You have done everything right. Your pet has had a successful pregnancy and delivered healthy adorable puppies
with no problems. You may think it is now smooth sailing until weaning time. Unfortunately, your bitch has yet to make it through nursing before you can breath a sigh of relief.
The two most common complications that occur during nursing are eclampsia and mastitis. Eclampsia
Eclampsia in animals is not the same as in people. In women, eclampsia is related to problems with blood pressure. In dogs, eclampsia is related to blood calcium problems. Bitches with large litters or nutritional problems may develop eclampsia. Their body calcium is deposited in the milk to give the babies the best nutrition. This has a detrimental effect on the mother. Low blood calcium will result in muscle tremors or seizures. Without treatment, eclampsia can become life threatening. To help prevent eclampsia, make sure the bitch is eating a high quality nursing food. It's important to discuss the need for supplements with your veterinarian. Any sign of muscle tremors or abnormality should prompt you to seek veterinary assistance.
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Mastitis is an inflammation or infection of the mammary gland. The milk becomes infected and may cause illness in babies that nurse on the infected gland. Without treatment, the infection can worsen and make the mother quite ill, while the babies will suffer due to maternal neglect and poor nutrition.
You can prevent mastitis by keeping the whelping area clean. Make sure the mammary glands and nipples are clean as well. Any abnormality should prompt you to seek veterinary assistance.
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