How to Help a Dog in Heat
Your dog's heat is certainly not a disease or a condition that needs treatment, however, it may be an annoying issue to deal with, especially when a bunch of stray dogs line up by your door or if taking your dog for a walk may be frustrating because of all the attention.
Most dogs go into heat every 6 months, larger dog breeds may go every 8 months, but the time eventually comes, lasting a good 7–10 days. Of course, spaying your dog is the ultimate solution, but what to do if your dog has papers and all the requirements to be a future successful dam or if the spay surgery is not happening now?
There are several ways you can make your dog more comfortable, her prospective mates less eager and yourself more relaxed during ''those days''.
How to Help a Dog in Heat
Give Extra Attention
Your dog may become more loving during her heat, even though some dogs may become more irritated. Giving her the extra attention she craves will not do much harm, it actually may help her keep her mind off the hormones.
Spoil a Bit
Many female dogs may lose their appetite during their heat. Giving extra treats, some meat baby food with no garlic or onion, may help entice her to eat. If your dog gets diarrhea during her heat, try to feed some boiled hamburger with the fat drained off, with lots of rice.
Play a nice game with your dog and get her distracted this way. Exercise may help her relax, but best of all, it will make her tired and hopefully, a heavy nap may follow.
Keep Smells Away
Close all your windows to minimize all intact male dogs nearby from showing up at your doorstep. It is amazing how strong the ''smell of love'' can be and how it effectively lures male dogs even when far away.
Lock Her Up
Dogs in heat can easily stray away no matter how much they love their home and their masters. When in heat they are on a ''mission'' and a door left ajar as usual may be used this time to escape to the dangerous roads of the outside world. Also, don't keep her in the yard alone; some dogs were capable of mating even through a fence!
Cleaning her often will keep the quarters where your dog lives in less messy while minimizing smells that attract male dogs. Giving her a bath twice a day may be helpful. Diapers may be put on after, as they are helpful in preventing messes.
Pass Some Chlorophyll
No, it is not for her breath for romantic kissing, rather it has been shown that female dogs given Chlorophyll tablets tend to attract males less. The liquid version that is found in health food stores and comes in 100 mg is helpful. Generally, 1 tablespoon in the morning and in the evening poured on the dog's food may do the trick. It works best when given from the first day of heat. However, male dogs may still want to mate, so never leave them together! Also, be aware that the chlorophyll may cause oddly green looking stools!
There are special products that may be sprayed on the dog to make her less attractive to males. Lust Buster is one of them.
As seen, there are various ways to keep your dog in heat relaxed, and most of all, all the males in the neighborhood relaxed as well. Those "days" hopefully will go fast, until next time! And of course, if you want to avoid all these issues, spay your dog.
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This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.
Questions & Answers
My dog just went into heat and has diarrhea. She never has accidents in her kennel and now has been having diarrhea in her cage. This is very unusual for her, but it’s also her first heat. Is this normal?
This is not uncommon due to the hormonal changes coming with the heat cycle and some dogs just get stressed when in heat. Please keep an eye on her and see your vet if you see any worrisome signs accompanying the diarrhea or the diarrhea gets severe. Of course, the diarrhea can be due to other reasons (eating something inappropriate, sudden diet change, presence of parasites, viruses etc) which may need treatment.Helpful 64
Why does my dog in heat want to whine when there's nothing wrong?
When in heat, many dogs become restless. The hormones may cause them to become more anxious, and they become focused on searching for a mate. Your dog may also be annoyed by the discharge. You can try using a product called DAP, dog appeasing pheromone which many dogs find calming, or you can try distracting her with play. If your dog seems lethargic, doesn't eat or drink or eliminate regularly, then there may be something medical at play that may require a visit to the vet.Helpful 53
Should my dog be sleeping more since she is in heat?
Each dogs reacts differently to the onset of heat. Dogs who are coming into heat the first time may sometimes react this way. This may be due to a hormonal shift which causes behavioral changes in many female dogs during the initial stage. As the heat progresses though, she may become restless. Of course, see your vet if she starts acting lethargic or sick.Helpful 52
My dog is 8 days into her first season and she is so restless, she cannot nap. She is kicking her back legs, twitching, jumping up and moving around staring at her backside. She is so tired, is this normal it has started in the last 24 hours??
In some sensitive dogs, the hormonal changes that occur with the estrus cycle can cause anxiety, stress and discomfort. Lethargy, can happen too. Some dogs feel odd in their back end. This can be behavioral and therefore related to the heat, but of course, it never hurts to play it safe and have her evaluated by a vet so to make sure she's not getting a urinary tract infection or some other concomitant health issue.Helpful 28
© 2009 Adrienne Farricelli