What To Expect With a Beagle Pregnancy

by Sonya | Last Updated:   March 24, 2021
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Are you preparing yourselves for a Beagle pregnancy to come? Getting excited for the arrival of adorable Beagle pups? 

Well, dealing with your Beagle’s pregnancy can be exciting and stressful. You need to educate yourself about Beagle pregnancy and its stages. This will ensure a healthy mother and safe birth for precious puppies.

We have come up with a comprehensive guide about Beagle pregnancy. You will know about the early signs, states of birth, at-home birthing tips, and warning signs of Beagle pregnancy. 

Let’s get started!

Beagle pregnancy: standing pregnant beagle standing on the ground in between walking for exercise

First Signs of Pregnancy 

Pregnancy in dogs is relatively short as compared to humans. It is about 9 weeks total. Each day of dog pregnancy matters. Here are some common dog pregnancy symptoms to look out for:

  • Changed size and color of pregnant dog’s nipples. They get noticeably bigger
  • Fluctuations in the appetite of a pregnant dog
  • The female dogs may groom themselves more thoroughly than usual
  • The female dog may become anxious, overprotective, and show nesting behavior
  • The female dog becomes lethargic and less active
  • The stomach starts to feel firm
  • A pregnant dog might show unusual and strange behavior
  • Mucus discharge may occur
  • Enlarged abdomen and weight gain in the later stages of pregnancy

If you suspect that your female Beagle is pregnant, take it to the vet. He will be able to confirm whether or not your Beagle is pregnant.

Stages of Beagle Birth

When a Beagle is giving birth, there is are a lot of things to know. In most cases, the pregnant Beagle will know when labor is coming. The female dog will become restless 2-4 days before whelping down.

Pregnant Beagle then goes and nest in her birthing area and goes into labor. There are three stages of birth in the Beagle:

Care during and post-pregnancy is vital. There are many health conditions that expecting Beagles might develop. So, it is important to know what happens and what to expect in each stage of birth.

Let’s have a look at the stages of birth:

Stage 1

During the first stage, the female dog is lining up the puppies, ready to come out. The whelping Beagle’s cervix will dilate and contractions begin. There may be a watery vaginal discharge as her cervix opens.

This stage usually lasts 12-24 hours and can be painful to the dog. Female Beagle will be uncomfortable, restless, and quite possibly pacing, shivering, coughing, or might possibly vomiting.

Your dog may refuse to eat at this stage. So, do not forcefully feed your Beagle during this stage. It’s better to have an empty stomach at this stage. Try to keep the mother’s environment quiet and calm during this period.

Stage 2

The actual delivery of the puppy a cure at this stage. As this stage progresses, you may notice a white fluid discharge. There are visible and strong contractions, and the whelping Beagle may pant or yelp. 

You can gently move the expecting Beagle to replace the whelping mat under it. Puppies will be pushed out one at a time, wrapped in their own amniotic sac.  Do not pull a puppy out unless it appears to be stuck.

As the puppies are delivered, the whelping Beagle will bite open the sac, lick the puppy clean and also bite off the umbilical cord. It is important to let the dam do this. This licking of the mother stimulates the puppies to breathe and prompts circulation. 

Stage 3

During this stage, all the puppies have been born and the Beagle’s uterus contracts fully. At this stage, delivery of the placenta, or afterbirth, follows. You can expect this stage to take place about 15 minutes after the delivery of the puppy. 

Pet Parent Tip: It is common for pregnant Beagles to stop eating a few days before labor. You must ensure that the expecting mother already has lots of reserves to draw upon. Just make sure the pregnant Beagle is comfortable and well hydrated. 

Safe at home Beagle birthing tips

A home birth can help your female Beagle feel relaxed while delivering its litter. The mother dog will do most of the work and it knows what to do by instinct. Your part is to remain absolutely calm, have certain supplies on hand, and prepare the birthing area carefully.

Unlike humans, multiple births are the norm in Beagles and all other dogs. So, the first pup will be followed by others. Here are few home birthing tips:

Keep your Beagle’s home birth hygienic

The home birthing area needs to be kept very hygienic. You need to limit the number of people going into the area. Frequently disinfect and clean the birthing area.

Take good care of your own personal hygiene as well before going into the area. Also, keep the area free from other adult animals. This will help to get rid of infections, germs, parasites, or bacteria.

Introduce your female Beagle to the birthing area

You should introduce the pregnant Beagle to the birthing area one to two weeks before the expected delivery date. This will ensure that the mother dog feels happy, comfortable, and relaxed when it gives birth. 

Disinfect the umbilical cord

If the mommy Beagle doesn’t chew through each umbilical cord on her own, you need to do this. To prevent infections, you can disinfect the umbilical cord with iodine or antiseptic solution.

If the umbilical cord is still bleeding you may need to clamp it or tie it with thread to stop the bleeding.

Remove the sac

All puppies are born in a thin membrane that looks like a sac. You can help the Beagle mother to remove the amniotic sac from around a puppy. Just tear the sac open and remove it.

You should do this within 30 seconds after birth to allow the puppy to breathe.

Remove the secretions from the puppy

You may help remove the secretions from the nose and mouth. Carefully, turn the Beagle puppy upside down supporting its head and allowing the secretions to drop out with gravity. 

Rub the puppy with a towel

You can rub the Beagle pup shortly after birth with a soft towel after the secretions are cleaned off. This mimics the mom’s licking and will stimulate it to breathe and cry.

