Can Dogs Have Abortions? Exploring Medical Procedure and Risks

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Author: Jacob Kay

Unwanted pregnancies in dogs are common, just like in humans. Mismating, or unintentional mating, can result in unwanted puppies. In animals, mating occurs spontaneously. Dog owners frequently report their unpatched female dogs mating with unneutered male dogs. So, Can Dogs Have Abortions?

They consequently have a large litter of puppies to care for, which may or may not be desired. One way to stop mating is to spay and emasculate your dog, but what if he mismates and becomes pregnant already?

Difference Humans Dogs

What is Abortion?

When a dog unintentionally gets pregnant, the pregnancy might need to be ended. This is carried out following extensive research into the causes of the pregnancy, the necessity of terminating it, and the most secure course of action. The procedure used to terminate the pregnancy will vary depending on the dog’s age and if the owner intends to breed her in the future.

"If the female is too young to safely carry a pregnancy or if an accidental mating occurred between disproportionate partners, the owner may choose to put an end to their dog's pregnancy. Before beginning a treatment, your veterinarian will take the necessary measures to confirm that your dog is truly pregnant." confirms MSD Manual

When a dog’s owner requests that the veterinarian end the pregnancy, this could lead to an abortion for the dog. A miscarriage is the term for an unplanned abortion that happens on its own.

Planned pregnancy termination may be required for a variety of reasons, including accidental mismating of dogs or safeguarding the mother’s health. The majority of the time, spaying the dog is a better option than forcing an abortion.

What Are The Similarities Between Human and Canine Pregnancy?

Difference Dogs Humans

Pregnancy in dogs and other animals, including humans, share some similarities:

  • Pregnancy in humans and dogs can cause the mother to feel unwell or exhausted for a while.
  • It is easy to mistake those sickness symptoms for early pregnancy indicators in both cases and vice versa.
  • When the children are born, the nipples and mammary glands will change in preparation for location.
  • The best method for keeping an eye on the child and looking for any issues in both cases is to use an ultrasound
  • Within months, the waist and stomach will both distinctly enlarge in both.

What Differs Between Dog and Human Pregnancy?

Although the characteristics of the pregnancy are very similar in many ways, there are still some significant differences. Here are a few of those variations:

  • The pinkening of the nipples is one of the first indications of pregnancy in dogs. This change won’t occur in humans until much later in the pregnancy.
  • The changes in a dog will happen faster than in a human since a canine’s pregnancy usually lasts 58-68 days, whereas a human pregnancy typically lasts 280 days.
  • Pregnant canines are far more likely than pregnant people to contract parasites.

Abortion Treatment in Dogs

Abortion Treatments In Dogs

There are many medical choices to take into consideration for owners who are searching for safe ways to either end a potential pregnancy or prevent an undesirable pregnancy.

The best course for dogs to permanently avoid getting pregnant is spayed (ovariohysterectomy).[1]

The following medical options are the most popular ones for ending a pregnancy:

Estrogen Injections:

Soon after mating, a veterinarian could give an estrogen injection. However, because of adverse effects such as anaemia and bone marrow suppression, the usage of estrogen injections has decreased recently.

Oral Estrogen:

Oral estrogen is thought to be unsuccessful, despite being a possible therapy option. Veterinarians do not advise it since it can result in uterine infection (pyometra).


Another reasonable alternative for ending a pregnancy is dexamethasone. It contains adverse effects including excessive thirst (polydipsia), excessive urination (polyuria), and painting, although it is also administered by a veterinarian.

Prostaglandin F2 Alpha:

Veterinarians use this natural hormone to end pregnancies safely. On the other hand, moderate side symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, panting, shaking, and excessive drooling have been observed. With any dog abortion treatment, side effects are inevitable.

In both planned and spontaneous abortion therapies, discomfort, pain, and vaginal bleeding are frequent side effects. You must closely monitor your dog’s behaviour to look for any negative effects.

Techniques for managing pain may also be an option for you to ease your suffering. See a veterinarian about spaying your dog to control future pregnancies.

Recovery from Abortion in Canines

Given the potential unpleasantness of the absorption surgery and its aftermath, some pet owners would prefer that their animals stay at the clinic for the duration of the procedure. Furthermore, before bringing their dog home, some dog owners want to be sure the termination is finished. It is a personal choice that you should talk to your veterinarian about.

Recovery Abortion
"Sometimes, one or more puppies in the litter may be miscarried and resorbed, while other puppies in the litter go on to be born normally."[2]

When your pet gets back home, which is normally the day after the procedure, she will need quiet and rest if she has an ovariohysterectomy. She may have skin stitches, therefore she must keep quiet and go on leash walks exclusively for exercise. After your pet has been spayed, your veterinarian will let you know when a follow-up appointment is required.


Can dogs have abortions?

Pregnant dogs can be aborted using a product called ALIZIN. Whilst it is registered for use in dogs as far pregnant as 45 days post-mating, it is recommended to use this product before day 35 post-mating.

Are there medical interventions for canine abortions?

Yes, veterinarians can provide medical interventions for canine abortions. These may include medications or surgical procedures. It’s essential to seek professional advice to determine the most suitable option based on your dog’s health and circumstances.

What are the signs of pregnancy in dogs?

Signs of pregnancy in dogs may include changes in appetite, weight gain, enlarged nipples, and behavioural changes. However, these signs can also indicate other health conditions. Consult with a vet for an accurate diagnosis.

Is spaying a form of preventing unwanted pregnancies in dogs?

Yes, spaying is a highly effective method to prevent unwanted pregnancies in dogs. Spaying, or ovariohysterectomy, involves the removal of the ovaries and uterus, eliminating the possibility of pregnancy.

At what age can dogs be spayed to prevent pregnancies?

The ideal age for spaying varies by breed and size, but it’s generally recommended between six months to one year of age. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the best time for your specific dog.


Understanding every aspect of the intricate question, “Can dogs have abortions?” is crucial. Below the surface, several elements that may impact the reproductive routes of our beloved canines are extensively examined.

Professional skills and real-world experience are just as important as academic knowledge to get practical insights into canine reproductive health. By reading through this wealth of material, pet owners may get the abilities and understanding needed to navigate the complicated world of their dogs' health.


  1. Abortion in Dogs: Pregnancy Prevention in Dogs | petMD
  2. Miscarriage in Dogs | VCA Hospitals
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Jacob Kay
Jacob Kay is a Veterinary Advisor and Editor at WWD. He’s also a dog lover and has two pet dogs of his own. He has extensive knowledge in the field of veterinary medicine and is always happy to share his insights with others.

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