Frequently Asked Questions


Prior to the onset of labor I didn't really feel the pups moving in momma.  When she was in labor I could feel them moving constantly.  Is this normal?  Is it the pups lining up for delivery?

Feeling the pups move or not is normal. Usually the pups start lining up a couple of hours prior to whelp but feeling them move has no significance. 

Momma threw up 4 or 5 times in the three hours prior to the first pup presenting.  She had not eaten anything that day and was also refusing water.  It was real vomit, not gagging and a significant amount.  Is dehydration a concern?  She wouldn't drink water either but I did get her to lick at chicken broth ice cubes (Frosty paws (ice cream for dogs) seemed to heavy for her upset tummy).   

Vomiting is normal but Yes dehydration is a concern so getting her to lick frozen chicken broth cubes was a good idea. Frosty paws are made for dogs so they would have been fine too if she would have taken it.  You could also try ice chips or frozen pedialite pops. 

There are more oxytocin syringes than calcium.  Why is this?  Is too much calcium bad for momma?

No too much calcium is not an issue.  The reason there are only 3 syringes of calcium is because that is the maximum you want to give via injection under the skin..  Too much calcium in one area can cause necrosis of the tissue (death of the tissue).  This is why we inject the calcium in 3 locations rather than all in the same location and limit the number of injections to 3.  The use of tums after the 3 syringes of calcium are used is acceptable. However, experience has shown that Tums are not as good as calcium injections.  After the whelp is complete they get all the nutrients they need (including calcium) in the premium food we feed them.

What do I do when a pup comes out partially and then goes back in? Our first pup presented out of the sack with its tongue sticking out- was kinda scary because it kept going back in. 

Pups can present in either orientation (head or rear) and in or out of the sack.  If they are out of the sack then gettng the pup out quickly is important.  You never want to pull on a pup but you can try to grab the pup when it presents and hold it so it does not go back in.  This way each push by mom expels the pup further.  It is difficult to grab a pup that is partially presented but you can stick two fingers in and attempt to hook it.  Although, grabbing a leg is not a good option as they are too small and fragile. Even if you can't grab the pup the use of your fingers can help the pup come out. 

Momma would not eat before her whelp and refused food after her whelp.  What can I do to get her to eat?  She is nursing her pups and they are gaining weight but she refuses food.

Not eating the day of her whelp or 24 hours before is normal but it is important that they take in fluids to stay hydrated.  Frosty pups or frozen chicken broth or pedialite or ice chips are good to try if they won't drink.

Not eating after whelp usually only lasts a couple of days.  But you do want them to eat, so you can feed them human food if that is all they will eat. Some choices are scrambled eggs, chicken, adding chicken broth to her kibble etc.  You can also try canned dog food of any kind.    Heating the food helps with the aroma which can make it more appealing. If the not wanting to eat goes beyond a couple of days you need to contact the CCI vet clinic for advice.