Search Menu

Breeders appreciate the usefulness of comprehensive, up-to-date references about canine reproduction. Following is information on three such books that are carefully referenced, scientifically accurate, and conveniently available on

“Canine Reproduction and Neonatology, A Practical Guide for Veterinarians, Veterinary Staff, and Breeders,” by Marthina L. Greer, DVM, JD., 2014; Teton NewMedia.

Dr. Greer is on the board of directors for the Society for Veterinary Medical Ethics, the American Veterinary Medical Law Association, and the Society for Theriogenology and is board chair of the National Animal Interest Alliance. She has a veterinary practice in Lomira, Wis., and breeds and shows Pembroke Welsh Corgis.

This book covers just about everything concerning canine reproduction and leans heavily on the practical aspects of the veterinarian-client relationship. Much respect is given to clients who are dog-sport competitors and serious breeders, and the author emphasizes the importance of veterinarians’ listening to and learning from them.

Chapters include working with breeders, genetic selection and screening, preparing to breed, natural and special breeding, pregnancy, whelping and C-sections, managing postpartum care, neonatal and pediatric care, infertility and reproductive problems in the bitch and stud dog, and insemination with fresh and frozen semen. There are extensive appendices that are aimed primarily for the veterinary practice, but are also quite informative for breeders.

The information in this book is comprehensive and technical, but not particularly intimidating. Most breeders should find it very helpful. The spiral binding is a real plus.

“Management of Pregnant and Neonatal Dogs, Cats, and Exotic Pets, edited by Cheryl Lopate, DVM, MS., 2012; Wiley-Blackwell.

Dr. Lopate is a diplomate of the American College of Theriogenologists and has served on the Credentialing Examination and Residency Planning committees and actively mentors candidates for the credentialing examination. She is also a member of the Society For Theriogenology and has served on the board of directors and several planning committees. She practices at Reproductive Revolutions/Wilsonville Veterinary Clinic in Wilsonville, Ore.

This is a compilation of articles written by leaders in their fields and is a comprehensive, yet practical reference on small animal neonatology. Of the 18 chapters, 8 are relevant to dog breeders. They include kennel management and nutrition of the bitch and her offspring; reproductive physiology of canine pregnancy, and parturition and conditions of the periparturient period; assessment of fetal well-being and gestational age in the bitch; neonatal resuscitation; neonatal physiology, behavior and socialization; neonatal disorders; congenital defects and genetic counseling; and management of orphan puppies.

[bichon body image]
Photo: David Woo

The book is written primarily for veterinarians, and much of it is, perhaps, too technical for some breeders; however, those with a medical background or those who are not intimidated by professional writing will find it unsurpassed for practical information on these topics.

“The Dog Breeder’s Guide to Successful Breeding and Health Management,” by Margaret V. Root Kustritz, DVM, PhD, DACT., 2005, Saunders.

Dr. Kustritz is a clinical specialist in small animal reproduction, professor, and assistant dean of education at University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine in St. Paul, Minn., and is highly published in the world of theriogenology.

This has been a go-to book for serious breeders since it was published in 2005, and it is still an outstanding resource. Written a little like a textbook, each chapter starts with “Frequently Asked Questions” and ends with “Test Your Understanding” — all very helpful and educational.

The very comprehensive sections include “Nutrition and Basic Sciences,” “Clinical Management of the Bitch,” “Clinical Management of the Male Dog,” and “General Management of Canine Breeding.” It is quite thorough and easy to understand without talking down to the lay person/breeder. —M.B.

Originally published in the AKC Gazette. Visit us on Facebook.
Get Your Free AKC eBook

Breeder Education Courses

Training isn't just for pets - here's your chance to learn too. Visit the AKC Breeder Education Platform designed to support your continuing education needs. Course topics include introduction to breeding, genetics, anatomy, whelping and nutrition.
*Turn off pop-up blocker to download
*Turn off pop-up blocker to download