Raising male pups can be fun and frustrating at the same time. These adorable fur babies grow so fast and if you have a cycling female around, you may be concerned as to the possibility of an accidental pregnancy occurring.
On the other hand, if you plan to breed your male pup, it is only necessary to know whether dogs attain sexual maturity at puppyhood.
Our profound guide will help you understand the best age to breed a sire, signs of sexual maturity in male pups, and why it is bad to neuter dogs early. We’ll also look at some common causes of infertility in male dogs.
Can A Male Puppy Get A Female Dog Pregnant?
Whether or not a male puppy can get a female pregnant is a factor of its age and size. On average, dogs reach sexual maturity between 6 to 9 months but their fertility peaks only after 12 to 16 months. Small male dogs reach sexual maturity faster than their large or giant-sized counterparts.
As dogs reach sexual maturity (puberty), the testosterone level in their body begins to increase and at about the 1-year mark, it gets to a very high level and most dogs at this age are physically ready to breed.
Unlike female dogs, males do not go into heat and immediately after sexual maturity, they can breed all year long and will likely mount on any bitch in heat.
Since dogs are still growing during sexual maturity and puppyhood lasts up until dogs reach their full body size, it is right to say that only puppies who have reached sexual maturity can impregnate a bitch.
Just like in humans, hormonal fluctuations during sexual maturity are attributable to the physical and behavioral changes in dogs. During this period, they often exhibit uncanny behavior that is difficult and frustrating to tolerate and they may do away with basic training in pursuit of independence.
However, training your dog at puberty will help to prune undesirable traits and promote favorable ones. As well, it enables them to adapt quickly to the changes in their body. Exercise is necessary for physical and mental stimulation and burns off excess energy that can cause over-excitement.
How To Tell If Your Male Dog Is Sexually Mature
The onset of sexual maturity in both male dogs and female dogs is marked by a sharp increase in growth which results from an elevated level of growth hormone at this time.
The growth plates – soft tissues at the end of long bones, do not close until 12 to 16 months when growth stops in your dog. This time span could be shorter or longer in small and large dogs, respectively.
Excessive shedding is also a common sign of sexual maturity in both male and female dogs. This happens because the natural shedding cycle of a dog is disrupted as a result of hormonal fluctuations.
Copious shedding can be a result of many other factors like malnutrition, allergies, pregnancy, infection, skin irritation, sunburn, and various underlying health disorders.
Permanent Teeth Eruption
Dogs often start to lose their baby teeth as early as 3 months and at the age of 6 months or older must have been completely replaced by adult teeth. At this time, your dog must have reached sexual maturity but is not necessarily ready for breeding.
Something you can expect to see when your male canine finally reaches sexual maturity is an increase in aggressive behavior such as whining, jumping, growling, and staring. Male dogs may also become more possessive and protective of their space, which can lead to confrontations with other dogs or even humans. At this time, he’s trying to assert his dominance and show off his newfound masculinity.
Another common sign of sexual maturity in male dogs is an increase in urine marking. Male dogs will often mark their territory by peeing on objects or surfaces, such as trees, bushes, or even furniture. This behavior is usually a sign that a dog is announcing that he is in charge of his surroundings.
Sudden interest in female dogs
As male dogs reach sexual maturity, they will often develop a sudden interest in female dogs. This can manifest in various ways, such as following female dogs around, trying to mount them, or even trying to escape from the house or yard to search for females.
Disregard for commands and training
Adolescent canines may also start to ignore basic commands and start doing things their way. This is because they experience hormonal changes and you should address this issue early on with proper training and socialization to prevent it from becoming a hard-to-break habit. Additionally, neutering can help to reduce unwanted behavior in males.
Male dogs that are reaching sexual maturity may also start to roam more frequently. This can be due to the dog’s increased urge to search for females or to assert dominance over a larger territory.
Another common sign of sexual maturity in male dogs is an increase in humping behavior. Male dogs may start to hump objects, such as pillows or stuffed animals, as well as other dogs or even humans. This behavior is usually a sign that a dog is trying to assert dominance or release pent-up energy.
It’s important to note that all these behavior are normal for a sexually mature dog, but it’s also important to ensure that all these behavior are not harmful to other animals or humans, and if needed to take steps to train them or seek help from a professional dog trainer.
Common Reproductive Disorders That Can Cause Infertility In Male Dogs
Just like any member of the family, it’s important to keep an eye out for any potential health issues of your furry friend. One area of concern for male dogs is their reproductive health.
Let’s start with a relatively common issue: undescended testes. This occurs when one or both of a dog’s testis do not descend into the scrotum as they should during development. In some cases, the testis may eventually descend on their own, but in other cases, surgery may be necessary. But don’t worry, this condition doesn’t mean your pup will be singing “I Will Survive” at the top of his lungs.
