Cats and Dogs
Article Rating
1 звезда2 звезды3 звезды4 звезды5 звезд

How many minutes does dog mating last?

Reproductive cycle

The heat cycle of the female lasts from 18 to 21 days. The first stage is called proestrus. It begins with mild swelling of the vulva and a bloody discharge. This lasts for about 9 days, although it may vary by 2 or 3 days. During this phase the bitch may attract males, but she is not ready to be bred and will reject all advances. The next phase is the estrus. Usually the discharge decreases and becomes lighter, almost pink, in colour. The vulva becomes very enlarged and soft, and the bitch will be receptive to the male. This stage may last 3 or 4 days or as long as 7 to 11 days. The female may be receptive a day or two past the time when she would still be fertile. In order to be sure that the breeding is taking place at the optimum time, vaginal smears and blood tests can be done by a veterinarian beginning before estrus and through the estral phase.

At about the 14th day, or whenever estrus ends, the final, or luteal, stage of the cycle begins; this stage is called diestrus. The discharge becomes redder, the vulva returns to its normal size, and the bitch will no longer accept the male for mating. When all signs of discharge and swelling are absent, the heat is complete. The diestrus stage lasts 60 to 90 days (if no pregnancy has occurred) or until the bitch gives birth. She then enters anestrus, which is the time frame between the end of the last cycle and the beginning of the next proestrus.

Canine males are always fertile from the onset of their sexual adolescence, usually after six months of age. Larger-breed males may take a few months longer to become sexually mature. Males are usually promiscuous and are willing to mate with any available female.

golden retriever: nursing

Yorkshire Terrier

Males produce far more sperm than is needed to impregnate the ova that are released during estrus. Small-breed bitches usually produce small litters. Two or 3 puppies in a breed such as a Yorkshire terrier is considered the norm. Large-breed litters can have as many as 10 or 12 puppies, although the normal bitch can suckle up to 8 at a time.

More From Britannica
Are Dogs Smarter than Cats?

Gestation and whelping

The normal gestation period is 63 days from the time of conception. This may vary if the bitch has been bred two or three times or if the eggs are fertilized a day or two after the mating has taken place. Eggs remain fertile for about 48 hours. Sperm can live in the vaginal tract for several days. In order to determine if a bitch is pregnant, a veterinarian can manually palpate her abdomen at about 25 days after breeding. Ultrasound also can be done at that time. At about 40 days X rays will confirm pregnancy.

Most bitches whelp normally. However, the large-headed, short-bodied breeds and the toy breeds often must undergo cesarean sections in order to deliver live puppies.

Reproductive capacity

Both males and females are fertile well into their advanced age. It is generally considered best for the bitch to be bred for the first time upon maturity but not before her second or third heat cycle, depending on her age at the first. Because small breeds mature more quickly, they can be bred at an earlier age than large breeds. A bitch will have less difficulty in conceiving and carrying a litter if she is bred before the age of five. As she becomes older, litter size generally decreases. After the age of seven, bitches are likely to have small litters and experience problems in delivering the puppies. Veterinarians feel that bitches generally should not be bred after that age.

Males can be bred as long as they are fertile, although with age the motility and quantity of sperm decrease.


The dog is a social creature. It prefers the company of people and of other dogs to living alone. It is, therefore, considered by animal behaviourists to be a pack animal. In this respect it is similar to its distant relative the wolf. As a result of millennia of selective breeding, the dog has been adapted to live with people. Seminal studies of dog behaviour conducted in the 1950s and ’60s showed, however, that dogs raised without human contact at an early age retain their inherent instincts and prefer relationships with other dogs over associations with people.

Territory and range

Both dogs and wolves are territorial animals. Wolf packs, because of their need to hunt game, claim large territories as their own, whereas dogs claim their territories based on the limitations of their owners. Male wolves and dogs mark their territorial boundaries by urinating and rubbing their scent on the ground or on trees to warn other animals of their presence.

When on neutral ground, that which is not considered by either dogs or wolves to be their home territory, strangers greeting each other will go through formal rituals of sniffing, marking, tail wagging, and posturing. Unless they are claiming the same prey or are engaged in courting the same female, such interactions are usually terminated by each going its own way. Females will attack strangers in neutral territory to protect their young, however.



