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How Long It Take for Dogs Nipples to Recede After Pregnancy?

As you may have noticed, dogs’ nipples grow larger when during their pregnancy. But with time, it eventually returns to its normal size. So people often find themselves wondering how long does it take for a dog’s nipples to recede after pregnancy.

In this article, we will take a look at the various factors that contribute to receding nipples. Read ahead to learn more about it.

How long does it take for a dog’s nipples to recede after pregnancy?

It takes different lengths of time for the nipples of different dogs to recede after pregnancy. On average, it will take about six to ten weeks for a dog to have its normal nipples again. Nipples start to recede after the newborn puppies have weaned, and that’s when the mother dog stops lactating.

How long it takes for a dog’s nipples to recede after pregnancy mainly depends on the number of puppies that she has given birth to, their health, the mother dog’s health, and more. If the puppies wean within 6 to 10 weeks, then the mother dog will stop lactating.

As soon as the mother dog stops lactating, the nipples begin to return to their normal size. This may take longer when the number of puppies is more than average.

As soon as the puppies stop depending on their mother’s milk for food and nutrition, and start to eat solid food, the mother will stop lactating. This is when the receding process begins. The process may take about a week or two. 

And if the puppies have a slower growth rate, the mother will lactate for a longer period of time. In such cases, it will take longer for the dog’s nipples to recede. 

Factors that determine how long it will take for a dog’s nipples to go back to normal after puppies:

On average it takes between 6 to 10 weeks for a dog’s nipples to get back to normal after pregnancy. But there are several factors associated with the process. They will contribute to the speed at which the dog’s nipples will go back to normal after puppies are born. 

Let’s take a look at those factors:

Age of the dog:

The nipples of young dogs will recede a lot faster than older ones. If the mother dog is young and physically active, then it will take her a minimal time to have the nipples return to normal.

On the other hand, if the dog is older and has already given birth to multiple litters during her lifetime, then it will take her a significantly longer time to have her nipples recede after pregnancy.

The main reason behind it is that the skins of older dogs have already begun to lag.

Number of puppies in the litter:

If the number of puppies is more than average, then it is only natural that the skin of the stomach will expand more than usual. In such a case, it takes longer for the dog’s nipples to recede.

In addition, with more puppies, the mammary glands will expand more than usual. And the belly will be much larger. All these factors contribute to a longer period that’s required for the nipples to recede. 

Physical activities of the mother dog:

Mother dogs have already gone through massive changes in their bodies during and after pregnancy. So they need physical activities more than other dogs.

You will notice that the pregnancy, giving birth, and breastfeeding of the puppies have taken a toll on your dog. The mother dog is likely to be exhausted almost always.

But you will still need to make sure that the mother dog is going on regular walks, eating properly, and being physically active. These are very important factors to ensure that their nipples recede in time.

Dog’s breed:

How long it will take for a dog’s nipples to recede to normal also depends on the breed of the dog that we are talking about. Different dogs react differently to pregnancy.

While the normal time for an average dog’s nipples to recede is 6 to 10 weeks, it can take as long as 12 months for some dog’s nipples to get back to normal.

What to do if the dog’s nipples do not recede?

Sometimes you will notice that the nipples of the mother dogs are not receding even after several weeks. In such a case, the owners are often worried. But don’t be too bothered. There are a few solutions that you can try out if your dog’s nipples do not recede in time.

Check her diet:

Usually, it takes between 6 to 10 weeks for a dog’s nipples to recede. But if it does not recede even weeks after the puppies have weaned, then there might be some issues with the mother dog’s diet.

Check the diet of the mother dog. Mother dogs often end up eating more than usual during their pregnancy and breastfeeding period.

But their meal proportions need to return to normal once the puppies have weaned. Otherwise, their nipples might not recede to normal.

Increase physical activities:

Dogs often get very lazy after they have given birth. This is only a natural reaction. But you will need to encourage the mother dogs to engage in various physical activities after their pregnancy.

This will promote faster receding for their nipples. In addition, it will bring the mother dogs out of their fatigue and keep them healthy.

Apply vinegar to the nipples:

Once the puppies have weaned and the mother dog is not breastfeeding as much, you can begin to apply vinegar to their nipples. This is an age-old remedy to promote receding nipples in dogs.

Since puppies suck on the nipples of their mother, it is only natural that the nipples will be sore and puffy. The vinegar helps reduce the soreness and allows the nipples to recede.

How can I help my nursing dog’s nipples?

There are a few things that you can do to help your nursing dog by soothing its nipples during and after pregnancy. Here are a few tips for you:

Control the puppies’ feeding:

If you notice that your dog might be in pain, it would be best to control the feedings. You can dress your dog in a t-shirt to seal off the nipples from the puppies.

This will allow you to space out the feeding sessions, allowing your nursing dog to relax.

Apply balms:

Nursing dogs often experience sore nipples. You can help soothe their nipples by applying some balm on them. Consult your vet for suggestions for balms and creams that might help your dog.

How long will my dog’s breast sag after giving birth to the puppies?

The breasts of dogs will sag for about 6 to 10 weeks after giving birth to puppies. There are several factors associated here. For example, the breed of the dog is an essential contributor in such a case.

An average dog will have saggy breasts for about 6 to 10 weeks. But larger and older dogs may have breast sags for as long as 12 months. The older your dog is, the longer it will have breast sags.

Dogs who have already given birth to several litters, take much longer to recede their stomach and nipples. So their breast sags last much longer. On the other hand, the younger dogs will have breast sags for only a few weeks.

How long does it take for a dog’s nipples to grow during pregnancy?

It takes about 2-3 weeks for a dog’s nipples to grow during pregnancy. It is a huge indicator that your dog is pregnant.

Once the dog has conceived, it will take them only about a couple of weeks to grow their nipples. In addition, their mammary glands will begin to grow after 40 days of their conception.

So you will begin to observe major changes in their bodies. And their stomach will begin to expand within 4-5 weeks.

Final thoughts

On average, it takes about 6-10 weeks for a mother dog’s nipples to recede after pregnancy. But the duration may be prolonged for older or larger dogs. There are several factors associated here, including the number of puppies, age of the mother dogs, diet plan, and more.