All of our puppies are whelped in a custom built box that we designed and built that utilizes the Misty Method principles. The Misty method of raising puppies uses three areas that are designed for different functions but work together for the betterment of the puppies learning.
The first area is the whelping box with a pig rail included and then removed when it’s no longer needed. The puppies are whelped in the first area and have access to mom until they are weaned. A heating lamp is provided in a portion of the whelping area to help make sure the puppies stay warm. We also use a heating element in the whelping room to maintain the proper temperatures as the puppies needs change.
The second is a potty area. We use alfalfa pellets instead of newspaper to train the puppies where to go. We believe the pellets smell similar to the outdoors and helps with house breaking the puppies. The potty area is opened up at 3 weeks to take advantage of the puppy’s natural instincts to leave the sleeping area to potty. The alfalfa pellets are removed as needed and replaced with a new supply. This makes house breaking a puppy easier. We also find that when we take the puppies out to other areas of the house to explore, if we provide them a smaller container filled with the pellets, the puppies will potty in the pellets and not on our floors. This happens as early at the 4th week for most.
The third area is all about exploring and fun. We rotate all kinds of textures, toys, small crates and things to climb under and over. Every day we switch out different items to explore. This area is opened to the puppies during the day and closed off at night to help with a sleep schedule. The play area is in addition to all the exploration the puppies get in different areas inside our home.