A dog run is a brilliant idea – it gives your dog a place of his own outside to run, romp and play for hours. It is a great way to get your dog the extra exercise he needs beyond a daily walk! Besides, the truth is, dogs truly love to go outside!
I’ve not only provided a description of what exactly a dog run is but also gives you a couple of ideas of great products for just this purpose!
What is a Dog Run?
Simply put a dog run is your dog’s own personal space in your yard. It’s a place where he can run freely, romping around and getting out all his energy without you having to worry about him becoming an escape artist!
What Features Should a Good Dog Run Have?
The main thing is it should have is a lot of space to run! Your dog will be thrilled to have room to run, even sprint, to his heart’s desire.
Dogs all have an excess of energy, even after long walks. This can lead to destructive behavior and a having a safe place to run can help prevent this!
Your dog should always have access to fresh water while outside – especially during the warmer summer months. I didn’t list this as the “main thing” because it should be common knowledge, your dog should always have access to fresh drinking water!
In the summer months, it is also preferred that there is at least one shady spot for your dog to go to when he needs to cool down.
If your dog finds a spot he likes to dig and lay down, then consider covering that area with some type of shade as they enjoying lying in the dirt to cool off.
How Big Should It Be?
The size of the dog run will greatly depend on how many dogs you have and how big they are. Obviously, a single Chihuahua will need less space than say a pair of golden retrievers. You should check with your local SPCA to be 100% sure on the minimum size you can have.
To get a general idea here are the dog run requirements in North Carolina:
1 Dog – Under 50LBS: 6X10, Over 50LBS: 8X10
2 Dogs – Under 50LBS: 8X10, Over 50LBS: 8X12
3 Dogs – Under 50LBS: 8X12, Over 50LBS: 10X14
4 Dogs – Under 50LBS: 10X12, Over 50LBS: 12X16
Here are a Few Suggestions…
Now that you have a better idea of what a dog run is and what your dog run needs you can look into setting it up. There are several different approaches you can take and these three products all take a slightly different take on a dog run.
The Trolley Exerciser is a thick, rust-resistant cable that you can stretch as far as 100FT across your yard. Many people hook it up to trees, though some have used fences and even a post on their home or a combination of these.
It has an attached drop-down lead that is attached and allows the dog to run back and forth around the yard as far as the lead allows. This is great if you do not have a fenced in yard and you don’t want to put up a bulky pen area.
If you want to allow your dog the time to play and relax outside like he wants, but cannot risk that he will get away, then this is a great and simple solution. It is available in 50FT, 75FT, and 100FT lengths to fit all situations.
This is recommended for dogs over 50LBS as the cable is somewhat heavy considering it is so thick. It can be used in smaller breeds and is great for hounds since they are easily distracted by scents and wander into traffic.
The downside is that this is definitely not an enclosed area. This means if another dog is off leash and can wander into your yard he could potentially start trouble with your pup.
You should be able to view your dog easily from inside to help prevent such a situation from getting out of hand.
The Trolley Exerciser is priced reasonably at $29.95. This is actually the most inexpensive solution to letting your dog have some time to run around outdoors.
Lucky Dog Extra-Large Weatherguard Kennel Roof System (10FTx10FT)
This isn’t exactly going to help keep your dogs in a certain area – but it will protect them from the elements of nature. This Weathergard Roof System is basically a weatherproof roof that you can put over almost any 10X10 kennel.
They do not state in the description that it may not fit right on all models of kennel – though many of people have remedied this by buying different clamps to hold it down. This roof is strong and can keep out the majority of rain and snow.
Some will evidently leak through the small grommet holes that are used to secure the roof to the kennel. It is an excellent product and many have praised its use spanning over several years. Considering it is priced at $179.86, it’s great to hear it lasts so long!
Since many customers had trouble getting this supposed 10×10 Weathergard on a standard 10×10 kennel, a lot of the costumers who have used this product have not been very satisfied with it. However, almost all of these people did manage to stretch the material enough to fit it over kennels of different brands.
PetSafe Box Kennel for Pets (10X10X6)
This is the only actual kennel in this list, though it is an exceptionally great deal for the price. The kennel is easy to set up with only the use of some standard hand tools. It can be done by one person but it is recommended that you have at least two people setting it up.
The kennel is a 10FT by 10FT square and it is 6FT high. This gives even larger dogs plenty of room to run around a little in a safe environment. It is made of a rust-resistant chain link material, which means it will last for ages even in bad weather.
While this kennel does not come with a canopy one can be purchased separately – like the Weatherguard mentioned above – making a complete, all-weather place to play. In most reviews buying the canopy with the kennel is a great option. (Especially in warmer climates!)
However, the kennel itself may not stand up to strong winds since it is not anchored to the ground in any way. If you put the canopy on and it’s a particularly windy day (say 15-20MPH winds) there is a risk the whole kennel will catch air.
On days like that, you may want to keep your dog inside, so there is no risk they escape if this were to happen. Overall, since some people seemed to have trouble with the setup, costumes are not as happy with this product.
For $267.59 this is an excellent option for a kennel. The set-up is meant to be simple and quick and the best feature is probably the locking mechanism that is “puppy proof”. There is also a hole for a padlock in case you have an escape artist on your hands!
Personally, I would choose the PetSafe Box Kennel if I were looking for a quick and simple fix. I think it’s especially cool since it can be moved easily from one place to another. I could have it set up and home and pack it up when my family has a cook-out at my parents.
If you’re looking for a long-term solution the PetSafe Box Kennel would also be a great option – however, if it were meant to be a long-term solution I would definitely consider getting the canopy to go with it.
No matter which route you choose to go with your dog run set-up, remember that in the end, it’s about giving your dog a place to run around and enjoy his time outside.