What Time of Day Do Dogs Have Puppies?

by Betty Lewis
    Understanding stages of labor can help pinpoint when to expect puppies.

    Understanding stages of labor can help pinpoint when to expect puppies.

    Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images

    You may be getting antsy waiting for your dog's blessed event, maybe even hoping to schedule time off work to help with the midwifing duties. But Sheba doesn't stick to a schedule. Even if you know the due date, there's no way to know what time of day she'll deliver. Rain or shine, day or night, puppies come when they're ready.

    If you want to be prepared, the best thing to do is be familiar with the signs that Sheba's delivery time is imminent. The average pregnancy length for a dog is 63 days. To get an idea of when she's going to give birth, take her temperature daily beginning two weeks before what you think is her due date. When her temperature drops below 100 degrees Fahrenheit, she should be delivering in the next 24 hours. The first stage of labor lasts from six to 18 hours and is marked by contractions, making her uncomfortable, restless, and potentially whiny. When her water breaks, she's entering the second stage and will begin having her pups. Understanding what the stages are, as well as their timing, will help you be ready to comfort Sheba during her delivery.

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    About the Author

    Betty Lewis is a writer and editor specializing in pet care, animals, careers and emergency management. She previously ran an animal shelter, where she also served as a kennel attendant and dog trainer. Lewis holds a bachelor's degree in journalism, an M.B.A. and a master's degree in professional studies.

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