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Behavioral Cues That Tell You When Your Dog is Pregnant

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Many dog owners aren't sure what the signs of dog pregnancy are, and that can lead to a lot of confusion and worry. Thankfully, there are a few key signs that you can look out for to determine if your dog is expecting.

This article highlights some of the main signs and symptoms of dog pregnancy to help you prepare for the upcoming birth.

Increased Appetite

Pregnant dogs are known for their voracious appetites, and there is a good reason for this. During pregnancy, a dog's appetite increases significantly to provide the extra energy and nutrients necessary to support their growing body and developing puppies.

This increased appetite comes from hormonal changes that result in a shift in the balance of certain neurotransmitters. These chemicals stimulate appetite in dogs by activating certain parts of the brain that control hunger and food preferences. 

Therefore, it's no surprise that many pregnant dogs gain weight rapidly during the course of their pregnancies as they gorge themselves on seemingly endless piles of food. Ultimately, these factors contribute to one very important thing –– a healthy mom and healthy puppies!

Low Activity Levels

A decrease in activity levels or lethargy is most likely because pregnant dogs use more energy at rest than before they became pregnant. This increased energy expenditure is necessary to support their growing body and developing puppies, but it can leave them feeling exhausted.

In addition, the hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy can also contribute to fatigue. So, if you notice your dog taking more naps than usual or just seems generally tired all the time, it could be a sign of pregnancy.

If you're concerned about your dog's lethargic nature, take them to the vet clinic. A qualified vet will be able to confirm whether or not your dog is pregnant and help you get started on the road to parenthood!

Nesting Behavior

Most dog owners are all too familiar with the concept of nesting. This innate behaviour is characterised by a strong desire to prepare a safe and comfortable space for childbirth and raising young puppies. 

Nesting behaviour in dogs is driven by the same changes that cause an increase in appetite. These changes stimulate certain parts of the brain responsible for nesting behaviours, like preparing a den or collecting bedding material. 

Some pregnant dogs also become much more clingy and attached during the later stages of pregnancy. This is likely due to the nesting instinct kicking in and the dog's natural maternal instincts taking over. 

So, if you notice your dog suddenly trying to build a nest out of all your dirty laundry, don't be too alarmed! It's just their way of getting ready for the big day. Contact your vet clinic for more information.