It is recommended to keep the number of litters for a female dog three to four in total, and a good breeder will distribute the litters throughout the optimal breeding years of the female to keep the mother and her cubs healthy. As for the remarkable characteristics of different litters that would really depend on the stallion. I planned several litters with different objectives in mind for my dog, but always with the aim of improving her conformation and maintaining her wonderful temperament and coat. If a dog has huge litters, it may be tempting to keep raising it for the maximum number, but it is best to remove it sooner.
Two litters, possibly three depending on all factors, is my general rule for large litters of 12 or more. Some females can produce several litters in a 12-month period. It only depends on the natural cycle of the dog, the body condition and the wishes of the breeder. A handful of canines cycle three or four times a year, but most dogs only have two cycles per year, with an interval of about six months.
Determining the size of your dog's litter can be useful in many ways. To begin with, it is important for the health of the mother dog. If the litter is found to be too large, it can cause dystocia, the medical term used to describe labor complications. Believe it or not, but stallions can have a limited number of litters, and just because a male produces viable sperm doesn't mean he should be raised.
Within a given breed, individuals with a larger body size (in terms of build, not weight) usually give birth to larger litters. There are several different things that can influence the size of a dog's litter, and we detail some of the most important ones below. However, an ethical breeder will consider many factors when it comes to the number of litters their dogs produce. According to the American Kennel Club, dog mothers give birth to larger litters in spring and smaller litters in summer.
In the United States and Canada, as well as in most other countries, there are no legal limits on the number of litters a dog can raise. According to the American Kennel Club, litters born in spring are generally larger than litters born at other times of the year. I once had a relatively small chocolate lab that produced a litter of 9 and a litter of 10, which proved to be quite difficult. As your mother ages, you should expect a decrease in the number of puppies being born compared to a younger dog.
Towards the end of your dog's pregnancy, the vet will likely be able to feel the mother's belly or take an X-ray to determine an “exact number of puppies in their belly” (although it can be easy to miss one of the puppies, so you'll never know for sure until the little wiggles start to come out). There is also a small time interval, between day 28 and 35 of pregnancy, in which the veterinarian can feel your dog's abdomen safely. So you may be wondering, how many litters can my dog legally have? When it comes to reproduction, there is a lot of conflicting information. Some will be natural mothers without complications, which will allow the female to have four or five litters, while others will only be able to produce one litter before retirement.
Dogs fall somewhere between these two ends of the spectrum, as the average litter size across all breeds is approximately five. Dog breeders have been urged to reduce the number of litters raised of individual female dogs throughout their lives in an attempt to improve animal welfare. Small litters or litters that for one reason or another have some health complications can occur even among young and fit mothers, but they can also be a sign that the mother is older and needs to withdraw from breeding. .