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My sister-in-law has been feeding a little black and white dog that's been coming to her house for the past few days. No collar, acts really skittish, and is wayyyyy pregnant and due any time now. Her husband keeps telling her to call the humane society to do something with it, but the vet offices that she called informed her that the dog qould be put down, because due to the recent tornadoes they are all at capacity, and just can't take in a pregnant dog.

Because I seem to have a thing for taking in dogs who have no other options, I plan on getting this dog. Of course I'll try to locate her owners, in case she's just a dog that was seperated from her owners during the storms, but that might take weeks, and these puppies are coming soon! The dog has a few ticks, but seems okay otherwise, and I'll be taking her to the vet as soon as I get her. My question is... what the heck do I do to prepare for the birth of puppies? I've never had a puppy younger than the usual 9 weeks.

Supposedly the dog has been sleeping in the woods at night, but she comes running to the house when she hears the garage door. I'm not making this pregnant dog live outside, I have a tile sunroom that I can set her up in, but I don't have a clue where to begin. Nesting box? Shredded newspaper? Last time I had a pregnant anything it was a gerbil, and I was ten.
 

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I would get her like- now. She could give birth anytime and you want to be there to help. So many things can go wrong and they are life threatening for mom and puppies. I've never bred a dog, so I unfortunately don't have any advice. We do have breeders on this forum, so I hope they see this thread! Good luck and it's so nice that you're taking this pregnant dog in. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I couldn't NOT take her in... in fact, my first response when she told me her husband was nagging her to gon drop the dog off somewhere was to tell her that HE needs to be put down, STAT.
 

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I don't know much about whelping puppies, but I do know you should get her to the vet as soon as possible for an ultrasound to see just how many puppies are in there. That way you will know if not all of the puppies have come out, and if she might be having trouble. I would also have your vet on call when she is going into labor.
 

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If you've taken in dogs before you probably know all this but I'll mention it anyway... If she's skiddish on top of being pregnant be careful about handling her, she might get really defensive. Also keep your own pets away from her and limit human visitors to the people caring for her. She could be sick herself, or someone could bring an illness to the puppies when born. Be aware of transporting germs on clothes, shoes, and hands.

She will want a secure place to nest in. I've seen breeders use either whelping boxes they've made or plastic kiddy pools. Usually I see towels used in the bottom as they are easily removed and washed, some people use a newspaper liner instead. Other than that I can't be of much help, as I've never helped with a birth. I'm sure there are people on this forum that can help more. Your vet could also be a great resource.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The sunroom has a sliding door, so I figured it would be a good room so I can keep Panda away from her. Panda loves dogs, but I know that I need to keep her away until Mom and puppies health has been checked out. I plan on finding a loving home for mom and puppies as soon as they are old enough, if possible. I'm not sending any dogs to the pound! I found a few articles about whelping puppies, but they seemed kind of vague. If anyone reading this knows what supplies I'll need for the birth and for the puppies afterwards, lemme know. Like I said, I'm kind of clueless. Panda is a rescue who was treated badly, and she's done a complete 180, but she's 4 years old and lazy... not exactly good training for puppies.
 

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The sunroom has a sliding door, so I figured it would be a good room so I can keep Panda away from her. Panda loves dogs, but I know that I need to keep her away until Mom and puppies health has been checked out. I plan on finding a loving home for mom and puppies as soon as they are old enough, if possible. I'm not sending any dogs to the pound! I found a few articles about whelping puppies, but they seemed kind of vague. If anyone reading this knows what supplies I'll need for the birth and for the puppies afterwards, lemme know. Like I said, I'm kind of clueless. Panda is a rescue who was treated badly, and she's done a complete 180, but she's 4 years old and lazy... not exactly good training for puppies.
I would PM RedyreRottweilers. She knows TONS about whelping puppies. You might also search for some of her old threads about her Rottie Penny and her pups.
 

