How Much Does a Dog Pregnancy Test Cost?

Written by: Staff

A dog pregnancy test, much like the pregnancy tests used by humans, is used to determine whether or not a dog is pregnant before the physical signs appear.

During the early stage of pregnancy among dogs, the signs are uncertain and unclear.  As the pregnancy progresses, there will be noticeable changes not only in the dog’s physical appearance but also in her behavior.  The nipples will increase in size to prepare for nursing, and there will be significant weight gain.  The dog could also appear to be tired, lethargic, and she may lose her appetite and vomit occasionally.

However, approximately 26 days after a female dog has conceived, a dog pregnancy test could be done.  For people who breed dogs, this is an imperative test.  If the dog does not get pregnant, there will be another attempt soon after.  If the dog is pregnant, preparations can begin for the new puppies.

Line of Jack Russell Puppies by Prophetic_Blogger, on Flickr
Line of Jack Russell Puppies” (CC BY 2.0) by Prophetic_Blogger

How much does it cost for a dog pregnancy test?

The cost of a dog pregnancy test will depend on which route you prefer.  An over-the-counter test, which you can purchase online, can cost anywhere from $20 to $30 or more, whereas an x-ray, ultrasound and/or bloodwork at your local vet can cost $25 to $65, plus the typical office visit fees, bringing the grand total to about $65 to $125 or so.

One forum member on said that there are available dog pregnancy tests that cost about $20 to $30 that you can purchase over the counter.  You can ask your vet if they sell these, or you can visit a local pet supply store.

Dog pregnancy test overview

If you want to confirm the pregnancy at a local vet, he or she will either take an x-ray and/or perform bloodwork.  Results can vary, but most of the time, you can get a confirmation immediately.  A vet will be able to confirm the pregnancy as long as she is at least 21 days into her term.  By day 30, your vet should be able to determine how many puppies the dog will be having.

Over the counter canine pregnancy tests will usually contain about five tests you can use, and you, as the dog owner, will have to extract a blood sample from your dog in order for the test to work.  These tests will measure the relaxin levels in the dog’s blood levels, and these plasma and serum samples will indicate if the dog is pregnant.   As long as the blood sample is taken 22 to 30 days post-breeding, the relaxin hormone will increase when there is a fertilized egg present.  These tests are accurate, fast and are commonly used by breeders.

What are the extra costs?

Depending on the circumstances, a vet may recommend an ultrasound during the confirmation appointment or want to set one up in the future.  A dog ultrasound, on average, can cost about $100 to $200.

Depending on the size, weight, breed and how many puppies she is carrying, there may be medication or vitamins prescribed for the pregnancy.  An ultrasound is best after about a month after gestation, and it is non-invasive and very reliable.  At that time, heartbeats could be detected.  The ultrasound takes only a few minutes.

Tips to know:

A pregnant dog’s reproductive system changes as well as its hormone levels.  This is the reasons that a progesterone and urine test will not be accurate.  The perfect pregnancy test would be one that detects the levels of relaxin.  It is highly suggested that the exam is taken after a month of gestation.

A visit to the vet is always the best option, especially if you don’t feel comfortable taking a blood sample from your dog at home.  Your vet may be able to detect if your dog is pregnant or not by simply be feeling your dog’s abdomen since there will be swelling around the placental sites.

A false negative result may occur if the test was performed too early in the pregnancy or before the placenta has started to produce the relaxin.  If your dog was tested 30 days before post-breeding, it may be wise to perform multiple tests to confirm the results.

How to tell if your dog is pregnant

A slight mucus discharge may occur 30 days after mating.

The nipples may change in color and size; they may also produce a slight semi-clear discharge.

Similar to morning sickness for a human, your dog may vomit during the early stages.

Around 35 to 40 days of the pregnancy, she will begin to gain weight, which will gradually increase to 50 percent more than her average weight.

The dog’s stomach will begin to swell around day 40; however, first-time moms often may show less, especially if the litter is small.

Personality changes may be noted such as a decrease in appetite or she may act differently.

During the second half of the pregnancy, your dog’s appetite will increase.

How can I save money?

In many cases, over the counter kits can be very reliable.  Instead of wasting your money, highly consider going to vet right away to confirm the results.

If you do not have a vet that you use every day, consider calling a few over the phone to inquire about prices.  Most will be more than happy to give you a quote over the phone.

If you do not have pet insurance, highly consider signing up for a policy.  Policies are inexpensive and can save you thousands in the long run.

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Average Reported Cost: $81.5

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How much did you spend?

Was it worth it?  

  1. Desi (greensfork,  Indiana) paid $113 and said:

    113.00 for ultrasound and first time exam fee

    Was it worth it? Yes

  2. newberry paid $50 and said: said:

    pregnancy test

    Was it worth it? Yes

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