A Bitches Season

Each female dog (bitch) is different and it is very hard to tell when your bitch will have her first season and what it will be like for her, as each bitch and each breed differs. However as I am currently experiencing own dogs first season I thought I would do a simple question and answer post on this topic, as it may help other dog owners know what to expect and when to expect it. I have read so many books regarding female dogs, their changing bodies, the hormones and the whole topic of bitches in seasons, but I didn’t want to write a medical post I simply want to try to reassure other owners about the whole experience of having a bitch in season.

What is a season?
A season is sometimes referred to as ‘heat’, but it all equates to the same thing which is your bitch’s reproductive cycle. A bitch’s reproductive cycle has four stages which include proestrus, estrus, diestrus and anestrus, during this time she will experience hormonal and physical changes, which of course includes her season. A season is a time when her body will change, her hormones will change, she will bleed and also during this time she will accept a male therefore she can become pregnant.

When will my bitch have her first season?
Depending on the breed, a bitch can have her first season at between 5 months and 24 months of age, smaller breeds tend to have their first earlier than larger breeds. Also each bitch is different so therefore the same breed can have their first season some distance apart. It is good to be aware that your bitch could have her first season from 5 months onwards, also speak to your vet as they will be able to give you a clearer indication of when your particular breed of dog tends to come into season.

What are the sign that my dog may be coming into season?
Your bitch may experience some or all of the signs listed below when she is coming into season:

  • Swelling of the vulva
  • Sensitive behaviour
  • Clingy and cuddly
  • Become snappy towards other dogs
  • Tiredness
  • Cleaning herself frequently
  • Urinating more frequently
  • Bleeding
  • Loss of appetite

What should I do differently when my bitch is in season?
A bitch in season will release pheromones to tell males dogs she is in season and will soon be ready for mating soon. These pheromones will attract much attention and male dogs will show more interest during this time. If you have both male and female dogs living together you need to be very cautious and not leave them alone during this time, also entire/unneutered males can become rather focused on a bitch in season so separation may be best for all concerned.  You will need to keep a close eye on your bitch and be with her at all times or make sure she is securely away from other male dogs during this time.

You may wish to still walk your bitch during this time but if so it is recommended that you walk her away from your house, even carry her to the car and drive to your chosen walk area to ensure no males can track her scent. You may choose not to exercise her away from the home, this is fine too as she can enjoy ball throwing activities in the garden which will suffice for the 3 weeks or so she is in season.

Some owners like to use a type of dog nappy or children sized pants or knickers with a tail hole cut out of them, as this can prevent extra mess in your home when your bitch is bleeding, although some bitches on their first season can keep themselves very clean and the bleeding may be very light to almost unnoticed.

How long will a season or heat last?
A bitch’s season can last between 3 to 4 weeks and you will know when her season is coming to an end as her swollen vulva will return to its normal pre season state, this is a good time to give her a bath to get rid of any scent she is letting off to attract a mate.

She will continue to have a cycle and season for the rest of her life, although as your bitch gets older she may experience her seasons slightly further apart, also seasons can be stopped by spaying your bitch.

How often will my bitch come into season?
Each bitch and breed is different but generally it is around twice a year therefore every 6 months. Some bitches season every 4-5 months and others may season every 8-12 months, and some are less predictable and season with variations in their heat cycle, as each bitch is different and your bitch will establish her own cycle.

I have been advised a good way to work out a bitches cycle is from their first season, for example if your bitch had her first season aged 6 months old her cycle will be every 5 months therefore her next season will be around the age of 11 months, however I have not tested this rule and will update you after I have experienced it with my bitch. Update: I have now tested this rule and it is not correct for all bitches.

Should I have my bitch spay before or after her first season?
This is a highly controversial topic as some medical professional say before season spaying is better for the bitch and others say after. You really need to discuss this fully with your chosen vet and feel happy about the decision you make for you bitch. Pre season spaying can prevent the inconvenience of experience your bitch in season and all the hormonal changes but there isn’t a right or wrong time, but it is something you need to talk to your vet about and make the best decision for you and your pet.

Should I spay or breed from my bitch?
This is a question only you as the owner can answer, but before you do please read a few more articles on My Dog’s Life and talk to your vet in depth about breeding as it is not for every bitch or every owner.

Which season should I breed my bitch?
A bitch can be bred during any season but this is not recommended, and I am sure you will be speaking to your vet if you are even considering breeding your bitch. Each breed and each bitch is different so there really isn’t a clear answer to this question. However following good dog breeding books and vets advice it is generally advisable to breed your bitch when she is over 1 year of age and not before her second season, however this may not be right for your bitch so please consult your vet. If you are considering breeding, you will want the best for your bitch and for her puppies so please seek advice from a professional. She needs to be fit, healthy and mature enough before breeding can be considered.

I may do another post at a later date including more information about the hormones and each stage a bitch goes through during her reproductive cycle, plus include some information regarding breeding your bitch.

Comments

  1. Thanks Jojo really useful!!
    Poppix

    • Hi Poppi … I am so pleased you like this post & thank you for the positive feedback :)

      Love JoJo xxx

      • Hi I rehomed a staffy x rottie she has just turned 1 year old and she started bleeding on the 11th of may and stopped completely on the 1st of june its been 2 weeks since then and she is still slightly swollen and still urinating a lot do u think its safe to take her out off lead yet
        Amy

        • Hi Amy, A bitches season generally lasts 3-4 weeks however the thing to look out for is no swelling of the vulva which is a good indication that her season has ended. She will never be as neat as she was pre season in that area, but the swelling does reduce dramatically. She should be fine to walk now as it is almost 6 weeks after she first came into season, just do it with caution, but do keep an eye on her as swelling and enlarged nipples which may indicate she is having a phantom pregnancy. These are quite common in bitches and you may notice some behavioural changes, taking toys and items to her bed, generally acting like she may act if she was to have puppies. I just wanted to make you aware of this as you mentioned she is still swollen. If you are unsure, a quick trip to the vet will put your mind at rest :) I hope this helps a little bit …Love JoJo xxx

  2. Thanks JoJo, really informative as usual

  3. Hi,
    I enjoyed reading your post. I have a 7 month king charles bitch awaiting her first season. I also have a 6 month dog, not really sure what we will do with him. It upsets me to think of him some where else, as I dont want to cause upset. They have been together since they were 7 week’s old.

    • Hi Anita, great to hear from you and pleased this article was useful to you. If your male is entire you may notice a change in his behaviour if your dogs live in your home and are close. This may be his first experience of a bitch in season and he may be frustrated and up tight around this time. I have learnt that some male dogs can take it in their stride whereas others can become very up tight, missing meals, whining for the bitch and becoming rather stressed, but all dogs are different and they all deal with this in different ways. Just see how it goes and be aware you may need to separate them. I hope this helps a little. I hope her first season will be hassle free, all girls are different but my girls are just cuddlier and keep themselves very clean, she may seem quiet and tired too. Love JoJo xxx

  4. I was very interested to read your information. We rehomed a 3 year old (unspayed) staffy bitch almost a year ago. We are not planning to breed from her and will be having her speyed very soon but I was wondering whether you could help with this problem. She came into season about 3 months after we got her and not long after it ended she became almost depressed – stopped wagging her tail and generally looked very fed up. Previous to this she had been very loving, happy and content. She also became super-possessive of our house and belongings – hiding things and not letting anyone other than our family come into the house. She has since returned completely to normal but I am wondering whether this is normal behaviour and whether spaying may prevent this from happening again. Our vet suggested it was possibly due to a phantom pregnancy. Any thoughts on this? Your response would be very much appreciated. Many thanks.

