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Barks & Mewsings

The Trupanion blog

DIY: How to Build a Dog House for Your Pet Space

By: Kelli Rascoe

Dog relaxing in the yard in front of a house

Your dog is an important member of the family and they deserve a special place to call their own. Relaxation comes in many forms for your furry friends and this may include a comfortable bed. Does your dog need their own relaxing getaway? Consider creating their own oasis where they can retreat to in their very own dog-centric space. In this installment of our at-home DIY series, read on to learn more about how to build a dog house and the benefits of dog-friendly space.

How to build a dog house

A dog sits outside on a wooden log

A dog house comes in many sizes, and so does your furry friend. Your best friend may enjoy a large space to lounge in, while others prefer a smaller space to lay their head. No pet space is the same and luckily you can personalize your pet’s house to include their preferred style.

There are many things to consider before you begin building your dog house, like starting with the location. For example, if your puppy likes to play indoors you may want to consider a chic indoor doghouse. Alternatively, if you have a multi-dog household you may opt for an outdoor dog space on the patio.

Consider the following:

  • Measure your space and determine the ideal spot.
  • Decide whether you would like an indoor or outdoor dog house for your furry friend. That may help you choose the design style.
  • A patio, an awning, a door, and windows are just a few of the features you can add to your dog’s space.
  • Assemble your supplies and research different patio designs.

Fortunately, there are many dog patio designs to choose from, for an additional resource check out The Spruce Pets design guide here.

Steps to build a dog house

No matter what style you decide to make, it may be best to start with the structure and foundation. According to Home Depot, a pet-friendly DIY dog house design may include this:

  • Cut the wood pieces based off of your design choice
  • Lay the foundation by framing the base
  • Attach the foundation floor like your pallet pieces
  • Frame the house sidewalls
  • Frame the front and back walls
  • Cut the siding
  • Create the roof

This basic design is a simple way to lay the foundation, especially if you want to add additional items like a roof, sun deck, or water fountain. You want the best for your furry friend, and that means keeping them safe, dry, and healthy. For some tips for how to insulate your DIY dog house, check out the video below from DIY expert April Wilkerson.

The benefits of a dedicated space for your dog

Everyone needs a place to recharge and this includes your furry family member. In fact, a dedicated pet space is a great way for your pet to de-stress. For example, a change in your pet’s environment or schedule may cause stress, so having a dedicated space for them to rest may be ideal for your pet’s health.

Also, a dog house may help provide enrichment for your best friend. Pet enrichment may help with mental, physical, and emotional stimulation. Consider including some of your dog’s favorite toys in their dog house so they have the chance to play.

Further, whether you’re outside in the backyard or enjoying an apartment balcony you want all your family members outdoors with you. Learning how to build a dog house may not only give you the chance to learn a new skill, but also bond and interact with your best friend. For more on pet safety, check out this pet hazards article here.

A French Bulldog sits on a blanket inside a doghouse

Tips for the ultimate pet getaway

So, you’ve picked out your design and assembled your best friend’s new house. Don’t forget to include these pet-friendly items below.

Stay hydrated

Always make sure fresh water is available for your furry friend. Consider adding a fountain or splash pad for a way to help keep your pet hydrated and to provide enrichment.

Add an awning

You want to help keep your pet safe in the sun. Consider adding an awning to keep the sun off of your dog’s face.

Create a dog park

Surround your pet’s dog house with a mini dog park. Consider adding a dog agility course, scavenger hunt, or dog run. If you have a multi-dog household, this may be a fun way for your pets to get rid of some energy and enjoy playtime together.

Supervise playtime

Naturally, your pets will enjoy being able to interact and play with one another. Be mindful of your pet’s activity and always make sure to monitor pets and children at all times. You don’t want an unexpected trip to the veterinarian.

A dog sits with his owner and toys outside

DIY: Building a dog house may make a peaceful retreat for any pet

Whether you have a puppy, adult dog, or senior pet, building a dog house is a way for the entire family to create something together and enjoy more quality time with one another. Further, a dog house is unique because it can be created specifically with your pet in mind. Whether you want it in a yard, balcony, patio, or indoor space, it’s a way for your pet to enjoy a little retreat in the comfort of your own home.

To learn more about how to entertain your pet at home, watch this video from the Trupanion team.

A dog and cat snuggle

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We’re the official blog of Trupanion—chosen by veterinarians as the #1 pet insurance in America. Here you’ll find useful dog and cat care tips, interesting veterinary insights, and fun pet topics galore.

While you’re browsing our pet blog, please note that the views expressed here are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily reflect those of Trupanion. Our articles are reviewed by veterinarians for accuracy, but they are not a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. Always consult with your own pet’s veterinarian for advice.

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