How to Relieve Dog Period Cramps? (Natural Remedies)

Dog laying down with period cramps. How to Relieve Dog Period Cramps.

If your female dog has gone into heat, you’ll want to prepare for the discharge and her cramps! Here’s how to relieve dog period cramps and how to care for your dog during this time.

If your dog has cramps from her period, you can consider vet-approved pain medications or natural pain killers such as ginger licorice root or CBD oil. You can also consider alternative therapies such as hydration and diet, exercise, massage therapy, and even acupuncture. Experts agree that TLC from you is one of the best period pain treatments!

Do female dogs get cramps during their period?

Firstly, let’s take a look at whether female dogs get cramps in the first place. The answer is definitely “yes” the majority of the time. Not all female dogs get cramps, however, just as not all humans get cramps during their period.

In humans, period cramps are due to the shedding of the uterine wall, which is responsible for the pain associated with a period. In dogs, the pain is thought to be from a hormonal surge since their periods work differently from a human menstrual cycle.

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How do I know if my dog has period cramps?

Dogs don’t show pain the same way humans do, a common issue when determining if dogs have pain from an undiagnosed health condition. If you’re trying to spot period pains in your dog, some signs to look for include:

  • Arching her back
  • Resting and staying still a lot
  • Grumbling or whining quietly
  • Being overly affectionate or the opposite
  • Unsettled

If you notice any or all of these symptoms with the telltale bloody charge, crying, and other signs of being in heat. In that case, you can safely assume your dog is having menstrual cramps.

It’s important to remember that just because dogs don’t show obvious signs of pain or discomfort doesn’t mean that they aren’t in pain. Dogs are, as mentioned, notorious for being strong against pain. You’ll need to watch for whatever indicators that you can that dogs are in pain and be ready to jump in with your preferred method of pain relief.

How long do dog cramps last?

Cramps for your dog can last several days, though some dogs can have cramps that last through the entire proestrus stage, which often lasts 14 days or so. The cramps might be mild, moderate, or even severe during this stage, so proper preparation is essential for your dog’s health and overall comfort.

Why do dogs cry when in heat?

Experts tend to disagree about why dogs cry during their periods. Some feel that it’s a sign of pain. This can be true, as dogs will whine to let us know they’re in pain. This is how most dogs communicate a problem to us, after all, right?

Other experts feel that dogs cry when in heat as a mating call to male dogs that signals that she is almost ready to mate with them. Since this is the only reason dogs will be interested in mating, the cry is thought to be connected.

The best thing to help you distinguish what is going on with your dog is to pay attention to her behavior otherwise. If she is showing other signs of pain and whining quietly while looking at you sadly, it’s a sign that she’s in pain and wants to let you know. If she’s wandering around the home aimlessly and yellow or yowling, it’s most likely due to the mating call.

What can I give my female dog for cramps?

We understand that you can’t and seeing your pet in pain and want to give her something for it. It’s not only kind but also recommended since you are a loving and attentive pet parent that wants what’s best for their dog.

The first thing that well-intentioned humans give their dogs area acetaminophen or ibuprofen medications such as Tylenol or Advil. Neither of these is safe for dogs in most cases, so you’ll want to resist those urges!

You should only give dog-safe medications to your dog, and your vet will be the ones to recommend those to you. These vet-approved medications will be designed for your dog’s system without overloading it. 

Never give your dog a human-oriented painkiller, even if it’s half a capsule, without your vet’s explicit consent! They can cause serious side effects even in small doses and even kill them! Be very careful even if you do get your vet’s approval. These should be the last resort in most cases.

Natural remedies for dog period cramps

If you want to simply stay away from medications as far as your dog’s health is concerned. In that case, you’ll be glad to know that there are many options and possibilities out there that you can put into your dog’s diet and lifestyle. Some top options include:

  • Ginger
  • Licorice root
  • CBD oil

All these can effectively reduce pain in dogs, and most dogs will enjoy their effects if they take them with food. You’ll still want to talk with your vet about portions and preparation for the best overall effects, but these are great options for targeted pain reduction.