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A clean quiet spot,away from drafts with towels for bedding. You'll want to change the towels out after the babies are born. If you have an alcove that is 3 sided, or in a closet with the door open, with a large box cut in half for the bed, that would work. Sides should be short, so she can get in/out easily.
You might want to get some puppy milk replacer to have on hand and some small bottles in case she doesn't produce much milk due to her health. You might also ask your vet if there is a way to get some colostrum to have on hand if needed. Ask your vet if they check puppies ICG levels the day after they are born to make sure they got mom's immunity. I know they do with horses, but am unsure with dogs.
Try to trap her soon. As mentioned you don't want her having the puppies where you can't find them or have her have a problem with the delivery. Be aware that some dogs that were strays will look for ANY opportunity to escape, once caught, so make sure she can't fit under any fences, dig under a fence, knock out a screen,bolt through an open door or jump a fence.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Just got home from vet with the new dog. She's approximately 4-5 years old, so I'm hoping this isn't her first go around with puppies. That makes me feel better :) She HATED being on the lead, I'm not sure if she's ever been taken for a walk. She weighs 31 pounds, about 9 over the ideal weight for her body size. Nine pounds of pups, maybe? She tested positive for heartworm, hookworm and whipworm. Vet treated the last two, but said we should get her through this pregnancy before starting heartworm treatment. She had no fleas, but several ticks, they removed all of the ones they could find. Vet said the pups should be here in 1-2 weeks, and that I should call them if she seems to have any complications. They gave her some calcium, gave me a rebate for some dog food, and told me that I shouldn't panic because dogs have instincts and know what to do. So...

As far as supplies go, I'll be getting her a collar, and a bag of good puppy food. She's set up in my sunroom (she likes the cold floor) and I laid some beach towels down for her. I'm going to Petsmart after my Drs appt at 1:15... anybody know of any other supplies that might come in handy?

Oh, I introduced her to Panda, my big fat spoiled beardie. Panda loooooooves other dogs, and she did great, laid down beside her and wanted her head scratched. The other did didn't seem to have a problem with Panda, though she did kind of growl when Panda got her face too close to hers.

Any ideas for names? The receptionist was calling her Preggers McGee.
 

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I'm surprised that they didn't do an ultrasound to see how many puppies are in there. It will give you a good idea of how many puppies and placentas to count coming out. I would take her to the vet the day after she has puppies to make sure there's no remaining puppies or placentas. That can be life threatening.
 

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As far as supplies go, I'll be getting her a collar, and a bag of good puppy food. She's set up in my sunroom (she likes the cold floor) and I laid some beach towels down for her. I'm going to Petsmart after my Drs appt at 1:15... anybody know of any other supplies that might come in handy?
You will want some sort of whelping box/container to keep the puppies contained, and off that cold floor. Newborns can't regulate their own body temperatures well, and also are limited in mobility, if one gets onto the floor it could easily get chilled and die before you or momma realize what's going on. A kids wading pool works well, but even just a large heavy cardboard box (lined in some way so it doesn't just soak up fluids) or the bottom half of a 500 sized crate should be fine for a female her size. Whatever you use it will need to be something that can be cleaned later, so the box would be temporary at best.

You will need a lot of bedding, birthing is a messy process. You could use a couple rolls of paper towels for the birth, then just throw them out afterwards, or cloth towels that you will just need to wash. Be careful with larger towels (beach towels) or blankets, if a pup gets wrapped up inside momma can do damage trying to free it. Smaller towels work better IMO, you can buy bundles of them for cheap at the hardware or Home Depot type stores, the ones they sell for general cleaning rags.

I also like to put down a large piece of cardboard depending on the flooring, so if all the bedding gets shoved to one side, the pups aren't laying on cold plastic or tile, the carboard gives some insulation. That or use a heat lamp.

