If you want to keep your dog from getting pregnant, you have to decide what you plan to do long-term with your family pet. That depends on whether or not you ever want to breed her. It's not that complicated, but you can't exactly hand her a condom and tell her to play safe! Here's how you can save your sanity and head off puppy problems:
- Decide whether or not you want your dog to get pregnant. Many pet owners don't think through the breeding question. They assume that any puppies will be fuzzy bundles of joy just like their mother. But it doesn't always turn out that way - and remember, you can't control how many there will be. Talk to friends who have bred their dogs. Ask your vet how your breed of dog will change when she's pregnant. And remember, if you decide to fix her, you can always buy another dog.
- Take steps to keep her from getting pregnant. If you opt never to let her breed, the solution is pretty simple. Just take her to the vet and have a quick, simple operation done.
- If you want your dog to get pregnant in the future, or if you're not sure but you don't want to fix her just yet, it's more complicated. Preventing unexpected puppies comes down to making a lifestyle choice. Be more vigilant with her. Make sure she doesn't get pregnant by keeping her in the house. Ensure she can't jump the fence for a one-night tryst with the Pauper. At the dog park, be certain that your dog stays baby-free by shooing her away from unfixed males. Maintain special watch for the times she's in heat - and a short leash on her then.
- If in spite of all you do, your dog does become pregnant, all is not lost. You can give the puppies away or sell them. Then, if you don't want anymore puppies after that, have the vet spay her.
Keeping your dog from getting pregnant - and you from going insane - isn't all that difficult. If you learn what to look for, and how to handle it, you should be fine.