Although there can be Labrador Retriever reproduction problems during pregnancy those problems to vary by breed. Labradors are no exception and there are some things you should keep in mind about their reproduction and problems that may occur.
We have a silly and energetic Labrador retriever, Abbie!
We call her A-is-for-Apple-Abbie because she loves apples! Surely, she should have been a horse!
I have two sisters that wanted Labrador retriever puppies so before we had her spayed, we had one litter of pups.
We never had a pregnant dog and we weren’t sure what to expect, but here is what we learned to help you with your Labrador retriever and what reproduction problems are normal for their breed as well as the correct process for Labrador reproduction.
With our Abbie, we took her to our vet to ensure she didn’t have heartworm, fleas, ticks, or any other parasite that might affect her pregnancy.
Our vet also told us she should only gain between 15% and 25% of her total body weight during her pregnancy.
Too much weight for pregnant Labradors can cause heart problems or glucose problems and when the time for delivery comes, your Lab may not be able to handle the birthing process. Once we got a clean bill of health for Abbie, we searched for a good breeder.
Because we wanted to breed Abbie, we wanted to ensure that she had a stud that was free of disease and a strong Labrador breed with a long family line and an expert breeder.
We went through the American Kennel Club (AKC) and found a recommended breeder in our area and off we went. The breeder assured us she would be fine and after mating, we took our pregnant Abbie home with advice from the breeder to have her checked in three weeks by our veterinarian.
Our vet told us about some problems that might occur during birth for Abbie. Things like extreme pain or strong contractions for sixty minutes with no pup were bad things.
If two or more hours elapsed between puppies or if Abbie was over trembling, shivering or collapsed, we know we would have to call our vet. A big sign to watch for was if Abbie passed a dark green or bloody fluid before the birth – this is a common sign of Labrador Retriever reproduction problems.
We also learned if after 70 days of pregnancy with no puppies, we were told to inform our vet. Finally, we were strongly advised not to over feed our dog or give it extra supplements such as Vitamin D or Calcium which can cause uterine inertia.
If uterine inertia occurred in Abbie, she would most likely have to have a C-section to deliver her pups.
If you are concerned about your Labrador retriever and how she will be during her reproduction process, you can ask your vet to keep an eye on her calcium and vitamin D levels.
As we were instructed, we kept track of Abbie’s pregnancy days and began taking her temperature rectally around the 63rd day.
A normal dog’s temp is around 101 to 102 degrees Fahrenheit and on day 67, Abbie had a constant temp of 100 degrees—something that indicated she would be giving birth within 24 hours.
While we thought it would be great for my sisters to watch their new puppies to be come into the world, we did not do this and it’s really not recommended. We had set aside a comfortable and isolated place for Abbie to have her pups with soft music and lighting.
As each puppy came, Abbie gently cleaned up after them (the afterbirth) and cleaned them with her tongue.
Nothing seemed so natural to us and luckily, Abbie didn’t experience any of the Labrador Retriever reproduction problems we were told to look for.
If you are considering breeding your Labrador Retriever, make sure you have your vet check our your dog, find a good breeder, and follow the directions your vet and breeder give you to ensure a healthy Labrador Retriever reproduction process with no reproduction problems.