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We just adopted a female dog (~3 y/o) from a high volume shelter a few days before she was going to be put down.

The shelter said the owner brought her in on 1/17, she whelped on 1/20, and had lost all of her puppies by early Feb- they said she wasn't making enough milk, and I don't know if that's the entire story, but its what I have to go on right now.

She isn't spayed (yet), and I wanted to give her as much time as possible to get really healthy before we did the spay. I read on this website http://www.pedigreedatabase.com/german_shepherd_dog/bulletins.read?mnr=63684&pagen=1 that usually females go into heat 6 months after their last heat, regardless of whelping.

I don't know enough about breeding to know what's the best and safest thing to do. In your experience, how long can (and should) I realistically wait before spaying her? She's not terribly underweight, but she's obviously been under stress and her teats are still saggy.

How far in advance should I make the appointment, ideally? The shelter mentioned that she would have more blood loss right now because of her teats are still enlarged. Our dogs are neutered but I still want to do it before she goes into heat again. When-ish should I make the appointment for?
 

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Usually 3-4 months from their last heat is optimal. So, is it 6 months from when she started her last heat that she's supposed to go into heat again? I'm not sure she'll be strong enough by then since she's already 3 months since her last heat--if you wait another couple of months she'll be going into heat again and it'll be riskier. I would probably let her have one more heat and then wait 3-4 months.

If you really don't want her to go into heat, she might be OK a month-6 weeks from now.
 

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She would have been in season around the middle of Nov. so would not be back in season till May IF she has a six month season. It would be best to get her spayed sometime in March. If she did not have enough milk for the puppies, she is probably pretty well dried up by now.

I just had a female who has always had 7-8 months between seasons come in after 5 months, just as I was about to phone the Vet to get her spayed. I now have had to wait a couple of months till she is over her season so you never know for sure when they will come in.
 
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