Pets in the West

Great ideas for pet-friendly homes, gardens, trips, and outdoor adventures

Build a mini ranch house for your pooch

DIY doghouse: Get our free plans and instructions for this great-looking shelter

How to build a doghouse

Emma the puppy is a contented homeowner. Click photos below to see the building plans for this doghouse.

Photo: Peter O. Whiteley

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How to build a doghouse plans
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How to build a doghouse plans
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Here's a stylish ranch-style doghouse a beginning-to-intermediate woodworker can make for about $200.

It’s made from three sheets of plywood and big enough for a large dog. Redwood lattice battens and a shed roof create the rustic ranch-house look. A little arbor of 2-by-2s above the door adds interest and provides shade, and a removable asphalt-shingle roof makes cleaning inside easy.

Materials to build this doghouse

  • Tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Square
  • Protractor
  • Circular saw
  • Paintbrush
  • Electric drill
  • Tin snips
  • Hammer
  • Materials
  • 2 sheets of 3⁄8-inch rough cedar plywood
  • 1 sheet 5⁄8-inch exterior plywood
  • 1 pound 11⁄2-inch deck screws
  • Three 8-foot-long redwood 2-by-4s
  • Four 8-foot-long redwood 2-by-2s
  • 2 quarts exterior paint or stain
  • Twelve 8-foot lengths of redwood lattice
  • 1 tube all-purpose panel adhesive
  • 5⁄8-inch wire brads
  • Two 10-foot lengths metal drip edging
  • 1 box 5⁄8-inch galvanized roofing nails
  • 1 pack asphalt shingles 

DIY doghouse instructions

1. Following the diagrams at left, cut and paint plywood sides (A, B) and panels for the rear (C), front (D), floor (E), and roof (F). Sketch out front opening.

2. Cut and screw four 41-inch-long 2-by-4s to the underside of the floor panel so it sits off the ground. Check that floor height matches the sketched front opening’s bottom (41⁄8 in. from base of front panel), then adjust sketch if necessary and cut opening.

3. To make it easy to screw the panels together, reinforce each side-panel corner with one 2-by-2 that will run from the floor to 1⁄2 inch from the top edge. Screw side, front, and back panels to the floor.

4. Center roof above the structure and use screws to attach two painted 46-inch-long 2-by-4 rafters that flank the exterior of the side panels. To keep the roof from sliding to the rear, attach three painted 6-inch-long 2-by-4s that butt against the exterior of the front panel.

5. Referring to the diagram, build and attach with screws (from the inside) the arbor of 2-by-2s. Add the painted lattice trim with panel adhesive and wire brads 6 to 8 inches apart and paint over them.

6. Mask roof edges with metal drip edging, attaching it with roofing nails. Also use roofing nails to attach asphalt shingles, working up from the roof’s bottom end.

More:  Dog-friendly gardens

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