Dog breeding is a different kind of scope. Some breeders mate purebred pups, while some others mix different breeds. When it comes to the latter, another interesting question arises: whether a small breed can mate with a large dog.
A small dog can get pregnant by a large dog. However, without careful supervision and consideration, it can be really dangerous or even fatal. Advantages are variety, increased healthiness, and a unique look. The cons are genetic issues, unpredictable size, difficulties during pregnancy & delivery.
So how is it possible for a small dog to get pregnant with a large dog? What are the things that can happen? What are the pros and cons of it? What should you do if that happens? Stay with me, and let’s find out!
Can a large dog breed mate with a small dog? Is it possible?
Yes! A large dog can mate with a small dog and can even get pregnant. However, there is a massive question of whether it should happen or not.
A large dog mating with a small dog can occur due to several reasons. It could be either an unplanned pregnancy or deliberately done.
Mating small dogs with large ones can result in adorable puppies.
However, this process mostly has a lot of cons than pros. First, let’s check some of the mixed breeds that can be commonly found.
- Pomsky- Siberian Husky X Pomeranian
- Goldendoodle – Golden Retriever X Poodle
- Labradoodle – Labrador X Poodle
- Bernedoodle – Bernese Mountain Dog X Poodle.
- Saint Berdoodle – Saint Bernard X Poodle
- Corgidor – Labrador Retriever X Welsh Corgi.
- Dalmaschund – Dalmation X Dachshund.
But this breeding between small and large dogs is not professional or profitable in most cases. Many breeders who have tried this say the outcome was not worth it.
However, if you are planning to mix large and small breeds for some reason, it should only be done if you’re completely aware of what you are doing. It should be thoroughly thought, and expert counsel should take part in making this decision.
The owner must remember that the pregnancy will be a very high risk to the female dog and her puppy fetuses.
Moreover, common sense and expert veterinary supervision are highly needed when breeding a small female with a larger male dog. Also, birth by Cesarian Section is often required because puppies can be oversized than the female genital opening. In addition, even though there are breeds that can be mixed, there are some that can't. For example, a small female Chihuahua can't be mated with a large Great Dane male. Also, even trying to mix such breeds is very cruel, considering the size difference between them and its harm to the small female.
However, there is a possibility it could work the other way around. A small male could mate with a Great Dane female. But in this case, too, there has been no evidence that such breeds have been mixed.
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What happens if a large dog mates with a small dog?
Many things can happen when a large dog and a small dog would mate. To be honest, these outcomes are not actually ‘good.’ They can occur during mating and during birth, and after birth.
1. What can happen during mating…
If the male is too large, the size difference and the physical mechanics of mating matter. If so, his penis can rip the vaginal opening of the small female.
This can mainly occur during the entrance and once the mating begins. The male and female would be tied together, and if the female is too small, she would be in severe pain when this takes place.
So as a solution, If a breeder really wants to breed such puppies for some reason, they could use artificial insemination instead of letting physical mating take place.
2. What can happen during pregnancy.
After mating, if the size difference is not too large, the puppies can stay within the limits of the size the mother can carry. It depends on the breeds involved.
But the puppies can grow too large for the small female to carry most of the time. So this can result in many complications like abortion, bleeding, and even having to go to a Cesarean section and take the puppies out before they are fully mature.
3. What can happen during birth…
Because the mother is small, the puppies can mostly grow larger than the birth canal. Because of this, many complications can occur during delivery and result in tearing of the tissue, bleeding, and even death.
It is best to go into immediate C-sections if the parents are of different sizes.
4. What can happen after birth…
The puppies from a larger and a small dog are most likely to have physical ailments from their parents’ differing sizes.
Some reports even suggest that the dog can have different sizes of organs, resulting in various types of complications.
So breeding a small female with a large male is not just dangerous; it can be deadly. They aren’t built to breed, with males a lot larger than their size. Breeding, as well as pregnancy, has a probability of killing the female dog.
Here are the possible pros and cons of getting a small dog pregnant by a large dog.
There are always advantages and disadvantages of pretty much anything out there, and the same goes for mating a small dog with a large dog. These can come with the process of mating and also with the puppies. First, let’s check what the bright side of this is.
So, here are the advantages.
1. More variety.
Imagine the cutest large breed mixed with the cutest small breed. That would be double the cuteness. This can create many designer dogs. However, that doesn’t mean it should be done.
2. Increased healthiness
Crossbreeding dogs mostly means that pre-existing genetic diseases being inherited are prevented. So this can increase the strength and healthiness of puppies.
