Why Is My Dog Carrying Her Puppies In Her Mouth?

It is completely normal for a mom dog to carry her puppies in her mouth. However, there are a few reasons why she is doing this. In the wild, the mother dog would carry her puppies in her mouth to change their location in order to protect her puppies. But that is not the case with domestic dogs.

A mother dog is carrying around her puppies in her mouth if she wants to move them closer to the human family, if she feels that the current place is not quiet enough and she has found a quieter place, the mom might consider the current place to be too cold for the puppies, she may simply prefer another spot, or the current spot has became too filthy from the pee and poo from the newborn puppies.

Why Is My Dog Carrying Her Puppies In Her Mouth?

Why Is My Dog Carrying Her Puppies In Her Mouth

It is important to note that this behavior is completely normal and actually quite common in domestic dogs. It may come as a surprise, but carrying puppies in the mouth is an instinctive maternal behavior seen in many canine species.

1. She is moving them closer to the human family

Dogs are undeniably loving and loyal animals. So, it’s not surprising that they desire the same level of nurturing and closeness with their puppy families. A mother dog is carrying her puppies in her mouth as a way to show them affection and get them close to you. That is the closest she can come to cuddling.

By carrying each pup, she ensures that all get an equal amount of attention from her and from the human family around. This primal behavior acts as an extension of motherly love and shows how deeply ingrained parental instincts can be in our beloved pets.

2. The mom is moving them to a quieter place

Why Is My Dog Carrying Her Puppies In Her Mouth

Dog mothers often express an astonishing level of maternal instinct towards their puppies. This involves a range of behaviors from protection to simply providing comfort. One of these behaviors is the mysterious habit of carrying her puppies in her mouth. It is prompting pet owners to puzzle over why this seemingly strange behavior is exhibited.

As it turns out, the answer is quite natural. A mother dog may carry her pups in her mouth as part of her innate need to create a safe sleeping spot for them away from any dangers. This involves finding a quiet and secure place with minimal disturbances that she can relocate them to.

Upon arriving at their new destination, the puppies will be gently placed down so they can settle into their new den and rest peacefully – all thanks to mom’s thoughtful care!

3. She is moving the pups to a warmer place

Why Is My Dog Carrying Her Puppies In Her Mouth

Dogs have a natural instinct to take care of their puppies, and one way they do this is by carrying them in their mouths. If a momma dog notices her puppies are feeling cold, she’ll scoop them up in her mouth and move them to a place that’s warmer. It might look strange to humans. But, it’s just part of the mothering process for dogs – and many other animals as well!

Making sure newborn puppies are comfortable and safe requires providing the perfect environment. In terms of temperature, the room should be kept at approximately 80 degrees Fahrenheit with some variation depending on the type of puppy. Too high of a temperature increases the risk of respiratory issues. Too low can lead to hypothermia, or even death in extreme cases.

4. She may simply prefer another spot

A mother dog will carry her puppies in her mouth if she feels that the current spot is not good enough. A mother dog wants only the best for her newborn puppies. She will make sure that they are warm enough, in a quiet place where they can rest, and most importantly they are in a comfortable place. If some of the requirements are not met, the mom will pick up her puppies and will carry them somewhere else.

5. The current spot might be too dirty

Did you know that newborn puppies urinate every two hours and need to poo up to five times a day? And because they are too young to walk, they do it where they sleep. Over time, the mother will notice that the current spot has become too dirty from pee and poo and will pick up the puppies with her mouth and will carry them to a cleaner location.

Why Do Dogs Grab Puppies By The Neck?

Dogs instinctively employ neck scruffing when interacting with puppies. In the same way that a mother will pick up her pup by grabbing them by the back of their neck, more dominant dogs show their affection to younger puppies this same way.

It is a natural instinctive behavior hard-wired into all dog breeds, as it has been observed in feral packs as well. Neck scruffing usually isn’t accompanied by aggression, and tails often wag during the process, showing that it is done out of endearment rather than hostility.

It is understandable for a mother dog to want to carry her puppies around and make sure they are safe. However, it is important that she does this with gentleness in mind. Mother dogs will often scruff their puppies, which is the act of gently clasping their jaws around the back of their neck.

While there is no science proving this to be painful, some studies suggest that puppies may experience momentary discomfort as a result of it. Therefore, owners should be sure to monitor their canine mothers closely when carrying newborn puppies and take extra care not to cause them any harm or distress.

Why Is My Dog Excessively Licking Her Newborn Puppies?

Dogs are known to have a special bond with their puppies. Your dog’s behavior of licking her newborn puppies is a natural instinct. She is doing it to stimulate blood circulation, assist in breathing, and quicken the cleaning process for her litter.

When a mother dog licks her pup, she not only cleans and warms it, she also stimulates its circulation. As she licks the puppy, her movement causes its blood vessels to become active and this increases its ability to absorb nutrients as well as oxygenate its organs.

Not only that, but the warmth from the licking helps stimulate digestion in these very young and fragile babies which is essential for their growth and development.

Additionally, this behavior helps create an early bond of maternal care between the mother and her puppies. It also serves as a form of communication for the dogs. It is demonstrating to the litter that she loves and cares for them. Most importantly, your dog’s licking is an important part of caring for these pups during those crucial early days of development.

Dr. Joel Robertson (DVM)

Dynamic and dedicated veterinary professional with 10+ years in the industry providing excellent patient care, advanced medical treatments, and preventive medicine for a variety of animals. Skilled at diagnosing medical issues, developing treatment plans, and educating owners on proper pet care.

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