how to tell if an english cream golden retriever is pregnant

How to Tell if an English Cream Golden Retriever Is Pregnant

So how to tell if an English cream golden retriever is pregnant? As a dog lover and owner, one of the most exciting moments is when your furry friend becomes pregnant. However, it can be challenging to tell if your English Cream Golden Retriever is expecting. Sure, there are common signs like a change in appetite or behavior, but even those can be misleading.

So, how do you know for sure? Let me walk you through some fool-proof ways to tell if an English cream golden retriever is pregnant, so you can start preparing for those tiny paws to fill your home.

The English Cream Golden Retriever Reproductive Cycle

Like any other breed, English Cream Golden Retrievers undergo a reproductive cycle that is important to understand if you want to breed or care for one.


This is the first phase of a female golden retriever’s reproductive cycle. It typically lasts about 9 days but can be as long as 27. During this phase, you’ll notice swelling of the vulva and a bloody discharge. The female will also begin to attract male dogs, but she won’t be receptive to their advances. It’s important to keep her away from male dogs during this phase to prevent unwanted matings.


It is the second phase of the reproductive cycle, and during this phase, the female dog is receptive to males. Estrus lasts about 9 days but can vary from 3 to 21 days. During this phase, the female’s discharge will change from bloody to clear or straw-colored. She’ll also become more friendly and affectionate with male dogs and may even initiate mating. If you’re planning to breed your English Cream Golden Retriever, this is the phase where you should introduce her to a male dog of your choice.


This is the third phase of the reproductive cycle and begins immediately after estrus. It lasts about 56 to 60 days, regardless of whether or not the female has become pregnant. During this phase, the female’s body prepares for pregnancy; if she’s pregnant, her pregnancy will continue to develop. If she’s not pregnant, she’ll come out of the heat, and her body will begin to prepare for the next cycle.


It is the fourth and final phase of the reproductive cycle. It’s a period of sexual inactivity and usually lasts for about 4 to 5 months. During this phase, the female has no interest in mating and will not attract male dogs. It’s important to note that this phase is essential for the female’s reproductive health, and you must avoid breeding during this phase.

Knowing what to expect during each phase will also help you avoid unwanted matings, which may result in sexually transmitted diseases or unwanted puppies. If you plan to breed your dog, always consult with a veterinarian to know more about the heat cycle of English Goldens.

Signs to Tell if an English Cream Golden Retriever Is Pregnant

how to tell if an english cream golden retriever is pregnant

It can be challenging to know for sure if your English cream golden retriever is pregnant, but there are some vital signs you can watch for.

1: Slow Activity Level

When an English Cream Golden Retriever is pregnant, she may have a slower activity level than usual. In the first few weeks of pregnancy, a dog may not show any signs of lethargy, but as time goes on, they may become more tired and spend most of their time sleeping or resting. If your furry friend is slower than usual and spends more time sleeping, this could be a sign that she is pregnant.

2: Appetite Changes

Another sign that may indicate your English Cream Golden Retriever is pregnant changes in her appetite. During the first few weeks of pregnancy, she may lose her appetite and start showing signs of nausea. As pregnancy progresses, she may begin to eat more than usual and show an increased interest in food. Keep a close eye on her eating habits and take her to the vet if you notice any significant changes.

3: Discolored or Enlarged Nipples

During pregnancy, an English Cream Golden Retriever’s nipples will enlarge and change color. If you notice any signs of discharge or swelling around the nipple area, this could be a sign that your pet is pregnant. Keep in mind that this may only happen about three weeks after your furry friend has been bred.

4: Abnormal Behavior

In some cases, an English Cream Golden Retriever may exhibit abnormal behavior when pregnant. For example, she may start nesting behavior, where she makes a cozy den for herself out of blankets or magazines. Additionally, she may become more protective and possessive of her toys or food. Keep an eye out for any changes in behavior.

5: Abdominal Enlargement and Weight Gain

One of the most significant signs that an English Cream Golden Retriever is pregnant is when her belly enlarges, and she gains weight. This usually happens after four weeks of pregnancy. As the pregnancy progresses, the dog’s abdomen will continue to grow, and she will gain more weight. Remember, childbirth can come with complications, so visiting your vet regularly during your dog’s pregnancy is essential.

6: Puppy Movement

Once your Golden Retriever is halfway through her pregnancy, you may feel movement in her belly. It is one of the first signs that she is pregnant and can occur as early as 3-4 weeks into the pregnancy. You may feel small flutters or gentle kicks as the puppies start to grow and develop. If you are unsure whether puppies cause the movement you are feeling, take your dog to a veterinarian for an ultrasound to confirm if she is pregnant.

