The Mating

If you use the services of a professional stud, then you will not have anything to do with the mating. The breeder will see to it that your bitch is mated and you can rely on him. All you have to do is deliver and pick up the bitch and pay the fee when due. But if you are using a local male, then you may have to help with the mating, especially if the male is inexperienced. The chances are the owner of the local male doesn't know much about mating the dog. You both will have to learn the facts of a dog's life.

Don't feed the bitch on the day she is going to be mated. Ask the owner of the male to withhold food from his dog. A full stomach is not conducive to sexual activity. This is true of other animals besides the dog. Bring the bitch to the place selected for the mating; a cellar, shed or garage will do, just so long as the dogs can have reasonable privacy (despite the fact dogs will copulate in public on the street!).

Before introducing the bitch to the male, take the precaution to put an emergency muzzle on her. This is to prevent her turning on the male and snapping at him. She can easily ruin his ardor by such tactics. It's quite possible that you miscalculated as to her readiness to stand for mating. When the muzzle is on the bitch, let the male come over and get acquainted. He'll soon show signs of interest and will sniff her genitals, wag his tail and get aroused. Watch the bitch. If she shows signs of nervousness or irritability, talk to her and reassure her. If she is ready to mate, she'll whisk her tail aside and stand still. If she doesn't, then you made a mistake.

When the bitch shows her willingness to stand, let the male mount her. Let him do it his way at first. That is, providing he is not trying to mount the wrong end. And this frequently happens with an inexperienced male. If he's confused as to direction, have his owner lead him around to the right end. Allow him to make another attempt. But if he gets too excited and doesn't seem to be getting anywhere, have his owner take him outside.

There may be a physical disparity that is holding up the mating. For instance, the bitch may be too short or too tall. If this is true, you'll have to do something about it. And as hilarious as it may sound, you'll have to prop up the bitch if she is too short or bolster up the male if he is too short. In the case of the bitch, you can hold her rear end up to the male. As for the short male, fold a blanket or coat and place it under his hind legs.

When the male seems to be doing all the right things, but still fails to penetrate the bitch, he will have to be guided. The best method is take hold of the bitch with both hands under the abdomen, move her rear end to the right or left or up and down to facilitate entry by the male. In cattle breeding, the handlers often take hold of the bull's penis and guide it into the cow's vagina. But size is a factor in cattle breeding and a similar technique is not feasible with dogs. You will have to be patient and keep helping the male. But don't make a marathon out of it. If the male fails to penetrate the bitch after an hour or two, give him a break. When you do separate the dogs, don't give them any water. And after three or four hours of failure, call it off and bring the bitch back the next day.

Upon penetrating the bitch, the male will be "locked in." What happens is that the bulbous end of the male's penis becomes greatly enlarged. At the opening of the bitch's vagina there is a sphincter muscle. As the male's penis pushes past this sphincter and enlarges inside, the sphincter muscle traps the penis. The male will ejaculate. But he cannot withdraw his penis until the swelling has subsided. This takes some time. Consequently, the male and female are locked together. Doubtless, you've seen two dogs locked together— maybe rear to rear—on the street. This is Nature's way of making sure that fertilization takes place.

There is nothing you can do but wait until the dogs unlock themselves. Under no circumstances should you try to hasten the process. You can seriously injure one or both dogs. While being locked together may seem an abnormal position for the dogs, it doesn't hurt them. All they have to do is think of something else to speed up the unlocking process.

The bitch may tire of the male's weight on her back and she will try to lie down. Don't allow this. Most males will swing their right or left leg over the bitch's back and thus have two feet on the same side of the bitch and on the ground. If the male doesn't do this, have his owner do it. Keep the emergency muzzle on the bitch until the dogs are unlocked. Don't let her jerk away or move unnecessarily.

Occasionally, two locked dogs get twisted around so that they are rear-to-rear. This position looks very ludicrous. But it can be painful and injurious to the dogs, especially if one dog starts dragging the other. Such a situation shouldn't be permitted to happen in a supervised mating.

Although the male mated with your bitch the first day you brought them together, you will be wise to bring her back the next day. This is just to "make sure." If you mated her at the correct stage of heat (9th to 14th day), she will still be receptive to the male. After the final mating, keep her confined. She will still encourage males and it is possible for her to mate again and have a litter sired by more than one male.

After the 20th or 21st day from onset of heat, the bitch will no longer be willing to mate.

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