How long do girl dogs get their periods?

Answered by Tom Adger

Female dogs, also known as bitches, go through a reproductive cycle called estrus, commonly referred to as “heat” or “season.” During this time, the female dog’s body prepares for potential mating and pregnancy. The length of a dog’s heat cycle can vary, but on average, it lasts between 2-4 weeks. However, it’s important to note that every dog is unique, and individual variations are common.

The heat cycle is divided into four stages: proestrus, estrus, diestrus, and anestrus. Proestrus is the initial stage and is characterized by the swelling of the vulva and the presence of a bloody discharge. This stage usually lasts about 7-10 days, but it can vary. During this time, the female dog is not yet receptive to male dogs and may even show signs of aggression towards them.

After proestrus comes the estrus stage, which is when the female dog is fertile and receptive to mating. The vulva will continue to be swollen, but the discharge may change from bloody to a lighter, straw-colored fluid. This is the time when a male dog may be able to successfully mate with the female. Estrus typically lasts for about 5-9 days, but again, individual variations exist.

Following estrus is diestrus, which is a period of sexual inactivity. The female dog is no longer receptive to mating, and her vulva starts to return to its normal size. This stage usually lasts for around 60-90 days. If the dog did not mate during estrus, she will not become pregnant during diestrus.

Anestrus is the phase of the reproductive cycle where the female dog is not in heat. It is a period of reproductive rest and can last for several months. During anestrus, the dog’s hormones stabilize, and there is no visible swelling of the vulva or discharge.

It’s worth mentioning that some female dogs may not display obvious signs of their heat cycle, while others may show more pronounced behavioral and physical changes. It’s important to keep an eye on your dog during this time, especially if you do not wish for her to become pregnant. Preventive measures such as keeping her indoors or using doggy diapers can be taken to avoid any unwanted mating.

The length of a female dog’s heat cycle can vary, but it generally lasts between 2-4 weeks. The cycle is characterized by different stages, including proestrus, estrus, diestrus, and anestrus. Understanding your dog’s heat cycle is essential for responsible pet ownership and managing her reproductive health.