When you have a female Shih Tzu it is like keeping a cute fur ball that you can play with anytime. However there is more to it than just cuddling and playing. The female dogs reach puberty stage when they are about 6 months old and they go into a heat stage or often called estrous cycle. Even the human females undergo this stage when they menstruate – a phenomenon that indicates that reproduction is possible. In case of the female dogs this stage also takes place but only twice a year. In case you see that your dog has developed heat and its age is 6 months then do not breed it yet – if you are serious about breeding. In case you do not plan to become a serious breeder then get her sprayed as early as possible. You should schedule the surgery after consulting the vet. Spraying should stop the formation of any sort of infection like pyometra (pus formation in the uterus) and metritis (inflammation of uterus) and even cancers like ovarian or mammary tumors. In case your Shih Tzu is around 15 months old but still you see that she hasn’t gone into the heat then something is wrong. She may have imbalance in her hormone system and it has to be assisted by medical methods.
So the big question – how do you know that your Shih Tzu is in heat? The first thing that you will get to see is her swollen vulva. One usually sees blood in the heat stages of dogs but in case of smaller breeds there is not much bleeding. The blood is usually thicker and consistent and often covered with mucus. Do not freak out as this is normal. This is not something that your dog can control so just put a doggy diaper around your dog so that your house does not get soiled. This is not usually a painful period – the heat time but some dogs may prefer to rest or “nesting” when they go into heat. After 7-9 days of the commencement of blood discharge your Shih Tzu is extremely prone to get pregnant because this is the ovulation period where the egg cell is mature enough to accept the sperm. SO you need to put her in a cage or harness her properly during the walks. The male dogs are surely to get attracted by her and will try to come near her. You can expect a lot of canine suitors on your doorstep. The cycle span is usually around 2-4 weeks and comes back after 6 months.
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