You can also consider some lifestyle changes that will help them curb their discomfort without taking anything for it, necessarily. These factors can include:

  • Hydration and diet
  • Exercise 
  • A hot water bottle
  • Massage and acupuncture
  • TLC and attention

Hydration and diet

Keeping your dog hydrated and eating her regular diet will help her stay strong and stable. The best thing you can do for your body keeps it strong. This includes fresh, cold water and her regular vet-approved diet for nutrition. You can still give her treats, but you’ll want to limit any unhealthy food as it may upset her stomach and worsen it.

Some dogs feel nauseous during their periods and might not want to eat a lot. This is fine, as she’ll start to eat again normally when she wants to. Always give it to her and encourage her to nibble away.


While she may not want to, exercise is a great way to help her get to the bottom of period cramps. Just moving around and getting the blood circulation going and the muscles moving can help better than some of the pain relievers and even the hot water bottle (more on that next). While most dogs will be reluctant to move if they are having cramps (much like humans),

A hot water bottle

You can get a hot water bottle for your dog that will offer her direct comfort right on her stomach area. You’ll want to get one designed for dogs, as it will hold a lower temperature for her to keep her comfortable without burning herself!

Encourage her to lie on it or put it on her stomach yourself. She might be uncomfortable at first, but once she feels how good it feels, you should have no problem encouraging it!

Massage and acupuncture

Massage therapy of her stomach area and even acupuncture can help her enjoy some relief from cramps. Most won’t start with this since it can cost a pretty penny. However, if your dog is experiencing severe cramps, you’ll want to consider it! You can also learn how to massage her stomach so she can enjoy a wonderful feeling, which will be from her favorite human — you. Plus, it’s free!

TLC and attention

If she’s feeling really low and in pain, she’ll really enjoy having some TLC and attention from you. She may want to snuggle up more often and be close to you. Make sure that you encourage this and remember to focus on giving her what she wants from you. She’ll feel better, and you’ll know you’re doing what you can to help her through this difficult time.

How do you comfort a dog on her period?

Just like with a woman on her period, no dog is happy on her period. It’s messy, painful, and frustrating. But, if you have an unspayed dog, it’s normal! You’ll want to ensure you’re always doing what you can to help her through it. Some comfort techniques include:

  • Preparing for her period like you would with a woman on hers
  • Taking her concern or discomfort seriously
  • Talking to your vet about how to ease her period cramps

While humans understand what periods are for, dogs don’t. She might be very unsettled and confused and even scared. You’ll want to always do your part to help her feel calm, safe, and loved even if she’s unsure what’s happening. Her first heat period is always the worst because you are both new to it!

One way to help her get through is to consider getting her spayed! Not only can it benefit her health, but it also means that she won’t go into heat at all! Most owners will not spay their dogs if they think they want to breed them, but if you know that this is not the case with you, you’ll want to consider getting her spayed!

A quick note on pain

If you notice her pain is severe during one period, it’s possible that she may be having another underlying issue with her reproductive organs, which is common. If this is the case, consider taking her into a vet for a check-up!

Effectively relieving your dog’s period cramps means considering medications or natural remedies like acupuncture and a hot water bottle. Period cramps are legitimate and authentic in dogs, so take your dog’s needs seriously to help her through her cycle!  

In sum

If your dog has cramps from her period, you can consider vet-approved pain medications or natural pain killers such as ginger licorice root or CBD oil. You can also consider alternative therapies such as hydration and diet, exercise, massage therapy, and even acupuncture.

Experts agree that TLC from you is one of the best period pain treatments! It’s crucial to take period cramps seriously, as they can be as uncomfortable for dogs as they are for humans.

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Andre Neves

Hi, I'm Andre and I'm the owner of Sula the Border Collie. I love writing about this amazing dog breed here. I joined the Council to be able to reach and educate more people on the joy of having a pet dog.