Border Collies are one of the world’s most adorable dogs, and if you’re a proud parent of one, congratulations! Border Collies are extremely energetic dogs with boundless enthusiasm and strength. They can even give sheepdogs a run for their money!
Any doggy-parent with a Border Collie will never be bored. They’ll always have something fun to do with their beloved dog. But what do you do when your Collie is pregnant, or you suspect she is at least?
Normally people get a little apprehensive when their pets get pregnant. They don’t know what to do, what to buy, or where to go for answers to any of their questions. This is why we’re pulling together all the information you need.
So, keep reading and find all your Border Collie pregnancy FAQs answered.
#1 How Many Puppies Do Border Collies Have?
A Border Collie can have 8-10 puppies. The number of puppies a Border Collie will have depends on her age. If she is older, then she’ll probably have a small litter than this.
However, if the Collie is young or a healthy adult, then expect around 8 to 9 puppies at least, maybe even 10 puppies. Although, if you want to be sure as to how many puppies are on the way, go to the vet and get an ultrasound done.
#2 How Many Puppies In The First Litter?
Generally, the first litter has around 8 to 10 puppies as long as the female is healthy. The second litter might also have the same number depending on the age of the Collie.
The number of puppies only decreases when the female is older and frailer than before.
#3 How Do You Know If A Border Collie Is Pregnant?
Unlike humans, dogs can’t simply pee on a stick or say, “I’m pregnant.” This is why it is often difficult to catch when your dog is pregnant.
You have to keep a keen eye on your Border Collie to figure out whether or not she’s expecting. Here are some tips that you can look at to help you figure out whether there is a litter of pups on the way.
One of the first ways you can tell whether your Border Collie is pregnant is through palpation. This method works only if you know the exact day when your Border Collie was bred.
If you remember the day, then on the 28th or 30th day of pregnancy, the vet can perform an abdominal palpation to feel whether or not conception has occurred. If your dog is pregnant, then the vet will feel something similar to grapes or golf balls in the dog’s abdomen. These grapes are actually the fluid sacks protecting the fetus puppies.
This method of finding out whether a dog is pregnant might sound easy, but be sure to never do it on your own! It’s very easy to hurt the fluid sacs if you don’t know what you’re doing, unlike a vet who has been trained for this.
You can take your dog to the vet around the 25th or the 35th day of gestation. The ultrasound can easily detect any fetus’s heartbeat and also give you an estimate of the number of pups to expect.
3. Hormone Tests
Another way that you can find out whether your Border Collie is pregnant is through hormone tests. You can ask your dog’s vet to check the relaxin levels of your dog on any day between the 25th to 30th day of gestation. The presence of relaxin will prove pregnancy as this hormone is only produced in a dog during pregnancy.
The last way you can use to find out whether or not your Collie is pregnant is via X-rays. An X-ray is best done on or after the 55th day of gestation.
This is because, before the 55th day, the skeletons of the pups will not show up in an X-ray. The X-ray also allows you to get a completely accurate number of pups, ensuring that you are well-prepared to handle all of them.
Other than these methods, here are other signs that you can and should look for to find out if your Border Collie is pregnant.
- Weight Gain
You’ll find that your Border Collie’s weight during pregnancy will go up 10%. She’ll be a little heavier than normal and not as easy to carry around. If the weight gain is more than 10%, you must take her to the vet as that’s not healthy and could be a sign of something other than pregnancy.
- Increase or Decrease in Appetite
Appetite changes in a Border Collie are the most noticeable. In the beginning days of pregnancy, a dog’s appetite decreases due to the abrupt change in hormones. The appetite will increase once the hormones start balancing out as the pregnancy progresses.
- Increased Nipple Size
During the early stages of the pregnancy, you’ll find that your Border Collie’s nipples have expanded to twice their normal size. You will also notice that they have darkened in color.
This is most noticeable after 2 to 3 weeks of conception and is a sign that the Collie’s body is getting ready to produce milk as nourishment for her pups.
- Swollen belly
This is an easy sign to spot pregnancy in any dog, not just Border Collies.
However, be careful because swollen bellies can also be a sign of other problems like ruptured masses, intestinal obstructions, or tumors. This is why the second you feel that your dog has a swollen stomach, take her to the vet. The opinion of a professional is always best.
- Laziness of Fatigue
Like any pregnant female, Border Collies also tire easily during pregnancy. Like we’ve said before, Border Collies are dogs with boundless enthusiasm and energy.
But during pregnancy, these qualities dim a little bit. You may notice that your dog is a little more sedated than usual and is taking time to nap and build strength rather than run around and play.
- Nesting behaviors
You may notice that your dog is dragging all sorts of warm items, like blankets and throw pillows, to a corner and creating a soft and warm nest. More often than not, you’ll find her there underneath the blankets, digging herself further into warmth.