Next up is brucellosis, a bacterial infection that can be spread through contact with an infected dog’s sperm or urine. It can cause infertility and other problems, so it’s important to have your dog tested if you suspect he may have been exposed.
Prostatic diseases such as prostatitis and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) can also affect male dogs. These conditions can cause difficulty urinating, blood in the urine, and even impotence. As with any health issue, early detection and treatment are key.
Orchitis and epididymitis are also conditions that can affect a male dog’s reproductive health. Orchitis is inflammation of the testis and epididymitis is inflammation of the epididymis (a tube that carries sperm). Both can cause pain and swelling and may require medical treatment.
Testicular cancer is another concern for male dogs. This cancer can be difficult to detect because they do not cause any symptoms until they are advanced. However, you may observe an asymmetrical swelling of the testes or feel solid masses on one or both sides of the testes. Regular check-ups with your veterinarian can help to catch this condition before spreads, though this cancer does not metastasize most times.
Last but not least, testicular torsion is a condition in which a testis becomes twisted, cutting off its blood supply. This can be a life-threatening emergency and requires immediate surgery. So, if you notice your dog is holding his leg up like he’s trying to avoid a smelly fire hydrant, it’s best to get him to the vet ASAP.
While these reproductive disorders may sound daunting, the good news is that many of them can be treated successfully if caught early. So don’t be afraid to ask your vet about your dog’s reproductive health, and give your furry friend the “puppy love” he deserves.
When Can Female Dog Get Pregnant?
Females dog can get pregnant when they are in heat. This is the estrus phase of the female heat cycle and is her fertile period. She experiences it periodically every 6 to 12 months depending on the dog’s breed or size. Bitches do not come into heat until 4 months for smaller dogs and up to 2 years for large and giant dog breeds.
While most female dogs experience their first heat in about 6 months, it is advisable not to breed them until their third heat. This is because they are not physically mature to handle pregnancy. Even in humans, puberty does necessarily not make females ready for sexual intercourse.
However, it is best to consult with a veterinarian to determine the specific timing appropriate for breeding your dam.
What Happens If A Female Dog Gets Pregnant By Her Son
If a female dog gets pregnant by her son, it is referred to as inbreeding. This act is mostly deemed unethical even though it is still widely practiced. While inbreeding can be useful in fixing desired traits, it comes at the expense of enormous health consequences for the offspring.
Inbreeding often lead to a small gene pool and expression of harmful recessive genes resulting in such as an increased risk of genetic disorders and congenital abnormalities.
Due to the reduced genetic diversity in inbreeding, the litter is usually of low quality and tends to have shortened lifespan. The rate of spontaneous abortions and stillbirths are also heightened in inbred fetuses.
In future generations, fertility may be reduced due to the disruption of reproductive processes by deleterious genes.
Additionally, temperamental issues can also stem from inbreeding. This can present in form of aggression, anxiety, and other behavioral problems, making it difficult to train and socialize the puppies.
Can A Neutered Male Dog Get A Female Dog Pregnant?
A neutered male dog is unable to impregnate a female dog as the surgical procedure of neutering removes the testis where spermatogenesis occurs, making it biologically impossible for him to father a litter.
Can A 8 Months Old Puppy Get A Female Dog Pregnant?
Most 8 months old dogs can impregnate females but it’s not necessarily advisable in especially larger dog breeds that may not be fully developed as this can often lead to the delivery of low-quality pups. It’s best to talk to your vet about the right age for your canine to start mating.
Can A 6-Months Old Puppy Get A Female Dog Pregnant?
Some dog breeds especially small dog breeds are capable of siring puppies at 6 months of age. However, most dogs are still in the developmental stage at this period and may take up to a year to reach full physical maturity.
Can A 4-Months Old Puppy Get A Female Dog Pregnant?
A 4-month-old puppy is still like a human toddler and is yet to reach the stage of sexual maturity, and hence, it’s unlikely for him to impregnate a female dog.
Well, there you have it folks!
Whether or not your male pup can impregnate a female dog is all about timing. On average, dogs reach sexual maturity between the 6 to 9 months mark, but it can vary based on size and dog breed.
So, if you notice physical changes like growth spurts, heavy shedding, and permanent teeth eruption, as well as behavioral changes like aggression and urine marking, your pup may be reaching sexual maturity. But it’s important to remember that it’s best to wait until they are in their adult size before breeding.
Training and exercise can help manage behavioral changes during sexual maturity.
Also, you can prevent accidental breeding by neutering your male pooch around 6 to 9 months of age or separating the male dog from his mother once he is of age.
So, keep an eye on your furry friend and experience the chequered journey of raising a pup!