You are here:

Dogs/Boston in heat


QUESTION: Please, please, please I am begging for help.  I have a 1 1/2 year old female Boston that is in heat and I have a 1 year old male Boston that is going absolutely crazy.  We do not want them to breed yet.  She is wearing washable panties but he is still trying and is completely wearing himself out.  He won't eat, he's not sleeping and we are trying to make him drink.  It's like he has no control on the back end of his body.  He tried to lay down because he is panting so hard and is exhausted but his backside and legs just keep moving.  Please tell me that the is something I can do for him.  His little penis is so red from rubbing on the diaper and her side.  He is normally the most well behaved dog I've ever seen but right now I can't get him to listen to anything.  I hate to see him like this.  I did get him calmed down for a few minutes but then she came over and backed in to him and then rolled over on him.  Can you give me an suggestions?  These are our first Boston.  We just got her from a rescue and we've had him since he was 5 weeks old but we have never owned a female dog before.

ANSWER: Hi JoEllyn,

Thank you for writing to me.  I can tell you immediately that I am not a fan of breeding so you may not like my response.  For every heat that a female goes through her chances for breast cancer rise dramatically!!!!  Unless you are a professional, well seasoned breeder that does it for the breed and not the money, I would suggest that you have your dog spayed as soon as possible.  The current situation is just not doing right by her and apparently is not very good for your male by what you described.  Unneutered male dogs are prone to cancer as well and will easily leave home, finding a way to escape, due to the hormonal drive, to seek a female in heat, even if miles away.  As you know, dogs have a very developed sense of smell.

Additionally, there is an alarming amount of over population that is causing millions of dogs to be killed each year, including Bostons.  If you want more Bostons, you can adopt one of these doomed dogs and save a life.  When you bring a puppy into the world, there is one less home for a dog on death row...and yes, even Bostons are killed all the time.  I know because I work in rescue every single day.

Here is an article that I would like you to read:

Top 10 Reasons to Spay or Neuter Your Pet

Whether you’ve recently adopted a pet or you’re considering it, one of the most important health decisions you’ll make is to spay or neuter your cat or dog. Spaying—removing the ovaries and uterus of a female pet—is a veterinary procedure that requires minimal hospitalization and offers lifelong health benefits. Neutering—removing the testicles of your male dog or cat—will vastly improve your pet’s behavior and keep him close to home.

Many states and counties have established low-cost spay/neuter programs that make surgery easily affordable and accessible. To find a low-cost program near you, search our Low-Cost Spay/Neuter Provider Database. If you're in New York City, the ASPCA mobile spay/neuter clinic offers free or low-cost spay/neuter surgery for financially needy dog and cat owners with proof of public assistance. Please contact our hotline at (877) SPAY-NYC for a listing of dates and locations in all five boroughs.

Not convinced yet? Check out our handy—and persuasive—list of the top 10 reasons to spay or neuter your pet!

1.Your female pet will live a longer, healthier life.
Spaying helps prevent uterine infections and breast cancer, which is fatal in about 50 percent of dogs and 90 percent of cats. Spaying your pet before her first heat offers the best protection from these diseases.

2.Neutering provides major health benefits for your male.
Besides preventing unwanted litters, neutering your male companion prevents testicular cancer, if done before six months of age.

3.Your spayed female won't go into heat.
While cycles can vary, female felines usually go into heat four to five days every three weeks during breeding season. In an effort to advertise for mates, they'll yowl and urinate more frequently—sometimes all over the house!

4.Your male dog won't want to roam away from home.
An intact male will do just about anything to find a mate! That includes digging his way under the fence and making like Houdini to escape from the house. And once he's free to roam, he risks injury in traffic and fights with other males.

5.Your neutered male will be much better behaved.
Neutered cats and dogs focus their attention on their human families. On the other hand, unneutered dogs and cats may mark their territory by spraying strong-smelling urine all over the house. Many aggression problems can be avoided by early neutering.

6.Spaying or neutering will NOT make your pet fat.
Don’t use that old excuse! Lack of exercise and overfeeding will cause your pet to pack on the extra pounds—not neutering. Your pet will remain fit and trim as long as you continue to provide exercise and monitor food intake.

7.It is highly cost-effective.
The cost of your pet's spay/neuter surgery is a lot less than the cost of having and caring for a litter. It also beats the cost of treatment when your unneutered tom escapes and gets into fights with the neighborhood stray!

