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Whelping and Queening a Litter

Giving birth can be an overwhelming process for pets, especially if complications arise. The process of giving birth for canines (whelping) and felines (queening) is instinctual, but some pet owners prefer to have a veterinarian assist with the birthing process, especially for breeds that are known to have troubles. At our office, we offer whelping and queening services along with neonatal care for pet owners and breeders. If you are interested in any of these services, please contact our office.

Reasons for assistance with whelping or queening a litter include:

  • Certain breeds (e.g. Boston Terriers, Bulldogs, and Persian Cats) tend to have difficulties delivering their offspring, and a Cesarean section might be necessary. Having a veterinarian present and prepared makes the transition from a live birth to surgical extraction of the newborns easy and risk-free. 
  • If newborns are premature, a veterinarian can nurture them to adequate health and help prevent loss of multiple newborns.
  • Occasionally a litter has one or multiple still borns (non-living babies). These can hinder the birth of live offspring. A veterinarian is properly trained to handle a stillborn so birthing the rest of the litter isn’t disrupted. 
  • Mammary glands can become infected or blocked. As a result, the offspring cannot feed. Under close veterinary care this issue can promptly be addressed before it results in infant death.

Why would I need a veterinarian for the delivery process?

Prior to birthing, care for a pregnant pet involves a special diet, exercise, booster vaccinations, and parasite control. During the birthing and nursing processes, complications can arise especially for a new breeder or a pet owner facing an accidental breeding who might not be versed on the process of delivery. The following complications indicate the need for a veterinarian present during the delivery process: 

  1. Contractions lasting longer than one hour
  2. A mother who has not started delivering puppies after an hour and a half from the onset of labor
  3. A mother who has vaginal discharge and pus oozing after delivery and has not passed placenta
  4. A mother who is resting for periods longer than four hours between newborns

If your pregnant pet is experiencing complications, please contact our office immediately.

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We encourage you to contact us with any questions or comments you may have. Please call our office or use the quick contact form below.
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