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Set up a Whelping Box for Your Dog

Set up a Whelping BoxSet up a Whelping Box


Set up a Whelping Box is the first thing required when your caring for a dog about to give birth? It’s natural to be stressed, but don’t worry. We have all the information you need to simplify the process for you and your canine companion.

Choosing a Whelping Box

When setting up a whelping box for your dog, it’s essential to plan ahead. We recommend getting everything your dog needs ready at least a week in advance. The first step is selecting the correct whelping box for your dog. If you’re someone who looks at building things on your own, you could even consider making your dog a whelping box yourself.

Whelping boxes are usually made from plastic or wood. Generally speaking, plastic whelping boxes are easier to clean, move from one room to the next, and keep clean. Plastic is probably out of the question if you’re looking to build your own whelping box. There are guides and instructional videos on how to make your wooden whelping box.

However, we at Petnap have a range of pre-made whelping boxes to suit your pooch’s needs. Are you looking for something environmentally friendly? Our disposable cardboard whelping boxes are bio-degradable and affordable too. Want something long-lasting? Our plastic whelping boxes are reusable and will suit your dog’s every need. Both boxes come in various sizes; you can even buy sets of multiple boxes, perfect for professional breeders.

The Essentials

Are you unsure what supplies you’ll need to help your dog whelp? That’s okay; our checklist will tell you everything you need to know.

  • A whelping Box
  • A kitchen Scale
  • Towels
  • Styptic Powder
  • Betadine
  • Sterile Scissors
  • Hemostats
  • A Digital Thermometer

Set up a whelping box process

Find a secluded area of your home where your dog will be able to relax and remain stress-free. Ideally, this area should be cordoned off from the rest of the property. Canine mothers are usually incredibly protective of their newborns for at least 2-3 weeks after giving birth. Strangers or other dogs were to approach her pups; your dog could become distressed and aggressive. To avoid unwanted incidents, allow the mother to stay alone in a secluded area of the house, where she can deliver her pups in peace.

If your dog is whelping in a carpeted room, you may want to protect your carpet. Either lay down old sheets or plastic covers to protect your carpet from being ruined during the birthing process. You may find that your dog rejects their whelping box. This is not uncommon. Some dogs prefer delivering under furniture or in their owner’s lap if they trust them enough. However, if you carefully place the first puppy in the whelping box, the mother should accept the box and deliver the rest of her pups inside it, as intended.

We recommend getting your dog accustomed to her whelping space before the delivery. While setting up her room, allow her to be part of the process, and try to get her to understand what you’re doing. Dogs are intelligent creatures, so she will likely catch on. You can even put some of her blankets or chew toys in and around the whelping box to make the space feel more familiar to her. This will let her know that it is a safe place where she can deliver her pups.

The Delivery Process

A few days before your dog is ready to deliver, it is recommended that you get her X-rayed, so you’re aware of how many puppies she will have. Doing so will allow you to be better prepared when the time comes. Take the time to ask your vet for professional advice. If your dog might require a c-section or if there are other medical complications, this is an excellent time to have that discussion.

About 12-24 signs prior, you will notice your dog exhibiting signs of going into labor. You must know what signs to look out for. Monitor her temperature regularly during this period. When her body temperature reaches 36°C, you’ll know she’s getting closer to delivering. 12-18 hours before she’s ready to deliver, you’ll notice your dog stops eating. Don’t worry; this is perfectly normal.

Your dog may display nesting behaviors. This includes the instinct to keep her pups safe and warm. She may try to collect stuffing from pillows or leaves from nearby plants. If you place enough soft towels in her nesting box, she should feel safe enough to avoid doing so. You might notice your dog rearranging the towels you’ve put in her whelping box. She may appear agitated, but this is normal behaviour.

Assisting With the Delivery

Your dog might need your help with the delivery process. If your dog acknowledges you as her primary caretaker and trusts you, she should have no problem allowing you to touch her babies. Still, do so with caution. Dogs usually open their own amniotic sac, but you might need to do it yourself if your dog doesn’t. Next, clear any mucus away from the pup’s nose and mouth so that it may breathe independently. If the puppy isn’t breathing yet, don’t panic. It may take them a second to catch their first breath. However, make sure they are breathing correctly on their own before you cut the umbilical cord.

Most mothers chew off their umbilical cord. If your dog doesn’t do so, you can help by cutting it yourself. Generally, it’s considered safer to do this yourself. New canine mothers might hurt their pups when chewing the umbilical cord.

Let Petnap Help You

Now that you know how to set up a whelping box for your canine companion, there’s only one thing left to do. Buy your dog their very own whelping box from Petnap today. As previously mentioned, Petnap has everything you need. You can even look at all their other products on their site. Petnap will deliver products straight to your doorstep, and our customer support staff is always ready to assist with any questions you might have.