How to Choose A Dog House

How to Choose A Dog House
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Buying a dog house for your pet may sound like a simple thing to do. It’s not until you visit a shop or lookup an online store, do you realize that it’s not as easy as you thought. Bigger may not always be better and if you bought a small dog house, you may simply end up wasting time and money. The ride for finding that ‘PERFECT’ dog house for your pooch does not end with knowing the right size.

You will need to choose between wood, plastic, or metal. If you choose plastic, it will not provide good insulation during colder months. If you go with wood, you will have options such as wood shingles or asphalt. This is just the tip of the iceberg because there are many more features and options you need to consider before buying a dog house.

How to Choose A Dog House

To make your task easier we will tell you in this article how to choose a dog house. We will take you through the different things you need to know before making that final choice.

What is the right material – Wood, Plastic or Metal?

First things first. When choosing a dog house for your Snoopy or Tiger, the first and most important thing that you will need to choose from the different options available is the material. So, do you want a plastic, wood or metal dog house. Let’s briefly take a look at the pros and cons of each.

Plastic is lighter, hence it makes your dog house highly portable. It is also less expensive than wood or metal dog houses. It should be easy to set up and clean. It will not rot and there are no pores for ticks or fleas to build their home. The biggest disadvantage of a plastic house is that it lacks insulation hence it can get very hot in warmer months and too cold in winter months. It may not be sturdy enough for large breeds.

Wooden dog houses are more solid than plastic ones hence they are a good choice for large breeds. It allows you numerous possibilities to add-on to the design and customize. This material ensures that your dog has better protection from outside elements. Wood has a better insulation capacity than plastic hence your dog will stay comfortable even in extreme temperatures. Owners also prefer the appearance and feel of wooden dog houses over plastic ones. The downside of buying a wooden dog house is that ticks and fleas can start living in the pores.

Metal houses for dogs are mostly used to transport them from one place to another. These are temporarily used for shows and events. However, some dog owners use metal boxes all year round for their pets. The two most common metals used for making these dog houses are aluminum and stainless steel. These boxes are sturdy and highly durable. They may even outlive you but they are a poor insulator.

Determining the right size

Well these two factors go hand in hand. It is difficult to say which is more important than the other. Just like choosing the right material type is essential, you also need to correctly determine the right size for the dog house. If it’s too large, your dog will not be warm and comfortable in the winter months, and if it’s too small then he may feel crammed inside.

As a result, you need to measure your dog correctly and take several other things into account before deciding upon a size. If you have a puppy, you may need to consider the maximum height, width and length your puppy will reach when he turns into an adult before buying a dog house.

The size should just be enough for your dog to get inside comfortably, turn around and lie down. The door does not have to be large because dogs have the habit of ducking down as they enter. You must, however, consider the width of your dog after he has had a full meal to ensure that he can enter comfortably.

Determining the location of the door is also important. Most dog houses will have a door at the middle and it looks perfect. However, depending upon your geographic location, your dog may need some extra shelter from outside elements or may need to get some sun. Thus, some owners prefer a side door with a vinyl flap for extra protection.

Choosing the roof type

If you are buying a wooden dog house, you will have two options for the roof – the classic pitched roof with two panels joined together to form a peak and a single flat roof. There’s a third type of roof that may come with a sun deck. This is mostly made of a single or sometimes double panel. You will also need to choose between asphalt shingles, boards and plywood.

You may also need to choose between a fixed roof and a removable one. We would recommend that you choose a dog house with a removable roof as it is easier for you to clean the interior.

Choosing the floor type

The ideal dog house will typically have an elevated floor, which is a few inches above the ground. This provides some extra insulation and keeps moisture away from getting in contact with the wood. It also provides protection from flea infestation. The elevated floor also saves the floor from getting damaged, hence this extends the life of your dog house.


Apart from the above mentioned primary factors, there are several other secondary things you may consider before choosing a dog house. Also consider how to insulate a dog house and ensure that there is good ventilation inside the dog house or else your pet may feel uncomfortable during summer days. In winter months, poor ventilation will result in moisture creating a damp and clammy environment inside the dog house.

After you have chosen the dog house, go ahead and create a suitable interior made up of a good bed, blankets for winter, a carpet and maybe some old rugs to make him feel cozy. You may choose to buy an insulated house or insulate a dog house after buying it.

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