Great Danes are large dogs with powerful muscles, yet they are friendly, courageous and graceful. Their regal appearance gives them an elegance and dignity lacking in other breeds, yet they are a dependable loving pet. There are ways to detect pregnancy in your Great Dane and to make this large canine friend as comfortable as possible during her pregnancy.
Early Visit With a Veterinarian
A veterinarian should be able to tell if your Great Dane is pregnant by gently feeling her abdomen for the presence of bumps within three to four weeks after the mating occurs, according to the Alabama Cooperative Extension website. Taking an x-ray may be necessary if nothing is felt by palpating the abdomen. The vet will also be able to tell you if your dog needs different foods or supplements during the pregnancy.
Abdomen Growth Midway Through the Gestation Period
The gestation period in dogs is anywhere from 56 to 66 days, but on average it take about 63 days. Around the fourth week of pregnancy the dog's abdomen will start to enlarge and will be firm to the touch.
The dog's appetite may decrease at the beginning of the pregnancy yet will return to normal about midway through the gestation period. The appetite should increase toward the end of gestation and your dog can safely eat up to one and a half times her normal food amount.
Your canine may act lethargic, take naps more often or become more affectionate than normal in the beginning stages of the pregnancy. This is similar to morning sickness in women during their first trimester of pregnancy.
The area around the dog’s nipples will begin to swell and enlarge as the dog's body readies itself for milk production in the last few weeks of her pregnancy, according to the dog-obedience-training-review.com website.