Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Brooksville, FL
Re: calcium while pregnant & lactating?
I see Chris(and others) so I think they asked "and others"????
I add yogurt, cottage cheese from time to time throughout, not just in pregnancy or lactation. I don't do it daily.
I found this years ago so I've never given "regular" supplements because I don't want to invite problems.
Eclampsia (convulsions not associated with other cerebral conditions such as epilepsy or cerebral hemorrhage) can occur in the dog as a result of lactation. The greater the quantity of milk produced, the more likely it is that eclampsia will occur. When calcium is lost in the milk faster than it is absorbed, or than it can be mobilized from the skeletal system, hypocalcemia results. Signs are muscle fasciculations, tetany, and death. The treatment is to slowly (10-15 min) administer a calcium solution intravenously. As you treat, the amplitude of heart sounds will increase, and the heart rate will decrease. If the heart rate increases, or becomes arrhythmic immediately stop calcium administration.
A bitch with a large litter two to four weeks into lactation is especially susceptible to eclampsia. Some would suggest giving extra Ca prior to the time it is needed. However, this does not help, because excess Ca intake decreases the efficiency of Ca absorption from the intestine, inhibits parathyroid hormone secretion, and stimulates thyrocalcitonin secretion. These changes decrease the ability of the dog to mobilize Ca from the bone, when additional Ca is needed; it takes 1 to 3 weeks to reverse the effects. Of course, this is not fast enough, and hypocalcemia and eclampsia occur. Giving Ca when it is needed, during the first week through the fourth or fifth week of lactation, may be helpful; 500 mg of calcium carbonate (about one Tums, the antacid you take for upset stomach) per 5 kg of body weight per day, but only for the bitch in which eclampsia has previously occurred. The best treatment is to get the puppies off the dam as quickly as possible, either onto solid food or a bitch's milk replacer.
I don't do any other supplements other than raw, veggies.
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Hardy, Diesel, Jet, Denial v. Zioner Berg, Iris & Patches the cats