My Brussels Griffon is In Heat, What To Do? (Care tips)

The owners of Intact Brussels Griffon girl should know as much as possible about the heat cycles as their dogs will doubtless pass through many periods in their life. I have a 1-year-old rough-coated Griffon Cleo and we have been through several heat cycles so far. Heat cycle is a very special period, when your Griffon girl may act differently, requiring more of you and your time.

Brussels Griffons in heat may become even more affectionate and clingy, asking for more of your attention and time. Some Griffs in heat will show nesting behavior, feeling more exhausted than usual, so provide a calm, safe and child-free zone to have a nap whenever she feels the need to. Although Griffs are energetic pooches don’t exaggerate with daily exercise during the cycle since their energy won’t be at its highest point. Keep your Brussels Griffon on a short leash and away from any male dogs. Lack of appetite is quite common during the heat cycle so offer her tastier cuts of meat, food toppings, and her favorite treat more often the usual.

How Do I Comfort (Care) My Brussels Griffon While in Heat?

The heat period is rather a special one for your Griffs as she will feel significantly different due to hormonal level changes.

Give Your Brussels Griffon Extra Attention

During her heat cycle, your Griff girl may become more attached to you, needy, quite snuggly but also nervous sometimes. Take a little more time than usual to cuddle her. She really needs that.

From my experience, this cannot be avoided. My Cleo always craved attention when she was in heat. She is like that but during the heat cycle, she transformed into a real velcro dog!

Distract her by providing some new toys

During her second phase called Estrus, she will have only one thought on her mind- to mate! In order to distract her and make focus on something else, a new, interesting toy or some safe chew toys would be perfect. This really works. Keep several toys ( chew toys, food balls… ) and then replace them every two days. A very good way to distract your Griff girl and relax her a little bit.

My Cleo is an alert dog like any other Brussels Griffon. During heat, alertness in Griffs is even more noticeable so it’s a good idea to distract your girl with some new toy.

Provide Safe and Calm Area for Brussels Griffon girl to rest

Griffs in heat may be tired and sleepy. Provide a safe, calm, and children-free zone, where she can rest as much as she wants. This breed doesn’t get along well with kids anyway, so imagine how it would be stressful for her, during the heat cycle when she is tensed and nervous plus tired, to have kids that are chasing her around.

Use Doggy Diapers

During the first stage of the heat cycle, called Proestrus, your Griff girl will have a vaginal bloody discharge. Since this is a toy breed, the amount shouldn’t be big but still can make a mess.

Besides bloody discharge female dogs urinate more frequently so they can make additional mess unintentionally

To reduce the mess you can use doggy diapers. that are very practical in this period especially if your Griff stays alone at home for several hours. By the way, leaving Brussels Griffon alone is not recommended even on normal occasions, since Griffs can be really destructive if left alone for many hours.

Even though dogs are able to clean themselves, it can happen that your Griffs leave some mess on the floor.

In that case, don’t yell at her, don’t scold her, just comfort her gently while you clean the mess.

I noticed that Cleo has a very light bloody discharge and she has always been very devoted to self-grooming so we didn’t have the need to use doggy diapers but every dog is different. It’s good to know that this possibility exists if your Griff has heavier discharge.

Visit A Vet

If you are first time owner or you are especially concerned, the best thing to do is visit a vet. Even though the heat cycle is normal for female dogs, a veterinarian is the best person to ask for advice.

How To Walk My Brussels Griffon While In Heat?

Some people are under the misconception that dogs in heat shouldn’t be taken outside due to various reasons – lack of energy encounters with male dogs … But on contrary, dogs in heat do require some physical activity. On normal occasions, Griffs need at least 30 min of daily exercise but since these are high-energy dogs you can walk them more and they highly appreciate playtime with their humans.

When you walk your Brussels Griffon while in heat, you need to take precautions to avoid any unpleasant situations like unwanted breeding and potential pregnancy.

First, make sure that the ID tag and microchip information are up to date. Dogs in heat usually have a strong impulse to escape so they can find a mate so this way you will find your Griff easier if she runs away.

Another thing, you can invest in a GPS tracker for even better results.

Another thing- never leave your Griff alone outside, no matter how secure your yard is. You cannot imagine what males are capable of when they feel the female in heat.

It’s recommended to walk your Griff either very early in the morning or late in the evening to reduce the possibility of running into other dogs.

Don’t go to dog parks, dog shows, or public events where you think other dogs will show up. It’s better to go to a less crowded place/park/path for a walk where you won’t be meeting other dogs.

