swelling is quite visible. The swelling can be seen increasing above the pelvic and around the anus.
- Discharge Of Blood From The Vulva: Heat cycle is very evident from the bleeding that takes place in the dog. The bleeding is mild in the beginning and grows heavier within few days of the cycle.
- Tucking Of The Tail: The dog in the heat cycle tries to protect its swelled vulva either by covering the vulva with its tail or either by sitting when some other dog tries to touch the swelled area.
This stage begins in the second week of the heat cycle. This is the period when the process of reproduction actually starts. The ovaries initiate the discharge of eggs for the process of fertilization. Some of the common symptoms visible during this period are:
- Discoloured discharge of blood: The blood released during this period changes from red to a slight pinkish shade which makes the beginning of estrus period evident.
- The viva tends to soften: The swelling of the viva slows down and helps the dog in the process of dissemination.
- Trying to attract the male counterpart: Since, the female dog is completely ready for mating by this time, she tries to attract the male dogs by inducing into enticing manners. She can been showing her rear to the male dogs and moving her tail upwards so that she can catch the attention of her partner. During this stage, the chances of complete mating are at its highest.
The week three of the heat cycle leads to the end of the reproductive cycle. It can be found by resorting to symptoms like:
- The slowing down of swelling in vulva: This period embarks the end of the swelling at vulva. The vulva resorts to its normal shape and size. Though, the original size tends to restore by the end of first week itself but the third week leads to the complete restoring of the vulva as it was originally.
- Decreased flirting: This period leads to a complete change in the mood of the female dog. She is no more interested in flirting, leave alone mating. It does not matter if she is reproducing or not.
- Decreased flow of blood: The blood which has turned pinkish in the second week turns to be back to its red colour and the discharge of blood also slows down a lot by the end of third week.
This is the last and final stage of the heat cycle. If the mating does not lead to pregnancy, the female dog supposedly goes in the phase of anestrus which is a resting period for her. It continues for a period of five to eleven months. The dog doesn’t resort to any activity during this period. They remain inactive and resort back to the initial stage of poestrus after an ample amount of rest to begin their heat cycle again from the start.
Other Questions Related To Dog’s Heat
How Many Times Does A Female Dog Resort To Heat?
Usually the heating process happens twice a year which varies from the period of 5 to 9 months. However, there are certain breeds of dogs that resort to heating just once a year. It should be kept in mind that it is not any sign of abnormality. Some dogs are that way by default.
At what age do female dogs go into heat?
The heat cycle begins once the dog has reached the age of sexual maturity. It can be at the age of 6 months or 12 months. However, dogs who are larger in size may lead to the beginning of heat cycle at the age of 14 months too. It is perfectly normal and there should be no worry in the mind of the owner of dog if the dog does not breed for 2 years.
What Is The Age When The Heat Cycle Ends Permanently?
Dogs do not have any permanent end of the heating cycle. However, the age factor can increase the gap between heating periods. It is usually visible in dogs that have attained the age of 6 years. Furthermore, this depends totally on the individual dog in accordance with the breed they belong to.
Are There Chances Of Pregnancy In The First Heat Cycle Itself?
The heat cycle begins only when the dog has reached the stage of sexual maturity so there are possible chances of it getting pregnant in the first mating. However, pregnancy midst the first heat cycle is not advisable.
Are The Chances Of Heat Cycle Initiation More In The Season Of Spring?
There is no particular season where the chances of heat cycle commencement are high. It totally depends on the inner self of the dog. They are not like cats that need daylight hours to mate. They can mate at any time. So, if you are the owner of a male dog. You might find female dogs in the mood of mating wandering around your dog.
Is Delay In Heat Cycle A Matter Of Worry?
It is quite normal if your dog does not become reproductive for the first two years. There is nothing unusual about it. It is found to be very common in dogs with big breed. However, if the heat cycle does not begin even after a period of two years, it is a matter of worry. You must immediately consult your vet and make him updated towards your dog’s condition so that he can provide the possible remedy for the dog.
Are Abrupt Heat Cycles Abnormal?
Usually the heat cycle continues for a period of 21 days. However, in some dogs it is seen that the cycle ends abruptly mid ways. It’s not a matter of worry as the chances are that it shall begin again within few days. Abrupt heat cycles are usually found in young aged bitches.
What Is The Period Of Bleeding During The Heat Cycle?
The first phase of heat cycle accelerates the bleeding process which continues for a period of 7 days. Though the bleeding ends in 7 days usually but, in some dogs in can resort to a period of 17 days too. After the end of this stage, the bleeding slows down and the color of blood converts a slight pinkish tone from the usual red shade.
How To Observe A Dog In Heat?
There are certain visible symptoms that make the emergence of heat cycle very evident. Loss of appetite, mood swings, swelled vulva, and discharge of blood are some of the common symptoms visible. If your dog has long hair, it is possible that you might not be able to see the vulva swelling. So, it is always advisable to take your dog to a vet and carry necessary veterinary test to make it clear that whether the heat cycle has started or not.
Can The Other Symptoms Be Mistaken For The Heat Cycle?
If you are a new owner of a female dog, you might start worrying when she starts bleeding for the first time. There are symptoms when the dog won’t stop crying. You can always consult a vet for clearing out your apprehensions and get yourself updated regarding the same. The owners who already have witnessed the dog’s heat cycle know how normal it is.
How To Know That The Heat Cycle Is Over?
To analyze the end of heat cycle is not an easy task. You should wait for few more days as precaution after the cycle has ended.
Summary: Keeping yourself updated regarding your dog’s heat cycle will help you understand her better and you would be able to take care of her properly.