When it comes to dogs in winter you need to provide them with extra care. If you are feeling the chill your pet most certainly is! Providing your dog with a winter dog house, extra supplies of warmth and special care to ensure your pet is as safe and comfortable as they can be in winter. Remember, it is a better option to bring them inside on the nights when it gets unbearably cold!
There are quite a few options available when it comes to winter houses for your dog. Ranging in prices and features, these are the ones dog owners are backing with positive reviews:
- Petsfit Dog House
- ASL Solutions Deluxe Insulated Dog Palace With Floor Heater
- DP Hunter Dog House And Floor Heater
- Pets Imperial Insulated Wooden Dog Kennel
- Petmate With Indigo Microban
- Tangkula Weather Proof Dog House Outdoor
- Petmate Barnhome 3 Dog House
- Animals Favorite Dog House
- Confidence Waterproof Pet Outdoor Dog Kennel
- Dogeden Open Yard Series Dog House
Top 10 Best Dog Houses For Winter
1. Petsfit Dog House
This pet house is moderately insulated for mild winters. It is recommended by most dog owners who have tried this product. Crafted from furnace dried cedar boards it prevents heat loss and pests. Elevated off the floor and a door flap, it is great to have for those moderate winter climates. Built to prevent drafts and pre-drilled holes for easily assembly, you can’t get better than this. Not to mention the roof that lifts for easy access. Keep this one in mind when purchasing your cooler climate dog house.
2. ASL Solutions Deluxe Insulated Dog Palace With Floor Heater
This is one of the most respectable houses on the market and a favourite among pet owners. It is insulated with polystyrene to assist in heat retention. But don’t worry, this one includes a floor heater and self closing door for maximum heat retention and protection from the outside elements. Simple to clean and great looks, you won’t be sorry for investing in this one. There is a builtin viewing window in the door to ease anxious and curious dogs with whats going on around them. Easy to assemble, large enough for big dogs and a warranty for life, you’ll be surprised how much your pup love it!
3. DP Hunter Dog House And Floor Heater
Investing in this winter warmer is
worth it because it is all about warmth. From the amazing insulation and the
included heater that is stationed on the floor, your beloved pet will be
staying warm. This house is build to last in all seasons as it has window
panels that are adjustable to change the ventilation, accompanied by a self
closing door with a window. A great pick for you warmer and colder months!
4. Pets Imperial Insulated Wooden Dog Kennel
Owners rave about this winter dog kennel. It is an amzing product with awesome insulation provided by 3 layers (timber, styrofoam and plywood board). It lasts for years when enduring the harsh elements winter has to offer. Door can be a little problem as it uses flaps which isn’t as secure as a self closing door, but many owners find that is isn’t too big of a problem because of the build quality. The ability to remove the floor and the ability to open the roo fup easily is great for cleaning and ventilation, so it can be used all year round.
5. Petmate Indigo With Microban
Although, this one is less expensive many owners are backing it due to its igloo shape which provides housing all year round. A strong construction with awesome insulation to keep the cold out and the heat in or the heat out and the cold in. Easy to clean and with the addition of the microban antimicrobial it is designed to protect against smells and stains. Built with an offset doorway, elevated floors and moats that keep liquid away you won’t have an issue with your pup getting wet. This is a durable dog house with an easy snap together assembly without any tools needed.
6. Tangkula Weather Proof Dog House Outdoor
This weather proof dog has is rather inexpensive with decent insulation. Water proofing has been made the priority for this product so it isn’t ideal for the extreme winters, but will do just fine in moderate conditions. It has a raised floor to assist in insulation your pet, and with that money you have saved you can invest in some good blankets. However, the main draw back for this on is its open entrance. But you can easily fix it yourself by blocking or insulating the door using a thick blanket or making a flap for it .
7. Petmate Barnhome 3 Dog House
This is one of the least expensive options on the market but is super easy to clean and store away. It has an overall great quality, but it isn’t a definitive solution for housing your pet. Ideally, this is for traveling from camping and trekking to long bush walks when you spend a night or two. It allows you to keep your pet warm in its sturdy PVC casing.
8. Animals Favorite Dog House
A great option for places where it doesn’t get too cold in the winter climates is this beauty as it is inexpensive but still has decent insulation. There is no self closing door on this one, so you may want to block or prevent the wind from coming in by creating a plastic flap or curtain. To ensure you pet stays warm in this house, invest in some blankets and an appropriately sized heating mat. You don’t have to worry about the assembly either as owners say its takes 5-10minutes to put the 7 pieces together.