Other supplies to have on hand
Milk replacer or canned goats milk and a bottle - this is only to be used if mom's milk isn't coming in, but the best thing to bring it in is nursing action from the pups, plus they NEED the colostrum so don't be to hasty to pull out the bottle
Karo syrup - a swipe in the mouth of a pup who doesn't seem to be doing well can give them a quick boost of energy which can help them find the energy to nurse, or give them time to warm back up if they get chilled, etc.
Iodine - used to dip the end of the umbilical cord in, I only do this if the mom keeps fussing at them, some moms get real fussy about the cords because of the blood on them, and the pulling, chewing, etc can lead to umbilical hernias If mom isn't fussing, I don't use it. Also, many times mom will fuss with the first few pups, but once she's had 3-4 she's got enough to keep her busy and she'll stop
Bandaids - if mom keeps fussing on the cords, I'll toss a bandaid over it, it will fall off in a few hours since it doesn't stick well to their fur, but by then mom will have plenty to do and won't be focusing on the cords anymore

There are other things I keep on hand, but honestly they should only be used by experienced people (tubing supplies and such), you would probably be best just taking the pups to the vet if you have concerns if you are new at this.

Also, bond as much as you can with mom now, because they can get weird when they have pups, especially for the first 48 hours. And with some new moms, doesn't matter how much bond you have, they don't want you anywhere near their new pups. But if you don't have a good bond, there is a much better chance you will have problems. So when she starts whelping, keep an eye on how she is reacting to your presence. I've had girls who had no issue with people nearby, and even didn't mind the other dogs coming in, checking things out, etc. I've had other girls where I'm the only person tolerated near the pups for the first 48 hours, and I do mean tolerated, they didn't even want me there, and anyone else was liable to get bit. 48 hours later, they had no issues with "visitors". Not that I let people outside the family around the pups that young, but family members were accepted.
 

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Just wanted to add to Dantero's post about puppies getting chilled. Most breeders add an additional heating source- like an overhead heating lamp. The puppy area needs to be very warm, at least 80 degrees.
 

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My sister-in-law has been feeding a little black and white dog that's been coming to her house for the past few days. No collar, acts really skittish, and is wayyyyy pregnant and due any time now. Her husband keeps telling her to call the humane society to do something with it, but the vet offices that she called informed her that the dog qould be put down, because due to the recent tornadoes they are all at capacity, and just can't take in a pregnant dog.

Because I seem to have a thing for taking in dogs who have no other options, I plan on getting this dog. Of course I'll try to locate her owners, in case she's just a dog that was seperated from her owners during the storms, but that might take weeks, and these puppies are coming soon! The dog has a few ticks, but seems okay otherwise, and I'll be taking her to the vet as soon as I get her. My question is... what the heck do I do to prepare for the birth of puppies? I've never had a puppy younger than the usual 9 weeks.

Supposedly the dog has been sleeping in the woods at night, but she comes running to the house when she hears the garage door. I'm not making this pregnant dog live outside, I have a tile sunroom that I can set her up in, but I don't have a clue where to begin. Nesting box? Shredded newspaper? Last time I had a pregnant anything it was a gerbil, and I was ten.
I don't think shelters have started euthanizing animals from the tornados yet- but they probably will soon. I would contact the Humane Society (of the US) and report that this dog was found after the storms as they have been keeping official records of storm dogs- but obviously this dog wasn't well cared for if she is HW+. I've heard here in Tuscaloosa that over 20+ of the dogs recovered after the tornado were HW+ :(. I work with the Alabama SPCA so if you would like some courtesy listings down the road feel free to toss me a PM. Unfortunately I have no experience with pregnant dogs and can't be of any help in that regard!
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
I am happy to report that the dog formerly known as Preggers McGee is now Gypsy... named by, of all things, someone on Facebook. She is adapting quite well here. I have made her box in my sunroom, I keep the TV in there on for her and I bought a few nightlights for her as well. I do have a space heater (a very safe one that I'll keep elevated). She's getting on great with Panda... they go out for bathroom breaks together, they get treat time together, and they are generally over each other, meaning they barely notice the others presence... I think this is a good thing :) Gypsy is bonding quickly... when we go out back, she'll only get on the grass if I come out onto the patio with her. I was worried about her because she had peed but not pooped, but boy did she ease my nerves. I think Panda was alarmed that a dog that weighs over 50 pounds less than she does was able to poop out a pile as big as hers. I don't think Gypsy was formerly housetrained, but she's had no accidents in the house. She's very good about watching Panda and going when Panda does, so she's learned quickly what outside time is for. She's even accepting of my big ol husband, who's 6'4" and 275. She's eating her calcium supplements with no problem, and I feed her small amounts of holistic food a few times a day.

