How to make a dog house warm in the winter?

I love winters, and so does my dog. Heat and humidity have never been our cup of tea. Comfy, cozy is our thing.

If it’s too chilly, though, I have to be careful because my dog likes to be outdoors in his lil’ house we made. So we make his doghouse as warm and toasty as possible during winters and whenever it’s super cold. The key is fashioning his outdoor dog hut with indoor protection. 

While most dogs can withstand cold weather, there are some steps you can take to heat a doghouse, so your furbaby is warm all winter.

1. Use insulation.

Most dog houses are made of wood, a poor conductor of heat. A wooden dog hut eventually loses heat, making it too cold. Insulation is the most effective way to keep a dog’s house warm throughout the winter. You can purchase insulation specifically for dog houses.

The best way to insulate an outside doggy house is to use fibreglass and Styrofoam. This will make the house very warm and comfortable for the dog.

Fibreglass and Styrofoam can be incorporated into a dog house to keep a kennel warm. The most popular insulating material, fibreglass, is excellent at trapping heat. But Styrofoam is better at trapping heat within.

That said, the possibility of my dog consuming any insulating material has been one of my concerns. Although well-trained dogs wouldn’t bother consuming these materials, which are poisonous and in no way edible, you must take additional care to ensure that your dog doesn’t swallow any of the insulating material.

2. Place a heater inside the dog house.

Another way to introduce warmth is by keeping a heater inside. This will help regulate the temperature and keep your pup warm and toasty.

Since dog houses are significantly smaller than the ideal human bedroom, tiny electric heaters are ideal. Compared to their gas counterparts, electric heaters are both known to be safer and to be far more efficient. I wouldn’t mind a little hike in my electricity bill for my dog’s comfort.


However, a few things to consider before deploying a heater in your dog’s house. Never leave the house while the heater is on; ensure it’s positioned away from any bedding or flammable goods.

To prevent your dog house from overheating, you must also ensure that the house is well-ventilated. Keep an eye on it and watch out for your dog to prevent the heater from falling over.

3. Place the dog house in a spot with plenty of sunlight.

Natural light is invigorating for both humans and our playful canine companions. The easiest way to keep your dog’s home warm is to place it in an area that receives ample sunshine throughout the day. Darker areas around the house may have a chillier climate.

Ensure the sun is not directly overhead and that your location for the dog house has some mild shade. Given how quickly the kennel warms up in direct sunshine, it’s dangerous to set up your dog’s house in such a spot.

Prolonged exposure to direct sunshine is unsafe for pets, even during the winter. Finding suitable spots is not difficult; make yourself a cup of tea, spend some time on your lawn, and check for locations that stay warm most of the day.

While setting up the dog house under a slight shade is advisable, keeping the dog home away from tree shade is a safer choice. As the sun sets, photosynthesis ceases, increasing the amount of carbon dioxide in the air around the trees.

Despite being a modest effect, it can make breathing more difficult for your pet and contribute to an unpleasant experience.

Read More: What to do when approached by an off-leash dog?

4. Place the dog house in an area that is not vacant.

Only some areas of the residence are created equal, and some are largely empty. Such locations could be better if you consider building a dog house for winter. Empty areas fail to provide your dog with a comfortable atmosphere and offer little protection from the bitter winter air.

However, it’s not the wisest decision to put the dog house in a highly crowded area either. I preferred placing my dog house in the backyard near the storage area because it was a warm, cosy spot close to a spacious patio where my buddy could play or rest during the daytime.

5. Paint the dog house black.

Painting the dog house black is not a preventative measure, but it helps warm up the dog house. Science has shown that black absorbs more solar heat than other colours, increasing ambient temperature.

Although a dog home painted entirely in black is not the most attractive option, it is a great way to keep the dog warm and comfortable during the frigid winters. If you choose not to paint the entire kennel black, you may also try painting just the roof.

Even if you have no prior experience with paintwork, you should give this a try because a dog home is tiny and simple to paint. While doing so, be mindful of your physical safety. Ensure the paint has dried before letting your dog inside since paint contains dangerous chemicals for pets.

6. Get some warm bedding for the house.

The dog house can effectively keep warm by providing the right bedding inside. There are several ways to do it, with blankets and rugs being the most popular.

Dog blankets are economical and effective, and the best bedding still relies on this time-tested technique of harnessing the air’s resistance to the flow of heat.

As an alternative, you may choose a dog bed, but this has the drawback of being quite pricey. Although you must be prepared for the upkeep responsibilities that come with it, a dog bed is far more comfortable if your budget permits.

Cedar chips bedding is yet another excellent way to create the right bedding for your dog house. These are excellent at keeping the dog house warm and are insect-repellent. Although they have a pleasant fragrance, some dogs may experience nasal aggravation due to the small wood particles getting inside their noses.

7. Fix all the cracks.

The safest housing has been built well; it does more than keep the dog warm. I want to highlight how important a well-built kennel is. Pesky cracks not only make your dog’s house look ugly, but they also significantly lower its quality.

The next thing you know, your dog is uncomfortable where it is since a cold winter breeze can easily enter via tiny breaches in the roof. You can renovate your dog house with a little know-how and a few necessary tools. Hire an expert if possible.

By doing this, not only will you have more sense of security about your dog’s safety, but your dog will also benefit from the conveniences of living in a solid house that can shield them from all outside risks.

Read More: Best Indestructible Dog Beds to Buy in UK 2023

8. Keep them elevated.

If you live in a region where snowfall is more than typical, you will face greater challenges than people who live in tropical climates.

Please keep your dog house slightly elevated above the ground to ensure that it does not leak any snow inside on nights when there is heavy snowfall. Also, give your kennel a sloping roof. They work well to keep the excess snow off.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are some good insulating materials for a dog house?

Fibreglass, Styrofoam, and rugs are some of the finest materials for insulating dog housing. Another common method is surrounding and insulating the dog house with water-filled plastic bottles.

2. Should I keep my dog indoors during the winter or outside?

Both have pros and cons, so it’s important to consider what’s best for your pet.

If you have a small or short-haired dog, it may not be able to tolerate the cold weather, as well as a larger or thicker-coated breed. Dogs that are elderly, sick, or have a compromised immune system may also do better indoors.

On the other hand, some dogs prefer being outdoors, even in the winter. If your dog has a lot of energy and loves playing in the snow, it may be happier staying outside.

3. What is the best bedding choice for a dog house during winter?

Straw is the best bedding choice for a dog house during winter. It is a good insulator and will help keep your dog’s house warm. It is also relatively inexpensive and easy to find.

Another option is to use a dog bed. Dog beds are made to be comfortable and warm, and they can be a great option for dogs who spend a lot of time outside. They are usually more expensive than straw, but they will last longer.


  • Jonathan Spaeth

    I'm a professional business person who loves dogs. I'm motivated by a passion for dogs and a deep understanding of pet care and behavior. I have more than 10 years of experience in animal healthcare—my lifelong passion for helping dogs.

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