9. Confidence Pet Waterproof Outdoor Dog Kennel
With ample room and it’s plastic construction, owners are loving this doggy house. Perfect for winter with its innovative waterproofing and amazing insulation, it can with stand all weather conditions. Not only that, but owner’s confirm this structure is sound and doesn’t leak! You can quickly set it up and easily clean it. You’ll want to invest in this sturdy k-9 den.
10. Dogeden Open Yard Series Dog House
With a design inspired
by nature you’d be surprised to know that this is a favourite among pet owners.
Although, this does require a little extra labour when installing (you have to create a small bit by digging), it relies on the ground to keep your pet warm – just like wild animals homes. You can’t argue against nature that this wont insulate your pets heat! It has a lip that sits on the surface to prevent water from seeping in, while your pup crawls through the door and retreats to his/her comfortable and extremely cozy chamber. You can even add a few blankets for that extra plushness.
Petsfit Insulation Kit
This isn’t a dog house but an insulation kit. Ideally it pairs with the Petsfit Wooden Dog House, so you can have it all year round. It is rather inexpensive but offers great insulation when installed. Your pet is surrounded by a sense of coziness and comfort during the cooler months. Easy to open up a couple zippers to remove the foam for quick machine washing. The most appreciated feature of this kit is the easy installation and the carry case for storage.
Best Pet Supplies Inc. Indoor Tent Bed
Do you own a little dog? This one is for you. Made to keep your small dog warm by using plush materials top to bottom, such as faux suede, corduroy and linen. This is only made for indoors use and will last a very long time. The soft poly foam lining provides a soft feel while insulating your pup. It also prevents it from collapsing or falling over. Easily machine washable. Pair it with a few blankets and you little dog won’t be feeling the cold.
How Much Is Too Cold For Dogs In Winter?
When it comes to your pet in winter you need to be aware of the temperature. Dogs can only handle so much. When it drops below 45 degrees Fahrenheit you need to start watching out for symptoms of your pup getting too cold, as this is where they start getting uncomfortable. 32 degrees Fahrenheit, you need to start taking action to heating your dog up.
Insulated vs Regular Dog Houses
When it comes to providing your pet with a winter dog house you need to understand the differences between insulated and regular dog houses.
An insulated dog house isolates the temperature difference inside from the outside. This is done by thicker walls, floors and ceilings that are stuffed with foam. They can also utilize the use to layers to prevent heat from getting out and the cold getting in. A winter dog house that’s insulated should ideally have no gaps or holes where the chill can seep in. Quality insulated dog houses will incorporate a door that’s closes by , extended entrance or at minimum a plastic flap. This assists in retaining heat and preventing your pup from getting wet. Raised houses help to stop the transfer of temperature from the ground through to the floor of your dog house. Adding blankets and extra accessories that encourage heat retention will have your beloved pet falling asleep all cozy and warm.
When it comes to a regular dog house,
they don’t usually have any of the special features for battling the cooler
climates. There is no insulation, thinner walls, ceilings and floors and they
usually sit on the ground directly, which are all big no no’s for preventing
heat loss. These regular dog houses are ideally
made for warmer months, so make sure you invest in an insulated dog house to give your dog the warmest winters ever.
Can I Use A Heater In My Dog House?
A dog house heater can be installed inside or directly outside of your dog house. Just remember to follow the safety instructions. Most heaters made for dog houses have a protective housing to make sure your pup is safe from getting burns by accident
Never use a human heater for you dog. Human heaters are made for us so your pup may cook from the heat it produces. A dog house heater wont cook your dog as it is designed to automatically turn off or reduce the amount of heat it puts out once it reaches a particular temperature.
How To Build A DIY Dog House For Winter
If you have a few basic carpentry tools and skills, you could build your own house for your pet with a little time. You have the ability to build whatever you want if you cant find that perfect house just remember to keep safety at the utmost importance.
Start with some research of dog house from things you like and don’t like. This will help you to determine how to build your dog house. You can then make up your own design. Otherwise you can find many blueprints and design of dog houses on the internet you can download.
When it comes to building there will be a few things that vary depending on your design but keep these following in mind:
- Set up before getting started. Get your tools and supplies together and all in one location for easy findings, it prevents wasting time and having to stop half way through to look for a tool or piece you require.