7: Nesting Behavior

As your dog approaches her due date, she may exhibit nesting behavior. This is when she starts to prepare a space for her puppies to be born. She may become more protective of her space and gather blankets or toys to create a safe and comfortable environment for her litter. It is a good sign that her puppies will arrive soon, and you should begin preparing a whelping box for her.

8: Flaring Fur

When a pregnant dog is close to giving birth, her fur may flare around her belly. This is due to the pressure caused by the growing puppies inside her. If you notice her fur flaring, monitoring her closely is essential as this is a sign that labor may be imminent.

9: Panting and Pacing

In the final stages of pregnancy, your Golden Retriever may become restless and anxious. You may notice her panting more than usual, pacing around, and whining. She may also become more clingy and seek out attention from you. It is a normal response to the physical discomfort she is feeling as the puppies start to descend.

10: Body Temperature Drops

Shortly before labor begins, your dog’s body temperature may drop by a degree. This indicates that she is about to go into labor within the next 24-48 hours. It is a good time to start monitoring her closely if any complications arise.

By monitoring her behavior and physical changes, you can ensure that she is healthy throughout her pregnancy and provide her with all the care and support she needs for a successful delivery.

Veterinary Tests to Determine Pregnancy

For instance, a pregnant pet requires a different diet, exercise routine, and medical attention than a non-pregnant pet. Additionally, knowing the pregnancy status of your pet is essential to manage its pregnancy more effectively and preparing for its litter’s birth.

Types of Veterinary Pregnancy Tests

💉Blood tests

Blood tests are the most accurate way to determine pregnancy in your pet. These tests are usually done in the first month of gestation and can detect the hormone relaxin – the hormone that the placenta produces after fertilization – in blood samples. Blood tests need to be done by a licensed veterinarian since they require more sophisticated laboratory equipment. You can expect results within the day; false-negative results are rare.


An ultrasound is probably the most common veterinary test used to determine pregnancy, providing accurate information about how many puppies there are, their heart rate, and gestational age. Moreover, the scan can determine if there are any developing problems with the fetuses. The earliest your vet can perform an ultrasound is around 21 days after breeding. Ultrasounds are non-invasive and aren’t painful for your pet. However, early ultrasounds may need to be more resolute.

💉X-Rays, or Radiographs

These can also be used to determine pregnancy. After 45 days following breeding, radiographs can show how many puppies or kittens are growing in your pet’s womb. Additionally, they can detect any developing issues that ultrasound can’t assess, such as skeletal problems. The main downside of using X-rays is that they expose your pet to radiation, usually only done around day 45 of pregnancy.

💉Fecal Progesterone Test

There is also a Fecal progesterone test, which helps to determine if your pet is ovulating. Progesterone levels are high in pregnant animals and fluctuate with their reproductive cycle. This test does not check for direct pregnancy but serves as an essential tool to time the breeding of your pet for successful conception. Your vet can perform this convenient test in-house, and it provides the most comfortable handling for your pets.

Each test has unique benefits, and your veterinarian will choose which is best suited for your pet.

The Best Time to Conduct a Pregnancy Test

When it comes to determining the pregnancy status of your pet, timing is crucial. The most accurate pregnancy tests are carried out several weeks after conception. This is about three weeks after mating in dogs, while in cats, it is about two weeks. The earlier the pregnancy test, the less accurate the results, so it’s best to wait a while before conducting one.

False Dog Pregnancy

False pregnancy is a condition where a non-pregnant pet shows signs of pregnancy. This condition is particularly common in dogs and can be caused by hormonal imbalances. Veterinary pregnancy tests are essential to differentiate between a true and false pregnancy. Determining if your pet has a false pregnancy is crucial, as it can lead to various health issues if left untreated.

These necessary tests are essential for giving your pet the best care you can provide. Knowing the pregnancy status of your beloved pet is critical to guaranteeing their health and well-being during this time.

Managing Care During English Cream Golden Retriever Pregnancy

how to tell if an english cream golden retriever is pregnant

Now it’s been confirmed by your vet that your English cream golden retriever is pregnant; congratulations! So here’s what to do next:

1: Ensure Consistent Nutrition

A well-nourished dam is essential for the growth and health of her puppies. Feed her nutritious dog food specifically formulated for pregnant or lactating dogs during pregnancy. Consult your veterinarian, who may recommend prescription diets rich in nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. Avoid feeding your dam table scraps or high-fat treats that can lead to complications during delivery.

2: Prenatal Veterinary Checkups

Your dam will require prenatal veterinary care to ensure she is healthy enough to carry and deliver her puppies. Your veterinarian may prescribe supplements or vitamins to aid nutrition and minimize birth defects. The veterinarian will monitor the weight of your dam and provide health care as needed. In the last stage of pregnancy, your veterinarian will perform imaging and ultrasound to determine the number of puppies and their growth status.

