|Bella at 46 days to go!|
It was difficult to tell Bella was even pregnant as she didn’t really show much until day 37, when all of a sudden her waist line bulged to a whopping 33.5 inches (85 cm).
Bella continues to have an amazing appetite and is now eating three small meals a day. We are feeding her a very nutritious diet of premium kibble, ground beef or roast chicken, boiled rice, digestive enzymes and probiotics.
Bella seems very active at the moment but as we head into the homestretch, we expect she will slow down. She is ever so affectionate and she is demanding frequent belly rubs, which we are very happy to oblige.
Pre-natal period: It is an interesting fact that a dog's tactile perception develops before birth, therefore unborn puppies can detect touch when the mother is petted from the outside of the abdomen. This establishes the basis for puppies to tolerate being touched, when compared to puppies born to mothers that were not petted.
Pregnant dogs that are exposed to stressful events tend to release hormones that can be detected by the fetuses, which can negatively influence their future development. This underscores the importance of providing pregnant dogs a stress-free and tranquil environment.
|Above is an amazing photo by National Geographic of an embryo at 25 days old.|
|Bella's ultrasound at approximately day 30. Can you see the resemblance?|
At this stage, the puppies’ eyes and spinal cords have begun to develop and the face is also forming. Fetuses are approximately 1.3 cm. This may seem small, but they will triple in size in just one week. Between days 29 and 35, their toes, whiskers and claws start to develop. They are now beginning to look like dogs! Interestingly, their eyes are initially open but their eyelids fuse at around day 35 to protect them from contamination during development and remain closed until approximately 10 days after birth.
Stay tuned .....