- Build to your skill set. Don’t go picking an extravagant design that is going to be difficult to build if you barely passed your wood work class in school. You will only get frustrated and be disappointed when the final product is not what you expect it to be.
- Back to basics. Measure twice and cut once. When it comes to constructing anything in life this is a golden rule. It prevents wasting materials from things being cut too small, as well as saves time from having to do things over and over again.
- Check again and again for hazards. Don’t let your pup inside to enjoy it and then he/she gets a nail in the paw. You need to check to make sure all surfaces are smooth, nothing poking out or little gaps. Little gaps can potentially pinch your dog or they could get stuck.
- Water. Avoid your house decaying and rotting over time from water seeping in by using wood resistant to insects and rotting ie cedar and/or use a paint for outdoor use and a coat of a clear seal. If you prime the wood before you paint you’ll be in an even better situation . Remember paints and sealants smell so give it a few days to air out before letting your pup inside.
- Strong roof. If your pup is a curious one and enjoys climbing you’ll need to make sure the roof you build has the ability to allow your pet to sit on it. Better to be safe then sorry and come to find your pup caught half way through the roof of his/her little house.
- Electric cords. Planning on using a bed or mat that is heated, you need to make sure you drill a little hole near in the house to prevent the dog from chewing and getting tangled in the cord. It will also keep the house looking tidier. Insulainge around the hole will prevent your pup from feeling a chill coming into the house.
- Incorporate Mylar. This is a thin film that is reflective which is used in making survival blankets. It bounces back the heat your dog emits back towards him. Remember to make sure it isn’t in a place that he/she cant chew on it.
Dog Care Tips For Winter
When it comes to taking care of your dog during winter you need to put in a little more care. Dogs that don’t handle the cold well can get sick, become lethargic and sore due to the cooler temperatures. To prevent that from happening, here are a few extra care tips for winter:
You should feed you pup just a little more as they are burning more energy to keep producing heat. It is best to give them several small meals. If that isn’t possible just add a little extra to their usual meal times.
Play games inside such as hide and seek to keep your pet warm and fit when it may be too cold to go outside and exercise.
Practice tricks to build your bond with your pup while training them and keeping them stimulated.
If your pup begins shivering, shaking, seeking warmth or is sluggish, you need to take action in heating them up. They rely on you to provide for them so keep your eye out for them getting too cold.
Additional Winter Dog House Equipment
When it comes to accessories to add to your pup’s house you should consider getting some of these items. They assist in keeping your pet warm and healthy during those harsh months.
- Heated Bed. They are comfortable while assisting in keeping your pet warm. Has the ability to relieve dogs with ailing joints, arthritis or hip dysplasia. Choose a bed suitable for use and follow the guidelines explicitly to avoid any injuries (such as being shocked or burnt). It is advised to decide on a self heating bed as it requires no electricity. This avoids the problems of injuries and cords.
- Heated Mat. These are a better option for owners who have already provided a bed or dogs that have never liked sleeping in a bed. Keep safety in mind as electricity is not a safe option for pups who like to chew. You should aim to protect any cords by threading it through a pipe, burying the it and drilling a hole for it to come into the dog house. Otherwise use a conduit to protect the cord and prevent your pet from accessing the cord.
- Heated Water Bowl. You don’t want to come outside to find your dog extremely thirsty during winter because his water bowl has frozen. Use a heated water bowl to prevent the water from freezing. Place it just outside of the dog house to prevent spills inside!
- Blankets, Litter, Bedding. By covering the floor of the dog house you are helping to insulate it while keeping it cozy. You could use a good blanket or more if you prefer your pet to have the extra heat and coziness. You could use a litter to assit in cushioning and insulating the house. By using a combination of litter under a blanket(s) for ultimate comfort. You should avoid using grass or hay for litter as they tend carry bacteria and parasites. Decide on using wood shavings such as cedar and pine. These are popular for their pest repellant properties and nice smell. Be wary of the strong smell in confined spaces as some dogs can suffer respiratory issues after resting on them. Wood shavings can be harmful to puppies or pregnant females so avoid using them in these cases; also be wary of females feeding new puppies.
- Thermal Blankets. These are inexpensive and quick to stock up on to provide warmth. You can be wash them in a washing machine. Thermal blankets are made out of materials such as microfiber plush fabrics, sherpa and even fleece to keep them soft. These materials also hold heat better which is great for winter.