Both dogs and wolves have a repertoire of barks, growls, and howls that are identifiable among themselves and to humans who have studied their vocabulary. Dog owners can determine by certain sounds whether their pet is playful, warning of a stranger nearby, fearful, or hurt. One of the earliest signs that puppies are becoming social and independent creatures within the litter are the yips and barks that they make while playing with one another. Dogs, unlike wolves, will growl if cornered or fearful. Certain breeds of dogs, notably hounds, have been bred to enhance the howling instinct when they are on the trail of game. Some of the northern breeds, such as the Siberian husky, howl rather than bark. At the other end of the spectrum, the basenji does not bark but rather emits a yodeling sound when it is happy.

Behavioral development

Canine behaviour is a combination of instinct and environment. Dogs are born with certain innate characteristics that are evident from birth. Puppies are born blind and deaf, totally dependent on the dam for warmth and nourishment. The dam will instinctively suckle and protect her young, often keeping other dogs and all but the most trusted people away from the whelping box. Between 10 and 14 days after birth, the eyes and ear canals open, and the puppies begin to move actively around their nest. As they grow, they become more curious and start to investigate their surroundings independently. The dam will begin to leave them alone briefly. During this phase they relate most intensely to their littermates and dam and may become unhappy at being removed from their familiar surroundings. This stage of development lasts about 20 days and is the first of four critical periods.

Beginning at three weeks of age, the most adventurous puppies will seek ways to get out of the whelping box and will start to investigate the larger world. At this age puppies are receptive to human contact, which is essential if they are to bond with people when they become adults. Dogs left alone from four weeks on will never reach their full potential as pets and will often become independent and more difficult to train than those accustomed to close human contact from an early age. At the same time, during the period between three and seven weeks, it is important that puppies socialize with their littermates and dam. This is when the dam weans her puppies, first by regurgitating some of her own food and then by not allowing her puppies to nurse as often as they would like. At about four weeks of age, puppies can be offered solid food in the form of a soft gruel.

Individual socialization of each puppy in a litter can begin at six weeks of age. This is when puppies begin to be more receptive to handling and attention.

The third critical period in a puppy’s development is from 7 to 12 weeks. It has been shown in studies undertaken at various breeding kennels that this is the best age to form human-dog relationships. Attachments formed during this period will affect the attitude of the dog toward humans and toward its acceptance of direction and learning. During this period the pack instinct, which has played such an important role in the puppy’s early development, can be transferred to humans. At this time environment becomes a vital part of the dog’s education and training. This is when a human can most easily establish dominance over the dog, becoming the “leader of the pack.” At this age a dog will accept a submissive role more readily than at any other time in its life. Learning comes most readily at this age. Puppies taught basic commands, even if they are not reinforced for several months, will remember them and respond if they are taught during this critical age.

The fourth critical stage in a puppy’s development is between 12 and 16 weeks. At this age the puppy will declare its independence from its mother and will become increasingly daring in its forays from the familiar. Puppy training can begin during this period, and it is a time of rapid physical and mental growth. The permanent teeth begin to emerge at this time, which is often a painful and distractive process. Puppies need to chew during this period, and, if they are not provided with appropriate teething toys, they will use any available hard object, such as furniture. Puppies at this age may be less willing to cooperate or respond to new commands.

A dog’s personality continues to develop during its entire maturing process and will undergo radical changes while the dog matures sexually and physically. Dogs mature sexually earlier than they do emotionally. Their personalities develop more slowly than their bodies, much like humans but unlike wolves, whose personalities and sexuality develop more harmoniously.

At about seven or eight months many puppies tend to go through a period of anxiety. They are insecure, frightened of strangers, and will appear timid. If this is not an inherited trait, it will disappear within a few months. If it is inherited, that condition will remain and may become accentuated with time.

How Many Times Should a Dog Mate to Get Pregnant?

Breeding is a passion for many dedicated pet owners that want to preserve their dog’s bloodline.

For the most part, nature takes its course in dog breeding; however, there are many things to learn if you want your dog to perform well.

The whole process is a complex combination of science, art, and devotion.

Responsible breeding is a challenging yet exciting task.

Breeding purebreds is even more time-consuming and expensive. Improving the breed should be the only underlying goal in any breeding scenario.

If you are new to dog breeding and you noticed how some people do it with ease it’s because they took their time to study their breed, study dog reproduction, perform training and exercise and provide wellness for their pets.

In this article, we will discuss the act of mating and provide answers to some of the questions popping around frequently.

How Many Times Should Dogs Mate to Get Pregnant?

A total of 3 matings is considered to be sufficient by most experts in the field. After the female starts accepting the male, mating every other day for 6 consecutive days will most likely lead to pregnancy.

Three dogs are mounting each other in a park.

A female dog will let a male mount her during the fertile part of her heat cycle – the estrus.

