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  Topic Review (Newest First)
11-18-2012 05:43 PM
Zisso Something else I found is the plywood holds the smell of urine and it was, for me, impossible to keep clean/odorless. I tried horse stall mats and hated them right away. I can't stand the smell of rubber and it was hot for the dogs. A roof is a must.
11-18-2012 01:50 PM
Rerun We have textured but they potty 99% of the time in the potty area, so it hasn't been much of an issue.

Also, when people are talking about cedar, you may want to verify whether they are referencing cedar mulch or cedar shavings (the small critter stuff, which can be bought in huge bags at places like TSC and other feed stores). The shavings are going to blow away easily and stick to fur. The mulch won't.
11-18-2012 01:06 PM
Originally Posted by bocron View Post
Concrete in a big expanse is slippery when wet and dogs will injure themselves (not a problem in the small area), if you rough up the surface to make it slip resistant then it is impossible to clean.
Yes, I forgot to mention that wet concrete is slippery... so after cleaning, make sure it is dry before you put your dogs back in. I do not like the textured concrete either, it is very difficult to clean unless you have a power washer.
11-18-2012 12:24 PM
Blanketback Wow Freestep, that sounds sweet! I know if I ever invest in a kennel, it will be sloped and concrete. I've seen the results of just putting up barricades and calling it a day. P!U! The urine smell is constant, the feces mix with the mud...just gross.
11-18-2012 12:20 PM
bocron We have built many kennels over the years and have tried too many ground materials to remember. When all is said and done, pea gravel or what they call 8's and 9's (which is not rounded pea gravel, but just small unfinished grey gravel) is the easiest. Concrete in a big expanse is slippery when wet and dogs will injure themselves (not a problem in the small area), if you rough up the surface to make it slip resistant then it is impossible to clean. Wood decking is ok but hard to clean and does get slippery and even moldy in rainy seasons. Composite decking is super sturdy but hard to clean and gets VERY hot in the sun. Wood chips are what we use in our park on the walking trails and the hangout areas by the creek. We get truckloads delivered on a regular basis. I wouldn't use them in the runs though since dogs get bored in the runs and will eat the wood chunks. If money were no object I'd do the rubber block floor material like you see in fancy horse barns. You'd just have to make sure the dogs can't get to the edges.
Some people use sand but we found our dogs like to dig in it, and again it gets pretty hot.
11-18-2012 12:12 PM
Freestep Grass will not last very long and will very soon become dust, and then mud. Unless you have a very large kennel enclosure, I cannot recommend grass.

Honestly, the best thing is concrete. It is easy to clean, stays relatively dry, and dogs cannot dig out. It is the safest, most secure, most hygenic, and ultimately the most comfortable for dogs. It stays cool in the summer if covered, and in the winter you can put down some washable bedding or rubber mats if you like (and if the dogs won't chew them up).

I do recommend a roof over the kennel. This keeps the kennel shaded in summer, dry during rain, and provides extra security so that dogs cannot climb or jump out the top.

Personally, I prefer welded wire to chain link, as dogs can injure their feet and teeth if they are all over chainlink. Welded wire is smoother and toes cannot get pinched. It is stiffer and harder to chew.

A good kennel system is a large investment, but you will never be sorry you did it! If you really want to get fancy, you can put in a drain system; slope the concrete and create a well at the end of the slab, outside the kennel, so that all water, waste and debris is easy to flush out. If you want to get even fancier, you could pipe the end of the concrete well into the sewer or septic tank. One kennel I used to work at had a flushing system, so that after the kennels were sprayed down, and waste and water went into the concrete well at the end, you could pull a cord and water would flush through the well and into the sewer/septic. I would love to have a system like that.
11-18-2012 11:44 AM
Blanketback I was looking for something to replace the grass on my lawn where we've killed it, and the rubber mulch was suggested. It seemed like a nice choice, but when I dug a little deeper, I changed my mind.
EHHI ::"Rubber Mulch" A Danger for Gardens and perhaps even People
11-18-2012 11:27 AM
huntergreen x11--- there is always the trial and error method to fall back on.
11-18-2012 10:25 AM
Zisso I have used wood shavings and found they are a mess due to sticking to my dogs long coats and it gets into the house on their coats. I have also used straw before with the same results. Now, my kennel has pea gravel in one half and natural ground-grass and dirt in the other half. No more messes. Easy to clean. The pea gravel half is covered, grassy area is not. My dogs seem to like it a lot. I will be adding more pea gravel as I don't think it was deep enough, but overall I am happy with it.

11-18-2012 08:39 AM
gagsd I like this set up. Decking (and living area) in the front. The dogs will be jumping and dancing at the gate. So why put the "clean" area and houses/bed/whatever in the back of the run?
This set-up I believe uses shavings in the rear of the runs.

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