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 Post subject: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2019 11:06 pm 
Tournament Grade

Joined: Tue May 31, 2016 7:34 pm
Posts: 299
Location: New Mexico USA
I have a new dog in my life and she'll be staying outside in the yard. I was given one of those igloo-looking dog houses - the price was right, but are those any good?? It's not insulated, and it looks too tall to hold much body heat in.

As an aside: The dog was a stray and I've only had her for a few days. She's maybe 18 mos old. She seems to like tight areas to lounge in. She quickly hollowed-out a nest under my stock trailer - as if she feels safer there. As a condition of adoption, I had to spay her.

In addition to blankets/bedding, I'll need a reliable way to keep some heat on in there this winter. It can easily get below zero here in NM, and I can't be here 24/7 to make sure some POS chinese-built heater is going to work properly.

What do you guys like in the way of dog houses and heaters?




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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2019 11:38 pm 
Crown Grade

Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2003 12:52 am
Posts: 5529
I had two of them igloos for my dogs, they got along great with just that in MN weather. I don't like heaters or lights as they seem to end up causing too many fires. I think it often is the result of the dog getting bored and chewing on the cord causing a short or knocking the light down and it starting bedding on fire. The first year we had record cold temps of -45 degrees and the dogs looked hale and hearty when I came came home from work the next day. The several days prior and after had temps in the -20s. It was a cold winter that year.

The houses were kept inside an unheated, uninsulated garage on an insulated platform 2" thick. I had a thick padded dog bed that covered the floor of the houses. I also hung a t-shirt over the doghouse opening to keep in heat. It didn't work that well as the dogs pulled it down. The houses were on each side of the dog door which fully covered the entry hole. The entry was boxed in with the doghouses at the ends of the box. There may have been some sharing of body heat but not much as there was 3' between the houses. The entry also faced south which used the house as a windbreak.

The real key was to have plenty of food available. I fed Purina Pro Plan Performance to the dogs as it is high in calories which are needed to keep the metabolism going good. I let the dogs self feed back then, I just filled a 5 gallon feeder before heading to work and the dogs ate as necessary. The same goes for water, it is needed too. I had slots cut in the side of the entryway that allowed just the dish portion of the feeders to be inserted into the entryway. This also keeps the water dish cord out of the reach of the dogs.

My dogs ranged from Pointers to English Setters to German Wirehairs to German Shorthairs so had a bit of a mix regarding coats. I had labs as a kid but they slept in the barn with the cattle so were pretty spoiled. I would insulate as best I can, provide food and water before adding a heat source. If the dog spends a good portion of each day outside in the kennel, it will acclimate to the outside and grow a decent coat. If it spends most of the day inside, you will be needing the heater at times. If you do it right, the heated water dish may be all the heat needed.


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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 8:05 am 
Crown Grade
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Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2008 6:20 pm
Posts: 21549
When I lived in ND, I built my Elkhound a house from 3/4” plywood. It had a wind break entrance, 2” thick rigid insulation and carpet inside. For heat I ran a 100 watt lightbulb. Dog still preferred to curl up in a smowbank even when it was forty below though.

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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 8:15 am 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2016 11:45 am
Posts: 1663
Not familiar with those houses, do they have a way to get the moisture out ?

Don’t know what kind of dog you have but most would be fine with bedding, no wind and ventilation.


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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 8:29 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Sat Mar 12, 2016 10:39 pm
Posts: 4297
Best way is to keep them inside.

Next best way is to have more than one dog and a good dog house. You'll have to build it.

Good dog house has two rooms, with entrance to the "bed" room sheltered from the entrance and a bed of plenty of straw, floor skirted but not touching the ground, and a removable or hinged roof for cleaning.

Again, the best way to keep a dog warm is to bring it in the house.

