My extremely sweet girl is due with her first litter on 09/27. I got her to show a little and to produce something that I can show and she did quite well with her previous owner... who was supposed to mentor me. Unfortunately he has opted out since our funds to buy his dogs and essentially run a kennel for him for free have dried up. SO! now i have about 28 days to figure this out on my own. This dog( a 3yo) has never been inside except now that we have her to hang out on the couch, watch tv and get baths. Is it 'better' to keep her outside for the birth or do i have time to bring her inside. Outside is a 20x10 kennel, concrete floor and a carport roof above. it is actually very clean and spacious. The other option i putting her in my air conditioned shed or the house . . . I'm not so worried about housebreaking ect as she doesnt go in the house when shes with me and i have a crate for her. . . which she also doesnt use as a potty. . . Its more the stress( on her) because i have three dogs who live inside and my fiance keeps telling me that she'll try to kill them once she whelps. She knows them interms of seeing and smelling them and seeing them during her inside time, but obviously im going to keep some kind of separation up during the whelping/raising. It is her first litter FWIW. Would you recommend a kiddie pool or a whelping box for a 45 lb dog. I was hoping i could lay a painters drop cloth on the floor to catch any extra mess if she decides the floor is a better option. how messy is the actual birth? How long should I wait before I take her to the vet if the birth is difficult. I am about 40 minutes from the vet. We have a pup count check up at the vet soon and I am excited to see them. . . yet nervous because it makes it real. She's not gaining weight like a blimp which worrys me but is filled out some. . . I am already feeding her puppy food but read to stop that right before the birth because it actually slows down contractions ( the calcium?) . Would it be worth it to put her on something like Wellness and ignore the puppy food entirely? Hopefully my vet can offer enough assistance and encouragement that I do not miss having the mentor.