Labradoodles have become one of the more popular breeds in the U.S. – and that’s for a good reason. They are extremely loyal and incredibly loving dogs. And with them being in such high demand, you may be thinking that you can breed Labradoodles on your own. But before going into this process there is actually a lot of time and research required. So let’s have a quick look at the basics.
At around two years of age, your Labradoodle will reach its’ sexual maturity. This is also the earliest that you should consider breeding a Labradoodle, both female and male. It is also highly recommended that you don’t breed your female Labradoodle until after their first or second heat cycle.
Now that we’ve established when we can breed our Labradoodle, how does this line up with the actual process of breeding?
Why Wait With Breeding a New Doodle?
Breeders are given specific guidelines for breeding their Doodle for several reasons, but the most important one originates from a need to protect a dogs’ health in every possible way.
Some dogs can easily get very confused if they are breeding too early, and it can also affect the newborn puppies when the parent isn’t really mature enough to be bred.
For Female Labradoodles
As with most animals in general, female Labradoodles are quite a bit more complicated than males.
Although your female Labradoodle could start experiencing what is called her “Heat Cycle” when she is no more than six months old, this in no way a sign that she is ready for breeding.
For the best and safest results, one shouldn’t start to breed their female Labradoodle until about two years of age and you should stop once she turns eight years old.
Breeding when the dog is only in its’ first or even second heat cycle may lead to confusion for the mother and cause serious mental issues as she might end up neglecting her puppies.
And breeding her for too long or without taking a break for just one season once in a while can also lead to serious damage to your Labradoodle and her puppies.
As she gets older, the quality of the eggs your female Labradoodle carries will start to deteriorate, making it harder and harder for her to carry her pregnancies to full term and can even end up causing stillborn puppies.
Not following these rules can bring serious danger to her and her puppies if you’re not careful.
For Male Labradoodles
Male Labradoodles are a lot less complicated than their female counterparts – but this does in no way imply that their health doesn’t really matter much.
As with females, you shouldn’t even consider breeding him until he is around two years of age. This has been proven to be the best age for breedings Doodles, to make sure that they are of proper age and sexual maturity.
And as with a females’ eggs, a male Labradoodles’ sperm will start deteriorating over time.
But if you remember to take your Labradoodle to regular visits at the vet to check on his health, a male Labradoodle can be bred until he reaches the age of around ten years – so long as he is able to produce healthy puppies.
Taking your male Doodle to a Vet to be screened for any major health problems is very important if you’re thinking about using him for breeding purposes.
A vet can help you find out if there is anything in your Labradoodles genetic history that you should worry about before you continue the process of breeding.
- RELATED ARTICLE: BEST AGE TO NEUTER A LABRADOODLE
How Can Breeding Age Affect My Labradoodles’ Puppies?
The main goal of breeding should always be a healthy litter of puppies, right? And if so, a new breeder must first come to understand how a healthy pregnancy resulting in healthy puppies can be accomplished and how the age of your dog will affect the goal you ultimately have in mind.
Breeding at a Young Age
For any Labradoodle, female or male, breeding them while too young can lead to disastrous consequences for the puppies.
However, the largest number of problems really stems from the result of breeding a female too early.
Both the mother and puppies are at a greatly increased risk when a mother is younger compared to when she gets’ older.
When the mother is too young and hasn’t fully developed herself yet, and she then tries to carry out a pregnancy to full term, which means that the puppies will be a huge drain on her and the risk of stillbirth and miscarriage are greatly increased.
When the breeding female might be as young as a year old, a Labradoodle could easily die during the whelping process due to her pelvis not being fully developed – thereby endangering the lives of not only her but her puppies also.
Breeding at an Older Age
Now that your female Labradoodle has gotten older, what happens if she is perhaps a bit too old to be bred?
The statistics show that there is a much higher risk of complications if the mother is bred at an older age.
For older Labradoodles, there’s an increased risk of stillborn births and miscarriage than there would be if the mother were at a more proper age.
Even starting to breed a Labradoodle as late as four years old can cause numerous serious consequences and several difficulties in the whelping phase.
When a breeding female gets older, a breeder may start to notice an increase in sickness in the new puppies that can be related to the inviability of a females’ eggs.
The cause is usually that her eggs are becoming too old and can contain some abnormalities that make it hard or even impossible for her to have healthy puppies.
An even as a Labradoodle gets older she might still have that instinct to nurture and care for her puppies, but she can also end up having a really hard time trying to feed them.