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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 9:00 am 
Crown Grade

Joined: Tue Dec 27, 2011 5:50 pm
Posts: 2291
Location: SE Ohio...where ruffed grouse were
Placing the house out of the wind, possibly on some insulation from the ground, keeping the bedding dry and often replaced, plenty of good food, especially, water...a dog will normally do quite well in a small dog house outside.
If the house has a door baffle or an L-shaped entry, then so much the better.
Super cold periods well below zero may indicate extra precautions tho.....which would appear understandable.
The key...is to care for and monitor the pup.


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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 9:50 am 
Diamond Grade
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Joined: Sun Nov 26, 2006 9:04 pm
Posts: 1029
Location: Upstate NY
My old buddy's house had a false floor with about 4-5" of space. I kept a light bulb on in that space during cold weather.

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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 12:43 pm 
Crown Grade
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Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:59 am
Posts: 6213
Location: Neosho, MO
I use the Hound Heater in my dog's Dog Den houses that are located inside their kennel building. The downside for your application is running electrical power and making it chew proof. I run mine at the lowest setting and it keeps my dogs very comfortable.

https://www.petstreetmall.com/Hound-Hea ... tails.html

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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 12:49 pm 
Diamond Grade

Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2016 11:45 am
Posts: 1663
Our labs always slept in the four pen hog house with 6 or 7 cats on top of them.

The last one wouldn’t stand for the rooster sleeping on top of her. Between the claws and the chicken crap on her when she woke up she’d had enough.


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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 10, 2019 6:16 pm 
Presentation Grade

Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:36 pm
Posts: 595
Location: Endless Mountains of PA
Gentlemen,

Got to tell ya when living in a cold weather climate state, and you do not house your dogs in your home. IMO you need an outing building Kenneled correctly, and fully heated as you do your home. My 6 dogs have always been kept in our nice game room in our home, with a Dutch door between the game room and the formal part of our home. Each dog has his own flight cage in the game room, where they sleep at night. We have a one acre yard around our Murrysville home with the PetMate electronic fence. One dog is left out of the cage during the night, usually it's a Weimar dog to secure our home.

Having a training kennel for over 30 years we do not house our animals or anybody's animals, outside especially in the winter months.

We do have our outside holding kennel for training purposes, at the log cabin training facility in Potter/Tioga County, Pa.

Pine Creek/Dave
Pine Creek Grouse Dog Trainer

Our 40 yard outside kennel in Potter/Tioga, used for training purposes during the day.
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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 10, 2019 6:39 pm 
*Proud to be a*
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Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2009 1:54 pm
Posts: 10460
Location: Kansas
When I had outside dogs, I built an insulated house and installed one of those vinyl flap doors to keep the wind out. On the floor I installed one of those fiberglass “pig mats” that are heated. They use these to keep newborn pigs warm. I bought it at Tractor Supply Co. There were no exposed wires as I put them in metal conduit. Lastly I put the whole system on a thermostat that would come on at 30 degrees. With a generous bed of clean wheat straw over the heated mat, my dogs were comfortable throughout the winter, even down to -20.

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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 16, 2019 4:14 pm 
Presentation Grade

Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:36 pm
Posts: 595
Location: Endless Mountains of PA
casonet,


That sounds like a safe cold weather system for heating a dog house, 1st one I have heard of that probably works incredibly well! Something you might consider marketing yourself.

Pine Creek/Dave
Pine Creek Grouse Dog Trainers

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Pine Creek Grouse Dog Trainers
Charlton Heston NRA Speakers Bureau Member
NRA Life Member/NRA Instructor


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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 16, 2019 4:25 pm 
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Location: Kansas
Thanks, but the idea is free. My marketing days are long past.

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 Post subject: Re: Best way to heat a doghouse?
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2020 11:04 pm 
Field Grade

Joined: Sat Dec 26, 2009 2:26 pm
Posts: 57
As others have said , build the dog house. It's important to have some ventilation. What you don't want is moisture inside. That's why I always used straw instead of a blanket or carpet.I had an english pointer and he got along fine by pushing the straw up against the door opening. With him curled up in the house you could put your hand in and feel the heat. Also, don't build it too big. Build it on 4 x 4 skids to get it off the ground. Use a slightly angled roof so he can lay on it in the spring.




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