Estrus takes place somewhere between the 3rd and 21st day if you start counting from the first day the female dog starts bleeding. The average is on the 9th day.

In most cases, the bleeding stops when the female becomes fertile and the red discharge is replaced with straw-colored fluid.

This stage is also called the ‘standing heat’ because besides allowing male dogs to mount the females flag their tails as well.

How Many Days Will a Female Dog Let a Male Mount Her?

The average period during which a female dog lets male dogs mount her is 7 days. However, this is entirely up to the female and varies between individuals. Some females let males mount them for a couple of days and others more than a week.

A small Pomeranian with a rainbow-colored tail is mounting another small dog.

Female dogs mate during the estrus.

Estrus in dogs lasts somewhere between 1 and 3 weeks and it can be shorter or longer for some individuals.

It’s important to know when the female started bleeding so you will know approximately which stage of the heat cycle is on.

Doing hormone testing and evaluation of vaginal smear in the vet’s office can help you distinguish the different stages of dog heat.

Experienced breeders let the dogs breed over a period of 6 days, with 2 to 3 total successful matings being ideal.

Since they want to ensure there is a gap between the matings, the owners often separate the male from the female when a single act of mounting is completed.

Don’t leave the dogs alone and assume they will mate. Observe each time the male and female are together to see if mating occurs and separate them if there are signs of aggression.

There is an old tale that says female dogs mate as much as they want and once they get pregnant their desire to mate vanishes.

That’s completely untrue since female dogs don’t have a way of knowing whether they got pregnant or not.

Some females won’t let males mount them even though they are in their fertile periods.

Situations like that happen when the female is inexperienced, afraid, or unsocial.

Other times, the female’s hormones are out of sync and she won’t stand for the male during her most fertile period.

Sometimes the female simply doesn’t like the male presented to her, but will gladly accept another.

If you try to replace the male and the female is delighted, you fixed the situation.

If not, the only solution to this problem will be assisted/artificial mating which is a whole new can of worms.

Can Dogs Mate More Than Once a Day?

Yes, dogs can mate more than once a day. There are no restrictions when it comes to how many times dogs will attempt to mate during a single day. As long as the female allows it and the male is up for it mating can occur.

Female dogs are more likely to get annoyed soon enough and prevent males from mounting them multiple times during the day.

On the contrary, if given the opportunity a male will likely mate more than once either with a single female or multiple female dogs.

Even though it’s possible, it doesn’t mean that multiple mountings in a single day increase the chances of pregnancy.

A generally accepted thought among breeders is that a male should only be allowed to mate with a female once or twice a day.

Increased frequency of mating can deplete the quality of the male’s sperm and leave him incompetent for the next session following 2 days after.

Owners of expensive males intended for breeding don’t allow mating more than once a day.

There is a significant difference between younger and older male dogs when it comes to the frequency of mating.

Usually, due to a decrease in their libido, older dogs are likely to lose interest in a female faster and refuse to mate more than once or twice.

Chances of Dog Getting Pregnant on First Time

An astonishing 40% of female dogs get pregnant after only one mating session. A single session is enough for a female dog to get pregnant on her very first heat cycle (although not recommended).

Accidental breeding is frequently observed in the first heat cycle of young females even if they are not finished growing.

The chances of getting pregnant after just one try are good news for people that purposely want to breed their dogs, but it’s a complication for someone that cannot take care of an unwanted litter of puppies.

You have to be very vigilant about letting your female pup roam loosely whenever she is in heat.

Dogs are indiscriminate when it comes to mating brothers with sisters, fathers with daughters, and sons with mothers.

Keeping a close eye on them and preventing mounting or taking the dogs to the vet to get spayed and neutered is recommended if you don’t want new puppies roaming around the house.

Male dogs can start with mating very early between 6 and 12 months of age.

Maturity can vary between individual dogs and different breeds. Smaller breeds mature earlier.

On the opposite, some large breed males need 2 years of development to reach maturity.

As your male puppies get older you will notice that they start acting strangely and develop a sudden desire to hump objects around the house (mostly cushions).

Besides this behavior, coming into maturity is also characterized by scenting things with urine.

The first signs of maturity or puberty in female dogs are redness and swelling of the vulva as the most prominent physical sign.

This too happens for the first time between 6 and 12 months of age. Your dog will start licking herself more often and urinate more than usual.

Mating a female dog on her first heat cycle is out of the question.

Females bred on their first heat are not done growing, raising the chance that puppies will be too big for the birth canal and get stuck.

