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By Michael Davis

Do-it-yourself dog kennel and shed

This do-it-yourself idea is versatile and easy to complete. It can be tailored to fit your needs whether you have a single dog or you want to raise hunting dogs. The shed can be used for storage, or the kennel can be built into an existing structure such as a garage.

The first step is the concrete slab. If you are building a new shed, the slab should be large enough to accommodate the building. You may also extend the slab as the floor of the dog run. This would make the area easier to keep clean, but it also reflects more sunlight and can get hot if not covered. If you have an existing structure, this step is already done.

The shed can be built to any size. One side will of course have to accommodate the dog's sleeping area. Simply enclose the dog's area and provide an access door. A shelf can be built on top of this area if desired. If using an existing building, simply enclose the dog's area and build the access door into the side of the existing structure.

The dog run can be enclosed by a fence. It can be dirt floored or concrete with a roof. If there is no roof, shade trees can be planted outside for protection from the elements. Make sure your pets can escape inclement weather. There should be an outside door to access the dog run. Again, specifications depend on the size and number of dogs. Larger breeds need more exercise, and so do hunting dogs.

Here are some ideas for the construction of the shed.

Start by placing 2x4x8 studs along the sides of the concrete slab. Fasten top and bottom 2×4 to studs so that each stud is 16" apart. Raise each wall and bolt to slab. Use 2x4s to brace each wall until it is properly fastened and square.

Place 2×4 joists across walls to make roof. This can be a flat roof at an angle, or a traditional style roof. A flat roof can be raised on one side by building that wall higher than the opposite wall using 2x4s. Place joists at 16" centers and fasten to the walls. Use ¾ inch plywood for the roof and apply roofing as desired. Rolled roofing is sufficient for a flat roof, or you may prefer a traditional shingled roof.

Add windows if desired and siding. Siding can be 4×8 wood panels or aluminum. If using aluminum you will want to place paneling on the outside walls and house wrap plastic sheeting to protect against moisture. The interior can be finished with 4×8 plywood sheets. Shelving can be placed inside the shed for storage.

The dog run part of this kennel can be chain link, ready made for kennels, or use treated wood posts and 2x4s with rolled fencing for a more permanent kennel. The shed roof can be extended over the run, if desired. The possibilities are endless, depending only on your budget and imagination.

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