3: Provide a Comfortable Living Space

Ensure your dam has a comfortable living space pre and postpartum. Pet-proof the area and provide comfortable bedding where she can sleep and care for her puppies. Keep her living space warm and draft-free, with easy access to food and water. Ensure the living space is cleaned regularly to maintain hygiene for the well-being of the dam and the puppies.

4: Monitor Changes in Behavior

During pregnancy, your dam may experience changes in behavior, such as mood swings, appetite loss, and lethargy. Monitor these changes closely and promptly notify your veterinarian if you notice any significant changes. You may also need to restrict the dam from over-exertion during the last trimester and avoid introducing new situations or dogs that may cause stress.

5: Exercise and Play Time

Although exercise and play should be restricted in the last trimester, keeping your dam active and engaged during pregnancy is important. Exercise will help her stay fit, healthy, and happy. Take your dog for walks and provide her with toys she can play with within the comfort of her living space.

Signs of an Unhealthy Pregnancy in English Cream Golden Retrievers

English Cream Golden Retrievers are susceptible to various health issues during pregnancy, like any other dog breed. As a responsible dog owner, you must know the signs of an unhealthy pregnancy in your English Cream Golden Retriever to ensure your dog gets the best possible care and treatment. Here are some signs of an unhealthy pregnancy in English Cream, Golden Retrievers:

📌Loss of Appetite

One of the early signs of an unhealthy pregnancy in English Cream Golden Retrievers is a loss of appetite or sudden changes in their eating habits. Pregnant dogs require a heightened need for nutrition, and not eating enough could lead to malnourishment and endanger the health of both mom and puppies. Lack of appetite could also signal other health concerns, such as gastrointestinal problems, so you must consult with a veterinarian immediately if you notice such signs.


Just like humans, dogs may experience morning sickness during the early stages of pregnancy. However, if a pregnant English Cream Golden Retriever is vomiting frequently or has blood in their vomit, it’s time to take them to the vet. Chronic vomiting could lead to dehydration and potentially endanger the puppies’ development, so getting medical attention as soon as possible is crucial.


Pregnant English Cream Golden Retrievers may also become less active and less playful due to their growing bellies. However, if your dog seems unusually lethargic or weak, it could indicate an unhealthy pregnancy. Decreased energy levels could be caused by various factors, such as infections or hormonal imbalances, so bringing your pet to the vet for a check-up is best.

📌Abnormal Discharge

Discharge during pregnancy is normal and should not be a cause for concern unless unusual colors or odors are present. Greenish or yellowish discharge may indicate infections or bacterial growth. Discharge mixed with blood may suggest placental problems, and a lack of discharge may signal difficulty with labor. If you notice any abnormal discharge from your pregnant English Cream Golden Retriever, immediately take them to the vet.

📌Painful or Difficult Urination

As the pregnancy progresses, the puppies may grow more significantly and pressure the bladder. It may lead to difficulty urinating or a painful experience while doing so. However, excessive straining or whimpering during urination could signal urinary tract problems or bladder infections. You should not ignore these symptoms and be brought to the vet as soon as possible to avoid complications.

If you notice any of these signs in your English Cream Golden Retriever during pregnancy, it’s essential to consult with a veterinarian immediately. Early detection and treatment of health issues can increase the chances of a healthy pregnancy and delivery.

Things to Prepare for at the End of a Pregnancy Term

how to tell if an english cream golden retriever is pregnant

When your pregnant English cream golden retriever nears the end of her term, it’s essential to prepare for labor and delivery. Here are some things you should do in preparation:

✔️Arrange Veterinary Care

The first and most important aspect of preparing for your dog’s pregnancy is to schedule a visit with your vet. They will thoroughly examine your dog and advise you on the steps to take to ensure a healthy pregnancy. Your vet will also guide you through the birthing process and advise you on caring for the newborns.

✔️Whelping Box

A whelping box is a secure and comfortable space that you can create for your dog to give birth and care for her puppies. It should be warm, dry, and spacious enough to accommodate your dog and her pups. You can purchase a ready-made whelping box or create one from scratch using wood or cardboard.

✔️Clean Towels and Blankets

Towels and blankets are necessary to keep your dog and her newborns clean and comfortable. Prepare several clean and soft towels and blankets that you can use to line the bottom of the whelping box. Have extras on hand, so you can change them when they become soiled.

✔️Heating Pad

Puppies are fragile and need warmth to survive. A heating pad is an essential tool you will need to keep your puppies warm and comfortable. Place the heating pad under a few towels or blankets in the whelping box. Make sure the temperature is not too high to avoid overheating the pups.


A scale is essential in monitoring the weight of your puppies, especially in the first few weeks of life. You will need the scale to ensure the puppies are gaining weight at a healthy rate. This is an excellent way to tell if they are getting enough milk from their mother or if you need to supplement them with puppy milk replacement.

