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jewels1273 03-20-2014 12:29 PM

Pen for 5 week old litter pups
The welping box that we used for the birthing up to now has worked great. However, now that the pups (7 of them) are running around and doing their business, we need a better plan of action to keep the area clean. We currently are using used comforters with puppy pads under them and changing the comforter and pads out daily. While they are doing a great job, we need something that will better absorb and let the pups still have plenty of room to lay around without them either tearing up the comforter, puppy pads and keeping the pee/poop section seperate from their laying down and playing area (so that they don't step in the poop - which the mom now will go in and clean up).

We currently have a homemade box with plastic netting that is about the size of a queen size comforter.

Also, not pen related, but the mom pretty much is almost done nursing and really doesn't go in the pen (except to eat the poo) so should we be putting a bowl of water in the pen (they are let out in the morning and evening to eat and drink and play and again during the day to drink and play in our kitchen). If so, any recommendations on how to keep the water from not tipping over?

Thanks for any advice/suggestions.

Chris Wild 03-20-2014 12:37 PM

Set up a litterbox in one corner of the pen. Keep their sleeping/eating area on the other side of the pen. Before long they will start using the litterbox almost exclusively. Keep their sleeping/eating area spotless so that they are drawn to the litterbox by the scent of having peed/pooped in it before. For litter we use pine pellets made for horse stalls that we get at the farm store. You can also use pine or cedar chips/shavings but I like the pellets best.

At this age their dam is going to start weaning them, so you need to start offering them solid food. And yes, they need to have access to clean water at all times.

Here's a photo of our puppy set up with the separate areas.

jewels1273 03-20-2014 12:41 PM

Great looking pen! SHould we just use a regular size litterbox (like for a cat)? What if they start trying to eat the pellets? (They are in to everything right now) Is there a way that we could fasten the water bowl down so they don't tip it?

They are currently on mush 2 times a day and we are gradually working it up to more "chunks" of the puppy food. Should they be eating more?

Chris Wild 03-20-2014 12:42 PM

For our last litter we decided to go with a slightly smaller litterbox. This was a shower pan we picked up for $40 on clearance at Lowe's.

Chris Wild 03-20-2014 12:44 PM

A regular sized cat litterbox is WAY too small. We found the 3x5 showerpan to be barely big enough. A small plastic kids wading pool can work as a litterbox too so long as the sides aren't too high for them to easily get in and out. They may eat a few pellets at first to taste them, but there's really no worry about them eating a lot of pellets. The pellets are just pine, non-toxic, and will pass right through.

Get a large, heavy no-tip water bowl from the pet store. Biggest, heaviest one you can find.

jewels1273 03-20-2014 12:53 PM

Thanks for the tips. Looks like we will be going to Lowes tonight. :)

Cute pups by the way.

Is that a doggie door to the outside?

Chris Wild 03-20-2014 12:58 PM

Yes, it's a doggy door to an outside kennel so that they can start practicing pottying outside rather than just in the litterbox once they're old enough. :)

blackshep 03-21-2014 09:28 AM


Originally Posted by Chris Wild (Post 5235298)
Yes, it's a doggy door to an outside kennel so that they can start practicing pottying outside rather than just in the litterbox once they're old enough. :)

What a great idea! Nice setup! :)

onyx'girl 03-21-2014 10:17 AM

I have to say, if all breeders had the setup that Chris posted, they'd go home at 8 weeks pretty much housetrained! My pup only ever had 3 accidents inside because of the excellent way she starts them off.
They are also use to being crated by themselves for short periods of time(during meals then afterwards for a bit) so crate training goes smoothly too!
The transition to new homes goes so much easier when the puppy is already aclimated to a crate, and being all alone for short periods.

Liesje 03-21-2014 11:22 AM

I concur, the pup I had that had a dog door access was basically house trained by 8 weeks. Very very few accidents (just a few times I lost track of time and wasn't paying attention). He would even go to the door and "ask" to go out. The pup I have now was raised in a barn-type pen with shavings (I think) so has taken longer to house train. His idea of "going potty" was finding the far corner of the pen and peeing there, lol, so I stopped using a pen at my house. He actually is less likely to have an accident *not* crated or penned and having free reign of the house. Mother is a kenneled dog so she probably doesn't have super "clean" habits herself. A clean mother and a pen with a dog door is the way to go!

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