These nests are where the dog would give birth if you have an at-home doggie birth. Although nesting behaviors are common in pregnancies, they can also be a sign of depression, so be sure to keep an eye on your dog and take her to the vet if you feel something is amiss.
- Increasingly Affectionate
Other than tiring easily, your dog may be extremely affectionate when pregnant. She will want to cuddle up to you, demand belly scratches, ear scratches, and lots of hugs. She’ll also be very sensitive, so give her all the extra love and care you can.
- More Irritable
Another sign of pregnancy is irritability. You’ll see that your precious Border Collie isn’t as easily forgiving for any perceived slight or transgression during her pregnancy. When pregnant, they are the queens of the house, and they demand to be treated like one.
Last but certainly not least, vomiting is also a sign of pregnancy. In the early stages of pregnancy, you may witness your Border Collie vomiting a little.
Don’t freak out! Just quickly cover her in blankets and take her to the vet to ensure that the vomiting is due to pregnancy and not any other problem.
Want To Train Your Border Collie With Peace Of Mind?
If you haven’t trained your Border Collie properly, then this is the perfect time to start. Whatever bad behavior your shepherd has, whether it’s barking at night or other bad behaviors, using the right training program is the key to having an obedient and happy pup.
The training program I love and highly recommend is Brain Training For Dogs.
With Brain Training For Dogs, you’ll save yourself a ton of time and effort. Instead of banging your head against the wall trying to figure out why your dog won’t listen, you’ll follow a path that has been tried, tested, and most importantly, that’s given proven results. Not to mention the fact, you’ll be able to fit the course around your schedule, not fit your schedule around a trainer or obedience class.
So instead of worrying about whether they’re going to be well-behaved or not, you’ll only have to worry about how much fun you’ll have with them!
And in most cases, it’s still going to be:
- Cheaper than hiring a professional.
- Cheaper than replacing everything they might break.
- And definitely cheaper than a lawsuit against you, if they decide to bite someone.
Just imagine how great it will feel to finally be able to trust your Border Collie completely and never worry whether they’ll be naughty or not. Instead, you’ll have the peace of mind that you have a well-behaved pup, and the boundaries you set for them will always be there, EVEN IF YOU’RE NOT.
And the best part is it also has a 60-day money-back guarantee! So there’s no reason not to give Brain Training For Dogs a try!
So if you’re tired of your dog’s bad behavior or how they react around other people and pooches, then give it a try! You’ll be amazed by the results!
(You can also check out a full review here to learn exactly what the course has to offer!)
#4 How Long Is A Border Collie Pregnant For?
The average length of a Border Collie’s pregnancy is around 9 weeks, i.e., 60 to 65 days. This is the general consensus for all gestation periods of dogs.
But, experts still say that knowing the exact date of delivery is often difficult. This is because the date of breeding does not always match the date of conception in dogs, as it does with humans.
If you know your Collie is pregnant, there are certain things you should look out for during her pregnancy. These are:
- A Proper Nutrition
Taking care of your pregnant dog’s nutrition is extremely important. You need to make sure that they gain the right amount of weight. It can’t be too much or too little. Otherwise, the puppies may get harmed.
Nutritional problems could also lead to labor problems, which is why you should get advice from the vet. The vet can provide you with a full guide on how to care for your pregnant Border Collie’s nutrition. He can tell you what sort of foods and treats are good for pregnant dogs and what foods to avoid as well.
Exercise is important for dogs, especially Border Collies. Without proper exercise, dogs can actually fall ill, which is why taking them on long walks once or twice a day is imperative. You may think that exercise would be bad for a dog in a delicate situation, but the opposite is true.
While yes, your Collie should not be overdoing her exercise, she should also not be sitting all day. Her muscles need the energy a few laps around the garden can give her. So, make sure to take your Collie to a safe garden and play fetch with her or let her walk around at the very least.
- Vet Visits
Finally, yet most importantly, the best way to properly care for your pregnant Border Collie is by routinely taking her to the vet. Don’t miss a single check-up; follow all advice given to you by the vet. Many pet owners fail to take their pregnant dogs to the vet during pregnancy and face many complications later on.
Also, make sure that you are giving your Collie every medicine or treatment the vet says is necessary. If you do, trust us, caring for your pregnant Border Collie will be easier than you think.
In this Border Collie pregnancy FAQ, we’ve talked about signs of pregnancy in a Border Collie, gestation period, how to care for the dog, and what to be wary of. We hope that we’ve answered any possible questions regarding your Collie’s pregnancy. As long as you’ve read up thoroughly, you’re ready for your dog’s pregnancy!
After all, there are few things in life as beautiful as the miracle of birth! It’s a sensitive time for your Collie, so make sure you’re extra careful and always there for her. Don’t worry, just follow the advice stated above, and you’re going to be just fine.