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Thread: Normal age of 1st heat cycle

  1. #1
    Junior Member rawdeal's Avatar
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    Default Normal age of 1st heat cycle

    I have a female yellow lab, who is 2 weeks shy of her first birthday, and she started her first heat cycle two days ago. Is that normal?

    The last female lab I had was nearly three years old before she had her first heat cycle.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Nicole's Avatar
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    Nearly three *can* happen, but it's not normal. I would guesstimate that 6-18mo catches most bitches for their first season.

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    As Nicole says, 6-18 months is fairly 'normal', but all bitches are different. The youngest I've had come into season was 7 months, and the oldest 13 months.

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    I have a female who was two before she had her first cycle.
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    Senior Member Richard Finch's Avatar
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    Youngest 6 months.... Oldest was 16 months....



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    Senior Member Jennifer Henion's Avatar
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    What about the second cycle. I've heard that it is the timing of the second cycle from the first that tells you the average number of months between all future cycles. My girl had her first heat at 12 months and we are now 10 months down the line with nothing? Will she be a once a year type gal?

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    Senior Member Cedarswamp's Avatar
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    I had one that had her first heat cycle at 22 months. She's been averaging 8 months since.
    Had another that was 14 months, was a once a year type, her dam's first cycle was at 14 months as well but averaged 6-7 months between best I recall.
    Have another that the last three cycles were 18 months apart, she's now 10, only had 2 litters, only 5-6 cycles her whole life :/
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    Senior Member windycanyon's Avatar
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    I'm coming to the conclusion that some of the timing of the first cycle depends on your household. My very first lab came in at 7.5 mos. Then they progressively got later, up to 19 mos. One recent mom that didn't go into season until 17+ mos had a litter and lo and behold, all 4 of the girls in different homes w/o intact bitches came into season at 9 mos. I'm thinking there is a pack influence there.

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    Senior Member firehouselabs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by windycanyon View Post
    I'm coming to the conclusion that some of the timing of the first cycle depends on your household. My very first lab came in at 7.5 mos. Then they progressively got later, up to 19 mos. One recent mom that didn't go into season until 17+ mos had a litter and lo and behold, all 4 of the girls in different homes w/o intact bitches came into season at 9 mos. I'm thinking there is a pack influence there.
    Yes, there is. My females also tend to not take if I bred the dominant bitch. When breeding more than one at the same/close to the same time, I have to completely segregate the females, with one staying in the kennel building, and one staying in the house. Otherwise, I end with absorbed litters, false pregnancies, or bitches that stall and then go out of heat.

    I should state for the record: My two dominant females were really dominant. I have only ever run into issues with them while having a male on the premises as well, so they got into a alpha pairing mentality.
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    Senior Member windycanyon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by firehouselabs View Post
    Yes, there is. My females also tend to not take if I bred the dominant bitch. When breeding more than one at the same/close to the same time, I have to completely segregate the females, with one staying in the kennel building, and one staying in the house. Otherwise, I end with absorbed litters, false pregnancies, or bitches that stall and then go out of heat.

    I should state for the record: My two dominant females were really dominant. I have only ever run into issues with them while having a male on the premises as well, so they got into a alpha pairing mentality.
    That's really interesting. I don't have what I would consider dominant anything here (except maybe me!). The "alpha" of my pack is definitely a "closet alpha" and now almost 9 so spayed, but I did breed 2 w/ in days of one another in Oct and had the younger first timer come up totally empty, whereas the one I was worried about (who had turned 7) has a full house! They would lay on the couch w/ heads draped over the other so surely no ill feelings but it makes you wonder if there can only be "one" mom at a time in some packs.

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