There are certain health risks for both the mother and the pups when bred too early.

Breeding dogs with health or behavioral issues means passing on the genes that can result in behavioral problems like uncontrollable aggression or anxiety.

How Many Times Should Dogs Tie When Breeding?

Since the main purpose of intentional breeding is whelping a litter of healthy puppies, people are often unsure how many times the dogs should tie during the heat.

There aren’t precise numbers of how many times dogs should tie when breeding. Moreover, it’s not necessary for a male and female to tie for pregnancy to occur as a tie between dogs can’t guarantee a pregnancy.

In many cases, females fail to get pregnant after multiple ties with a male.

On the other hand, many dogs get pregnant without a single tie with a male dog.

Not only isn’t a tie that important, but the duration of the tie doesn’t seem to matter as well.

Breeders still find the tie between females and males reassuring.

It’s a form of confirmation that intromission happened and the male discharged his fluids into the female’s reproductive system.

Except for mating, tying too can only happen during the female’s fertile heat stage.

Female and male dogs tie only after intromission (the act of intercourse).

When the male begins thrusting vigorously a part of his copulatory organ called the bulbus enlarges inside the female.

In the meantime, the female dog tightens down and the male dog is trapped for a certain time.

The dogs are locked and while this happens the male continues with the transfer of fluid material to the female.

The average time of a tie is 15 minutes although it can last anywhere between 5 and even 60 minutes in some cases.

Do Dogs Get Pregnant Every Time They Tie?

No, dogs don’t get pregnant every time they tie. A tie doesn’t guarantee that your dog got pregnant at all. Be it a short tie or a long tie – there is no way to know whether there will be a litter of puppies immediately.

Another popular misconception is that the duration of the tie can impact the number of puppies.

The longer dogs remain tied – the bigger the litter will be.

This has been proven to be untrue as well.

Few weeks after mating you can take your dog to the vet to confirm whether she is expecting or not.

Disclaimer: This blog post does not substitute veterinary attention and does not intend to do so. I am not a veterinarian or pet nutritionist. If your dog shows any sign of illness, call your vet.

About Danielle

I am the founder of PawLeaks where I share weekly tips on dog training and behavior. Sharing a passion for dogs and helping owners to solve problems through understanding canine behavior and modification is my number one goal.

How Long Are Dogs Pregnant?

It is an exciting time, and you are about to be a dog grandparent. You need to know what to expect when your pup is expecting.

Dogs are pregnant for about 62 to 64 days, from the day they ovulate to the first day the puppies come into the world. Just like humans, dogs’ bodies change when they are pregnant. They have a decreased appetite, which is similar to morning sickness in a human.

If you think your dog may be pregnant, you should take them to the vet to be sure. If you want to know how long dogs are pregnant, check out this article.

Pregnant Dog Sleeping On Floor

Dogs Are Pregnant on Average for 63 Days

During the first month of pregnancy, dogs experience a loss in appetite. You will likely need to feed them smaller meals throughout the day to lessen the chance of nausea and vomiting. It is one of the signs you want to watch out for concerning your pup and pregnancy. The best approach is to get your dog to the vet and find out so that you can prepare for the arrival of the precious little pups.

Dogs, on average, are pregnant for about 63 days or about two months. Trying to predict the timing of the impending birth may prove difficult because the breeding date does not always match up with the date of conception. The precise length of the pregnancy may also vary with the size of the dog and breed.

During the first month of gestation, the inseminated eggs travel through the long oviducts and then go down to the uterus, where they implant and begin to create puppies. When puppies are ready to be born, they are ejected from the uterus. Like human babies, they come out with their placentas intact. It is quite a miracle to behold the birth of tiny baby pups.

More About the Dog Gestation Period

The date of conception can be difficult to determine in dogs. Sperm can live for several days inside the female. Eggs can stay fertile for up to two days, which means that the mating ritual does not determine pregnancy. It can be challenging to establish the actual date of pregnancy without the skilled assistance of your veterinarian.

Hormone measurements are more accurate to be able to make calculations. Your vet can monitor your dog’s reproductive hormones, which will give you a better idea of how long the pregnancy may be and the potential due date.

Knowing the length of pregnancy is crucial for the health of your pup. If you want to breed your dog, you should work with your vet to figure out the best plan for your pup and her babies.

