Dogs are deeply intuitive beings. And thanks to their incredible senses, they are also able to smell some changes in our bodies. Even much before the doctor’s diagnosis. For example, research proved that they can smell low levels of blood glucose. In some cases, dogs were even able to detect cancer, especially melanoma, far before it became detectable to the owner. But can dogs sense pregnancy too?
This would make definitely sense. Even the most benign health conditions cause change in the chemical structure of our bodies, which dogs are able to detected thanks to their smell.
Can dogs sense pregnancy?
Have you ever heard a pregnant woman saying that her dog started acting differently around her? This actually happens pretty often. Sometimes, dogs will notice changes even if their owner is only a couple of weeks pregnant. Dogs definitely can in a way sense pregnancies, and science has a few different theories for this.
How do dogs sense pregnancy?
What gives dogs the ability to sense pregnancies? The answer may lie in their sense of smell.
Dogs have an incredible sense of smell. They have about 60 times more smell receptors than we do. That’s why dogs are able to smell the trace of narcotics, missing people or decomposition of human flesh. In some cases, dogs can even smell cancer. But do dogs also smell pregnancy?
Although more detailed research still has to be done, there is some evidence pointing to the fact that dogs can smell the hormonal changes during pregnancy. The hormones cause a subtle change i a person’s individual smell, which some dogs are able to pick up on. Even though the dogs can smell those changes, there isn’t any evidence proving that the dog actually knows it’s owner is pregnant. Just that they smell differently.
One of the first pregnancy hormones that the body produces is human chorionic gonadotropin, which occurs during the second week after fertilization. This hormone is also detected during urine or blood pregnancy tests.
Hormonal changes also cause changes in the body, such as:
- Changes in the appetite and changes in taste preferences
- Swollen and sensitive breasts
Are there any other ways for dogs ti detect pregnancies?
Dogs are very intuitive and observant creatures. That’s why they will also pick up on any changes in their owner’s body language, moods or emotions. Dog will start suspecting that something isn’t right the moment you start to act differently even the slightest bit.
If walks become shorter, you start to walk slower and suddenly your dog won’t be allowed to jump and sleep on your tummy anymore — he will start suspecting that something is different.
How will their behavior change?
Some people say that their dogs start acting more affectionate, protective and alert after they sense the pregnancy of their owner.
Some common behaviors they exhibit are:
- Being more affectionate than usual — they will follow you around the house and won’t let you out of their sight
- They are more alert or protective — they start to act differently and more protective whenever you are around other people or dogs
- Being more cuddly — they love do cuddle with you while you’re on the couch or napping
- Acting out — urinating around the house or chewing items brought home for the new baby
- Seeming unfriendly — growling and barking, without any willingness to communicate
The changes in your dog’s behavior will also depend on his personality before the pregnancy. If your dog was always protective and affectionate, these traits will only become more noticeable. Continue to give your dog lots of love and attention, so he doesn’t feel jealous or left out. Your dog may start acting out if he fears that he will lose his place in your life, so help them adapt to the change.