    • Hi Shally, lovely to hear from you and sorry to hear your staffy may have experienced a false or phantom pregnancy. I have no experience of this with my own female dogs, however I am aware this is very common, plus know others that have experienced it with their bitches. I would recommend you follow your vets advice, it may be advised to spay your staffy in between her seasons which can stop this reoccurring and I have also read that once a bitch has a phantom pregnancy she is more likely to have this again with her next season, but as I said I have no personal experience of this and am not a vet or expert, just a dog lover :) I hope this helps a little bit. Love JoJo xxx

  5. Nicky Willmott says:

    My cockerpoo will be 4 months on 24 June and has just had her first season, has any one else had their bitch come into season so early?

    • Hi Nicky, Do you mean your cockapoo will be 4 months old on 24th Oct (Date of Birth 24th June), and yes this is young and the youngster cockapoo bitch I have heard of having a first season, but each bitch is different in so many way :) Please contact me if you have any further questions. Love JoJo xxx

  6. Hi Jojo, thanks for this infomation ,we are sure our patterjack is coming into season

    • Hi Antony, I am so pleased this article was useful for you. How old is your patterjack? What signs have you had that your girl is coming into season? I hope she has a good season, as I know many bitches who have suffered with their seasons mainly with phantom pregancies (even when not mated) and after the first season which is such a worry to their owners:( Love JoJo xxx

  7. Hi, My bitch is moody when she is in season and I wonder if anybody has any suggestions for a pick me up? I do not want her to go through an operation, it’s a big thing, like for humans, so if there is something that others might have used in order to lift their bitch’s mood, could you let me know please? Cheers
    Katja.

    • Hi Katja, Sorry to read your bitch is moody during her season. I am not sure about a ‘Pick Me Up’ for her but lots of love and cuddles always go down well with my bitches. I would recommend you speak to your vet. I appreciate being spay is an operation but it is a common procedure and if means your girl will not season or suffer this moodiness, then it may be an option. Spaying a bitch that suffers during seasons may be the best thing to do for her going forward. As dog owners I am sure you will do the very best for your girl :) Love JoJo xxx

  8. Lynn Molloy says:

    Hi, we rescued a 2 year old un-spayed golden Labrador and as with the lady with the rescued Staffy, Pippa has come into season about 2 months after we got her. Her behaviour has been almost identical to that of the Staffy but we’ve only noted a little blood smear on our bedding (she’s a little pampered!) and I read on your post that she may be good at cleaning herself or the bleeding may be light to the point we might not notice it, but that seemed to be aimed at a bitches 1st season, and obviously as she’s 2 she’s clearly had previous seasons, so would the same apply to seasons thereafter? She’s also gone right off her regular food which she would previously practically inhale!! Is this normal? Shes been like this since the last week of November – would you suggest the end of this is in sight and I’ll get my happy pooch back soon? Lynn

    • Hi Lynn, Some bitches’ season differently to others and the same goes for the amount of blood lost. Pippa may not have a heavy season and may not loss much blood during this time or she may be good at keeping herself clean. I appreciate it is hard to see your bitch not acting the same as normal and not gulping all her food down, but she will be back to normal by now and I can only recommend you get her spay between this season and her next if you would prefer her not to go through another season. Some bitches’ sail through seasons whereas others suffer in so many ways including phantom pregnancies, going off their food, acting quiet and withdrawn etc and I would always recommend a bitch is spayed if the owner is not happy with seasons or their dog during this time. Love to you and of course Pippa, I grew up with a Labrador and will always have a soft spot for them. Love JoJo xxx

  9. Pamela Knight says:

    Dear Jo Jo, A friend has a jackrussell x cheower(wrong spelling) and is just having her 2nd season and it has lasted a month. I this unusual and would you advise a visit to the vet.

    • Hi Pamela, Dont worry about the spelling, I know what you mean :). A second season is fine to last approx 3-4 weeks depending on the bitch, it may be a little heavier than the first season but if your friend has any concerns a phone call to her vet would be recommended. Love JoJo xxx

  10. Mollie James says:

    Hello Jojo. Learnt so many interesting things for your website. Quite worried about my border x patterdale. She is five years old and comes into season pretty much every 6 months. She was due in September and is never really late. However she still hasn’t come in to season. Is this normal… Id hate to think I was interfering but you can’t help worry.. thanks.. Mollie

    • Hi Mollie, great to read that you are enjoy My Dogs Life :) I would recommend you take your bitch to the vet to get her checked over and just explain that she has missed her season in September. She seems to have an established season pattern for five years which should continue until she is spayed. It may be nothing to worry about and just delayed but always worth getting a professional to check her over. Please let me know what your vet says. Love to you and your dog .. Love JoJo xxx

  11. Hiya JoJo,
    I have a neutered for Jack Russell x Patterdale boy who’s 3,and a Jack Russell x Chiuhaua x Something Else girl who’s nearly 4 months. We’re expecting Ella’s 1st season to be around end of March/April ish and hope to get her spayed at Easter(as we work,we can only have her convalescence while we’re off work).But we’re wondering,if our plans go awry and she has her season before Easter,what will Jeff’s behaviour be. He was neutered last September,but tries to mount poor little Ella..though she fights him off admirably!

    • Hi Linda, it is lovely to hear from you and of course your doggies. Ok,l as Jeff is neutered there is no chance of any mis-mating which is good. With seasons your bitch’s behaviour may differ slightly as my girls are very cuddly around this time. Jeff may pick up on her season before you even spot any changes in your girl but as he is neutered and a little older it may not affect him. You always have the option of having her spayed prior to her first season (around 6 months old), and you may like to speak to your vet about this, but I fully appreciate you want to be around for her after her operation. I have heard of so many girls having their first season which has not been a nice experience for all, and also some may have phantom pregnancies, but also many bitches just sail through their first season and deal with the changes very well indeed. It really is personal choice for the owner when to get their bitch spayed but if you are not intending to breed a pre season spay or after first season is usually the option. Please keep me posted, but I would not worry too much about your neuter boy (Jeff) being around her too much. By the way his humping behaviour can be a dominance thing, so not always related to mating as many dogs that live together :) I hope this reassures you a little, love JoJo xxx

  12. Hello Jo Jo,
    My 7mth staffy has just come into her 1st season and have just found some spots of blood. I found your information really helpful but just wanted to know if she will try to escape from the garden to find a male? Most of the doggies around our garden are bitches so dont think any dogs are living close by. Will that make a difference to having male doggies try to get to her?
    xx

    • Hi Liz, your bitch is maturing and growing up, ahhh. All bitches are different, but I must say none of my girls have even tried to escape from a secure garden to find a mate during their seasons, however some do, so always good to be aware of this. I would recommend you go with her into the garden whilst she is in season and walks should be avoided too, as this will only attract male dogs. You can exercise her in the home and in your garden during this time. I hope this reassures you a little and please keep me posted on her first season, some bitches do become more cuddly and look for extra comfort and attention whereas others may just sail through their first season. Love JoJo xxx

  13. I have a 9 months old golden shepherd who in last 10 days has

    •Clingy and cuddly
    •Tiredness
    •Cleaning herself frequently
    •Urinating more frequently
    and I slightly swollen vulva and have notice couple drops of bloodly discharge jus after she urinated, do u think she could be in season or coming in season?

    • Hi Claire, Thank you for your comment/question on My Dogs Life. It does sound like your bitch may be experiencing her first season as all the things you have mentioned are signs that a season is approaching or present. I would recommend you use pale coloured bedding for her, look out for small amounts (spots) of blood where she rests, also you can dab her vulva with a white tissue a few times a day as this will show you if she is bleeding. I should mention that some bitches do get infections which are not necessary related to seasons and can cause a discharge, frequent urinating and discomfort, so if in any doubt a phone call to the vet would be recommended.

      I hope her season goes well, many bitches are unfazed by this change but I am aware that is can be different for others. Love JoJo xxx

  14. Hi JoJo

    Enjoyed reading your post, I have a 11 month old Cockapoo and I thought the other day that her nipples were more pronounce and had some swelling on her Vulva.