As far as the puppies coming, I still have a few questions. The vet didn't think an x-ray was neccesary, but he told me to watch her and make sure she doesn't appear to be having trouble between puppies... well, how am I supposed to know when the last pup is delivered?? Also, he guessed her gestation based on her large size and the fact that her milk wasn't in yet... how will I know when it is in? Because I have a feeling when that happens I'll be eating adderall and coffee and watching her 24/7, towels in hand.



 

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I don't know much about whelping, only from what I have read lol. I commend you for rescuing a dog in so much need. I agree about your friends OH, I would be irate if my OH had said that, but he wouldn't it would peolly have been his idea to rescue her lol
 

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The vet didn't think an x-ray was neccesary, but he told me to watch her and make sure she doesn't appear to be having trouble between puppies... well, how am I supposed to know when the last pup is delivered??
Well I guess it's not "necessary" in that she's going to have puppies with or without an x-ray... but it's a very, very good idea to have it done IMO, for exactly the reason you stated. If you want the x-ray done, just tell your vet you want to have it done whether he thinks it's "necessary" or not.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Well I guess it's not "necessary" in that she's going to have puppies with or without an x-ray... but it's a very, very good idea to have it done IMO, for exactly the reason you stated. If you want the x-ray done, just tell your vet you want to have it done whether he thinks it's "necessary" or not.
I'm afraid to stress her out like that again... she was terrified, and struggled to and from the car, to and from the door to the vet office, and during the procedures. I'm scared that with her being this class to delivery, I'd do more damage than good if I freaked her out again. She's starting to warm up to me, and I dont want to undo any of my hard work :)

I know she looks like the mutt of all mutts, so I doubt knowing her mix would ever be possible. But is there a way to guess how many puppies she'll have based on her size? She looks like some kind of terrier mix, about 30 pounds right now. I don't want to be expecting 6-8 and end up with only 3 or 4, because I'd be a nervous wreck and I'd be making house calls to the vet.

I think her stuggling is one reason he didn't see the neccesity for an x-ray.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
What a little sweetie. thats good of you for taking her in! she reminds me of a jack russel/beagle type.
I have no idea. She has a pointed little nose and big eyes sort of like a rat terrier, but I think she's bigger... but I like her spotted coat... she matches Panda's legs!

I thought I read that most dogs slow down their eating when they are close to giving birth, but since she eats like she's starving I'm not sure if that's going to be the case. She always seems famished. And I can tell that it had probably been a long time since she had any owners, so perhaps she's just scared of the food supply running out before the pups come. Either way, she will do anything for a liver treat. She's very smart. Appears to be housebroken now, just after watching Panda for a few days. And she's mastered the art of sitting, which may not sound like much, but given the way she acted about having her collar put on I was surprised that she caught on so quickly. Who knows, maybe she's only been a stray for six months or so, but judging by the amount of parasites and ticks in/on her I'd guess longer. Either way, Gypsy is proving to be quite smart and loving. And she's a licker! Panda only licks when her sad puppy dog faces don't get her what she wants.

Oh, and I contacted an old friend of mine who worked in a vet office (and went to vet school for a little bit) about the impending arrival, and she mentioned that she had heard that sometimes you're not supposed to let them eat all the placenta, that sometimes it's helpful to clean it up for them a little. Does anybody know any info about this? I know the dog generally eats all the gross stuff, but didn't know there was a limit.
 
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