|An insulated dog house made from inexpensive and
recycled building materials.
Here is a do-it-yourself dog
house that I have dubbed the "Sparky1". It features an insulated
floor, roof, and walls, a removable roof for ease of cleaning, a
cedar deck with roof, an optional inner wall, and solid construction
It was made from common construction materials - including
recycled cedar boards from an old deck, T1-11 exterior grade
plywood, and 2X pine framing lumber. The whole thing cost less than
$150. (A similarly constructed commercial dog house could easily go
The doghouse was built as a gift for a needy local family. That's
their pooch "Nicky" in the picture. He seemed to be right at home as
soon as he climbed into the house for the first time.
Dimensions: The house was designed for a medium sized dog. It
is 30" wide, 33" deep, and 37" high. The doorway is 11" wide and 15"
high. The front deck measures 18" by 26". The whole thing
weighs about 100 pounds.
Drawing and materials list
The house consists of six insulated panels. The side and roof panels
are made from 2"x3" framing lumber sandwiched between T1-11 exterior
sheathing and sanded plywood interior panels (1/2" for the walls,
1/4" for the roof). For insulation, I used 1" thick foam sheeting.
This comes in 4' x 8' sheets and is pretty easy to cut to exact
size. The floor, which measures 28-3/4" x 32", consists of a cedar
frame with 1/2" plywood on top and foam sheet insulation on the
Cedar was used for the floor frame, the deck, roof cap, and trim
boards. It was salvaged from 5/4" decking material that was cleaned
and planed down to 4/4". It almost looked too nice to use for a dog
house, but at least it wasn't being thrown out or left to rot...
Building the Dog House
Here are the steps for building the dog house:
Step 1: Floor and Side Walls
Step 2: Front and Back Walls
Step 3: Roof
Step 4. Deck
I found that it worked best to partially build the front and back
walls (step 2), build the roof next (step 3) and then come back and
finish up the front and back walls. The step 2 page provides details
on the construction sequence.
The house can be constructed using standard woodworking tools. I
used the following ones: table saw, radial saw, power hand saw, jig
saw, router, drill, 1/4 sheet sander. I also used a planer to plane
down some old deck boards but that's not an essential tool for the
I estimate that the house can be built over a weekend or two -
with the aid of the plans provided here. (It took me more like 4
weekends partly because I was designing as I went.)
Figure 1. The Sparky1 Dog House.
Figure 2. Front view of the Sparky1. Note the ventilation holes on
Figure 3. Inside the house.
Figure 4. Inside view from the top showing the privacy wall.