    It was only yesterday as I was grooming her that I noticed slight bleeding from her, so it summed it up really. Hopefully we will have a good few weeks with her and she will be able to cope too :), I had noticed over the weekend at a park a few dogs being more sniffling around her too.

    xx

    • Hi Diane, it is wonderful to hear from you and I am so pleased you found the article useful. What is your cockapoo called? I hope she has a good season, lots of tender loving care coming her way. I would recommend you exercise her in the garden with a ball or other toys, as taking her out for walks during this time may gain some undesired attention from male dogs. Her season will not be over until the swelling has reduced completely and her vulva will go back to its normal size. Please let me know how her season goes. Love JoJo xxx

  15. Julie boulton says:

    My 9 month old cocker-poo Beau has come into 1st season in last few days and is feeling very sorry for herself bless her! She cannot understand why she can’t do normal things like sit on us for a cuddle! Is there anything I can do to make her more comfortable?

    • Hi Julie, I hope Beau is sailing through her season now. It is hard to not let them jump on your lap at this time, some owners use dog nappies but I tend to just sit on the floor with my girls when they a cuddle and are in season. Nice treats and lots of play in the garden would be my tips, she may feel strange and act different just reassure her with a tummy rub. Thinking of you and Beau. JoJo xxx

    • I bought some dog nappy pants ans sanitary towels for dogs on eBay. My dog wears them in the evening when on our knee having cuddles
      We also give her nappy free time too so she can wash herself.

  16. Your post has proved very useful to me! Our cockapoo Maddie has just been going through her first season without any worries at all! But as I didn’t check the size of her bits before she started I am unsure if her season is over yet! They were more swollen than they are now but whether she is back to normal I am afraid I don’t know! Are there any other signs to look for?

    • Hi Nicky, so your Maddie is a big girl now. Regarding the size or shrinking of the vulva after her first season, it will go down considerably but may be slightly bigger than before to her season. It may also remain swollen if she is having a false or phantom pregnancy (which is more common than you may think in canines), have a look at her nipples and if they seem raised and her vulva is still swollen, this may indicate a phantom pregnancy, don’t worry or be alarmed just monitor her intake of water, watch out for her nesting i.e. taking toys or blankets to her bed, but of cause any concerns please visit your vet. Maddie may have finished her season (approx 3-4 weeks) and her vulva has just not gone as small as you remember it. I hope this helps a little bit, give Maddie and hug from me. Love JoJo xxx

  17. Nicola Bees says:

    Really informative site JoJo, thanks. We have a six month old Welsh collie and I now know all the signs to look out for. Dreading it to be honest!!!

    • Hi Nicola, so pleased you are enjoy My Dogs Life. Lovely to read you are the lucky owner of a Welsh Collie and I hope she has a good first season. Love JoJo xxx

  18. Hi JoJo, thanks for your useful posts. My black Cockerpoo pup has just come into her first season at 7.5 months. Not sure exactly when it started but I shall know now to check when she has finished! I did notice some changes but I thought it was too early. I plan to get her spayed – my vet recommended 3 months after first season. By the way, this is the best breed I have come across. A really great family dog, who loves running free and is very responsive. We are so happy with Tassie. Thanks and I will read the rest of your blog.

    • Hi Nicky, I am so pleased you have found this post useful :) I hope Tassie has a good first season. I totally agree Cockapoos make wonderful family pets. I would love to know more about Tassie, What mix is she? What colour? Enjoy the rest of the blog. Love JoJo xxx

  19. Minnie the Minx says:

    Hello JoJo
    Minnie the MInx here. I am a black, German Shorthaired Pointer aged 3½ years. Mum adopted me a few days before Xmas 2012. I have had litters before so mum is taking care of me but she is so worried. I have had spotting now for 14 days and have been lucky enough to still have 2 walks a day, but we have avoided the woods as I like to go off hunting.
    I have got some diapers and a lovely black pair of shorts which I managed to temporarily lose in the bracken/brambles.
    Mum is still not sure when it will be fully safe for me as I didn’t swell straight away. Hopefully, not long to go now. love Minnie x

    • Hi Minnie, Lovely to read you have such a good mummy to look after you during this time. I expect your season could last at least another 1-2 weeks and your human mummy will be looking for no swelling, no blood and also no licking around this area, but some female doggies do have prolonged seasons or phantom pregnancies after seasons, even when not bred, so your mummy will be looking for any signs of this too. I hope you have a good season Minnie, continue being a good girl for your mummy. Love JoJo xxx

  20. Hi, i am just wondering if my 6 month old cocker spaniel is coming into season, Penny sats behind the door and on the laminate she is tired all the time and she used to eat like a horse but now she picks and pikes, I didnt know if she was poorly but after googling those are some of the signs, is there anything that I can do to make it easier for her. She also feels heavy underneath, when i pick her up she is heavy. I take her to the park 3 times a day and i know she will miss it, I am thinking of having her spayed after the first season, i know some people say that having a litter makes them better dogs but i think she will always be a rebel

    sarah
    x

    • Hi Sarah, Lovely to hear from you and of course Penny.

      It could well be her season on its way, if there is swelling and she is acting a little quieter than normal. Keep an eye on her over the next few days, but also never rule out other problems and if you are concerned please take her to your vets. One of my girls acts very quiet and extra cuddly the weeks before her season.

      You mentioned getting Penny spay, most dog owners do this either before the first season or between the first and second season. I would never recommend breeding a bitch without DNA health testing, a general vet check and of course making sure she could deal with the experience both physically and mentally. Of course another thing to consider is making sure the owner (breeder) is ready for the effort and care involved in caring and raising a litter, it is wonderful but when done well it is very emotional, tiring and costly too.

      I hope Penny has a good first season and I am only an email away if you have any questions of concerns.

      Love JoJo xxx

  21. Hi, I have a 7 month old miniture schnautzer called Daizi, she has just come into season and I was very unsure of the signs. After reading your comments I now feel very reasured and comforted to know she is acting perfectly normally. Thanks for the advice.

    • Hi Angela & Daizi, so pleased this article helped you and I hope Daizi has a good first season. Love JoJo xxx

  22. Hi, thanks for the read, I have had three dogs previously, all male and have my first bitch, a black cocker spaniel, a few weeks ago she went off her food and is now at the bleeding stage, day three, she is really grumpy, and has snapped viciously at both of us, if we tell her to do something that she does not want to do, for instance lay down or direct her to bed, she shows her teeth at us and sometimes growls. I am not afraid of her but I am becoming very apprehensive. I hope it’s just a phase.

    • Hi James, lovely to read you are the owner of a black cocker spaniel (beautiful dogs) but so sorry to read you and your girl are having such a tricky time at the moment. Is this her first season? It does sound like she is struggling with the hormonal changes and this can affect a bitches behaviour in so many different ways. I would recommend you continue to be pack leader and if you want her to do something she should do it, however she is having hormonal changes which can confuse her and she is not being herself. Are you having her spay in the future? As you may not want to experience this behaviour again. I am very aware that bitches in season can have many changes which including being quieter and calmer, being more active, confusion at it highest level and also bitches can fight with other bitches when in season, but to show aggression towards her owners, she may see you as her pack and just be suffering from the huge change. Continue to exercise her on lead and away from other dogs at this time. If you feel the snapping at you is getting too much, put a lead on her which allows you to gain control of her and this can be done even in the house. A bitches season can last approx 3-4 weeks and the hormones do take some time to change. If you need any further help, please just ask and you may like to talk to your vet about this too and to arrange her spay between this season and her next one. Also things to be aware of are prolonged seasons and false/phantom pregnancy which are common with bitches too. I hope this reply helps you a little bit. Love JoJo xxx

  23. Hiya jojo
    I’ve read a few sites about bitches coming into season but I have really enjoyed your
    Website and all the wonderful advice you give people.
    Was just wondering how long does the clingyness part last as my miniature jack Russell
    Bella is due to come into season at the start of June and I’m wanting to breed her this
    Time round and she never showed these signs last time.
    My lurcher has just come out of season and my saluki and bellas behaviour has deffinateley
    Changed not sure it’s because of my lurcher being in season or they are guna come into season.
    Bellas vulva didn’t swell that much last time it was by chance one morning when I was giving her
    Cuddles that I realised she was in season. She is weeing more especially when I take her out.
    Any advice will help.
    Kerry and Bella xxx

    • Hi Kerry & your pack, so pleased you are enjoying my site, thank you so much.

