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Thread: How to build a dog pen

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Germantown, TN
    Posts
    114

    Default How to build a dog pen

    I need to build a dog pen for 1 dog. I would like advice on size, shape, floor and etc. Thanks....Mark

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    1,638

    Default

    mkimball,

    There are lots of possibilities. Generally speaking I think an enlongated rectangle is better than a square, as there is a longer fence to run and the dog can bed farther away from the latrine. Size wise I think something in the neighborhood of 4' x 12' or 4' x 16' is about right. My personal single runs are 5' x 14'.

    Surface material is a personal choice. For many years I used pea gravel. Advantages are it's relatively inexpensive, clean up is easy (just scoop poop & urine drains naturally into the soil below. Disadvantages are that it is impossible to sanitize if you're worried about pathogens, the dogs will dig in it and make a mess, and I've had young pups eat the stuff.

    Concrete is probably the best, but it is most expensive. My current kennel runs are on 18" square patio pavers layed on a 5" deep bed of pea gravel. This has the advantage of drainage through the 1/8" gaps between the pavers, but clean-up is about the same as a concrete pad. I think it is cheaper than concrete too, and if you decide to move the run or get rid of in all together, that is easier done with the pavers on pea gravel than with a concrete slab.

    As far as fencing goes I prefer a quality chain link fence panel over the powdercoat welded wire. I think they are more rust resistant in the long run and will last longer. I purchased my current kennel fencing from the Mason Company in 2003. It has done the job well and is still looking good after nearly eight years. Cheap chain link from the big box stores isn't the same quality. I purchased some for a temporary kennel while my current facility was under construction and I had a dog escape by peeling back the fencing from the frame. Do yourself a favor and buy quality fencing.

    You can see some pictures of my kennel at my website under the "About Orion" tab at www.orionlabradors.com. Good Luck on your new kennel runs! Let me know if you have any other questions.

    Swack

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    River bottoms of Mississippi
    Posts
    218

    Default

    What price range are you looking at. And is the dog going to be there only when your not at home. My pens are 3 x 10 kennel in the morning after feeding and let in around 3 to 6 don't have much mess to cleanup, all thought i do wash down every day.
    Craig

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Near Peoria IL (Dunlap)
    Posts
    576

    Default

    Unless I missed it in one of the other posts I'd add that I like a covered kennel/run. A cover allows the dog to be out of the dog house in wet humid weather, have good shade, keeps the bulk of the snow out. I provide an elevated surface with rug for them to lie on and that keeps them high and dry and theyíll spend the majority of the time sleeping out.

    I do use pea gravel for the floor and add welded wire under the gravel to discourage digging. Once they know the wire is there they don't dig. What I don't like about concrete is the bare spots on hips, elbows and hocks and in general although dogs enjoy lying on cool concrete I don't know if it's that good for joints. You can provide a more comfortable place on the concrete for them to lie down, but they will pick cool concrete if it's a hot day, can't blame them. Since my dogs get out often enough they rarely soil the dog run, but when we need to be gone for a whole day it does happen and picking up in pea gravel is easy. Pea gravel does get messed up with the dog bedding and that causes issues so I replace the pea gravel near the dog house a couple times a year and spray it down with disinfectant once a month during warm weather. This added effort makes concrete an attractive floor surface, especially for those with more than one or two dogs.

    I donít know anyone who has used the kennel floor panels, but thatís another option for flooring.
    Bob

    "Properly trained, a man can be dog's best friend. "
    -- Corey Ford

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Germantown, TN
    Posts
    114

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    My plans are to raise pup in the house until duck season. Then I will need a place for him to spend the night to get acclimated to the temperature. Also, I live in south Georgia and heat becomes an issue during the summer months. I will need shade as well as protection from the direct sun.
    Last edited by mkimball; 02-21-2011 at 06:32 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    River bottoms of Mississippi
    Posts
    218

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mkimball View Post
    My plans are to raise pup in the house until duck season. Then I will need a place for him to spend the night to get acclimated to the temperature. Also, I live in south Georgia and heat becomes an issue during the summer months. I will need shade as well as protection from the direct sun.
    mkimball,
    I suggest the welded wire pens at tractor supply. I beleive there 4ft x 6ft runs. Cost around $300.00. They also sell the shades, bunge them to it, if you,re not sure were to position it on you property sit it on sand for now. Easy to clean up and cool for the dog to lay on. You would want to get four rebar about two foot long, bend the end and drive in each coner in case you get a strong gust of wind. you could cut your cost some by buying just the door section. setting four post and using the 6' rolled weld wire but it won't be as easy to move if your not sure of your location. Hope this helps
    Craig

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    9

    Default Get a Mason

    Mason Kennel company has been around since the early 1900's. They make prefab pannels that bolt together. Super clean looking and should last a lifetime. Mine are 30 years old and sat on grass for 5 years, but know are on concrete. I would do it and do it right once, and that means concrete. Mason hand ties the fence material to the fram work so that the dog has a difficult time working the fencing with their teeth. We have all seen kennels that a dog damed near chewed out of. Don't say it is impossible with a Mason but pretty difficult. Call or go on line to get the catalog and seethe system. Doors with low panels so puppie can't get out, dog house "holes" in the pannels so that the house is outside of the kennel, doors that slide or doors that swing. I can't recommend Mason highly enough.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    1,638

    Default

    I second Trouthead's motion. Yes, Mason kennels will cost about twice as much as the cheaper alternatives, but they should last several times longer, while looking good and working better during those many years.

    I recently sent to Mason for some information and have forwarded that to 20 Fan (heads up Kirk, should be there Mon. or Tues.), so I don't have the exact prices at my fingertips, but if I recall correctly one of their "Top Dog" kennel runs in the 6' x 10' size runs about $600. That doesn't include shipping. However, if you can handle the cost I don't think you'll regret the investment.

    Swack

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