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Disinfecting a whelping box

Preparing for the birth of puppies can be as simple as placing an old rug on the ground for the mother dog's comfort. Professional dog breeders, however, prefer to prepare whelping boxes. Whelping boxes allow a mother dog to whelp in privacy and quiet as well as care for her new puppies without outside interference for the first weeks of their lives. Preparing a whelping box involves obtaining a wide variety of items for use before, during and after the birth. Some important items on the checklist are disinfectant and cleaning supplies to disinfect the whelping box during the puppies' first weeks.

Step 1
Construct the whelping box with a plan for future cleaning and disinfecting. The floor should be constructed with Melamine or some other easily washable surface. This will allow the area to be more easily cleaned and disinfected.

Step 2
Disinfect the whelping box before the puppies are born. Use one part bleach to thirty-two parts water and wipe down the entire whelping box area. Leave the solution on the floor for ten minutes before thoroughly rinsing it with fresh water. Shredded newspapers should be laid on the floor of the whelping box to give the puppies traction while they are learning to walk.

Step 3
Sweep out the shredded newspaper every day once the puppies are born. Replace it with fresh clean newspaper. During the first week, when the mother dog rarely leaves her puppies, work around her and the puppies. Once the mother starts leaving the whelping box periodically, do the work when she's away.

If an old blanket has been laid down for the mother and puppies, it should be washed daily. A second blanket should be kept handy so that the blankets can be switched back and forth.

Step 4
Remove the mother dog and her puppies to a quiet nearby spot once the mother begins to leave the whelping box for short periods of time and begins to allow her puppies to be handled and moved.

Step 5
Sweep out the whelping box and wash the area with soap detergent. Disinfect the box area and any toys or feeding dishes by making a solution of one part bleach to 32 parts water and wiping the area and all objects. Leave the bleach solution down for ten minutes before rinsing everything with water.

The parvovirus bacteria is highly contagious for puppies that have not yet been vaccinated. It is passed through puppies' contact with infected faeces. There a quite a few varieties of  parvovirus bacteria solutions on the market you can buy, but the bleach solution is adequate to kill any possible parvovirus bacteria that may come in contact with the puppies. While the puppies themselves are still in the whelping box, they are not at risk of picking up the virus outside. However, when the mother dog enters and leaves the box, she may bring the virus into the box where her puppies are. Because of this, the whole whelping box area should be disinfected every other day once the mother dog begins to move around.

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