Bitches age for first and last litter

I just read a post basenji forum, and a woman have had her 9month old mated to her male, yesterday she delivered 6 healthy puppies at only 11month:eek:
What do you think about breeding so young, what could be the problems for the dam, appart of stopping her from growing properly?

Well, personally I would never breed a bitch that young. I don't think they are mature enough to be good mom's; they aren't old enough to have had their hips tested; and I just don't see a reason to do it. But, physically, they are probably fine…in the wild, or native habitat, I would imagine that females often whelp on their first estrous. But I don't think that justifies choosing to allow that as a breeder.

I agree with Andrea the biggest issues are the mental maturity of the bitch and unknowns with regard to health. With many of breed's health issues being late onset, breeding dogs at 1 and 2 years of age, especially as a common practice, creates a pedigree where you have to look 5 generations back to find a dog who is even old enough to have entered the age range where symptoms are usually first seen. Pregnancy is physically demanding and if you have passed on genetic disorders like hip dysplasia or Fanconi, pregnancy can acclerate the onset of symptoms.

@Quercus:

Well, personally I would never breed a bitch that young. I don't think they are mature enough to be good mom's; they aren't old enough to have had their hips tested; and I just don't see a reason to do it. But, physically, they are probably fine…in the wild, or native habitat, I would imagine that females often whelp on their first estrous. But I don't think that justifies choosing to allow that as a breeder.

Ya know…I should say I would never INTENTIONALLY breed a bitch that young. Lots of responsible breeders have 'oops' litters....it could definitley happen to me.

And usually I hate to say "never" but this is one thing that I am pretty sure I would never choose to do.

I made a mistake writing the breeder mated her to her male, apparently it was not planned (a oops litter as you call it)!
I also got a oops litter (my male and my female manage to unscrew the screws on the varykennel she was in by scratching on the door, now when in season the females are in a room and the males in another and in crates even the door is locked up) but my female was already 2, I don't know if I would have let her have the litter if she would have been even a year younger!
It' not yet usual practice to health test basenjis in France.
Thank you anyway for your answers!
Another question until what age can you use a female to breed, or start to breed?

I think the oldest I have personally known of a bitch having a healthy litter was seven years old; but I am sure there are older ones out there. I think it would depend on the individual female…some seem old at five or six, some not until 10!!

I am planning to breed a bitch for the first time next year; she will be five. I have heard of breeders waiting to breed a maiden bitch until she was six or so....

I read an article in the AKC Gazette, in one of the breed columns (don't remember which breed) a few months ago concerning the age for breeding. The author mentioned that many breeders prefer to wait due to late onset health issues - BUT - waiting until 5 or 6 dramatically increases the problems with pyometra, detached placentas, etc. They gave some statistics and it was kind of scary.
I prefer to breed at about 3 for the first breeding, and I don't believe in back to back litters - I don't think a bitch should have more than 2 litters (although 3 MIGHT be ok if the breeding was a really good one) Just my personal quirks.
I definitely agree that 11 months is way too young, for the reasons everyone else has mentioned. IMO, most Basenjis don't mature mentally until at least 2 years old; there are always exceptions, of course.

Terry

<< BUT - waiting until 5 or 6 dramatically increases the problems with pyometra, detached placentas, etc. They gave some statistics and it was kind of scary. >>

I agree Terry, I don't think it is ideal to wait that long. There were various reasons why this bitch hasn't been bred yet..I still may decide against it. But I also think three is probably the optimum age (or the third annual estrous)..so maybe almost three years old. If you try to breed on the second annual estrous, the bitch wouldn't be old enough to have her hips done (usually)..so I would wait until after that.

I don't have any set restrictions on how many litters I think a bitch should have…I think their bodies are probably set up to have quite a few litters in their lives. But I think it would depend on the individual bitch, breeder and stud choices whether it is a good thing or not.

I am guessing by back to back breedings you are thinking of dogs that have multiple seasons per year? Or do you mean you wouldn't breed a basenji bitch in the fall of one year, and then again in the fall of the next year?

I started to reply to this, then accidentally hit my backspace button twice; I think it vanished into cyberspace.

Anyway, to repeat what I was trying to say, I'd rather not breed the same girl in consecutive years - but you have to have the luxury of having 2 or 3 breeding possible girls. I can't even think of having more than one litter at a time - I have known people with 4 litters on the ground at the same time, YIKES! And definitely, with breeds with more than one season per year I wouldn't breed the same bitch again.

I agree with Lisa that pregnancy puts a lot of stress on the body (it certainly did on mine, and I only had 1 baby, not 4 - 6). While I know that if a dog is going to get Fanconi, she's going to get it, I have known of several that were diagnosed within 6 months of whelping. Coincidence, probably, but I do think that the stress of pregnancy, nursing, and raising little Basenji hellions could tax the immune system defenses and perhaps be a factor in when a disease manifests.

I also have to say that I don't mean never, because different situations could change things. Just what I try to do…

Terry

My personal opinion is that a Basenji bitch is not ready to be bred till about 3… Waiting to long can be stressful on an older bitch and they may have problems... And as far as Fanconi and/or PRA (our late onset) that is why it is so important to know the pedigree's of the dogs you are breeding and especially vertically... Also making sure that the things we can test for are done and recorded... Hips, Thyroid, Patels, etc...

Oldest that I know of is a 10 yr old... she was check by the Vet and deemed in perfect health... and she delivered just fine... while I might think that is a bit old, as long as she was checked out and in great health I would do it... as it is, this bitch lived to just shy of her 18th birthday!

I waited until two bitches were 5 years old for their first litters and I am unlikely to do that again. Delivery was rather hard on them and it changed their bodies dramatically! Personally I think 3 is the ideal age for a bitch's first litter.

I had an ooops litter once, Sissy, the mother had the puppies (7) cleaned them up and everything, but would never feed them. I had to physically hold her down to let the babies nurse. Once they got full, the mom would leave them. Luckily we had another female, Kamina, who would take care of any baby!! When Sissy left, Kamina would take over and teach them how to be a Basenji and dry nurse them. Ironically, when we purchased Sissy at 3 months old, Kamina had a litter at that time, and was nursing her puppies and Sissy. I have a picture and it looks so funny seeing the little bitty babies and this huge 3 month old nursing. I tried to make Sissy stop nursing, but Kamina wouldn't have it. GO FIGURE !!
Anyway, age along with maturity is a big issue!!!
I wouldn't want to go through that again… 😞

Most dogs don't mature mentally until they're 3-period! There may be reason's for breeding young that may help such as narrow hips. I was considering breeding Sugar this year-she would be two, but decided against it as she is too narrow in the back end. After various opinions and vet checks, most stated she would probably need a c-section, I have decided unless she matures with a wider back end-I probably won't breed her at all. Although she would be a wonderful mother-it may not be in the cards for her. I would also need to test her before breeding. Breeding is a responsibility- not a right when you own a dog or bitch.

However with all that said, I would still never breed that young!

I had an "oops" litter 4 months ago between an 11 year old male and a 9 year old bitch. This was the bitch's third litter. She had no complications during pregnancy nor in delivery. If the scenario wasn't odd enough to begin with, the bitch has gone through alot of positive changes since delivering. She has slimmed down and is maintaining the best weight she has had in years. She has become active and playful again and her attitude is almost always happy. I'm thoroughly enjoying these changes in her and she is too. I don't know what was in those "puppy hormones" but I wish I could bottle it and sell it LOL! 😃

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