Household supplies that you should have on hand — in case you need to assist with the puppies’ birth. All dogs, regardless of breed, pass through various stages as they grow and develop, physically, mentally, and psychologically. Characteristics of pregnancy in dogs. Psychologists use the term critical period to describe a specific time in a dog’s life when certain experiences have a lasting effect upon their psychological development. The gestation in a dog has a duration which is close to 64 days, and which consists of two phases: The first phase of pregnancy: Until the 43rd day, it concerns the development of the embryo. A dog's cycle consists of four distinct stages, but she can only get pregnant during the estrus period. First Stage of Dog Labor (Cervical dilation) The first stage of dog labor takes place when the dog’s first contractions take place. At this stage of development, begin to limit rough play and particularly strenuous exercise in your dog. The Diestrus Stage — Pregnancy (or not) This third stage is the period following mating, it commonly lasts 58 to 63 days in a pregnant female and 60 to 90 days in a non-pregnant female. No weight gain is usually seen in the dog during this stage. One general rule that Doberman owners use to remember the growth rate of the average Doberman is “ten pounds every month.” That means they should weigh 20 pounds at two months of age, 30 pounds at three months of age, 40 pounds at four months, and so on. Let’s rejoin our unborn puppies four weeks after fertilization. Day 7: Embryos will move to the uterine horns. The stages of dog pregnancy. This may take up 12 to 24 hours. The fourth week of foetal development is considered to be one of the most formative stages of the pregnancy, when the growing puppies are most vulnerable to damage and developing defects. During this stage, the dog’s cervix opens and her reproductive tract starts relaxing. Female dogs usually experience their first heat cycle at about the age of 6 months, although that initial estrous cycle often occurs considerably later in certain breeds. Stage 1: Contractions begin, and the cervix becomes dilated and softened. The 3 stages of dog labor. Dog sperm will reach an ovum on day 4 (48 to 73 hours). This guide on the dog’s stages of labor depicts a normal, uneventful labor so that you know what is going to happen. However, there are larger breeds that mature later (at 18 months). The 4 week pregnant dog: days 21 – 27. They continue to grow, and will begin to move around inside while mama’s body prepares for the delivery. Stages Of A Dog Giving Birth . The heat cycle in dogs, also known as estrus is the time female dogs can mate and get pregnant.The very first heat cycle typically occurs when the female dog reaches sexual maturity, approximately at 6 to 12 months old. You may or may not even notice Stage 1 taking place. 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