The Reproductive Cycle in Dogs

Dogs who have not yet been spayed go into heat about every six months, but it is different for the various breeds. The dog’s heat cycle can last for about 18 to 21 days. The heat cycle is grouped into four separate stages:

  • Proestrus
  • Estrus
  • Diestrus
  • Anestrus


Proestrus lasts for about nine days, but sometimes it varies by two or three days. In this phase, the female may attract her canine suitors. However, she is not ready to be bred, and she will reject the male’s advances. Specific symptoms characterize proestrus:

  • Mild swelling of the vulva
  • Bloody discharge

Your female pup’s indifference to males only lasts for so long. In the days leading up to this stage, you may notice that your dog seems nervous and more tired than usual.


Estrus can take anywhere from 3 to 4 or 7 to 11 days. During this time, the female dog becomes interested in the male dog’s attention. The female may be amenable a day or two past the time she would still be in breeding mode. There are defining symptoms of estrus:

  • Less discharge
  • Lighter color discharge (light pink)
  • Enlarged and soft vulva

If you want to make sure that breeding occurs at the opportune time, vaginal smears and blood tests can be performed by the veterinarian. Testing should commence before and during estrus.


Diestrus is the last stage of the cycle. At this point, the female becomes unresponsive to the male and no longer wants to be bothered. There are a couple of distinctive symptoms of diestrus:

  • The discharge becomes redder and diminishes
  • Vulva shrinks back to its original size

Once all the discharge and swelling are gone, the heat is over. However, if the pup becomes pregnant at this time, she will continue with this stage until the pregnancy is over.


At this stage, the dog will need to rest. It typically lasts for about 100 to 150 days. It denotes the end of diestrus and the beginning of the next proestrus stage.

How Can You Tell if a Dog is Pregnant?

Knowing the following signs that your dog may be pregnant does not negate the need for you to take your pup to see the vet for confirmation. However, it can be helpful to have specific symptoms or signs to relay to the vet concerning your dog.

Nipples Get Bigger

Your pup’s nipples will get more prominent if they are pregnant. The hair around their nipples will also become noticeably thinner. If your dog is near to giving birth, there may be milk dripping out of their nipples.

Pup Gains Weight

When your dog is pregnant, the shape of their body will also change. Like humans, pups will also gain some weight. The belly gets bigger and puffs out. Mammary glands become swollen and ready to provide milk.

You Can Feel the Babies

You can put your hand on their belly when your pup is at full term and feel puppies! There may be some movement going on in the womb.

What are Some Other Signs a Dog is Pregnant?

Your pup’s behavior may change as a result of pregnancy. You girl may even show behavioral signs sooner than physical signs. Some of them may include:

  • Decreased Appetite
  • Becoming more clingy or more affectionate
  • Lack of Energy
  • Nesting Behavior (looking for a good place to have birth)

If your dog is looking for a suitable nesting spot, they may scratch at the ground or even drag their bed to different house areas. They do this out of instinct. In the wild, dogs need to locate a safe and private place to give birth and raise her pups. When puppies are first born, they are at their most defenseless and are dependent on their mother for guidance and support.

Rhodesian Ridgeback Nursing Her Puppies In The Garden

How Can I Support My Dog to Prepare for Puppies?

You or your pup will choose a good place for her to have her babies. Make sure she is comfortable and ensure that the designated spot is safe for the puppies. When puppies are first born, their eyes are closed for about ten days. Do not let them wander off to an unsafe area. You will also need to ensure that the puppies are nursing safely.

Ensure that the mother receives the proper nutrition before and during her pregnancy. When you are helping your dog give birth for her first time, you will need to take her temperature rectally 7 to 10 days prior to her due date. Her temperature will fall below 100 degrees farenheit within 24 hours of labor. This temperature decrease lets you know that the puppies will come soon.

When breeding your dog, you should only have them breed after achieving two regular reproductive cycles. Breeding her sooner may cause problems for her and her puppies.

How Long After Giving Birth Can a Dog Be Spayed?

Spaying your dog comes with many benefits. It will protect the dog’s health, and you may have only wanted her to breed puppies once. Once your dog gives birth, they are exhausted. Their body is weak, and it takes time to recover. It is recommended that you wait for at least 6 to 8 weeks before spaying your pup after she gives birth.

It is appropriate to spay your dog if her puppies are eating solid foods and the milk has dried up. You also do not want to spay your dog too early or late. The average age to spay a dog is six months old. If you plan to breed your dog, consult your vet concerning when to spay them once they give birth.


Dogs are usually prenatal for about two months. If you choose to breed your dog one time, then your momma dog can be spayed 6 – 8 weeks after the birth. Fixing your pup if no more babies are expected is good for your dog’s health, and it is the prudent thing to do.

Link to main publication