Canine Eclampsia, or Milk Fever In Dogs
Eclampsia, or milk fever, is an acute, life-threatening
condition which attacks a brood bitch about 3 to 4 weeks after
whelping puppies. It is more common in the small breeds of dogs
that have had large litters.
Symptoms of eclampsia include stiffness, nervousness and
restlessness. The brood bitch will loose interest in her puppies.
She will very likely run a fever and have a rapid heart rate. In
really severe cases of eclampsia the brood-bitch will have muscle
spasms or seizures, and be unable to walk.
Eclampsia is commonly known as milk fever.
It is caused by low blood calcium at a time when the body
needs to produce calcium-rich milk. It is treated by
administering 10% calcium gluconate injections intravenously, at
0.25-0.75ml per pound body weight per hour. The brood-bitch will
usually return to normal in less than fifteen minutes after
In really severe cases of eclampsia it may be necessary to
wean the puppies or place their mother on a calcium supplement
for the remainder of the lactation.
People often give their brood-bitch heavy calcium supplements
during her pregnancy, however this does not prevent eclampsia,
and can actually cause it to reoccur during future
Russell Savige has 18 years experience as a professional dog
breeder. He is the owner of Training Dog Breeds,
which includes a massive Directory
of dog related websites, covering breeds and breeding, training,
rearing and health issues in dogs.
NEWS & INFORMATION updated Mon. September / 16 / 2019
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