As a responsible Labradoodle owner, you should have knowledge about when do Labradoodles go into heat and a complete understanding of the Labradoodle’s heat cycle and follow its schedule. This will help you prepare accordingly to ensure the best care for your dog during this period and prevent any unwanted pregnancy.
Labradoodles usually go into heat, and their first season begins at the age of six to twelve months. But there are some differences between the dogs, and there is nothing to worry about an earlier or later first season. After that, your Labradoodle will have one or two seasons a year. If you spay your labradoodle, they will no longer be in heat, but this operation has its pros and cons.
So, keep reading to learn more about the different stages and timing of the Labradoodle’s heat cycle, how to determine when your labradoodle is in heat, and how to care for your pet during their heat period.
What is the dog heat cycle?
Heat is the time when female dogs are fertile and can get pregnant. Heat is sometimes called “in season”. The age of the first heat, the duration of each heat cycle and the number of times a dog goes into heat per year can vary averagely depending on the specific dog and breed.
What happens when the dog is in heat
The heat occurs during estrous, the phase of a dog’s reproductive cycle when the female dog produces eggs that are ready to be fertilized. A dog in heat will show certain physical and behavioral changes that indicate that the female dog is ready to mate. Males can pick up these hormonal signals, and the female dog will be receptive to their advances.
When does Labradoodle go into heat?
For the first time, Labradoodles begin a heat cycle when they reach puberty, usually at the age of about 9 months. However, in some cases, they can begin at the age of 12 to 15 months.
They usually go into heat twice a year, once in early spring, and then again in autumn. The period leading to heat can last from 5 to 14 days, while the heat period itself can last from 14 to 21 days.
The heat cycle of any dog breed includes several stages. Its exact timing and any effects it has on the dog will vary depending on the age and health status of the dog.
How to tell when Labradoodle goes into heat?
It’s usually easy to tell when your labradoodle is in heat because it’s starting to show certain physical and behavioral changes that are hard to leave unnoticed.
General sign that indicates Labradoodle heat symptoms:
- The dog will urinate more often than usual, and it may have more accidents in the house, even if it has been potty trained.
- The dog will begin to raise its paw in an unusual position when it urinates or when it notices males nearby.
- The dog will lick the area of his genitals more often than usual to relieve any unpleasant sensation there and keep himself clean for his partner.
- The dog will start paying more attention to nearby males and releasing pheromones to attract them.
- The dog’s vulva will gradually swell until it becomes 3-4 times larger than its normal size.
- The dog will begin to have vaginal discharge and blood. Its quantity, consistency, color, and duration will vary depending on the stage of the heat cycle and the dog’s age and health status.
- The dog will exhibit unusual landing behavior as it will try to sit on other dogs or allow other dogs to sit on it. It may also try to install various objects or even your feet.
- The dog will exhibit some nesting behaviors that include pawing its bed and blankets, burrowing into small spaces & digging holes in the ground for its potential pups. They will also take some of his favorite toys to his nest to relax with them.
- The dog will experience intense mood swings. Sometimes he will behave affectionately and excessively intrusive, and in other cases, he will behave distantly and anxiously, which can turn into aggression.
- The dog will often lack energy and will have a higher appetite than usual to maintain its energy level.
Timeline & stages of Labradoodle heat cycle
The timeline of the labradoodle heat cycle includes four main stages, which are:
Each of these stages will last for a period of time, during which the dog will experience various physical and behavioral changes.
- The first stage is called proestrus, and it tends to last for 5 to 14 days.
- Your dog will start attracting males already at this stage, but it will not be receptive yet.
- You will also notice that at this stage your dog will start bleeding.
- At this stage, your labradoodle’s body is not yet fertile, but her body is preparing for a possible pregnancy and the birth of puppies.
- The vulva of your Labrador will gradually swell and turn out from pinkish to reddish color.
- During the Estrus stage, your female dog will start to accept males, and they can now get pregnant.
- The discharge from the blood will turn into watery and transparent color.
- This is a signal that the female dog can now get pregnant. This stage can last for an average of 10 to 12 days depending on your specific dog.
- At this stage, your doodle will not accept male dogs and cannot get pregnant.
- Your Labradoodle will not be interested in attempts to mate with males, and males will also lose all interest in your female.
- There is still bloody discharge in the diestrus stage, but this will gradually stop.
- At this stage, the vulva will also return to its normal size.
- The anestrus stage is the final stage of the heat cycle of a dog.
- This stage is the “resting” stage, and in this phase, there is practically no activity of the ovaries – until your Labradoodles begin “active heat”.
- This stage will last somewhere from 130 to 150 days.
- This period will allow your dog to fully recover after the birth of a litter of puppies.
How to avoid Labradoodle pregnancy during the cycle
If you do not plan to breed your labradoodle, you need to take some measures so that he does not get pregnant during the heat cycle.
The most effective way to prevent pregnancy in dogs is spraying, which is a surgical procedure that involves removing the dog’s reproductive organs, including the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and uterus, to permanently stop it from going into heat.
Should you spay your Labradoodle dog
As mentioned earlier, spaying is a surgical procedure that involves the removal of a dog’s reproductive organs. If you want to permanently prevent it from estrus and pregnancy, You should spay your Labradoodle.
Spraying will also help reduce the risk of various health problems caused by pregnancy and prevent your dog from developing any behavioral problems that come from its breeding instincts.
Most Labradoodles enter their first heat cycle after reaching six months of age, but for larger Labradoodles, you may have to wait a few more months.
When this happens, your dog will undergo several hormonal changes, so be sure to provide her with proper care and love during this time. However, if you do not plan to breed your dog, it is best to be spayed by a veterinarian.