8.Spaying and neutering your pet is good for the community.
Stray animals pose a real problem in many parts of the country. They can prey on wildlife, cause car accidents, damage the local fauna and frighten children. Spaying and neutering packs a powerful punch in reducing the number of animals on the streets.

9.Your pet doesn't need to have a litter for your children to learn about the miracle of birth.
Letting your pet produce offspring you have no intention of keeping is not a good lesson for your children—especially when so many unwanted animals end up in shelters. There are tons of books and videos available to teach your children about birth in a more responsible way.

10.Spaying and neutering helps fight pet overpopulation.
Every year, millions of cats and dogs of all ages and breeds are euthanized or suffer as strays. These high numbers are the result of unplanned litters that could have been prevented by spaying or neutering.

I do not wish to be harsh in any way...I am just thinking of what is best for the dogs.  Your male is suffering terribly and I suggest that you immediately take him to be neutered.  If you can't do that, board him at a kennel until your female's heat is done or ask a friend quite a distance from you to board him in their house.  Removing him from the situation will not immediately stop his hormonal drive but it will decrease in intensity.  If you don't do this he could end up with permanent injury to his penis, hurt his spine or hurt himself in some other way trying to get to her.  Please seriously consider spay/neutering.  There is more to being a breeder than letting dogs copulate.  It takes a lot of money and education to do it right.  You have to run extensive blood tests, x-rays, etc to make sure there are no genetic problems. You have to do pre-natal care and post natal care in conjunction with a vet to make sure the pregnancy goes well (just like humans have to).  Puppies are a lot of work and they also need vet care and shots.  You have to be extremely careful about what kind of home they go to for many reasons which I won't go into now. Ethically, you have to take back any puppy that doesn't work out, no matter how old it is...the litter is ultimately your responsibility forever.  Please consider all that I have presented to you and I hope you make a decision for what is best for your dogs and for over population.

Shelley Davis

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Ok, first let me thank you for responding and then let me tell you that I have all intentions of having my dogs spay and neutered. Actually Roxi was scheduled for her appointment on the 25th but because my husband was injured the day after we rescued her from an abusive drug house.  She has only been with us a little over a week now.  We were not planning on getting another dog at all but she was in desperate need of help, a home and lots of love.  We had thought about breeding Rowdy because he is such a well mannered gentleman but now we have decided not to since we have adopted Roxi so both does will be getting fixed as soon as we husband is back to work.

I was seriously hoping that you could suggest something that would help the two of them right now though but we seem to be managing better.  I have gotten some Calm Eze for him, Chlorophyll for her and lots of Eucalyptus and Wintergreen scent to mask as much as we can and we have kept them separated as much as possible.  I am worried about his penis though and his back.  I was in no way ready for this experience as I was told that Roxi was just in heat in December but I figured out that was just one of many, many lies the previous owner told.  My babies will be spayed/neutered and full check up within the next few weeks.  I hate not nothing for sure that they are ok.  If you have any other suggestions I would be glad to hear them though.  For instance since I have never lived with a female dog is there anything special that I should be doing for her?  She doesn't seem to be uncomfortable or in any pain.  Is there anything she should be eating or doing while she is in heat.   She's only about a week into this so I know she has a little while longer to go and I want to make sure she is getting anything she needs.  Thank you again for the info....much appreciated.


Thank you so much for getting back to me.  I do appreciate the details.  As far as spay/'s less expensive to neuter your male first.  There are two ways it can be done.  One costs less and has less recovery time.  Speak to the vet about that one.  Also, for both of them you can get a certificate from Friends Of Animals which offers a big discount with certain vets.  Your local shelter or humane society might offer low cost spay/neutering.

It seems that you have done the right thing.  Just be sure there is no opportunity for them to merge.  Perhaps you can crate them part of the time and make sure that one of them is always in another room and in a crate.  Additionally, I believe there is a time after the bleeding stops when your female can still get pregnant and a time after neutering when your male can still impregnate your female.

You sound like a wonderful dog owner..keep up the good work!

Shelley Davis

Please remember to rate your volunteer canine expert.


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Shelley Davis


Cageless Country Boarding, Holistic Health Concerns, Behavorial Concerns.


Crusader in the founding of Dog Runs in NYC Parks, instrumental in changing the law in NY State which allows Pet Facilitate Therapy into Acute Care Hospitals, accomplished artist and craftsperson, certified by Red Cross in pet first aid, pioneer in Children Reading To Dogs program in Ulster Co. NY, founder of Bed & Biscuit:Where Dogs Run Free,

©2017 All rights reserved.