How Many Puppies Do Labs Have?
How many puppies do Labs have?
If you are thinking of breeding your Labrador you might be wondering how many puppies do Labs have. I’ll answer all of those questions you might have and share 6 things that affect litter size.
How many puppies can a Labrador give birth to?
Usually, a female Labrador can have on average 6 to 10 puppies, given that it’s a large breed. Some Labradors, in good health, also give birth to 14 puppies.
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The overall Labrador gestation period is from 58 to 64 days.
You will notice when your Labrador is ready to give birth by watching for common signs such as a lack of appetite and a rigid abdomen. You might find them crying; it may be due to the labor pain.
How many puppies does a Labrador have in their first litter?
A Labrador’s first litter will be smaller, usually 4 puppies or less. After their first litter, they will have on average between 6 to 10 puppies.
Labrador Litter Size
The average Lab litter size can range between 1 to 12 puppies depending on the health, age, and size of the dog.
The size of a litter is different for different breeds; large breeds give birth to more puppies than small ones.
Litter size depends on the size, diet, and age of the Labrador, the litter size may increase or decrease. You should also know about the Labrador heat cycle.
The biggest litter recorded in the Labrador breed was the birth of 14 puppies.
What factors affect the litter size in Labradors?
Litter size is not a fixed thing, but it changes depending on different factors. For the dog centers and for the Labrador parents, it’s a piece of good news that multiple factors can increase litter size.
Let’s have a look at all of the factors in detail so that you know what to expect.
1. Age of female Labrador
Before anything else, the Labrador’s age is the factor that directly affects the litter size. The very first litter of the female Labrador is mostly tiny as compared to the other litter.
If the female is under 7 years, there are chances of a small litter. While on the other hand, sometimes breeding Labrador before 5 years can result in a large litter size in puppies. Even labs that give birth between 2 to 5 years of age get large litters.
2. Age of male Labrador
It’s not all about the female lab, the male Labrador also affects the size of litter but in a small way.
Older Labradors produce less sperm than young male labs; this may affect the litter size in terms of puppies. However, the male Labrador that is 5 years old has an abundance of quality sperm, which contributes to a healthy and large litter.
This is why it is highly recommended to allow breeding when both the male and female Labradors are 5 years old.
3. The health of the Labradors
Health plays an important role when it comes to litter size. In short, both of the Labradors should be healthy in order to maximize the overall number of puppies.
As a dog parent, if you want your female lab to give birth to the maximum amount of puppies.
Providing the best quality supplements to both male and female Labradors is really going to help in increasing litter size.
A female Labrador with a poor diet is never going to give birth to the required number of puppies. If you expect a large litter size from your Labrador, you should first provide her with the best quality food throughout the year, not just in the breeding season.
Providing the best quality and suitable quantity of food is going to improve the fertility of your female Labrador.
We are not talking about providing a bunch of supplements but a balanced diet to produce a large litter.
5. Gene pool
As mentioned above, it is not all about the female Labrador. Still, male Labradors somehow plays a role in litter size. Fertility is the only factor that is affected by the gene pool.
Other than this, traits are primarily hereditary. Sometimes, the color, size, and eye colors are not affected by the gene pool, but all of these are hereditary.
6. Gap in birth
Last but not least, the gap between the birth seasons also affects the litter size of the female Labrador. You cannot expect the same large litter two years later.
Consult a vet when you are planning to breed your Labrador.