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What size (square footage) kennel/dog run would be best for keeping two adult GSDs for 9-12 hours at a time?

My husband and I are looking into adopting one or two GSDs. We are gone every weekday from 8-5 and sometimes do errands on the way home from work. To make it easier on the dogs' bladders, I'm looking into a kennel/dog run to keep them in while we are gone. This would NOT be their exercise yard. We would take them for walks and play with them when we are home and they would spend the rest of the time in the house with us. We have a fenced backyard but the chainlink fence is only 4 ft. tall and no barrier to a GSD. The kennel is a more affordable alternative to re-fencing the entire backyard. At least I hope it would be. Depends on how large a kennel needs to be to give two dogs enough room to be able to run a little. By the way, we have 3 large shade trees in the backyard so they would not be sitting in the hot sun for hours. We both had GSDs as family pets when children but this kind of thing was not an issue back in the dark ages.


ESL
 

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You don't want to leave your dogs in the yard when you aren't home. Especially rescues who usually have a bad habit or two when you get them!

If they're outside, they can bark (annoy the neighbors), dig (escape) or bad things could happen to them becuase someone sees them and either poisons them, lets them loose whatever it's just not a good idea.

It's also not a good idea to leave 2 dogs together in the same kennel, especially when you aren't home. Much better to have them crated in the house or what I do, one loose to do as she pleases (dont' you lay on my couch Morgan!) and the younger male in the kitchen separated from her so they don't run around like nuts and break things.
 

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I agree with Jenn!
 

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If you build a kennel, build two that run next to each other, possibly open one into the other so that you can leave them together or separate them if necessary.

My first two were 14 x 25 foot. Nice size. Had to halve that though so now they are 14 x 12.5 foot, still ok.

Kenneling outside is good if:
1. neighborhood is safe.
2. yard is enclosed
3. kennel is on concrete and covered over.
4. there is shade for them in the summer.
5. they are unlikely to sound off and annoy everyone.

I find it a lot better than crating them all day. The dogs are not bursting with energy or bursting to go out when I get home. They generally bark and carry on when I come, don't bother when I go, and when I go to bring them in and feed them.

Keep a good repoir with the neighbors and you should be ok. Dogs bark.
 

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I have been looking on PetFinder at a male and female that were found together. The male was adopted out but returned because he missed the female too much. They are now only available for adoption as a pair, not singly. Under the circumstances I don't think I would need to worry about fighting. I am concerned about likely barking, however. Does anyone know if it is possible to "enrich" a kennel enough to keep dogs entertained so they don't get bored?

ESL
 

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Having two dogs, whether adjacent or together will limit bored barking by quite a bit in my opinion.

I think when the barking happens it is mostly with comings and goings. The dogs WILL bark when you get home. So? As long as you go out and get the dogs before they become a nuisance no problem. The dogs will also bark when your neighbors come within their view, like when they decide to play a volley ball game in their back yard.

A privacy fence will cut down a lot of barking like that, but if people are making plenty of noise that is unusual, well, the dogs will probably bark. They are, afterall guard dogs.

There are dogs that bark becuase they are bored and lonely. I do not see that as a problem for you, especially with two. Since mine are on concrete, I have things in my kennels to lie on to get them off of the concrete. I keep a dog house in there for them to have shelter in. And I have a large shelter in their dog house.

I put a tarp along the side to block some of the view if I have some that dislike others or if I just want more protection from the sun. Sun screens on top.

They are really quite quiet except coming and going.

This is how I set mine up. Two types of shelters, one is more open and doesn't do much for rain, but the dogs cannot jump up on them so it is good for the pups. They have their houses inside.

The other type is like a 4x8 box with a roof and three sides. One 8 foot side is open and holds the cot. They are very sheltered and the dogs love to stand and lie on top of them as well. They have a floor -- marine plywood on two by fours -- works very good for me.









 
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If you build a kennel, build two that run next to each other, possibly open one into the other so that you can leave them together or separate them if necessary.

My first two were 14 x 25 foot. Nice size. Had to halve that though so now they are 14 x 12.5 foot, still ok.

Kenneling outside is good if:
1. neighborhood is safe.
2. yard is enclosed
3. kennel is on concrete and covered over.
4. there is shade for them in the summer.
5. they are unlikely to sound off and annoy everyone.

I find it a lot better than crating them all day. The dogs are not bursting with energy or bursting to go out when I get home. They generally bark and carry on when I come, don't bother when I go, and when I go to bring them in and feed them.

Keep a good repoir with the neighbors and you should be ok. Dogs bark.
Hi! An old topic, but I am needing a solution right now. No loose dogs allowed here. When not on leash or long line, I want to provide my GSD a place to run a bit. From your description, it sounds like a 25 foot long run may fill the bill. Six feet high, with sun cover. Any thoughts?
 

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Hi! An old topic, but I am needing a solution right now. No loose dogs allowed here. When not on leash or long line, I want to provide my GSD a place to run a bit. From your description, it sounds like a 25 foot long run may fill the bill. Six feet high, with sun cover. Any thoughts?
Make sure the bottom can't be dug under. I prefer concrete. I do have some dogs on ground, but most have concrete where the fencing is, so they cannot dig under. Those kennels are more work, because they require wood chips to keep the mud from making the dogs muddy. This year has been a near-drought, so it has been easier. Still, concrete or patio blocks of some sort to prevent digging makes life less crazy.

Fly spray, if they are bad in your area, and swat for the ears if they are bad in your area. And I like to put a cot or a wooden pallet for them so they can rest off the concrete. I put a dog house in there, so they can take shelter if it starts raining. Some like to lie on their dog house. Like Snoopy. (Picture long haired GSD doing a snoopy on his dog house.)

Do not use a tarp to cover the top. And you only need to cover part of it. I use sun screens for kennels -- it allows rain to go through but blocks a percentage of the sun, to provide shade.

Big bucket of water in there. Clip the handle to the fencing so they cannot spill it. If at all possible, they have for horses a bucket holder -- this totally prevents them from spilling their buckets.
 
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We've contemplated adding an outside kennel for those times we may be gone all day. It would be nice to have a safe secure place for them, and not necessarily worry about getting home by a certain time. I think as long as good thought and preparation goes into a kennel, they can be a great asset.
 
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