It’s a good idea to mask the scent of your female in heat. Some dog owners apply a tiny amount of Vicks VapoRub cream on the tip of her tail that should keep the males away from her. I tried this trick with my Cleo and it worked! Just be careful with the amount, it really has to be a tiny amount as this cream contains menthol and camphor among others and these are toxic to dogs.

Giving your dog Chlorophyll tablets may also reduce the odor but you should consult the vet about the exact dosage. Never give any medicine to your dog before consulting the vet.

You should also prevent male dogs to track her scent all the way from the park or some other spot to your home.

Males can detect the scent of a female in heat up to 3 miles. So they know that there is some female in heat even if they don’t see her. Plus, males are attracted to females while they are even in the first phase of the heat cycle( then females are still not receptive to males, can be rather aggressive towards males)

They can track her smell all the way to your home and then hang around trying to reach her. This is a possibly dangerous situation that should be prevented.

If you take a car ride from your home to the place where you will walk with your dog and then ride back home, males will have no chance to track your girl.

Don’t forget though that you should keep your Griff girl always on the leash when you are outside. No matter how trained she is, how obedient she is, her natural instincts would win in this situation, so keep her tight and never let any intact male close to her.

My Cleo always had a good amount of energy during the heat cycle. Although she got tired faster than usual, she was always in the mood for play and walk, especially in the morning.

How To Keep My Brussels Griffon Clean While In Heat?

As you know, the dog shouldn’t be bathed too often. Frequent baths are not good for their skin and fur. The general rule of thumb for Brussels Griffons is one bath per 4-8 weeks depending on your dog’s lifestyle. Generally, smooth-coated Griffons need less frequent baths than rough-coated counterparts.

Like we said in the beginning, the heat period is a bit different than anything else so different rules apply when it comes to hygiene as well.

Even though Brussels Griffon dogs like other breeds keep their private parts very clean, lick themselves thoroughly, they might need your help in order to keep a good level of cleanliness.

During the first phase ( around 7 days ) of the heat cycle, you might be able to see the bloody discharge. The amount of discharge varies from dog to dog but still, it can make a mess.

Generally, toy breeds like Brussels Griffon shouldn’t produce large amounts of discharge but you never know. My Cleo had always had a tiny amount of discharge so this wasn’t an issue.

So some extra baths will make no trouble to your Griff’s skin and fur. If you don’t feel the need to bathe your dog you can only wipe her intimate area on daily basis. This will keep her clean and will reduce the scent.

As I mentioned before you can use disposable or washable diapers for dogs in heat. Doggy diapers usage may prevent a mess but never consider these items as contraception for dogs ( as some owners do) as males will easily find the way even if a female wears diapers or heat pants.

You can also place disposable absorbent pads on the place where your pet sleeps. You can also use washable pee pads.

What To Do If My Brussels Griffon In Heat Won’t Eat?

Lack of appetite during the heat cycle is quite common for all dog breeds, and Brussel Griffons are not an exception. Your Griff won’t be so interested in food especially during the second phase ( Estrus). Your dog has only one job to do and that is to find the mate and breed. Nothing else matters, not even the food.

Luckily the appetite loss during heat doesn’t last long enough to harm your dog but still, you have to do your best so your dog gets all the nutritive elements she needs.

No matter how well she usually eats, during those days she may become a fussy eater. That means that she likes one food today but totally dislikes it tomorrow. As a good dog parent, you have to cope with it. Please note that toy and small dog breeds generally preferred canned over dry food.

  • Offer her favorite food more often than you usually do.
  • Bribe her with some tasty treats.
  • Give her tastier cuts of meat.
  • Put some delicious topping over her regular food. That can be a healthy and tasty fish or coconut oil or even peanut butter. You can always purchase ready- to use toppers or cook a delicious unsalted chicken broth and soak her kibbles in it. It will give her a different texture and improve its dry food taste.
  • Treat her with some tasty fruits like blueberries, strawberries, or bananas.

Always make sure your Griff drinks enough water to keep her hydrated.

If she refuses to eat, try hand-feeding, in some cases, it helps since she needs more of your attention and affection.

Your Griff won’t be so interested in food during the first and especially during the second phase of her heat cycle ( around 2 weeks ). If her appetite doesn’t recover and gets back on track after the heat cycle symptoms are over, you should consult the vet.


Your Griff will go into heat every 6 months or so, she will stay in heat for approximately 2- 4 weeks, and during that period she will require special care and attention.

The most important thing you need to do is to give her more cuddles and more of your time if she asks for them.

Another equally important thing is to keep her away from an intact male. This means that you should seal up your house, don’t let any intact male come in, always supervise your girl while outside, walk her on a leash and never let her go near males.

I really do hope that you find this article helpful and that you will find some tips on how to handle and take care properly of your Griff female in heat.

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