      Ok I will try to share my experience of seasons with you. Each girl’s season can be different depending on other factors and a season can change the way a bitch behaves. As your Lurcher has just come out of season, it may have an effect on your Saluki and Bella too. Also it is good to point out that bitches can synchronise their cycle to come into season at around the same time. This can change the way the girls are around each other or around you, plus may cause some unwanted behaviour due to hormones. The way I look at it is, this is all part of breeding or having a bitch unneutered and yes it can be hard but a season will last 3-4 weeks and then waiting for the hormones to settle. Your Bella may be due in season in June but it could possibly come sooner due to your Lurcher just having a season, so be prepared. I know exactly what you are going through as I have two hormonal girls here at the moment :)

      Exciting that you will be breeding Bella, is this the first time you have bred? Please just email me if you have any other questions and I will help you if I can. Love JoJo xxx

  24. Hi Jo Jo,

    Thank you for your explanation its really helped me I have a 4 month old Husky girl and never having had a bitch before I found it very useful. The breeder said she should have her first season at about 6 months, I also have her litter brother so keeping a watchful eye on her incase she starts early. We also have 3 other males but they have all been castrated. The signs you listed will be very useful.

    Thank you

    • Hi Kylie, oh yes you will have to be very careful with two related Husky’s (brother & sister) in the house. It may be wise to get the brother neutered before your girl comes into season. I am pleased the article was useful and if you do have any questions I am only an email away. Love JoJo xxx

  25. Hi JoJo
    Minnie the Minx reporting in with how I got on with my season – I last wrote to you on 14th April 2013. I spotted for 26 days and was swollen from day 6 for 21 days. I had no personality changes and I was my usual loving self, however, I was very flirty with my older neutered brother. I am going to be speyed when the time is right so thank you for all your help. I hope my story also helps others.
    Love
    Minnie the Minx xxx

    • Hi Minnie the Minx, Thank you for the update about your season. I am sure this will be really useful to other readers of My Dogs Life and thank you very much for sharing your experience with us all. Hugs from JoJo xxx

  26. Mollie the Springerdoodle says:

    Hi JoJo

    Mollie the Springerdoodle here, my human mummy is a little worried that my first season is never going to end!
    Mum noticed I was slightly swollen on May 2nd, during bath time, over the next few days I was a little off with other dogs especially male pups (sorry Brambles). I had a slight bleed on the 2nd and 3rd day but I was very good and kept my self very clean.
    But from day 16 I am bleeding much more and doesn’t matter how hard I try I can’t keep myself clean, I’m really swollen now and feeling very sorry for my self, off my food, and needing lots of cuddles.
    Mum had planned a midweek break in the countryside (I love the caravan) the day after the bank holiday, but she’s unsure if I’ll be okay by then and should she cancel, what do you think? I’m on day 20 now, it’ll be day 26 when we go.

    Mollie

    • Hi Mollie & Human Mummy :), lovely to hear from you both. As is it Mollies first season it is hard to tell how long she will bleed for. Mollie may have had a light bleed and kept herself very clean at the beginning and then got heavier, all bitches are different, so it can differ between bitches. A season generally lasts 3-4 weeks and is not over until all bleeding has stopped and the vulva has reduced dramatically in size, almost back to normal size. After this time it is a good idea to give Mollie and bath to get rid of all the scents of her season. If Mollie does go on holiday with you just be careful where she goes and only lead walk her where other dogs may not go. I hope this helps. Love JoJo xxx

  27. susan conroy says:

    Hi JoJo.
    My Cockerpoo Bella has just come into season. We are going on holiday on the 3rd June and my daughter will be looking after her, but she has an older female Tibetan Terrier and they will be in the house on their own during the day when my daughter will be at work. I am a bit worried in case Bella gets aggressive with her. She came into season on Monday (yesterday) and she will be going to my daughters on Sunday. Do you think there will be any problems.

    • Hi Susan & Bella, All bitches are different and can also be different with each season. You could test how the two bitches will be around each other before Sunday and this may settle your mind or give you time to make other arrangements. Some bitches will just get on fine even with hormonal changes whereas others may just need a bit of distance at this time. Generally I find bitches are fine around each other during season, but now and again the hormones are high between bitches and they can be a bit grumpy (as I like to call it) and need some distance to prevents fights etc. I hope Bella has a good first season and you have a lovely holiday, your daughter could just keep them in separate rooms if you are concerned. Love JoJo xx

  28. I HAVE A 2 YEAR OLD BOSTON TERRIER SHE WAS IN SEASON AND MATED, HER PUPPIES WERE DUE ON THE 25 MAY BUT SHE DIDNT TAKE .SHE HAS COME BACK IN SEASON ON THE 2ND JUNE AND HAS TIED WITH MY BOSTON DOG TWICE ,IS THIS NORMAL ,THE VET HAS GIVEN HER A CHECK UP AND SHE IS FIT AND WELL ,JUST CANT UNDERSTAND HOW SHE CAN BE IN SEASON AND MATE WITH A DOG 10 WEEKS AFTER SHE WAS MATED THE FIRST TIME HELP

    • Hi Lee, A bitch generally has an approximately 5-10 months gap (depending on breed and bitch of course) between seasons and don’t have them so close together. I can only think she may have has a split season which would mean on the 25th May she showed many the signs of being in season, however she did not have enough hormones to bring on her full real season, hence why she did not take when mated. Then on the 2nd June her real season came and this would mean she may take if mated. Of Course all bitches are different but a 10 weeks gap between seasons may require a full vet check to be carried out as there may be something wrong, however split seasons are quite common and normal in many canine breeds. Hope this helps a little bit. Love JoJo xxx

  29. Hi,found your website very helpfull,thankyou..my 2 year old labradoodle is just entering the 7th day of her cycle and she hasnt moved all day apart from once to go for a wee,she isnt eating and looks totally lathagic and miserble…is this normal as I am really worried about her…regards..louise :-)

    • Hi Louise, sorry to read your Labradoodle is feeling a bit withdrawn and acting quiet during her season, some bitches can be a little bit low and quiet during this time but if you have any major concerns do give your vet a call. Make sure she is drinking and eating plus having some exercise, even just a game of fetch in the garden may perk her up. It will be coming to end soon enough. Love JoJo xxx

  30. Hi JoJo
    My 15 1/2 year old Staffordshire dog Coco has been in season for the past 3 weeks. She was at the vets a few days ago as she was diagnosed with lung cancer in Oct, 2012 (via x-ray, although no Biposy was done) and has been on steroids ever since. She is bleeding a lot more than normal, and I’m starting to worry. She lives with my ex-partner and I get her as much as I can. It is bright red dots and I’m keeping a close eye on her. Any advice would be much appreciated.

