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  • Writer's pictureJessie Miller

The Kennels

I have to say that I am super happy with the way our kennels have turned out! It is the first kennel building we have ever designed ourselves so a big learning curve and lots of "if we built another one we would....." But it's functional and 100% better than not having it. '

The whole building itself is 16' x 25' not including the runs. The runs are only 9' long, I know, strange length but we had to take into account the area we had to work with to still be able to walk around the building with the way the fence line was. It's not completely done but it is about 90% finished. Just a little trim here and there and some cabinets that it needs and a different heating and cooling system.

I love my windows! I love the light it lets in and since all our buildings on our place are encircling one another I can pretty much see the whole place out them. Also, when I am grooming the dogs I can look up to see if anyone is here out the windows or check on the dogs out in the outside play pens.

We only have 6 inside kennels in the building as part of the back side of the building is used for our rattery. The kennels are only half kennels because I hated the idea of wasting all that head space for the dogs when they weren't going to use it anyways. Counter tops just made more sense. You can never have enough counter tops in my opinion! I use them for wrapping presents or folding blankets, put extra goodies for each dog on top, you name it! All the doors and dividers were hand made since our dimensions were so random. Welding galvanized steel is not fun by the way. I only painted the poles and welds as the no-climb panels were hot dipped. I'll probably have to repaint them this summer as urine is super hard on any paint!

The inside is all concrete that we painted garage Epoxy-shield on. It seems to be holding up okay so far, there are a few nicks in the paint that I will have to patch from the inside construction process but nothing we cant handle. The outside concrete runs I tried sealing with a concrete sealer, but I am finding that it is starting to flake off so not sure how effective it is. The runs are pretty easy to clean with the electric pressure washer. I just fill the soap container up with my solution and give each side a good wash and then go back and rinse it off. No scrubbing needed. Each run has their own litter pan to try and contain all the yuckies. Most of the dogs are efficient in using them, some not so much and others don't use it all so don't get one. I use galvanized rabbit hutch pans so the dogs can't chew on them. I find that when dogs get bored they will destroy anything and everything so I do my best to make everything "chew proof".

The attic we use to store extra dog food, chicken food and pig food, and of course boxes and other stuff I don't want to look at. It's kind of a pain in the butt to get it all up the attic stairs but it's a good way to store it and keep it safe and save space. When you're limited on space every little thing matters. My vacuum is mounted on the wall with a 25" expandable hose that I use multiple times a day. I have a 150' retractable hose that I use to fill all the water dishes and if needed can also clean the runs with. Hoping to get a mini split unit for heating and cooling that will mount high on the wall as to be out of the way and be more efficient. Everything else is on rollers so I can move it around with ease. My main feed bin that holds the dog food rolls, along with the mop bucket and hoping to get a collapsable grooming table installed next to my sink.

I could not have done any of this had I not had my husbands help and support! He is truly amazing and I love him so much!

Now that we have built this one, a few things we would have made different if we could. I would have fully enclosed the runs with an 8ft walkway all around the building and sliding doors at each end to be able to open them up during the day and let air flow. A floor drain system inside and in each kennel. Full plumbing for a bathroom and washer/dryer. More kennels, haha! Like I need anymore animals, lol!

This summer I'll try and take a video with our finishing touches and do more of a virtual tour so others can see how this one works and maybe get some ideas on how they would build their own!

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