This section is from the book "The Dogs Of Great Britain, America, And Other Countries. Their Breeding, Training, and Management in Health and Disease", by John Henry Walsh (Stonehenge). Also available from Amazon: The Dogs Of Great Britain, America And Other Countries.
Nature proportions the power and resources of the mother to the wants of her offspring. In her wild undomesticated state she is able to suckle her progeny to the full time; but, in the artificial state in which we have placed her, we shorten the interval between each period of parturition, we increase the number of her young ones at each birth, we diminish her natural powers of affording them nutriment, and we give her a degree of irritability which renders her whole system liable to be excited and deranged by causes that would otherwise be harmless. Fits ultimately follow. Place the sufferer in a bath, temperature 96°, and cover her with the water, her head excepted. It will be surprising to see how soon the simple application of this equable temperament will quiet down the erethism of the excited system. In ten minutes, or a quarter of an hour, she may be taken out of the bath evidently relieved, and then, a hasty and not very accurate drying having taken place, she is wrapped in a blanket and placed in some warm situation, a good dose of physic having been previously administered. She soon breaks out in a profuse perspiration. Everything becomes gradually quiet. She falls into a deep and long sleep, and at length awakes somewhat weak, but to a certain degree restored.
If, then, all her puppies except one or two are taken from her, and her food is, for a day or two, somewhat restricted, and after that given again in its usual quantity and kind, she will live and do well. Bleeding at the time of her fit, or suffering all puppies to return to her, will inevitably destroy her.