    • Hi Angela, I would take her to your vets, just to be on the safe side. She is an older dogs plus with her lung condition, you just want to check everything is ok. She may just experiencing a heavier season but if you are at all concerned please do call your vets. Love to Coco, lovely name by the way :) Love JoJo xxx

  31. Tracey Tunesi says:

    Hi JoJo
    Your comment above about how often seasons are…. for me are spot on. Millie came into season on Boxing day (she was 6months and 1 week old). This took me by surprise, as I wasnt expecting it to happen until around 7-8 months. Anyway she surprised me again as on 23rd May I noticed her vulva swollen and noticed blood…. so her 2nd season came sooner than I expected again. I honestly think she was in season a little bit before the 23rd May but not sure. As you may remember… I intend to breed Millie, so I a expecting her next season to be Oct???? I have no intentions of her having puppies until she is nearer to 2years old, which if her cycle stays the way it has been should be around Feb…. I just need to find a nice curly F2 boy or a nice poodle as still not sure which way to go. Thanks for this website it is such a help to everyone xxx

    • Hi Tracey & Millie, Great that my article has helped you Wow it sounds like you have a plan for breeding Millie, excited for you. I will help you in anyway I can. Just ask if you need any further information and I wish you luck with your future plans. Love JoJo xxx

  32. helen and holly-boo says:

    hi jojo my 9 month old jack Russell has just came on heat she just wants to be with me all the time ,she has gone off her food and is sleepy.your article has helped me thanx xxx

    • Hi Helen & Holly-Boo, I am pleased you found the article useful and I hope your Holly-Boo picks up soon. It’s only a few weeks and hopefully she will be back to her happy self. Some bitches do suffer during their seasons and others just sail through it. Give her a hug from me please. Love JoJo xxx

  33. Hi JoJo,

    Thank you for a wonderful website, I hope you are able to help us.

    I have a 16mth old flat coat cross Lab, she is due to come into her 3rd season, she is showing all the behavioural changes, being fussy, clingy, her nipple area has dropped, she has started to mother the other animals in the house, Flagging and presenting her self to our other female dog.
    However her vulva has not swollen up, and she is not bleeding.

    What does this mean?

    I am Planning to breed from her this season, we have a male all lined up. This is also the first time I will be bred from my own dog.

    Kind regards
    Laura

    • Hi Laura, As a first time breeder, firstly I would recommend you go to your vets with your bitch and get all the relevant health tests done for the breed which may include important DNA tests. Also do talk to your vet about her general health and her seasons. Her season may be on its way this may just be the build up to it however you may like your vet to check her, a seasons with no or minimal bleeding are possible, is she quite regular with her seasons? I will help you in anyway I can regarding your first litter as I know how special this will be for you and your dog, but the health testing is very important and so it the quality of care of each puppy, I am sure you have read many of my articles, breeding articles and books on the subject breeding too. Love JoJo xxx

  34. My JRT bitch is, I think coming into her first season. She is 8 months old. She certainly has a very swollen, winky, vulva, but I haven’t noticed any blood/discharge as yet. Not noticed any particular personality changes, other than she is a bit crabby with her Auntie, who is in season at the moment. How long is she likely to be swollen etc before bleeding? I have never had a bitch before, and feel very underprepared! I also have her father in the house, and he is definitely showing more interest in her rear end. They are never left unsupervised at the moment, and if I have to leave them, they are both crated. She won’t be spayed, as the whole idea of taking a bitch from Dad’s first litter was to keep his line going. He is being very good, and if I see him sniffing I growl, and he looks very shamefaced! I’m sure I’ll get used to it as time goes on. Once she has had a litter, she may well be spayed, but that isn’t a ‘given’ yet. Everyone adores Dad, and his first litter could have been home several times over :)

    • Hi Jayne, It sounds like things are definitely starting for your bitch, the age sounds about right and also the swelling and male interest. Each bitch is different and some do take a while to bleed, also there is a possibilities of a split season where she may show many of the signs of coming into season however no bleeding but then a few weeks later it starts all over again and she produces enough hormones to bring her into season. Owning dad, you obviously have experience of home breeding and I am sure you already know much about it, but if you do ever fancy sharing experiences I am only a message away, I.ve only had two litters but followed many other litters and enjoy communicating with other breeders. Do ensure you keep dad well away from her and the crates well apart as her scent will attack him and she will be flirting with him at the height of her mating time. Keep me posted and enjoy your experience. Love JoJo xxx

  35. Hi Jo Jo,

    You have a very informative site which I have just discovered and enjoyed browsing. I thought I would share our current experience with you.
    Our 8 month old Cockapoo,Bonnie, is half way through her first season which is quite different to the experience we had with our 4 year old Goldendoodle, Cailin. Cailin sailed through her season with no problems at all and was able to keep herself very clean indeed, she was then spayed about 3 months later and we would recommend that approach unless of course people are intending to breed.
    When Bonnie joined our household as a puppy, Cailin took it upon herself to look after her and cleaned her when she went out for a wee and also allowed her to curl up next to her to sleep. They now have great fun together chasing each other around the garden play fighting etc. we consider ourselves very lucky to have two fabulous dogs with such great temperaments.
    Now that Bonnie is in season her behaviour has changed a bit, she is not so playful, wants more attention from us (a trait that many others have commented on), she is also constantly presenting herself to Cailin who dutifully cleans her, she does clean herself too but it does seem strange behavior, it could be that she is being flirty wanting to mate rather than wanting to be cleaned but Cailin is just playing the motherly role, very odd!
    We have a couple of weeks to go and I am sure we shall return back to normal then and we will then plan to have Bonnie spayed in a few months time.
    Best regards
    Adrian

    • Hi Adrian, thank you for sharing your Bonnie experience with the readers of My Dogs Life. I fully appreciate how hormones can affect a bitches character around their seasons. This can be avoided by pre season spaying, but of course this is all personal choice and there is much conflicting advice about pre season or after 1st season spaying, so it is very much a personal choice really. I hope Bonnie is back to her normal self in the next few weeks. Do look out for any signs of a phantom pregnancy signs, which I am sure you are aware of, as this may change Bonnies character too and may affect Cailin too. Girls hey :) Love to both your girls … Love JoJo xxx

  36. Hi Jo Jo
    I have a cocker spaniel bitch who has had 2 seasons perfectly normal she is 2 and 1/2 she was due to come into season end of May but still hasnt she is totally fit and healthy and seems very happy could there be a problem as i really wanted to breed her this time then have her spayed , the only reason i wish to breed her is because she is a wonderful example of her breed

    • Hi Dee, What was her cycle for her previous seasons? Sometimes a bitches season can be slightly delayed and also when living with other bitches they sometime synchronise their seasons. Two of my girls were approximately a month late with recent seasons. Is there any signs she may be coming in shortly? A trip to your vets may just settle your mind, as it is always good to get things checked out. Love JoJo xxx

  37. Jennifer says:

    Hi Jo Jo
    I have a six month old chichuahua x shitzu and she has just come into season but today she smells fishy, is this normal?
    Many thanks
    Jenny and Evie

    • Hi Jenny & Evie, There is a slight scent due to the bleeding but no I wouldn’t say it was fishy and would recommend you call your vet for their advice. Is she bleeding well, is it bright red, darker red or turning paler? Love JoJo xxx

  38. Jennifer says:

    Hi Jo Jo
    Her blood is bright red, but she does not smell anymore. Thank you for your reply
    Many thanks
    Jenny and Evie

  39. Hello, I am a little concerned about my 15 month old Italian Greyhound cross Whippet. She started her first season on the 7th August (when I noticed blood) but is still bleeding today, which is the 19th day! A few days ago I thought it was easing off but I think it’s heavier again today but more brownish in colour and watery. What is the longest time the bleeding should last? Also I noticed a fishy odour when she wants me to scratch above her tail. Is this normal as I’m worried about infection? Her behaviour has stayed the same throughout, nothing too noticeable apart from lack of appetite (Unless table scraps are offered haha). I would really appreciate your thoughts as the vets is closed for the next 2 days. X

