My husband was not happy when I brought home an English Mastiff pup about six years ago. He’s a die-hard German shepherd man and he didn’t understand the value of an English Mastiff. At four months of age, she was already weighing close to 50 pounds and within a year would top 100 pounds – reaching her full maturity and weight of 175-190 pounds by the age of three.
He told me then that if I was to keep her, that she could not sleep in the house, she would be an “outside” dog, like our other two dogs (which is what she is best for — home protection). For the longest time we kept our dogs in what we call the “Z” garage, which is where he now stores his 1979 280ZX – but that only lasted for a while.
We decided then to build a dog house so I went online and typed in dog house plans. I never knew there were so many options out there for a building you could build yourself to house your pooch.
It’s important to remember that your doghouse needs to be comfortable for your pet; it needs to be able to withstand winter’s harsh weather and summer’s blasting heat. Be sure you don’t use pressure treated woods soaked with chemicals especially if your dog is a chewer!
If you’re adding a dog run, the framing of the kennel itself should be made of a wood that withstands bugs and weather but your doghouse itself can be built with Douglas Fir (DF). However, your external coverings will need to be weatherproof, and you might want to insulate as well as use tar paper and shingles on the roof to keep your mutt dry and warm during the winter.
Be sure to choose a set of plans that allows your dog room to run, enjoy the sun, but provides shade when needed.
If you’re going to go the dog kennel route, be sure it is big enough if your dog will be penned up for long periods of time. If he’s too closely penned in, he’ll get bored and start chewing or pick up other bad habits, all of which is unhealthy for your pet.
We ended up building a dog house as country living requires that your dog roams free and chase off those pesky coyotes and other critters.