How Long Do Dogs Stay in Labor?

Based on information provided by Purina, Ronald Hines, DVM PhD., and Mar Vista Animal Medical Center, dogs stay in labor between nine and 30 hours. Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Ronald Hines explains that labor is divided into three stages, with the first taking the longest time.

According to DVM Ronald Hines, the first stage is hardly noticeable and takes between six and 18 hours, while the length of the second stage greatly depends on the number of pups being delivered. As DVM Ronald Hines explains, the dog can take a “mid-way” pause of up to four hours during the second stage. However, the dog should not take more than four hours rest between delivering pups. During the third stage, all remaining placentas, blood and fluids are expelled, DVM Ronald Hines states.