    • Hi Sarah, Sorry for the delay is replying but I am quite busy with puppies at the moment :) I am not an expert or a vet but I will try to help you. She may be coming to the end of her season as each bitch is different and it’s not uncommon for a bitch to ease off bleeding then to have some more bleeding. The smell could be a concern, but it could also be anal glands which can let off a fishy smell when blocked or needing attention, if you are worried at all please call your vet for advice. I have known bitches to bleed for 3 weeks and for swelling to remain for slightly longer. How is she today? Love JoJo xxx

  40. Hi Jo Jo,
    I was just wondering if my dog Susie could have a phantom season, she is 5 years old now and we had her spayed nearlyr 2 years ago now, but she is been very boisterous, play full and out of character, my 3 dog are always smelling her bum. When we take her for a Walk she is normally very obedient, and never moves from our side but the past week she keeps on running off and not coming back. We have been shouting her unroll we are blue in the face. Hope you can help its just very unusual for her.
    Thanks stacey xx

    • Hi Stacey, I am no expert but it could be more of a behavioural thing or possibly something else, as Susie is spay she will not have all that comes with seasons. The rear end sniffing could be just a greeting type sniffing, or even a smell from her which does not smell familiar to your other male dogs. Have you had her anal glands checked? Just a thought, as they may be letting off a scent and also make her a bit out of sorts if causing any discomfort. Like I said I am not an expert, therefore can only go on my own experiences with dogs. If you do have any concerns or see a big change in your dogs behaviour it is always worth a visit to your vet just to give her a check over. I hope she is back to her normal self soon enough, please let me know how she is. Love JoJo xxx

  41. Hi JoJo, have just discovered your website!! I have adopted a 6 month old female un-neutered Patterdale x Bedlington terrier as a companion for my 1 year old neutered male Jack Russell x Poodle (Alfie). She has settled in well and is a real treat. She came to me house trained and has been great but over the past few days she has refused to go to the toilet in the garden and has started to mess in the house. I have also noticed Alfie paying a lot of attention to her rear end – could she be coming into season and could she be messing indoors to let other dogs know she is “available”??
    Would love your thoughts Virginia xx

    • Hi Virginia, Lovely to hear form you and of course always lovely to read about other peoples dogs. A bitch can act quite differently around the time of her season so anything is possible, her age and the extra attention from Alfie would possibly indicate something is starting to happen for your girl, it may take a while but the males do pick up on the scent way before us humans see a different in our bitches. The messing in the house, is not something my bitches have done, but each bitch is different so I wouldn’t rule it out although it may not be season related, however this is something you may want to discourage before it becomes a habit. You may notice your girl urinating much more on walks which is a good sign that she is about to come into season as this to attract the males and let them know she will soon be ready for mating. I hope this helps a little bit and I hope your bitch has a good experience when it happens. Love JoJo xxx

  42. Lesley Bradley says:

    Hi jojo ur information has been really helpful. I have a 20 month old Labrador bitch who is in her first season and she has been bleeding on and off have u heard anything like this before?
    Thanks for any advice you may have x

    • Hi Lesley, Each bitch is different and the flow of blood can differ between bitches and seasons, keep a note of her bleeding. What day is she on? I am pleased the information was helpful during your bitches first season, and also important to know there are variations between bitches, however I hope this guideline helps others. Love JoJo xxx

  43. hi jojo my 9 moth old shih tzu has just came into her 1st season today i also have an un neutered male (he goes in a week monday ) in the house. how soon would you advise me to separate them? he hasn’t tried anything yet just panicking when i go out as they would cry the house down if separated im torn with what to do?

    • Hi Sam, Any time with an entire male is a risk with a bitch in season, but it also depends on her willingness to mate. On average a bitch will be mated at around day 10 of her season, however any time she lets him and she will encourage him at this time, could produce puppies, so your guard must not be down during a season, keep them separate would be recommended and not out of your sight when near each other. How are things going now? Love JoJo xxx

  44. Claire-Leigh McClelland says:

    Hi Jojo,

    My chihuahua Coco Chanel is 8 Months old now I got her when she was 9 weeks old. She came into season on the exact day of her 6 Month birthday haha on the 6th July till 28th July. I have booked her into the vets on 13th Sep which is this coming Fri to get spayed and micro chipped at the same time. Do you think this is the right time as I have heard you have to wait 3 Months after their first season? I am also getting Coco another little chihuahua friend to have who is 10 weeks old called Lola they have interacted and seemed to get on, is it true chihuahuas get along with their own breed. Your help in this is greatly appreciated.

    Claire x

    • Hi Claire, lovely to hear from you of course it is all personal preference when to get your bitch spay but two months after her 1st season should be fine also it will be good to get her spay and recovered prior to your new puppy coming home. I am not sure about the Chihuahua breed, but I am sure you can make it work with two bitches of any breed with the right training and commitment as an owner, plus without any hormones between them. Enjoy Coco and Lola (adorable names). Love JoJo xxx

  45. hi found this most helpfull, now we know why our labradoodle is acting a bit different

  46. Hi,
    I’ve noticed my chihuahua has come into season… She’s nearly two this is her first time! I’m not exactly sure what day it started but she’s very swollen there but only a little blood is this normal? She seems herself not off food or anything how long do u think she’s been in season for by the sounds of what I’m saying? X sorry it’s so vague x

    • Hi Leanne. She may be just at the beginning of her season, each bitch has a different experience and the blood flow can differ between bitches too. The swelling and blood seen would be a good indication that this is the early stage of her season. Count day 1 as the day you first spotted blood. Has the blood increased now? Love JoJo xxx

  47. Hi jojo my patterdale willow has just started her first season at 7 month old. She seems perfectly normal and her happy usual self. But i am worried about my 8 year old jack russel x border terrier milly. She is very grumpy and is constantly snacking at willow if she goes near her. Is this normal or should i be worried.
    Thank you xx

    • Hi Donna, Lovely to hear from you and I love your dogs names, very pretty names. Is Milly only being grumpy with Willow now she is in season? Did they get on well before Willows season? Is Milly neutered? sorry for all the questions just trying to understand the behaviour :). Bitches, hormones and seasons can have an impact on bitches and other dogs around them. It may be that Milly is picking up on Willow’s season and changing hormones which may cause a bit of grumpiness, you may like to just give them a little bit of space when needed. Love JoJo xxx

  48. Hi JoJo, Yours is a very good site. My 17 month old Choc. Lab Polly started her 2nd season on the 29th/30th, I noticed her scent-marking on the 30th, the very day I was planning to book her in to be spayed! I shall be taking her away for a week on the 25th. and would like to know if is it safe to assume she will be over her season by then? I have now booked her in for an ovarectomy on Jan 2nd. Also I have an old can of anti-mate spray that I bought for use with my last bitch, (can`t remember if it worked), and was wondering what are your thoughts on their effectiveness. Thanks.

    • Hi Mike, I am so pleased you are enjoying my site, thank you. Polly may possibly be a peak breeding time around now, but of course each bitch is different so your guard can never be down unless you know her exact ovulation time. She may be safe and of finished her season by the time you go away but I would recommend you check her to make sure she has completely finished bleeding and her vulva has reduced dramatically in size, if she is still swollen please just take precaution whilst away as she may have a prolonged season. The 2nd Jan sounds a good time to get her spay as in between seasons are recommend when her hormones are settled. I hope this helps a little and enjoy Polly, I do love Chocolate Labs, lovely breed. Love JoJo xxx

  49. So pleased I found your site. My Miniature Schnauzer has gone off her food and sleeps most of the time. She must be coming into season. She likes going outside and it is raining a lot at the moment. I wonder if it is not advisable for her to be getting wet. They probably feel some pain and possibly dampness could make her feel worse?

