Would you, as a human, give birth to your child in a dirty place or even bring up the newborn child in an unhygienic place? Guess not. Even dogs, like humans, need to give birth in proper clean conditions and they too need a proper hygienic place to ensure the safety of their puppies. For your pet dogs who are to be mothers, there is the whelping box. Here are some whelping box plans which you can make at home for the new mother dog.
For those who have no idea what this is, a whelping box is constructed to ensure the safety of mother dog and her young puppies, after they are born. Some dogs just wander around looking for private places to give birth. Sometimes they usually do so inside a closet or at times maybe on your bed as it is warm and cozy. The mess that is created after birth is difficult to clean up and also the safety of the newborn puppies is not ensured.
The box makes it less stressful for your mother dog as it is her special and private place where she can give birth to her puppies. Even the puppies are not scattered about after they are born. They are confined to one place and close to their mother.
A Few Plans
Before building the whelping house, you need to consider certain things. They are given below.
Size is Important
First you decide on the size of the box. The size usually depends upon the dog breed of your pet. The whelping house for a bulldog will be different from that of a dachshund. The box should be such that the mother dog can stretch fully when on her side. Don't have a size where the puppies are all scattered about. This causes disorientation and insecurity in the mother dog.
Now you decide where you want to construct the whelping house. It should be in a place which is safe and secure and which is warm enough and protected from the cold wind and where there won't be much disturbances.
Next, choose the material with which you want to carry out the construction. It should be sturdy enough to keep the dog and her puppies and also easy to clean. Puppies have a tendency to chew things, so be careful of that when you choose the material.
Decide on the design you want to have for your whelping house. There are many commercial ones available which you can consult. But do follow the basic plans which is that one side of the box should be at least 1 foot high while the other 3 sides should have a height of around 4 feet. This protects the puppies from the cold draft and also from escaping. Also it's easier for the mother dog to jump out whenever she wants to. Also while carrying out the construction, keep in mind that the box should be raised at least 2 to 3 inches off the ground. This is done again to protect the puppies from the cold draft. Inside the whelping box, you can put a pig rails which stick out into the box at least 1 to 2 inches. This is done for the puppies to snuggle into one corner or if the mother dog is sleeping against the rail, the puppies will not be squashed even when she rolls back onto the rail.
A Good Lining for the Box
Both the mother and the puppies need to be kept warm and cozy. Thus, line the box with warm and soft materials. You can use maybe a synthetic lambskin with a rubber backing or maybe some towel. Use materials which can be washed easily and which are also waterproof. Underneath the lambskin it's better if you put some newspapers in order to absorb the urine, the feces, blood or any other kind of liquids which may form after birth and for the next few days.
Once you have decided upon the size and all other requirements, here's how you should go about in constructing the whelping house.
Before starting, make sure that you have all the materials that you need. You need plywood, screws, screwdriver, drill, and all the other materials that you need to use as for lining and paint and polish.
- The size will depend on your dog's size. Let's say for example, you need a 4 feet by 4 feet box (most of the medium-sized dogs fit in this size). So now you cut the plywood lengthwise in half so that you have two 8 feet long and 2 feet high parts.
- Now cut these two parts in half so that you have four, 4 feet long and 2 feet high plywood parts.
- Pick up one section and cut it 1 foot by 1 foot.
- This is used for the door for the mother dog to get out whenever she wants to.
- The rest of the parts will be the walls of the whelping box. Secure these walls with the help of corner brackets.
- Now in each of the walls, cut out a section of 2 x 4 x 8 feet. This will be the 'rails' or the 'pig rails' section in the box.
- Screw two of the rails at least 4 inches off the ground.
- Now trim the opposite sides of the box to fix into the existing rails.
- Now paint or polish your box, preferably using waterproof paint or polish and there you have a whelping house for your dog.
- Put in some soft towels or line it with synthetic lambskin with a rubber backing, to make the dog bed more warm and cozy.
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