- Insulate the gap between the ground and the dog house. Hopefully, your dog house is raised. Use Mylar or Styrofoam to assit in insulating the house from the ground. You should particularly do this if your dog house is sitting on the ground. Insulation boards are another option. You can get these or similar materials from a home improvement store.
- Durable and safe chew toy. This ensures your dog doesn’t get bored, especially during winter when he is most likely to spend his time lazying about. It also prevent him/her from chewing their house, blankets or bed.
- Dog House Furnace. They work extremely well and do what they say . Dog house furnaces are moderately priced but will last several years. These help to keep your pet warm, just remember to get an appropriate size.
- Thermal Pads. These are flat heating devices placed under your dogs bed or alternatively used as a dog bed. You can get electric ones but we suggest you opt for the self heating and heat retention ones. They are simple to use and come in handy on those chilly nights. Not only that but they are cheaper then buying a heater.
What To Look For When Buying A Winter Dog House? The Buying Guide.
When it comes to purchasing a winter dog house there are a few things to look out for. Although, they may be similar, you will want particular features to ensure your pup is warm and safe from the harsh weather.
You need to invest in quality. You
can’t go purchasing a cheap dog house and say that it will do because your pet
will end up getting too cold, possibly ill, maybe even hurt from it collapsing,
and not to mention that it won’t last. Look for houses that are built to block
the wind and have no gaps or holes from which a draft can come up through.
Quality and durability is what you need for a winter dog house.
Seek out a house that has an extended entrance, self-closing door or minimum a double plastic flap door. You need to make sure there is something to prevent water and wind seeping in through the entrance. Otherwise all your efforts to keep you animal warm will go out the window. Remember it is your pets house so be sure he/she can easily fit in an out without having any issues.
You need something that is solid and wont leak. Purchasing a house that is waterproof and constructed to withstand the elements is vital in keeping your pooch dry. If you don’t your beloved pet will get ill from being damp or wet from water seeping in.
Each dog is a different size, so you need to accommodate for that. You cant go buying a little chihuahua a big dog house because it will all be in vain. They won’t be able to produce the heat the house would need to stay warm. Then you have the other side of the scale. You don’t want to purchase a house too small for your Great Dane, that would be ridiculous, especially if he can only fit his head inside! The house needs to be large enough for them to stand comfortably and turn around when they are inside.
Look for a house that is raised and has adjustable feet. When a house is on the ground it will rot quicker. Not only that the chill from the floor will seep through the floor of your dog house. Getting a house that is raised is particularly important. Having adjustable feet allows you to keep it level when you place the house on uneven ground.
Good insulation is vital in your winter dog house. Thick walls, ceiling and floor helps to prevent heat loss and the cold coming in. Don’t forget to add in blankets and other accessories to assist in heat retention.
Now, I don’t know about you but when it comes to cleaning and assembling things it can be a pit of a pain. So, make sure you find a dog house that’s easy to clean, whether it assist drainage from the inside or opens up for easy access, just make sure you will clean it to keep it hygienic for your pet. Remember to pick something easy to assemble if you struggle with flat packs or putting things together. There are some really easy snap in place dog houses available on the market for those who struggle.
Do Small Dogs Need Extra Protection In Winter?
When it comes to small dogs in winter you need to take extra care. Smaller pups require a lot more heat to stay warm. This is because of their minimal body fat, thinner coats and limited muscle mass. So, yes small dogs need extra protection in winter.
Remember to keep an eye out for the bigger dogs with thinner coats and limited body fat and muscle mass (ie greyhounds) as well. They also feel the cold really easily. You older dogs with or without ailments will feel the chill easier as well. Any dog that suffers from conditions such as arthritis should be kept a close eye on and the cold makes their pain worse unfortunately.
Things To Remember
- Check on your pet’s house thoroughly every week to ensure it isn’t deteriorating. You should make sure that the inside isn’t cold or damp as well. Although, dog houses for winter are meant to withstand the harsh conditions, they are being put through their paces with the cold, mud, snow, rain etc. so overtime, they will start to weaken and get old, especially during a big storm.
- When cleaning out the dog house remember to dry it fully before allowing your pet back in. It is suggested to wash in the morning so it has plenty of time to dry out.
- Remember to wash bedding, blanket etc often to prevent dampness and bacteria to build up, which can cause your pet health problems.