    • Hi Karen, lovely to hear from you. How old is your Miniature Schnauzer bitch? It’s a good idea not to walk your bitch when in season, but if she wants to go into the garden then treat her as normal. If she enjoys being in the rain then you could just dry her well when she comes in. Being sleeping and a bit quieter can be quite normal for some bitches. I hope she has a good season. Love JoJo xxx

  50. Hi jojo thanks. Milly is not neutered as we have bred with her. Also they do get on well usually unless willow is having a mad half hour milly doesnt like it. But apart from that they get on fine.
    Thanks donna

    • Hi Donna, it may be hormones as broad bitches can change under the influence of hormones and even the closes and most loving bitches can be grumpy or take a dislike to other bitches at this time. I know its not very nice to see your girls like this but it is a fact with some unsprayed bitches living together, give them some space over the next week or so, see how they go. Love JoJo xxx

  51. Hi
    I found our girlie Lulu in the garden at the end of April, think she was around 3/4 weeks old; not sure of her breed, she is medium sized, bit whippet looking. I live in Spain; she could be a mix of many different dogs?!
    I’m confused, I think Lulu came into season a couple of weeks ago, 24th Sept; her vulva is swollen but there hasn’t been any bleeding; she has been wearing a nappy during the day and sleeping in my bedroom at night, so I would have noticed any blood, is this normal? I had a cocker spaniel bitch and she bleed heavily during her first season?
    I also have a 10 year old cocker spaniel, Sid, Lulu was constantly presenting herself to him but this has stopped, he was very interested but only for the first 10 days. Because Sid has lost interest and Lulu has stopped pushing her bum in his face, I have stopped using the nappies!?
    Grateful for any advice
    Thanks and regards
    Melanie

    • Hi Melanie, Lovely to hear from you and of course so touching how Lulu came into your life, it sounds like she had a sad start but came to the right garden and a very loving owner. It may be that Lulu is having what is known as a split season or a dry season, a split season is where the bitch has all the signs of coming into season but she does not bleed heavily, but a few weeks later her season will arrive complete with bleeding, this is to do with not enough hormones to produce her season straight away. A dry season is basically a season with no bleeding and sometimes do signs at all for example no swelling either, so please do just monitor her over the next few weeks as I would expect things are starting to happen it she may be having a split season. Please keep me posted and enjoy Lulu and Sid :) Love JoJo xxx

  52. Thanks for this info, we have a 5 month old cockapoo and I’ve grown up with male dogs so totally don’t know what to do when she comes into her first season!! In terms of looking to see if her vulva is swollen- ever since we got her it has been slightly ‘outy’, perhaps it will swell further? I’m just so conscious of her getting pregnant but I don’t want her to miss out on walks or her puppy classes so don’t know what to do about those- especially the walks as she is such a friendlylittle thing that she wants to say hello to EVERY dog that she sees. Worst case scenario- if she was on a walk and a male came into contact, will I have time to seperate?? Any advice would be great, thanks JoJo xx

    • Hi Faye, You would notice the swelling, although all bitches are different of course, but a swollen vulva at the time of mating is very swollen and I would say sponge like, so you really wont miss this type of swelling Faye. You do have a choice that you could get your bitch spay before her first season at around 6 months but of course this is your choice and you would need to speak to your vet now about this. It is important not to take her near other dogs especially entire male dogs as it’s not fair on either dogs to be in such close contact if she’s in season and willing a male on to be mated, plus you don’t want to be in the position when you have to stop an accidental mating, not wise and can be dangerous for the dogs if they tie and you try to split them. I guess you have two opinions, pre season spay or to keep her in and safe for approximately 3 weeks when she does have her first season. I hope this helps a little bit and continue to enjoy your Cockapoo :) Love JoJo xxx

  53. Hi just wondering if you can help I have a 5yr old boxer bitch and she hasn’t ha a heat since feb 2012 she is lively enough and no health problems I just didn’t know if this is normal for a bitch to go this long she has had heats yearly up untill last feb.

    • Hi Sarah, How regularly were her seasons prior to February 2012? Did she have a regular cycle? A bitch should continue to come into heat as canines don’t have the menopause like humans. It may be worth a trip to the vets as a 21 month cycle between seasons is rather long, although she may have what is known as a dry season which is sometimes harder to notice as the signs and bleeding may not occur, however I am not sure if this is common in the Boxer breed. Please let me know how you get on at your vets. Love JoJo xxx

  54. Hi

    I have had dogs all my life all be that only 4 however they have all lived long and great lives I have recently got a rescue puppy of 22 weeks old which is a lab x with we don’t know what, she is a great dog but very demanding which is as I know part of the lab breed, she is taken for walks at least 3 times a day as I work days and my partner works nights, so she fell on her feet when we got her, on the 25th of October she came into season and is doing what bitches do!!! being bored coz she cant go out off the lead as she normally does, I have never had a bitch that I have not had spayed before the first season and am just wondering if after the season ends is It likely that she will become less hyperactive than she is now, not that I will be looking to rehome her, she is so much loved and cherished, its just that she is going through the hard work stage of a puppy at the moment coupled together with the season that’s all x

    • Hi Helen, lovely to hear you have rescued you lovely Labrador cross, and its sounds like she has a very loving home with you. Her season shouldn’t make any difference to her character and nature when she is over it, in approximately 3 weeks time. A season does show your girl is maturing physically of course and I presume you are planning to spay her between her 1st and 2nd season. I appreciate she will be missing her walks if she is a high energy dog, but you can keep her stimulated with lots of play in the garden and give her stimulating long last toys within the home. She may be less energetic with age but some dogs are just high energy and here walks and activities are very much needed in daily life, she may enjoy agility, field work, retrieving and other forms of dog training too. Enjoy your dog, thank you for commenting on My Dog’s Life. Love JoJo xxx

  55. I have a Black and Tan miniature jack russell 3 years old I have only had her 5months .she has had 1 litter of puppies before I had her.She is now in season of 2 weeks ,she very clingy and she is always shacking as if she is frightened and every time I stroke her she she jumps as if I ‘m hurting her, is this normal. she didn’t have a good start in life but she a lovely loving determined little dog,She is at this moment on my knee hiding her face under my arm,never leaves my side.

    • Hi Mair, great to hear you have a new dog. Is she is a timid nature in general or just now she is having a season? Her season may make her a little more sensitive, generally they get cuddly and affectionate at this time but all bitches are different. I have not heard of a bitch being frightened at this time, but if in any pain I guess she could just not be feeling herself. I would get her checked by the vet, just to rule out any problems that could be causing her to act like this, especially if its not usual for her to act in this way. Giving her lots of reassurance that she is loved and she is ok to be close to you may help her settle down, it sounds like she may not have had a great start in life, so love and trust with you as her owners is important. Enjoy her and give her a hug from me. Love JoJo xxx

  56. Hi was just wondering, you seem to know quite a bit about dogs. Well my partner brought an 8 week old meant to be pure Staffy without seeing the parents!!! I know, you don’t have to tell me, but the situation was we were looking for a dog and my partner went to look at this puppy aka missy!! When she got there the dad dog wasn’t there and the mum dog had to be shut in the kitchen due to her unwelcoming behaviour, hence the reason she didn’t see the parents. Also the apartment was covered in urine and poo and missy had a yellow tinge to her fur and didn’t smell too nice, so ami being ami had already fallen in love with missy, love at first site!!! So she took her from her unfortunate surroundings and took her home and first things first gave her a bath, to which we found out she was pure white and a lot of pink!! I could never of been happier with ami’s choice in dog, she is the most happy, loving, playful & naughty pup you could wish for, she’s beautiful and actually one of the most well behaved and trained 7 month old pups I have seen. Obviously now she’s 7 months old and after quite a few puzzled looks when I tell people she’s a full Staffy!! No one is completely sure what breed she is, we know she’s Staffy x something as she’s just coming up to my knee and still growing fast and weighs 20kg already. Most people ask if she is x boxer as the way she looks, her height and her stance and also the fact she is packed with muscle and bigger than any fully grown staff we’ve seen. The vet said she could be also be x American bulldog and said she has the skull of a pitbull??? Which I’m not quite sure about!!! Anyway I thought I would just ask for your opinion and hope you would get back in touch so I could send you a photo of her or you could tell me how to put one up on here. Look forward to hearing from you & thanks.

