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Discussion Starter #1
If this is in the wrong forum or duplicated conversation, please redirect it.

Ok, this is my first female since I was seven. That one was spayed. She's only 12 weeks so I have time to learn. I've been told that females housed with males sometimes take longer to have their first season. Anyone heard that before? Right now she's in the kennel with chopper, but at some point I have to stop that.

Also, how to I tell when she's in season? Besides the behavior, I was told to watch for blood spotting and her vulva will enlarge. Anyone got a pict of that?

As many know, I have two intact males, and I've tried a third, but it's no good. I've been dreading getting a female because of this, but here she is, and I don't want any accidents, so I need to learn how to recognize the signs.

I've had cats go into season, but it's been so long, and their behavior changes so much it's hard to ignore. Does the same happen to female dogs?
 

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Every dog is different, for sure...I noticed Heidi's first heat because she displayed "I don't feel good at all, Mom" symptoms. One morning (7 months old), I let her out of her kennel...and she did not come bouncing out as typical with happy happy face. She came out slowly, head down and dragging herself out (exageration)...she came out slowly. It was obvious something was up. I sat down on the floor and she came over to me and layed on me. Heidi is not a cuddly dog...so this was way out of the ordinary. She layed on me for quite a while. Of course, I started looking her over completely...and noticed a swollen vulva. Then I knew.

That first heat was very inconsistent...she bled a little, not a lot. And, it wasn't obvious to me how long she was actually in season. But, wanting no accidents, we managed her closely for the next 4 weeks.

You can google canine estrus cycle and will come up with a lot of information...perhaps even pics of a swollen vulva.

I've not heard that a dog living with a male will effect the female's heat cycle...but not saying it couldn't be true.

FWIW, her second heat (15 months) was completely "by the book." Swollen vulva, bleeding, puffy teats; interested males didn't show up until about 3/4 way though. Having said that, I wouldn't make any predictions based solely on the males interest.
 

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You won't need a picture to know when she is in heat. If she is anything like my dog was, you will find blood everywhere and her vagina will look pretty much like it belongs in a horror movie.
 

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Her **** will also be swollen, her mood will change and there will be male dogs to show up from out of nowhere, and obvioulsy she will be swollen in her below parts. Emma had her first heat at 9 months old!
 

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Originally Posted By: chasethedog
I've been told that females housed with males sometimes take longer to have their first season. Anyone heard that before?
i've actually heard that its the opposite, that intact males can push them into season sooner. either way, there are so many signs of a dog going into heat, that it'd be impossible to miss all of them. start paying attention from 5 months on... she'll become more goofy/flirty with the boys, and the boys tend to become more interested "back there" than usual. other signs are the physical ones... spotting, excessive licking, and of course the swelling - this isnt sublte - its gonna go from an almond to a big ol ready to burst plum lookin thing, ha, or a nectarine even! so basically, my point is that YOU'LL KNOW


also, i don't know the dynamics between your boys already - but it might be wise to keep them all separated during this time - not only from her for obvious reasons, but from each other because 'competition' among males can bring out sides you didnt know they had...
 

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well this is an extreme (pictured dog has cancer), but its the only photo i could find and isn't too too far off in some cases (also note that it doesnt look as horrific in a dog with more weight and more hair)
 

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Watch for signs of excessive licking of the genital area. Plus I don't think you will need a picture of an enlarged vulva because it is extremely obvious once it happens. Trust me, you won't miss it!

She may be extra playful with the male dogs, pawing at them, and throwing her rear end into their face.

Those are the most noticable signs I see when my girl is about to go into heat.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks. I've got crates and kennels all over the place, so that each dog can be separated when it happens.

Everyone is one big happy family for now...

I rearranged the kennel space yesterday, because I figured I'd better get myself in the mindset now, no more sharing kennels with Chopper.

The cycle lasts about a month? Wow, that should be fun.
 

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Average is 21 days. 7 days proestrus; 7 days estrus ; 7 days diestrus. I can't stress enough that this is only the average calculation...every dog differs...could be more days, could be less.

We managed Heidi closely for 4 weeks because we knew that the first heat can be very inconsistent.
 

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I've not heard of anything that can mask the smell.
 

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i've never heard of anything that does it, i doubt it'd work anymore - its not just the blood or her vulva that gives off an odor - hormonally she'll smell different to other dogs.

if you're talking about masking the smell for you - there usually isnt a smell unless she isnt keeping herself clean.
 

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I have. There are those (including some members at my DTC) that claim that chlorophyll pills can help mask the scent. Masking is one thing. I have never heard anyone saying it will eliminate it.

I did not try it with Kayla. Just kep her isolated during that period, but then I did not have multiple dogs at the time.
 

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One more thing. some folks have told me they board their females while in season, because the males howl like the devil. I don't think I'd want a female of mine whose in season, out of my sight, but if these two yokels start screeching at the top of their lungs...

Anyone here tried that?
 

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I've read that some also do it because some males will stop at nothing to breed, including crates and doors!
 

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I would never board a female in heat for any reason. I can think of no one I would trust to be as diligent as I am against an accidental breeding. I have however heard of boarding a male.

First heats can sneak up on you and not always be real obvious. If your girl cleans herself a lot or is a ligtht bleeder signs can be very subtle. If I am expecting a girl to come into heat I wipe their female area with a white cloth before they urinate in the morning. Sometimes it can give you a heads up.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
thanks evryone. I think I might be more informed than before. I dare not say that I am ready until the time comes and passes.
 
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