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Discussion Starter #1
We decided to compromise and spay her at 8 months, but only made it to 7.5. Oh well.

As I understand it, the first 7-10 days are bloody discharges, but she is infertile and unreceptive.
After that she is fertile and receptive for 10-14 days. Is that about right?

The few dogs around here are confined; in 5 years we have only seen 3 loose dogs. I don't know how many boys there are, or if they are neutered.
We have a 4' fence around the backyard and have been letting her go in and out by a doggy door.

1) For the first week, is it okay to let her continue being out back by herself? After that I know we can't take our eyes off her, but for the first week?
2) What happens if she does attract a boy? Can we chase him away, or will it be a more serious problem?
3) Can we continue to walk her? Obviously we will stop if there is a problem, but generally we don't see other dogs on our walks.

I know they are supposed to attract males from miles around, but I find that hard to believe. Fortunately, except for my street, there is nothing for miles but Mennonite dairy farms, and I have never seen any dogs.
 

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Walking on leash is fine. Don't let her go out alone. All not receptive means is you risk a dog fight or trauma if a male appears, because she's still plenty appealing to them. Don't be surprised if you see more lose dogs right now. If there are any around they will come to you/her and a 4ft fence isn't much of a deterrent.

It's not hard, but I'd keep her supervised on leash for the duration of the entire thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I have been walking her, and taking a walking stick in case we find an aggressive male. (I have a karate black belt, but am not sure how useful that would be against a dog) So far no one has taken any interest in her.

The breeder says I am underestimating the males and I am possibly going to get bit. She recommends that I skip walks for the 2nd and 3rd weeks.

Is she being overly conservative? Should my wife and I both take her for a walk; or would that not help.

Also, she keeps her dog in heat crated because she is concerned they will find a way to escape from the house otherwise. I would hate to do that to her. Obviously caution is required, but is that excessive or prudent?
 

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I kept Nova inside during the full month of her heat. She doesn?t go outside without me to supervise. It seems excessive, but an ?oooops? litter isn?t something that I?m willing to risk. We also don?t have many neighbors, but the first time she went into heat there were three different random dogs that showed up to play.
 

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Having females and heats for a number of years here is the way to handle it.

At first sign of heat, all walking is on leash with a fool proof, no slip collar. Non receptive for the first week? Usually until you get that odd female who is and who gets bred off typical cycle. All local walking is confined to the yard.

IF You take her walking elsewhere, load her in the car and take her there to walk. DO NOT WALK HER FROM YOUR YARD. This leaves a scent trail males will follow right back to your house. And the boys will foresake going home, eating and everything else for 3 (or more) weeks!!

I carried a stock prod. Long one. From Tractor Supply. Never had an issue but better to have an not need than to need and not have.

My dogs compete and train when in heat so I have to load them in the car/truck/trailer and go regardless of their estrous cycle status.

The bottom line is this. While your bitch is in heat make the assumption that she can get bred. Manage her accordingly and you will have no issues.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
She is on day 14. On day 8 she went from bright red to pink. She slowly got smaller and is almost normal today. (though I wish I had looked more carefully before... it just seemed rude to study it)

She is walking much better than she used to; we are doing 3-4 miles a day without attracting any boys. She was getting along with our 16 year old, but is now pestering her constantly, along with aggressively humping her bed (she had ripped several holes in it.) We have to put the 16 year old and her bed in a pen to protect them.

So... at what point does she get to be "safe"? I have read that the only definitive sign is when the boys lose interest in her, but since none have expressed interest in her, that would be hard to determine.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
She is likely ready to be bred NOW.
She will bleed again in about a week. Red Blood, not pink..
I have read 6 or 8 websites on the subject and only one says they go red again at the end.
If I hadn't seen you post, that would have prompted a call to the vet. Thanks.
 
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