Whelping Pools VS Whelping Boxes – How to make your own Whelping Box for Dog Breeders


How to tutorial video on how to build a whelping box


I personally like to use a plastic baby pool to whelp our medium breed puppies because their easy to move around,  clean and the plastic material moves with my Dams which seems to help because we’ve never had any issues with Mom laying on her puppies and smothering them. Yes,  puppies still do get stuck behind Mom’s in the pools sometimes so keeping an eye and ear tuned on them is still important. I do not need to use pig rails with the pools. 

I also like that I can easily keep a baby pool in my living room without worrying about a huge wooden box taking up a lot of space in my house. 


One of my Labradoodle Dams in the large size Whelping Pool with Handmade Whelping Pool Cover and EZWhelp Whelping Pool Pad

One of my Labradoodle Dams in the large size Whelping Pool with Handmade Cover and EZWhelp Pad on top. 

 The pools are also cheap so you can just toss them when you’re done and buy a new one next time OR you can wash them out and let the puppies play in them on a hot summer day.  

Goldendoodle Puppies playing in the baby pool in the backyard


I buy these wonderful handmade whelping pool covers on Etsy and Facebook and then I buy the EZWhelp pool pads on Amazon to make my life easier and Mama and puppies life more comfortable and clean. Plus no lost puppies in the folds of blankets and towels! Huge plus! 


My Whelping Pools,  Pool covers and Pads are definitely in my Top 3 absolutely cannot live with out breeding supplies.

Check out my “Whelping Supplies” page to see what else I use and recommend! 

Athena in her Whelping Pool

I get my whelping pool covers from different designers online… 

I have a much more extensive list of pool cover designers on my Breeders Whelping Supplies page. 

These handmade pool covers are a little spendy buy WELL worth the investment. They range between $55-$75 for the large ones. Depending on who you get them from.  My favorite’s so far have been from Kirsten Fulk on Etsy…  but they’re also the most expensive and to be honest there’s not a huge difference between her’s and Hugs and Stitches for example.  I just like that Kirsten uses a thicker elastic band around the top. 

Whelping Pool Pads

Whelping Pool Pad by EZWhelp

I get the EZWhelp brand whelping pool pads on Amazon and I put them over the fleece whelping pool covers but you can also put them under. I own several of them so I can easily switch them out and wash them daily.

I recommend owning at least 2 to 4 of each so that way you always have a clean cover and a clean pad while your other set are in the wash. Change out the pad daily,  you can usually go every couple of days with the cover especially with newborns but how often you need to swap them out will depend on a few factors like age of the puppies and litter size.. but that’s what makes plastic baby pools and pool covers & pads so great! 

Super easy to keep everything really clean and sanitary with minimal effort. Make sure you order the right size pads and covers to fit your whelping pool. 

whelping pad in whelping pool with mama Pele and her Labradoodle puppies


EZWhelp Round Whelping Pool Pads

EZwhelp Washable Whelping & Puppy Pad 36″ (Round).  Free Shipping with Amazon Prime. 

Buy it on Amazon!

EzWhelp Square Whelping box pads

EZWhelp whelping Box Liner Mat, Washable and Reusable Puppy Pads – Square pad on Amazon Prime!

Buy it on Amazon!


Snuggle safe: Keep newborn puppies warm - whelping supplies for breeders


You can also use the Snuggle safe heating pads in your whelping pools.  

SnuggleSafe is an awesome hard plastic disk that holds heat for several hours after warmed in the microwave for a couple minutes.  Works very well. I suggest two. The directions reccomend that the disk completely cools before re-warming..

Buy it on Amazon!



While I don’t personally prefer the wooden boxes for whelping my litters… a lot of breeders do love them!  I don’t use boxes for whelping but I actually do use them with my older puppies once they’ve learned to jump out of the whelping pools, usually  around 4-5 wks. We use the boxes when the puppies are sleeping at night and also when we can not supervise them in the house.  We use them for short periods and they work great!  They still need lots of play time outside of the boxes.

I have also used these huge pools that we got at the tractor supply store that are actually meant as cow watering troughs.   620 gallon pools. They work well but their huge so you need to have a full garage to keep them in. 



The MagnaBox Whelping Box

You can buy a premade Whelping box and the best one’s I’ve found are the Magnabox Whelping Boxes on Amazon Prime with Free 2 Day Shipping – they will run you between about $400 and $600 depending on the size you order.



Durawhelp whelping box - Dog Breeder Supplies

There are also the DuraWhelp Whelping boxes you can get on Breedeebase.com

The Dura-Whelp® whelping-box is made of top quality, extruded, 100% polypropylene plastic. The puppy rails are made out of vinyl with a wooden core and they cost about $150-$300 depending on the size.

While the Durawhelp boxes are nice I personally think the Magnabox whelping boxes are the best “pre-made” wehlping boxes currently on the market

BUT… with a little extra work you can easily make your own whelping box for about $100-150.


This is the Best “How to Build Your Own Whelping Box” Video on YouTube and it was actually done by a good friend of mine over at AwesomeDoodles.com! ❤ Easy to follow and the whelping boxes look great too!  I really like how he adds the Puppy Mom’s name to the inside of her box.  Nice Touch! 

My husband makes mine….  Thank you hunny! 

Click below for more of my blog post specifically  for Dog Breeders… 

Books For Dog Breeders

These are some of the best books I recommend for Dog Breeders.  Some of them are pretty expensive but still worth it.. especially if you’re a newer dog breeder. 

Canine Reproduction and Neonatology

Canine Reproduction and Neonatology

Winner of Dog Writers Association of America’s Dogwise Best Book Award

Canine Reproduction is a practical guide for veterinarians and an information source for breeders, kennel operators and others with a financial or humane interest in the breeding and maintenance of dogs.

Buy on Amazon

Advanced Canine Reproduction and Puppy Care: The Seminar 

 Answers to common questions and unusual problems encountered even by experienced breeders: Use sunlight to improve breeding results; avoiding C-sections; make AI more successful and much more from a breeder and lecturer who has “been there.”

Buy on Amazon

Canine Reproduction the Breeders Guide

Canine Reproduction: The Breeder’s Guide has been the ultimate reference on dog breeding, whelping and puppy care for more than 30 years. This new third edition features color photographs, the latest veterinary research on reproduction, and an affordable softcover binding. Canine Reproduction covers selection of breeding stock, the science of reproduction, timing the breeding for a successful result, prenatal and postnatal care, whelping, dealing with reproductive problems, illnesses, and more. A complete reference that is a must for any serious dog breeder.

Buy on Amazon

Puppy Intensive Care: A Breeder’s Guide to Care of Newborn Puppies

Get life-saving instructions in text and video on simple measures breeders and canine midwives can take to help newborn puppies in distress. Learn about tube feeding, administering oxygen, hydration and re-warming. Attention shelters and rescue groups: works with orphaned pups

Buy on Amazon

Whelping Calculators & Sample Contracts Online

I could not live without these whelping calculators….

More Dog Breeding Links

I have found a lot of great info on the following websites over the years.

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