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Saturday, October 18, 2008

Reproduction of Dogs

Although our pet named “Cutie” is still a certified virgin (no joke!), she still have a working reproductive system which is evident when she has monthly menstruation. From my own observations, she is like a normal human female during her menstrual periods. My Titas normally notice her change in mood from very active and hyper from a ‘dalagang Filipina’ drama. She just sits under the sofa all day and she doesn’t even want to go out and bark at other people and try catching motorcycle riders which she usually does.

One thing that also amuses us is the also discharges red fluid from her vagina. We concluded that it’s her menstruation. When these times happen I could see my Titas looking very pity. They would normally say if only there are sanitary napkins for dogs they would surely buy some. The only things they could do is follow the tracks of red ‘blood’ from the floor Cutie left.

Well these are other important information about the reproduction of Dogs both male and female. I hope these would help some amateur people gain knowledge that would help them out in taking good care of their loved askals:


Breeding interval
Domestic dogs can reproduce at approximately six month intervals, though usually less frequently.

Breeding season
Breeding can occur throughout the year.

Number of offspring
1 (low); avg. 6

Gestation period
63 days (average)

Age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female)
6 to 12 months

Age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male)
6 to 12 months

Reproduction in domestic dogs is generally manipulated by humans. Feral males tend to compete amongst themselves for access to receptive females. Some feral domestic dog populations have reverted to ancestral habits where a single male and female pair (the alpha animals) dominate mating in a small, family group, or pack. Other pack members help to care for the offspring of the dominant pair.

Mating systems:
monogamous ; polygynandrous (promiscuous) ; cooperative breeder .

Domestic dogs have a gestation period of 9 weeks, after which anywhere from 1 to dozens of puppies can be born, depending on the breed and nutritional status of the mother. Average litter sizes are from 3 to 9 puppies. Male and female dogs usually reach puberty between 6 and 12 months of age; however, the time that a dog actually breeds depends on many social factors, ranging from size of breed (larger dogs need more time before they are ready to breed) and level of confidence a dog must attain before being ready to breed.

Most breeds are seasonally monocyclic, showing signs of heat every 6 months or so. The reproductive cycle has four stages: anestrus, proestrus, estrus, and diestrus. The anestrus period lasts about 2 to 4 months. Proestrus is the time when a bloody discharge first appears in a female. This is the beginning of "heat," a period that usually last 9 days but that can last up to 28 days. The end of this period is marked by the female's acceptance of a male partner. Estrus is the period when the female is sexually receptive and breeding can occur. Ovulation occurs about 24 hours after the acceptance of the male. Ova survive and are capable of being fertilized for about 4 days after ovulation; therefore it is possible for a female to mate with more that one male. Diestrus follows estrus in the nonpregnant cycle, characterized by a state of "pseudopregnancy", which is followed by a return of the uterus and ovaries to the anestrus, resting state.

Key reproductive features:
iteroparous ; year-round breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; viviparous .

Females nurse and care for their puppies until they are weaned at about 8 to 10 weeks of age. In feral domestic dog packs, puppies are cared for by all members of the pack.

Parental investment:
altricial ; male parental care ; female parental care

reference: Dewey, T. and S. Bhagat. 2002. "Canis lupus familiaris" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed September 14, 2008 at

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