One of the most special stages in the life of female dogs is pregnancy and childbirth, especially if it is a new mother. During this period, they need all the care and attention you can give to them; the mother’s health determines the puppies’ health. As a new dog owner, you must know the duration your dog will be pregnant to be fully prepared for childbirth.
Like other dog breeds, Chihuahuas’ gestation period and pregnancy are for about two months and three days, approximately fifty-eight to sixty-eight days. On average, it takes about sixty-three days for a female Chihuahua to be pregnant. By day 60 to 65, the dog begins labor.
If you own a female Chihuahua currently in heat and has recently procreated, it is normal you anticipate its pregnancy and, of course, cute puppies soon.
How Long Are Chihuahuas Pregnant?
Pregnancy duration in Chihuahuas is similar to that of other dog breeds. The average period for many female dogs is usually between an average of 58 to 68 days. For a female Chihuahuas, the pregnancy takes about 63 days.
As an owner, you must know that every week becomes very important from the moment your dog gets pregnant. There might be the need for a change in its diet, the rate at which it exercises, checkups and scans, and your vet visits at specific weeks of the pregnancy. We will look at the Chihuahuas pregnancy calendar.
Chihuahuas Pregnancy Calendar
As a Chihuahua owner, you need to understand the Chihuahua pregnancy calendar; this will help you know what to expect during the duration of your dog’s pregnancy. You can prepare better and make available everything necessary for the dog.
This is usually the first week of every dog’s pregnancy, where fertilization of eggs occurs. During the first week, between 0 to 7 days, there will not be any noticeable change in your dog. Its diet and exercise level would remain the same. Although, you might notice some signs of morning sickness in the dog.
During the second week, when the dog is already 7 to 14 days pregnant, the fertilized eggs would begin to move towards the uterus for implantation. Depending on the dog, you may or may not notice changes or signs of pregnancy in your Chihuahua. For instance, you might notice its food or exercise level could be reduced slightly.
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During the third week, implantation, alongside embryo development, would have occurred in your dog between days 14 to 21 of its pregnancy. This means that the dog’s fetuses begin to develop, although they will still be tiny. At this point, you could notice a sign of your female Chihuahua eating more than the previous weeks.
In the fourth week, between days 21 to 28, your Chihuahua is already a month pregnant. During this week, it is important to take your dog to the vet for a checkup. At this point, the vet might be able to feel the movement of the puppies in the Chihuahua, which is also a physical sign of pregnancy. At this stage, other signs of pregnancy begin to appear.
Breast development begins to become noticeable, and the dog would start to grow bigger due to its pregnancy. Also, you could begin to notice the dog vomiting. During this period, you should limit the dog’s exercise to avoid miscarriage. Also, it is likely that your dog Chihuahua would begin to have an increased appetite, thereby eating more.
When your dog is already about 28 to 35 days pregnant, you will need to take the dog to your vet again. This time, the vet would perform an ultrasound scan on your Chihuahua. The fetuses would have developed to the point that the scan could reveal their body well. Also, you would get to know the number of puppies to be expecting.
In the 6th week, between days 35 to 42 old of the Chihuahua’s pregnancy, its tummy would have grown bigger as the puppies continue to develop. At this stage, it is normal for your Chihuahua to have some fluid discharge and might also vomit more. The vomiting could be due to the development of the puppies, thereby causing more pressure against your Chihuahua stomach.
As the pregnancy is about 42 to 49 days old, the puppies are almost fully developed during the 7th week. At this point, the female Chihuahuas breast would have fully developed with milk. Also, if you touch your Chihuahuas’ stomach, you can feel the puppies’ movements. So, you should be anticipating delivery soon.
Once the pregnancy is 49 to 57 days old, which is already 2 months old, the puppies would have been fully developed with fur in the uterus. At this time, ensure you have fully prepared its nesting area for delivery. Do not be surprised if you notice your dog digging or displaying some behaviors that might appear weird to you. Those behaviors are quite normal; it only indicates delivery is around the corner.
This is the final week of the pregnancy; you should expect your Chihuahua to be put to bed anytime soon this week. At this point, make sure you have prepared its nesting area well. The labor time could be between days 60 to 65 and should deliver new puppies. During this period, you could notice your dog appearing very restless and anxious, and your Chihuahua could even be seen crying.
Delivery time can be well known by examining your dogs’ temperature. The normal temperature should be between 100° to 102° Fahrenheit. However, the moment it drops below 100° Fahrenheit to maybe 97° Fahrenheit, your dog will deliver in less than 24 hours.
How Many Puppies Do Chihuahuas Have?
The number of puppies dogs give birth to varies depending on their breeds. In Chihuahuas’ case, they give birth to about one to three puppies on average. However, they can have about five to six puppies in a single litter. You know Chihuahuas are very small dogs, so it is normal not to expect too many puppies. The highest number of puppies born in a litter by a Chihuahua is 11.
Keep reading: Why Do Chihuahuas Shake? How You Can Help
What Should I Feed My Pregnant Chihuahua?
It is normal; your Chihuahua will undergo plenty of changes during pregnancy; the nutritional requirement of the dog will also change. During this period of your Chihuahua’s life, you are expected to provide everything it needs to ensure its safety and wellbeing as well as its litter.
When your Chihuahua gets pregnant, she will lose her appetite; it is normal and only temporary. Appetite will return as the dog’s body cares for the developing puppies. During this period, you might be tempted to change the feeding schedule to fit the altered appetite; you should not.
In the early stage of pregnancy, you should feed the dog meals with 1600 kcal of digestible energy and 22 percent protein. You should increase the dog’s meal by twenty-five percent between the sixth and seventh week, but it should still maintain the energy and protein levels.
By the ninth week of pregnancy, the dog’s appetite disappears again. After the pups are born, the dog’s diet will increase for the next twenty to 30 days. After a month of childbirth, the dog will eat more than before becoming pregnant.
If you are an old dog breeder, you would know how long dogs’ pregnancies take and how to care for them during this period. However, for a first-time dog breeder to properly care for your dogs while pregnant, you must know how long the pregnancy will be and things to anticipate.
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Shawn Manaher is a serial entrepreneur but when he isn’t working, he loves dogs. He’s owned different pets over the years, and always gives a part of his heart to each pet.