As a dog gets older, it is not uncommon to see that a dog will no longer be able to produce enough milk for her puppies and she might dry up even when the growing puppies are still very much depending on her.
What are the Guidelines for Breeding a Labradoodle?
Before you start breeding a Labradoodle for the first time, there are a few things you have to check to make sure your dog is ready for breeding.
I’ve compiled a small list below for you to check out before taking your dog to be bred.
- Found a fitting stud for your Labradoodle?
- Checked out your Labradoodles Genetic History?
- Gotten your Labradoodle to the vet to be screened for Elbow and Hip Dysplasia?
- Given your Labradoodle proper training?
The number one thing to think about if you are considering to breed your Labradoodle, and that is your dogs’ health.
Any breeder will want the healthiest possible puppies, which is why they should be certain that their dog has the best possible genetic traits to give to the next generation.
A breeder must also be knowing of the genes that are carried by their dogs’ possible mate – ensuring there won’t be any hazard to the health of any of the future puppies.
If it’s your first time breeding any dog, try finding some experienced breeders you can have a talk with and get their opinions on the specific dogs you plan to breed.
“Studding” your Labradoodle can take time and most likely also some money depending on whatever agreements are made between the owners of each dog.
A quick summary would be that you should make sure to get the opinions of professionals such as experienced breeders and vets before going forward with mating a Labradoodle that’s new to breeding.
Ultimately, those opinions can make a big difference in the health of both puppy and parent.
What Should I Have Ready When My Labradoodle Delivers?
There are quite a lot of things that should have ready before your dog goes into labor. Suddenly running to the store when the puppies are on their way is rarely a possibility, so try and be prepared.
Some of these are pretty common household items that you probably already have. Other items are something that might require a quick trip to the local store.
A Damp, Warm Cloth
One of the items I’ve mentioned earlier is a damp, warm cloth for cleaning up the small puppies if mom might be too weak and tired to get them clean and breathing.
When a puppy is born, the mother will get rid of the puppies’ birth sac. She will eat this and then actively lick the puppies. By doing this motion she will be able to jump-start the puppies’ breathing.
If you end up in a situation where your female is too tired and she might not have the energy for the later pups to get this job done, you will have to step in and do the work needed.
With some slow and easy rubbing motions from the puppies’ head to bottom, you should be able to do what’s needed. In the above video, you can see how the dog is cleaning her puppy from top to bottom.
That is what your job will be if necessary.
This was actually something I was suggested by a nurse a few weeks before our previous dog delivered her first litter. The nurse told me that in some cases, a puppy’s umbilical cord isn’t able to seal off like it’s supposed to and it will continue to bleed which can putt the dog at serious risk.
If you suddenly find yourself in this situation, the only thing you have to do is use dental floss to tie off the puppy’s cord about one inch from its’ belly. The floss will then be able to create the seal and the puppy will be just fine.
This tip helped up when we had our first litter, as one of the puppies had this exact problem, but thanks to something as simple as dental floss, the little guy made it, and so far he’s lived 8 years without any issues!
Your new bath of little furry friends won’t be able to moderate their temperature on their own for the first couple of days. And while the mom will provide the necessary heat, sometimes a puppy is able to get away from the mom in the middle of the night, and in that case, I would strongly advise that you get a whelping heating pad.
- LECTRO-KENNEL HEATED PAD: Outdoor dog heating pad features rigid ABS exterior, 5-1/2 feet steel wrapped cord and removable fleece cover
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- TEST YOUR PRODUCT: You'll notice that the K&H heated bed may not feel warm to the touch when your pet is not on the pad. That is normal!! You can test the pad by placing a large pillow on top of the pad. After about 20 minutes, feel under the pillow. It will feel warm, not hot.
- SAFE HEATING: This product has been tested & certified by MET Labs to exceed USA/CA electrical safety standards and runs on only 80 watts
This pad is supposed to go in the whelping box and will give a safe and direct heat as protection for any puppy that might go on an adventure during the night.
Related Questions for Best Age to Breed a Labradoodle:
How long does it take for a Labradoodle to have puppies? A Labradoodles gestation period is about 63 days – giving an average of 7 puppies per litter.
How many litters can a Labradoodle have? A Labradoodle shouldn’t have more than 3-4 litters during her lifetime. If it’s 3 or 4 depends on the size of each litter. If your dog has a history of getting manny puppies per litter, getting 4 litters total will be very taxing on her body.
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