3. Unique look.
There can be so many possible combinations, and dogs can be different from the other. Both the puppy’s appearance and personality can vary.
Suggested readings: Here is whether huskies can live with small dogs.
Now let’s see what the cons are of mating small and large dogs together.
1. Genetic issues.
As I mentioned above on how breeding between breeds slots puppies inherit the best genes, there can be times when this doesn’t always work. The combination of two breeds can lead to severe genetic entanglement issues.
2. Problems about size
When two breeds of different sizes are combined, it is merely impossible to guess which size they will be. This uncertainty will result in issues in pregnancy and whelping.
3. Issues when mating
As I said earlier, if the male is too large, the female would be injured during entering.
Also, as the dogs will stay united for more than half an hour, and usually they can move around or even run during this time, this could be extremely dangerous for a smaller female.
A female dog’s vagina is proportionate to her body size so is a large male dog’s penis. So this can possibly result in the tearing of her vagina.
4. During pregnancy
To remind you again, puppies can be too large for the small female dog to carry. This results in many issues.
5. During delivery
Not knowing the size of the puppies can lead to major difficulties when it comes to delivering them. The puppies can be stuck in the birth canal, resulting in still born puppies or tearing and injuring the mom dog.
To remind you again, mating a small female with a bigger male dog should only be done under expert advice and supervision.
The pregnancy can be either intentional or not, but frequent veterinary observation must be provided for the smaller female regardless.
Again, as a veterinary student, I believe this should NEVER be done intentionally. It is inhumane to put a female dog and puppies through such a danger.
What to do if your small dog gets pregnant by a large dog?
Getting a small dog pregnant by a large dog can be life-threatening, but what if it happens without your knowledge? There are many things you should do. Let’s check them one by one.
1. Keep the mother under supervision.
If your dog is impregnated by a larger dog, she must be kept under strict supervision and veterinary treatment even more than a normal pregnancy.
2. Take X- rays
This can determine the size of puppies because if there is a size difference between the parents, the size of the puppies will always be a surprise.
Get an X-ray done in the last 10 days of her pregnancy to determine how many pupies are there and how large they are, so you can go into a C-Section.
3) Take temperature daily
As in a normal pregnancy, it is good to take her temperature daily. It should drop by about 3 degrees of Fahrenheit about a day before delivery.
4) Go to C – Section.
The puppies can be too large for her to birth through her vagina, as I’ve said above. So seeking a Vet and going to C-section would be the greatest option.
Okay, all the above things are if you decide you want to let your dog have large puppies. But, if you fear your female dog might lose her life if she has large puppies, there is one other possible thing you can do.
That is to spay. If she is early in the pregnancy, like 3-4 weeks in, there is an option to have her spayed. However, the puppies will die, but the surgery will be safe for her.
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Things to be aware of.
If unplanned mating happens with a large male and a small female, then that’s okay. But breeding a large dog with a small dog deliberately is not professional.
So, you ever plan on breeding a large dog with a small dog, for some reason, there are many vital things you have to be aware of.
1) Vet advice
You should always seek vet advice before breeding. Responsible breeders have to carefully consider health issues, genetic concerns, temperament, soundness, and appearance.
You need to check the animals’ health, age, and other things to make sure you don’t pass down any genetic conditions and ensure the animals are healthy enough to handle breeding.
Also, you have to take care of taking X- rays, giving all the medical attention and also paying for C-sections.
2) You must know what you are doing
You need to ensure you know how to care for the animal during pregnancy, whelp, and care for the puppies.
3) You must be prepared physically and emotionally.
If you plan to mix a large breed with a small one, you need to be prepared with space, time, finances to care for the mom dog and each puppy as well.
Also, if you deliberately plan on mating a larger male to a smaller female, then there’s a chance that you are also hurting your dog. Since the puppies’ size would be most large, the mother will have to go through a lot.
So if you care about your mama dog, there is a chance you might get emotionally hurt through the process as well.
To sum up, people who care about their dogs and puppies would not intentionally breed an extra-large dog to a different small breed. Considering all the pain and danger to the smaller female dog, it is unhealthy, unethical, and unprofessional.
As mentioned above, small dogs can get pregnant with large dogs, but there’s always a downside. So considering everything I’ve mentioned above, as a Veterinary student, I believe cons weigh more than pros regarding this question. So if you’re a breeder and you deeply care for your dogs, it is best not to try something too dangerous and fatal to them. However, if this happens by chance, it is best to seek veterinary advice and treatment as soon as possible and keep your loved one under strict supervision.