When your dog goes into labor, she doesn't exhibit the traditional symptom of "water breaking" that a human does -- she will, however, show other symptoms indicating it's time to whelp. By paying attention to your dog's behavior during the last two weeks or so of her pregnancy, you can determine when labor is about to begin, and when it finally does.
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Signs of Labor
Within 24 hours of the impending birth, your dog's body temperature will drop from above 100 degrees Fahrenheit to below. So, during what should be the last week or two of her pregnancy, take her temperature daily to help you predict the onset of labor. When labor finally begins, her cervix will dilate and contractions will begin. While she can't tell you herself that it's time, her actions do all the talking for her -- she'll be restless and may pace or shiver. She may pant heavily or whimper, as the contractions are painful. When all of this happens, you know she's about to give birth.
By Tom Ryan
About the Author
Tom Ryan is a freelance writer, editor and English tutor. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in English writing, and has also worked as an arts and entertainment reporter with "The Pitt News" and a public relations and advertising copywriter with the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.