What you need to know before breeding your dog
Thinking of breeding your dog?
If you are considering letting your dog have a litter of puppies, there are important questions that you will need to ask yourself before proceeding:
- Can I devote at least eight weeks of my time to raising a litter of puppies?
- Do I have suitable accommodation for raising a litter of puppies?
- Can I afford to pay for the recommended health tests for the bitch prior to mating her and, where necessary, her litter?
- Do I know enough to help the bitch during the whelping, if necessary?
- Can I afford to pay for a caesarean should the dam have difficulty while giving birth?
- Could I cope with a very large litter e.g 10 or 12 puppies?
- Do I have sufficient knowledge to rear the litter correctly, including on worming, vaccinations and socialisation?
- Would I be able to find good homes for the puppies?
- Am I in a position to take back or re-home any puppies if it becomes necessary?
If you have not been able to say yes to all of the above questions, then dog breeding may not be for you. You may therefore wish to consider having your bitch spayed to prevent unwanted or unplanned pregnancies; call Folly Gardens Vets to book an appointment to discuss the options further with one of our vets.
Still a yes?
If you feel confident about the above, please bear in mind that the Kennel Club's guide on responsible dog breeding is as follows:
- Responsible dog breeders believe that each litter that they breed, should be an improvement on the parents.
- Responsible dog breeders give careful consideration to health issues, temperament and soundness.
- Responsible dog breeders plan ahead of each mating so as to ensure that each puppy produced will be bred in the best possible environment.
- Responsible dog breeders accept responsibility for a puppy which they have bred, and make themselves available to give advice, help and information to new owners.
Before going ahead with the mating
There are a few things you should consider prior to going ahead and mating your dam:
- Ensure your dam is microchipped and all the information is up to date and correct.
- Ensure your dog is healthy and suitable (especially in temperament) to whelp a litter. You are welcome to make an appointment with the vet for a full health examination and to gain advice of the whelping and rearing stages.
- Confirm both the dam and sire’s vaccines are up to date, that they have been wormed recently and the flea control is up to date.
- Carry out all relevant health checks e.g. hip scoring, elbow grading, eye testing and DNA testing for Kennel club registered dogs especially. Ask Folly Gardens about these schemes if you are unsure.
- Ensure that the health status of the proposed stud dog is satisfactory.
Before the Whelping
To confirm pregnancy, we offer a consultation and ultrasound scan. We can look to see if there are any foetuses, although we will not be able to confirm the number. We can also answer any questions you may have as well as agree a suggested due date.
- Decide what whelping facilities, including bedding, are most appropriate for you and your dam.
- Ensure that you have the necessary equipment to deal with the whelping. Please speak to one of our vets if you require any further information.
- Ensure you have Folly Gardens Vets contact telephone number on hand should you need it during the whelping phase.
You are welcome to book an appointment shortly after birth for a full health examination of each puppy as well as the mother.
Arrange an appointment to microchip all the puppies prior to 8 weeks of age. We are happy to vaccinate the puppies from 6 weeks of age and microchip at the same time as a providing a full Health examination certificate.
Reference: The Kennel Club