How To Make Their Puppy Pen Your Pup’s Happy Place

A puppy pen is an invaluable tool for keeping your puppy safe in their new home and for keeping your home safe from those sharp little puppy teeth. It is also essential to potty training your Yorkie pup successfully.

Before coming to pick up your Let’s Talk Yorkie puppy you should set up their puppy play yard so you can put them in it as soon as you get home. Doing this will give your pup a chance to potty, eat, and drink after their first long car trip. It will also give them a chance to look around their new home from a safe place. Yorkie pups raised in my home are used to spending time in their pens on and off throughout the day and sleeping in their pen overnight so the pen will be familiar to them which will help them settle in.



Which Pen Is Best?

The puppy playpen I have been using for years and that your puppy will be familiar with is the Iris 4-panel pen.

If your puppy will be in their pen for extended periods of time during the day or if you simply have the space and want to give your puppy a bigger area you can use the 6 panel pen instead.

If you have a cat you will want to get a cover for your pen to prevent the cat from jumping into it.

Where To Put Your Puppy Play Yard

  • choose a place that is away from drafts and air conditioning vents so your puppy doesn’t get a chill
  • you will want to put your puppy’s pen in a room where the family spends time (like the family room or kitchen)
  • if you have children make sure that you can see the pen easily so you can supervise your children’s interactions with your puppy
  • choose a place with tile or hardwood flooring. If you have to put the pen on the carpet then placing a chair mat under the pen will help keep the carpet clean
  • be sure there aren’t any electrical wires within your pup’s reach when they are in their pen

What Goes In Your Puppy Pen

I like to think of the play yard as a studio apartment for a puppy because it has a bathroom, bedroom, kitchen, and playroom, all in one space.

Potty pad – at first you will make the potty area 1/3 – 1/2 of the space. As your puppy gets better about using the pad you can make this area smaller. I prefer washable pads but disposable puppy pads are fine too.

Bed – I like to use crate mats in my pens because they are small so my pups have space to move around and play

Food and Water bowls

Lovie – I will send your puppy home with a blanket or stuffed toy that smells like their mom and littermates. Be sure to place it in your pup’s bed so they have something that smells familiar to snuggle with.

Toys – you can see some of our favorites here

How To Arrange Things

be sure to put the potty pad at the back / furthest from the side you will approach the pen from most often. This is to prevent them from stepping on it when they greet you (IYKYK)

What NOT To Put In Your Pup’s Pen

As far as safety goes, what you don’t put in your puppy’s pen is more important than what you do put in it

  • Bully Sticks or any other chew that gets smaller as your puppy gnaws on it. I am not against these chews in general but as they get smaller they are a potential choking hazard and should only be given to a puppy when you can supervise them with it.
  • A “tall” bed that your puppy can use as a ladder to help them climb out of their pen. I like to use crate mats because they are flat.
  • Anything made of a fabric that frays or has a long fringe can be a choking hazard and your pup could get tangled in the strings.
  • Anything with a rip or tear in it that a puppy can get stuck inside of (like a bed or washable pee pad.
  • Toys that are not in good condition
  • Anything donut-shaped that has a hole in the center big enough for your puppy to put their head through and that could get stuck around their neck.

What Not To Do

Try to avoid lifting your puppy out of their pen. Instead, you should open the door and let them walk out on their own. Lifting the puppy out gives them the impression that “up” is the correct way out and it could give them the idea to try to climb out on their own. It also takes the freedom of choice away from your puppy – what if your puppy doesn’t want to come out? If you open the door your puppy can walk out when they are ready which gives them a sense of independence and fosters self-confidence.

When you let the puppy out of their play yard, don’t make a big deal out of it. You don’t want coming out to seem better than going in!

Don’t put your puppy in their pen when they are wearing a collar or harness.

Because you want the pen to be your puppy’s happy place, never use it as a form of punishment!!!


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