Let’s face it. Not everybody is equipped to handle cocker spaniel whelping. You must be ready in the mental sense to assist in the birth of a new life while also being ready to provide for the needs of both mother and her litter of puppies – yes, dogs can breed like rabbits, too – after the delivery. Here then are a few helpful tips in this regard.
Forecast of Date of Delivery
First and foremost, you have to determine the delivery date. Or at least, you must try to as best as you can given your non-veterinary experience although a vet can help in this aspect naturally. If you can estimate the conception date, so to speak, it is possible to count 63 days give or take 5 days for the pregnancy period.
As the human handler, your pregnant cocker spaniel must be provided with sufficient amounts of micro and macronutrients to ensure the health of both mother and puppies. In the process, you are also increasing the likelihood of a safe and fast cocker spaniel whelping.
Prepare the Room and Supplies
A few weeks before the expected date of delivery, you must prepare the room where the pregnant dog will be giving birth. You must make it as comfortable and convenient for the dog as possible with plenty of bedding in a relatively warm area of the house. Also, you must situate the whelping bed away from high-traffic areas so the mother dog and her puppies can comfortably spend time together for the first few weeks after birth.
Your supplies for the whelping must also be ready. These supplies should include the following:
- Medical Kit – Stethoscope, betadine, sterile gauze sponges, surgical sponge, alcohol wipes and forceps
- Whelping Table Equipment – Paper towels, trash bags, laundry basket, disinfectants, heating lamp and fasteners
- Whelping Kit – Thermometer, scissors, dental floss, bulb syringes, late gloves, KY jelly, and hand towels
- Whelping Box Equipment – Old blankets, fleece covers and room thermometer
- Puppy Feeding Supplies – Evaporated milk, baby water and whole fat yogurt although commercial formula is available as well
Indeed, the task of cocker spaniel whelping is similar to preparing for the birth of your own baby. You have to be ready with the bag, so to speak, so that rushing to the hospital at the first sign of labor is quick, easy and convenient – except, of course, that your pet cocker spaniel will be giving birth in your own house.
Assist in the Delivery
The first rule when assisting in the delivery of puppies is to let the mother dog do all the pushing. Let nature take its course for most of time and when the mother dog appears to be in need of human intervention should it be given. If you think that your skills in whelping cannot handle the situation, we suggest calling the vet for expert assistance.
Keep in mind that, just like in human labor, cocker spaniel whelping has no set time. However, if the mother dog does not deliver its pups in 2 hours of bearing down, then surgical options should be considered. Rush the mother dog to the nearest vet clinic.
If all goes well, your household now has more cocker spaniels to liven up the days. Are you ready for it?