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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 30292
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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I can get the tip of my finger in her cervix. Want to know

Customer Question

I can get the tip of my finger in her cervix. Want to know just how much it needs to open before she whelps. She's at day 61 and appears ready to whelp.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.

I'm sorry that your question wasn't answered in a timely manner. Measuring the cervical opening in that manner isn't a valuable manner in which to determine the time of whelping. The cervix will dramatically stretch during stage 1 labor but the degree of opening is too variable to be predictive. Important facts to know include the following:

99% of dogs whelp 63 days after ovulation (the day that the serum progesterone concentration increases above 5 mg/dL).

Labor should begin within 24 hours of her body temperature dropping below 99F (or a serum progesterone concentration less than 3 ng/dL)

If no puppy is born within 4 hours of the temperature readjusting to normal (greater than 100F), dystocia (difficult birth) is diagnosed and her vet should be consulted.

Dystocia is also diagnosed if active stage 2 labor (active contractions) lasts more than 1 hour without producing a pup.

Dystocia is also diagnosed if more than 3 hours pass between pups without active contractions.

Dystocia is also diagnosed if a black, green, or red discharge is present before any pups are born (indicating placental separation and fetal distress) or a pup is lodged in the birth canal.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Too late, she's had her pups
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.

My best to mom!

You may receive an inappropriate follow up sent by the site ostensibly sent by me. It wasn't and I apologize in advance should you receive it.