✔️Puppy Milk Replacement

Sometimes, due to various factors, puppies may not get enough milk from their mother. In such a case, you will need a puppy milk replacement formula to help supplement its diet.

✔️Weaning Supplies

Eventually, your puppies will need to start eating solid food. To simplify the weaning process, you must have weaning supplies such as puppy food, bowls, and feeding bottles ready.

✔️Adoptive Homes

Lastly, you need to have a plan for finding adoptive homes for your puppies. Especially if you can’t keep all the puppies, you need to start looking for potential homes and screening prospective adopters.

Remember, the key to success is planning and preparing early so you are unprepared during this exciting and rewarding journey.

FAQs About English Cream Golden Retriever Pregnancy

How Long is English cream Golden Retriever pregnant?

The gestation period for English cream golden retrievers is around 63 days or around 9 weeks. However, remember that the actual length of pregnancy may vary from dog to dog. Some may deliver a few days early or later than the expected due date. Regular check-ups with a veterinarian can help monitor the health and development of the pregnant dog, which can also affect the duration of pregnancy.

What does a 7-week pregnant English cream Golden retriever look like?

At seven weeks pregnant, an English cream golden retriever’s changes on the inside would far outweigh any obvious physical differences. However, the vet may be able to detect signs of pregnancy, such as enlarged nipples and thickening belly walls. It might be too early to feel any puppies moving inside the mother’s womb, but the vet may advise doing ultrasounds for a clearer view.

How many puppies do English Cream Golden Retrievers have?

English cream golden retrievers generally have a litter of around six to eight puppies, but this will depend on the size and health of the mother dog. Factors such as age, genetics, and feeding habits may also affect the number of puppies. However, it is essential to note that the size of the litter doesn’t necessarily indicate the quality of the puppies.

Is a pregnant English cream Golden retriever belly hard or soft?

A pregnant English cream golden retriever’s belly would become firmer as the pregnancy progresses, mostly due to the growth and development of the puppies inside. However, it may not be as hard as people imagine since the puppies are cushioned and protected by the mother’s uterus and abdominal muscles.

What should owners and breeders expect in English cream Golden retriever pregnancy?

An English cream golden retriever’s pregnancy journey is exciting but requires diligence and care. Owners and breeders should ensure the pregnant dog gets ample nutrition, rest, and exercise. Regular visits to the vet can help monitor the mother and puppies’ growth and development, detect any potential complications early, and ensure that the puppies are born healthy.

Can I bathe my pregnant English Cream Golden Retriever?

Yes, you can bathe your pregnant English Cream Golden Retriever, but avoiding getting water in her ears is important. You should also use dog shampoo suitable for her delicate skin. It’s best to bathe her before her due date so she is clean and hygienic when the puppies arrive.

What color are pregnant English Cream Golden Retriever gums?

Pregnant English Cream Golden Retrievers have pink gums just like any other dog. However, during the later stage of pregnancy, her gums may turn red and swollen due to hormonal changes. It is normal, but contact your veterinarian if you notice excessive swelling or bleeding.

What should you avoid if your English Cream Golden Retriever is pregnant?

In order to ensure the safety and health of your pregnant English Cream Golden Retriever, there are several things you should avoid. These include:

  • Exposure to chemicals and toxins
  • Over-exercising and excessive activity
  • Feeding food that is not meant for pregnant dogs
  • Vaccinations, flea, and tick medications without consulting your veterinarian

What is the best food to feed a pregnant English Cream Golden Retriever?

Feeding your pregnant English Cream Golden Retriever a high-quality dog food designed for pregnant dogs is necessary. These foods are packed with essential nutrients and are formulated to meet your dog’s nutritional needs during pregnancy. You should feed her multiple meals throughout the day to ensure she gets enough calories.

Final Words

A pregnant English Cream Golden Retriever requires special care and attention, and it’s essential to have the right knowledge to ensure a safe and healthy pregnancy for her and her puppies. We hope this post has answered how to tell if an English cream golden retriever is pregnant. Remember, if you have further concerns or questions, do not hesitate to contact your veterinarian for guidance.

About Tom Thorpe

Tom Thorpe has overtime interacted with different species of dogs mostly through breeding and training; according to him, man’s best friend is yet to find solace in the company of man, as they are continuously mistreated. He, therefore, runs a rescue center that provides shelter to stray dogs, and has been advocating for the rights of animals; the Golden Retriever dogs are among his favorites, the reason he came up with the extensive excerpts to help educate the society on the right treatment and care of the respective breed. Tom spends most of his time running his dog shelter; he is a husband and proud father of two boys and loves to go fishing during his free time.

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