Being a pet parent is one of the most rewarding experiences in our lives. That is why almost 50 % of households in the U.K. have pets, mainly dogs. Many of those animals are left long hours alone inside small apartments and houses while their owners are at work. We seem to forget that our furry friends were once restless wolves roaming around vast territories. This confinement often leads to behavioral issues and destructive behaviors. Our loving companions deserve a perfect kennel that provides them with both comfort and security.
How to make a kennel a happy place for our pooch? Here are the answers that may help us understand the best kennel options for our friends.
What makes a kennel a dog’s best friend?
For a kennel to become a happy place, we need to consider our dog’s needs. When choosing or making a kennel, we have to keep in mind our dog’s breed, temperament, coat length, age, and health condition.
Here are some general guidelines that might help us decide.
- The dog kennel location is crucial. The best area for our pooch’s kennel is one with good drainage, natural shade, and away from a neighbor’s property line.
- The Perfect kennel needs to be roomy enough for our dogs to be able to move comfortably, but small enough for our dog to feel safe and warm. Bigger is not necessarily better for a tiny breed dog, a dog suffering from anxiety, and dogs prone to hypothermia.
- The right kennel needs to offer protection from the cold, rain, snow, wind, and sun. The kennel floor should be elevated several inches from the ground to avoid moisture.
- Providing dry bedding in the kennel is crucial for maintaining healthy paws and fur of our dogs. We should use straw rather than hay because straw is very dry and hollow, while hay can very quickly get mold.
- The large breeds should have a “dog run “.A “dog run” is a narrow and long path that provides our dogs with enough room to vent and to choose a spot where to urinate/ defecate.
- Freshwater should always be available for our dogs. If the temperature is very low, we should make sure to change the water a couple of times during a day.
What Are the Ideal Materials to Build the Best Kennel?
The right kind of materials for our best friend’s kennels need to be both safe and endurable.
- The most common material used for the kennel floor is concrete. Concrete is easy to install and clean. It also helps to keep the dog’s nails short. Other pet-friendly floorings we may consider are pea gravel and high-density plastic.
- There are numerous fencing options, but we must consider their durability and resistibility to dog teeth. Chain-link fencing is often used mostly because it is an economical solution. Another fencing we may consider is Welded wire. This can be a more pricey solution, but if you have a very chewy oriented dog, it will be worthwhile. We must make sure that there are no sharp edges for our dogs to get injured.
- The walls should be high and rustproof. Never underestimate the power of a skilled jumper/climber. We should always choose the highest possible solution even for a small dog. The best material is concrete, but we can also consider chain-link fencing framed by steel. We just need to make sure that fencing is wired to the steel framing.
- The gates of our kennel need to be secure. The most recommended material for safe closing is spring load latches.
- The right Kennel needs to have a weatherproof shelter for our dog. This shelter needs to be elevated from the floor at least 3 inches to provide dry bedding. If there is no water-proof shelter, we need to provide an overhead shelter to protect our dog from direct sunlight and rain. We should consider material such as vinyl sheeting or tarpaulins.
- The Roof of the well-constructed kennel should encourage water runoff. Steel roofing is a practical, affordable, and highly recommendable option.
Which Materials to Avoid When Building a Kennel?
There is a certain kind of material that we should avoid when choosing the right kennel for our dog.
- Wood floors are easily chewable. The wood splinters are another reason to avoid wood floors. Wood absorbs urine, and it can leave kennels smelling terrible.
- Wood also should not be used for the walls of the kennel. While it offers protection against the wind, it is not resistant to the dog’s teeth.
What Activities and Facilities Do the Best Kennels Have?
Knowing how a well-constructed kennel looks like it can make a big difference when choosing a boarding kennel for our pet. The high-quality boarding kennel doesn’t offer just accommodation. Facilities and activates provided by kennels are also important when choosing the right one for our dog.
Best Boarding kennels should have the following facilities.
- The individual kennels boxes for dogs all sizes.
- The special kennel block where tiny, timid and elderly dogs are kept.
- The closed exercise area for individual training.
- Special kennel units that can be under 24-hour surveillance for dogs with behavior issues.
- Neutral space where friendly dogs can interact and play.
- Space where a veterinarian can check your dog if needed.
- A dry and safe place to keep the dog food.
Activities in a well-organized kennel include:
- Individual care for each dog. Not all dogs in a kennel want to play. Some of them just want to have a human by their side. Other dogs prefer the company of other dogs. The best dog kennels work hard to make each dog feel comfortable.
- The Best kennels offer dog walking at least two times a day. This is a good way for dogs to keep their daily routine and vent.
- Playtime with other dogs. The best kennels have an experienced staff that understands the behavioral pattern between dogs and can provide a safe environment for our pets to interact. Playtime is essential to keep dogs socialized and active
- Obedience training or clicker training. While our dogs are in the Kennel, they can learn some new tricks or correct unwanted behavior. There are many Kennels that offer certified training services.
How to Choose the Kennel that is Right for You?
When choosing the right kennel for our dogs, we need to consider a dog’s needs, and the facilities a kennel has to offer.
- If your dog has a medical condition, ask your vet which boarding kennel would he recommend. High-quality boarding kennels have experienced staff that knows how to give medications.
- Certified kennels have an advantage. There are an Accreditation program by the Pet Care Services Association (PCSA).
- The best kennels will not host dogs who did not get their annual distemper, hepatitis, parvovirus and leptospirosis shot. Kennel cough shot is also required, and it needs to be given to the dog three weeks before boarding.
- Tour Kennel facilities before boarding a dog. A well-organized kennel should have all the facilities required for our dog’s comfortable stay. Kennels should be constructed well and odor-free.
- The staff-to-dog ratio should not be greater than 1:10.
- The individual needs of our dogs should be taken seriously. When having a dog suffering from separation, anxiety it is very important for us to know he is not alone. Employees don’t necessarily need to be professional animal behaviorists, but they do need to welcome every dog and take everything we said about them into consideration.
- The top-notch Kennels have cameras so the owners can follow how their beloved pets are doing.
A dog kennel can be a perfect solution for our frisky furry friends, family members, and neighbors. That does not mean we are keeping our pets in confinement. The right approach to our dog’s needs, being knowledgeable about kennel construction and boarding can make this a happy and safe place for your pooch.
Adam Thornton is a kind, caring, and considerate dog lover who has fostered dogs for the majority of his life. As the Senior Dog Loving Editor at Best Dry Dog Food Reviews, he is known as one of the most passionate, compassionate, and knowledgeable dog enthusiasts and rescuers in South Florida.
*PIN ME – Making your dog’s kennel a home*