Now you have your new family pet, a gorgeous Cockapoo puppy bitch, it is really important that you watch for the signs that tell you your Cockapoo is in heat, also referred to as being in season. This reproductive cycle will usually start when your puppy is anywhere between 6 and 12 months old, but can vary so don’t worry if it is a little earlier or later than that, this heat cycle will occur twice a year.
The average length of a season will usually be between 3 and 4 weeks but for some dogs, it can last up to 6 weeks, this is not a precise science so do not get too worried if it does last quite a bit longer than 4 wks. After your Cockpoo’s first heat cycle it is an idea to mark it on your calendar or set a reminder this will give you an idea of when to start looking out for their next season.
The importance of knowing when your Cockapoo is in season can not be overstated as the last thing you need is an unwanted litter of puppies especially if you beloved Cockapoo companion is either too young or too old for this to occur.
Stages of a heat cycle
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There are four stages to a female dogs season these are:
This is the first stage of a female dogs reproductive cycle and when you will start to see changes, it can vary in length, normally lasting for about 9 days but can be up to, would you believe, 27 days so quite a difference. At this time male dogs will be attracted to her but she will not return the attention. It is during this stage that she will have a clear discharge tinged with blood or bloody discharge and is not able to reproduce.
This is the really dangerous stage if you do not want a litter of pups on your hands as it is the time when your Cockapoo can reproduce. Not only can she reproduce, but she is very likely to encourage male dogs by doing a bit of doggy flirting. Again the average length of estrus is 9 days, but again it varies, it can be anywhere between 4 and 24 days, so do not let your guard down. During this stage, she will slow if not stop bleeding.
At this point, your beloved pet will start returning to normal and can no longer get pregnant, this will last for about 2 months but, yes you guessed it, can vary.
You have your pet back until the next cycle. Once your Cockapoo has had a couple of cycles you will find that it settles into a ‘usual’ heat cycle for your dog, enabling you to be able to judge and time when precautions need to be taken a lot easier.
Signs that your Cockapoo is in season
Before I go further I would like to mention abnormal heat cycles, this can be Absent which is what it says, no cycle occurs. Split, they start their season but then stop, and last but most important and worrying is the Silent cycle, this is where your dog is in heat but showing none of the signs that let you know. So if you suddenly find male dogs are constantly pestering your pet this could well be because they are having a silent heat cycle.
If you think your Cockapoo suffers from any of these it may be due to a medical condition so please get them to your vet and have them checked out.
There are a few signs you can watch out for, your Cockapoo may become clingy and follow you around, a lot more than usual, but, the complete opposite may also occur and they become more aloof along with their obedience levels changing.
You may find that they start trying to mount all sorts of things, including you and your family, also, just like some women can do, they may start getting broody and start nest building, taking toys to their bed and sleeping with them is a good sign that they are nesting.
You don’t need to worry too much about missing the behavioural changes as there are more visual signs that can help you spot when your Cockapoo is in heat. They will have bleeding or discharge and their vulva will be swollen at which time you will see them licking their genital area to keep themselves clean, although some do think is because the area is far more sensitive than usual.
How to cope while your Cockapoo is in heat
There are various precautions that you really need to take along with things you can do to help you in the house.
When you Cockapoo is in heat she will need to be supervised at all times, dogs will do anything to get to her and she won’t always refuse the attention. Some dog owners will keep their pets indoors during this time and exercise them with play or fetch and run in the garden. I realise not everyone will have the space to do this, do not despair, there is plenty you can do to deter unwanted attention while out and about.
Never take your dog out and let her off the lead, you will not believe the lengths dogs will go to to get to her, try to take her on the walks that are quieter and do not have as many dogs running freely, so avoid open parks etc. If you do see a dog off of the lead then change direction or change route, but also try and advise the other owner if they are within hearing.
Last but not least is to put your dog in the car if possible and take them somewhere away from your home and garden, this reduces the possibility of your doggy neighbours finding her scent and standing guard outside your house or even worse, trying their best to enter your garden area.