    • He Kevin & Ami, so sad to read that your Missy may not have had the best start in life, makes me sad as I am really into quality puppy care and socialisation for inquisitive and developing puppies. Please contact me via Ask A Question and then we can share photos etc and I would love to see Missy. I am not an expert of all dog breeds and cross breeds sometime have more than 2 pure breeds in the mix, but it does sound like she could be a Staffy x possibly Boxer size dog from her size. Enjoy your lovely girl and most of all she has a wonderful new home and is clearly loved so much by you both. Love JoJo xxx

  57. I ask this here as she hasn’t come into season yet and that’s why I was looking here as I also wanted to know will she grow any bigger after season or will it stop and will she keep putting on muscle or fill out more? We are going to get her speyed after first season as heard it can stop growth and could her attitude change as she’s lovely to everyone and every dog at moment but some other dog walker said earlier that after first season she won’t be as playful and submissive as she is now, is that true??

    • Hi Kevin. Ami & Missy. Well depending on the breed or mix, as different dogs develop at different rates, but from my experience of owing my cross breeds, they are generally at or around their adult height and size by the time they have their first season, however they still fill out gain further weight and develop further for a few more months. I think its a personal choice when to spay your bitch, and there’s so much conflicting advice about when to spay either before or after 1st season, plus each bitch owner has their own story or experience. Please just do what you feel is right for your girl and talk to your vet about this. My dogs are just as playful and happy after their first season, but I have heard from many dog owners that have different experiences with their girls first season such as phantom pregnancies which can change a bitches behaviour, prolonged seasons, and I have experienced a split seasons which can really confuse owners and be a long drawn out season for you and your girl, as you can see so much to consider, and everyone’s experience is different. Hope this helps a tiny bit. Love JoJo xxx

  58. Mandy Walsh says:

    Hi, I have a 14 month old american Anita,she came on heat at 10 months old and she just come into season again at 4 months old..is this normal? As we were going to get her done,but came into season sooner than we thought,she looked so sad this time round,not herself at all.

    • Hi Mandy, A four month cycle is possible in bitches and not as uncommon as some would think. You will need to make she it is her second season and then arrange her neutering accordingly. Do talk to your vet about this as they can confirm it is a season and also help when it comes to planning her neutering in the short gap between seasons. Enjoy your girl. x

  59. My bitch is just coming out of season.her blood has stopped and her vulva swelling is going down. My question is when can I leave her alone with my male without the risk of pregnancy or is it ok to do so now?
    Thanks x

    • Hi Steph, always a tricky one to answer and many a good breeders or owners have been caught out by this. It can be difficult if the season was light or shallow, or the bitch ovulates late, so it is hard to know when the time is definitely safe and right. I would say around 3-4 weeks apart, look for no discharge and reduced swelling completely, but it can be a hard one to predict, so to cover yourself maybe keep them apart for an extra few days. Enjoy your dogs. Love JoJo xxx

  60. Hi jojo, we have an 8month old patterdale. She had a season in October and it lasted nearly 6 weeks
    She has now started spotting again in the past few days. Is this natural? Many thanks in advance. Jen x

    • Hi Jen, I would get her checked by your vet just to be on the safe side, as a 3 month cycle and a prolonged 6 week season only 3 months ago will just need checking. All bitches are different and one of my girls had a 4 month gap and also their cycles can vary and having a prolonged season is also possible, so don’t worry just get her checked out to make sure everything is ok and it will put your mind at rest hopefully. Love JoJo xxx

  61. Ruby's mummy says:

    Hi, I have a 6 month old jack Russell (ruby), I’ve had my cousins male JR staying for a few days. Tonite when I got back from taking him home I’ve noticed ruby a bit swollen like a doughnut and think she may be coming into heat :/ im really worried as she’s way to young to have puppies and she’s so small. What can I do??? Please help xx

    • Hi Ruby’s Mum, I have only just seen this comments so a bit late in replying, it sounds like she is literally just starting her season, did you see a mating, if a mating was seen then getting Ruby to your vets asap after the mating would be advised as the vet can give her a medication to stop mating taking effect shall we say. A trip to the vets would be recommended after any potential miss mating, as your vet will give you all the advice you need, but also maybe she was just starting her season and no mating happened. I would love to have an update on Ruby, sorry I didn’t see your message sooner. Love JoJo xxx

  62. my dog is a husky x lab an she is nearly a year old but she hasnt had her first season yet

    • Hi Wendy, All bitches are individuals and therefore their season cycles can be different and vary so much, also some breeds are know for maturing later and having first season later etc. If she hasn’t had her first season by 18 months then you may want to mention this to your vet and I am sure they will help you and reassure you. Love JoJo xxx

  63. Mandy bridle says:

    Hi Jojo

    I have found your write up really useful. I have a 10 month old Cocka poo called lily she has come out of her first season. Her nipples are still quite swollen. If she sits @ a certain angle she looks like she has a six pack.
    I am wondering if she is pregnant? You see I have a eight month old miniature apricot poodle called Olly. I did intend to mate them Second season. I did take lengths to keep them apart. Nappies babies vests/knickers. They were determined to mate. I put lily in a cage she thought she was being punished. Lily is so petite I fear the miniature poodle is too big for her causing stress carrying puppies. Anyway, I contacted my vet which she is going on Tuesday to have injections. Now I am wondering if she is pregnant? If she is they will have to be abborted as lily is too young. But after considering Lily’s options I have decided to have her done. She’s too precious to have any stress in her life. Thank you for your time in reading this. Mand

    • Hi Mandy, Lovely to hear from you, Lily and Olly. Sorry I’m a bit late replying to this comment but I will help you in anyway I can if you need it going forward. It sounds like you have made your decision to have Lily neutered and I appreciate this must have been a worrying time not knowing if your Olly had got to Lily during her first season. It is nature and dogs do find a way sometimes even with the most cautious of owners intention of keeping them apart. I am pleased you had your vet to help you and I hope everything worked out well for you and your dogs. If you need any help please do contact me via Ask A Question and I will get back you quickly as I will help other dog owners and first time breeders with pleasure. Love JoJo xxx

  64. Stephanie says:

    Hello JoJo,

    Thank you for your post it was very informative. My Azera is a husky x Pomeranian just under 7 months old and I noticed today she is quite swollen and some spots of blood on her fur and in her bed so I think it’s safe to say she has come into her first season. She does seem a little uncomfortable, sitting awkwardly and stretching with her bottom in the air a lot, I have warmed up her microwave belly teddy for her to cuddle, just wondered if there is anything else I can do for her to make her more comfortable or anything special I should do, food etc to make sure she is ok through this. She is my first dog so I just want to make sure I am doing everything I can for her.

    Many thanks
    Steph xxx

    • Hi Stephanie & Azera, Yes it does sound like Azera is experiencing her first season. All bitches are different but just continuing with her normal diet and exercise her in your garden at this time. She may be a bit quieter and more rested during her season, so maybe a favourite long last treat may be nice for her whilst she is around the house. Most bitches sail through their season, just keep an eye on blood flow which should reduce/go paler around day 10 of her cycle, but at this time she may be very swollen (sponge like vulva) and this is her prime mating time so keep her safe. A season generally lasts for around 3 weeks but each one is different so may be longer. I hope it all goes well for her and she is growing up now ahhh. Love JoJo xxx

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