Discard the afterbirth

Once the Beagle puppy is born, the placenta is useless. You may discard some of the placentas if the mother Beagle is ingesting too many. These are harmless but in excess, they may cause diarrhea.

Count the puppies and placentas

It’s also important to keep count of the puppies and placentas. There should be one per pup. Sometimes, the afterbirth does not always come out with the puppy.

Keep the Beagle puppies warm

You may place the Beagle pups in a warm box while the whelping dog continues to give birth. This will help the dam to avoid accidentally laying on the pups.

Place the Beagle pups near their mum’s nipples

You may place the Beagle pups near the mother dog’s nipples. This will help to start feeding during the interval between births.

Warning signs

There are various warning signs that may indicate problems.

Dystocia

In this condition, the Beagle mother-to-be is not progressing through labor as expected due to a problem. This problem is caused by

  • Some Beagles may have a narrow birth canal. If the pelvis is narrow, delivering puppies may be difficult. 
  • Uterine inertia or uterine exhaustion when the uterus is no longer able to contract and push the puppies through the vaginal canal. 
  • A tumor or a fractured pelvis also makes delivery difficult.
  • If the size of the Beagle puppies is too large, they will not fit in the birth canal. 
  • Sometimes, the puppy is positioned incorrectly. If the Beagle puppy is sideways or bottoms first, they become stuck.
  • Developmental defects that result in the enlargement of certain body parts can make birth difficult.
  • Death of the puppy in utero 

Does not tear the sac

If the Beagle mother does not tear the sac away from the puppy, you must step in and do it. Gently tear it open and clear away all fluids. Gently rub the Beagle puppy to prompt it to breathe.

Does not bite the umbilical cord

If the whelping Beagle does not bite the umbilical cord, you will need to cut it. 

You should call your vet immediately if you notice the following:

Straining actively without puppies:

Beagle puppies are expected and more than 30 minutes have passed without a puppy being pushed out. A vet may need to correct the position or perform a Cesarean.

Puppy is stuck halfway:

If a puppy is stuck halfway out. You can intervene and pull it out.

Bloody vaginal discharge:

The Beagle mother is expelling a purulent or bloody vaginal discharge. It may suggest a hemorrhage or uterine rupture.

Dark green fluid discharge:

The Beagle mother is expelling a dark green fluid before the first puppy is born. It might suggest a premature placental separation.

Eclampsia:

The Beagle mother is exhibiting muscle weakness, tremors, spasms, muscle rigidity, or seizures.

Uterine torsion:

The Beagle mother is exhibiting signs of shock, pale gums, severe abdominal pain, drop in temperature.

Uterine inertia:

The Beagle mother is refraining from producing puppies within an hour, but you know it has more inside.

Some potential problems during Beagle pregnancy include:

  • Pre-eclampsia
  • Gestational Diabetes
  • Mastitis

Essential supplies for whelping

It’s always a good idea to have a checklist to ensure you have all of the supplies you may need for whelping. Here’s a list that can help:

  • A whelping box. You can take a big box of cardboard or plastic in which your Beagle can whelp. 
  • A canine digital thermometer
  • A whelping mat or clean towel 
  • Clean tissues
  • Iodine or antiseptic solution
  • Unwaxed dental floss and clean scissors to tie off umbilical cords
  • Trash bag for putting used towels and tissues
  • Heating pad to keep puppies warm
  • Ribbons to identify puppies
  • Puppy milk substitute, if supplemental feeding is indicated

FAQs on Beagle pregnancy 

What is the duration of a Beagle pregnancy?

Like all dogs, the pregnancy duration of a Beagle is around 9 weeks or 63 days.

It’s normal for female Beagles to give birth anywhere from 60 to 65 days. If a Beagle has not delivered at the 65-day mark, it should be brought to the vet.

When does a pregnant Beagle’s stomach start swelling? 

Generally, you will notice some firmness in your female Beagle’s stomach by the end of week two. In the third week, it is larger than normal. By week four, a female Beagle will clearly show that it is pregnant and carrying a litter.

What is the normal litter size of Beagles?

The average size of a Beagle litter is six puppies. However, this number can easily vary from 1 to 10 puppies.

By week 6, your vet can take an ultrasound to let you know how many pups to expect. When pregnant Beagles give birth to puppies, the little fur bundles weigh just a few ounces each.

And prepare yourself, Beagle puppies can be very hyper!

What is the diet requirement of a pregnant Beagle? 

A healthy diet sets the stage for successful Beagle pregnancy and healthy puppies. Pregnant dogs need to be fed more than other adult Beagles. 

A pregnant Beagle’s diet typically includes 

  • Muscle meat, usually still on the bone
  • Organ meats 
  • Eggs along with shells
  • Vegetables and fruits 
  • A small amount of dairy 

You need to increase your pregnant Beagle’s diet at various stages of pregnancy.

  • A pregnant Beagle will eat their usual portion sizes for the first few weeks of pregnancy. 
  • After the first four weeks, you should increase the food by 20-30%.
  • By week 8, your pregnant Beagle may be consuming up to 50% more food than she was pre-pregnancy.

Final Thoughts 

You should observe the mother carefully. Take your female Beagle to the vet for a health check-up before mating, after mating, and once you think it’s pregnant. Also, talk to your vet for more details on diet and care during pregnancy.

Sonya is a software engineer by day and recently earned her MBA degree, but she also loves spending her free time writing about her favourite passion, dogs! Click here to read more.