Finding the Perfect Dog House for Your Furry Friend

What size, style, features and extras do you need to consider when choosing an outdoor dog house? This guide covers materials, placement, weatherproofing, decor and more to pick the ideal shelter.

Dog House Guide
Share this to:

Bringing home a new puppy or dog is such an exciting time! Once you get past the initial puppy-proofing stage, it’s time to accumulate some essential supplies to keep your dog healthy, safe, and comfortable in their new home. An often overlooked but essential dog supply item? The dog house!

[AWIN_DATA_FEED no_of_product=4 title=’Sponsored Listings’ keywords=’dog, pet, dogs’]

Finding the Perfect Dog House for Man’s Best Friend

Having an outdoor shelter for your dog to retreat to is vital for their health and happiness. Protecting them from the elements is critical, as is giving them a quiet, cosy space. As you start your search for the ideal dog house, there are several things to consider when deciding what style, size, features, etc, would work best.

In this blog, we’ll walk through the critical factors in choosing a dog house so you can find the perfect fit for your furry friend!

Determining the Right Size

One of the most critical factors is selecting the appropriate size. You want the dog house to be big enough for your dog to move around and lie down comfortably but not so massive that it won’t feel cosy and secure inside.

A good rule of thumb is to choose a dog house that is about 25% larger than your dog when they are in a sitting position.

You’ll also want to consider potential growth if you have a puppy and size up accordingly. The dog house’s entrance should also be appropriate – large enough for them to quickly enter and exit, but not so wide open that the elements can reach them inside.

For very small or toy-breed dogs wanting more den-like space, you can look into covered cot beds for extra cosiness, for giant breed dogs or multiple medium/large dogs who will share the space, extra-large and even insulated or heated houses are available.

Materials Matter

Dog houses today come in all different styles and materials: plastic, wood, resin, steel, and more. Consider the climate where you live when selecting house materials that will hold up against weather conditions and temperature extremes.

For example, a plastic house may crack in severely cold winters. Wood houses fare better in the cold but may deteriorate more quickly overall. Insulated steel holds warmth in and keeps pests out.

Also, look at the roof style and overhang that extends beyond the entrance. This peak roof overhang and treating the house against drafts will help ensure wind, rain, and snow stay out of the interior space where your dog rests.

Whatever materials the house is made of, elevate it off the ground for moisture control and airflow. Raising it on a stool or platform and including a waterproof floor liner will help keep their little house clean and dry inside.

Location, Location, Location!

Where you set up your dog’s outdoor house on your property is key as well for their comfort and ease of use. Choose an area that is relatively flat and dry, provides adequate shade and protection from wind, and allows them to survey their territory. Placing it against a building, under a tree, or overhung with landscaping can help block prevailing winds and weather.

You’ll also want it to be convenient for them to access – avoiding locations with long or slick grass walks to trudge through. Easy to clean around and accessible for humans and maintenance needs. Consider proximity for nighttime potty trips, too!

Many dog parents place houses on porches or patios for increased security and weather protection. Just be sure your pup is comfortable frequently using stairs or ramp access if elevated. For dogs with mobility issues, stick to ground-level placement.

Now Comes the Fun Part – Decor!

Today’s dog houses come in stylish designs that match your home’s exterior features and colours. Or make it a decorative focal point with bright colours and patterns! Personalize it to your pup’s personality with their name, cute motifs, sports team logos, and more.

For added exterior visual interest, think about flanking your dog’s house with containers of pet-safe plants or flowers. If space allows, incorporate shelving to hold their outdoor water and food bowls. You can even install tiny lighting or solar strings to help illuminate their little home.

If your dog primarily hangs in their outdoor house while you’re away at work or overnight, enhancing the interior décor can make it even more cosy and inviting. Plush doggie bedding, treats, and toys inside give them familiar comforts. Just be mindful of fabrics that could retain moisture in rainy weather.

Extras for Extreme Weather Protection

In climates with more severe winters and snow or intense summer heat, extra insulation and temperature regulation features allow your outdoor dog house to remain usable year-round. Foam or fibreglass liners act like a convection oven – capturing and radiating body heat to keep interior temps comfortable.

You can install a small space heater (with extreme caution on wires, chew protection, not leaving pets unattended inside, proper ventilation, etc.) or cooling fan accessories.

Likewise, shade cloth extensions, ventilation holes, and reflective paint colours can prevent overheating in the sunniest spots. Always provide ample fresh water as well when temps spike. For rainy regions, most dog houses today are designed to be weatherproof, but extra waterproofing sealants can give added leak protection.

When the climate gets icy, detachable clear vinyl “windshields” can provide an extra enclosed buffer at your dog house entrance to retain heat. Offering a covered path from their house to the home’s entrance will protect their paws from ice melt chemicals, sharp ice chunks, and foot salts.

Special Needs Situations

If your dog requires medical equipment or mobility assistance, you may need to evaluate speciality dog houses to meet their needs.

For instance, disinfectant-resistant surfaces may be required for immunocompromised or older dogs. Ramps, stairs, or even doggie elevators could be necessary for dogs with mobility limitations.

Custom ornamentation may help vision or hearing-impaired dogs locate their outdoor house more quickly.

For anxious pups who prefer a “den-like” environment, covered cot beds, houses with reduced entrance sizes, or even DIY solutions like an adapted furniture cabinet can feel most secure.

Working with your vet to understand your dog’s health needs will ensure you find the best housing solution for their well-being and safety.

Bring The Indoors Out!

Now that you’ve fully prepped the perfect outdoor refuge focus on making your time outside just as pleasurable! Stock up on durable toys they can happily chew or play fetch with as they wander in and out of their abode.

Rotate special treats and recreations to keep variety in their day. Consider a cooling pad or fan to give them respite in the heat.

Hanging a bird feeder nearby and watching nature out their “window” also provides entertainment. If your pup is highly bonded to you, placing a worn clothing item with your scent can comfort them when you’re away. They’re all set to live the good life at their new outdoor digs!

We hope this overview gives you many factors to consider in choosing the ideal dog house for your beloved pup. Their health, safety and happiness outdoors are so important.

Take stock of your climate, yard space, budget, and dog’s needs to custom-fit the perfect tiny home for them to enjoy for years.

Share this to:

Similar Posts