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Many pet owners have concerns about whether it is ok or even appropriate to keep their dogs outside.  For some pet owners, it is a question of leaving their dog outside for a couple hours while they run errands. Other pet owners need a solution where their dog is not in the house at all.  This question can be a bit anxiety inducing, so let’s have a closer look at it!


Yes, you can! As long as you take appropriate precautions for the safety of your dog, provide proper temperature control, and have facilities that are clean, there is no reason why you cannot safely keep your dog outside.  It is, however, critical that you pay attention to these three areas.

If you are currently searching for a way to allow your dog to live outside full or part-time, you are likely finding many many options that are simply not adequate and will fail to cover the three basic needs as outlined above. It is not wise to choose a solution that is simply “good enough”, but rather find a solution that will allow your dog to THRIVE.  

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At Lone Star Structures, we feel that the large outdoor dog kennels that we hand-build is the IDEAL solution because it will pass the three-fold test of providing more than adequate safety for your dog, temperature control, and cleanliness.  

Let’s be clear on one thing though.  We are talking about basic needs for your dog here… The perfect outdoor dog kennel will not provide EVERY need for your dog.  For example, your dog will also need adequate food, water, socialization etc…  For a full and comprehensive list of everything that a dog needs, check out this link from the American Kennel Club.

With that in mind, here are the three basic reasons a hand-built high quality outdoor dog kennel with a floor, roof, and a run will be a phenomenal outdoor option for your dog.


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Your dog needs space to move around, but you want your dog to be able to move around safely. If you have a fenced in backyard it might be tempting to simply let the dog run free, however, there is a real possibility for a dog to find a way of escaping the backyard.  When the dog is at home and the family is at work or school, wouldn’t it be great to have the peace of mind that your pet is safe at home AND enjoying the great outdoors?

It’s also worth mentioning  that predators like Coyotes are a real and potential problem in some parts of the country for smaller dogs in particular.  So having a secure kennel in those situations is essential!

Another critical safety concern for your dog staying outside, is the chance of bad weather. This is why an outdoor dog kennel with a high quality roof and interior area is essential. There are a lot of cheap outdoor dog kennel options where the roof consists of a simple tarp. While that might work for a little while, tarps can tear easily in a major wind event, and will be totally useless in a driving rain.  Having a solid roof AND an interior partition built into the dog kennel itself is an excellent way to ensure that your dog will always be safe no matter what the weather.

If your lifestyle and home needs demand that your dog stays outside the house when you are gone… there is really no substitute for the peace of mind that comes with a highly secure enclosed dog kennel that is safe from elements and predators.


Every breed of dog will have a bit of a different requirement for keeping warm in the winter time. Siberian huskies for example, have long been known for thriving in sub zero temperatures.  But most of us do not have Husky.  Some breeds like Boston Terrier should have special accommodations under 45 degrees Fahrenheit. It is essential that you take the time to understand the needs of your particular dog in regard to cold weather. Pregnant dogs will have additional concerns in the winter.

In the summertime, excessive heat may present the opposite challenge to your beloved dog. Heat stroke in dogs is a real concern for some breeds in particular, like bulldogs.  Providing adequate shade and cooling (and water of course) is essential for your dogs in the summer.

Once you know and understand the particular needs of your particular breed of dog, factored in with your local climate, you can determine what kind of temperature control may be necessary for your dog. At Lone Star Structures, our dog kennels are  built to the same basic specs of a residential house. If your breed of dog is resistant to cold weather, and you live in a warm part of the country, then you may get by with simply leaving the unfinished part of the kennel the way it is. For colder weather, outdoor dog kennels should be insulated in order to winterize your kennel.

If your dog and climate don’t fit this criteria, dog kennels like ours are quite simple to insulate. This could be a fun DIY project for you and your family, but if you do choose to purchase an outdoor dog kennel from us, we can finish it for you however you need it!

Here is a photo of the standard “unfinished” interior look of our outdoor dog kennels.

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Here is how we insulated and finished an outdoor dog kennel for one customer who needed to keep his dog cool in the heat.

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Insulating the walls like this allow you to efficiently run a space heater and/or small air conditioner, and will work for either or both objectives of heating and cooling the kennel.



Cleanliness and sanitation is important for your dogs health and nobody wants to see a muddy dog.

This is why having an outdoor dog kennel with a floor just makes so much sense. One of the pitfalls of any dog kept outside whether in a traditional kennel, or roaming free in the backyard is its propensity to follow the same paths and create dirt patches all over the yard.  All it takes is one simple rain and you’ve mud hole on your hands as well as a beloved, but muddy Fido. 

A quality clean dog kennel is not only good for the health of your dog, it’s also good for you and your family.  After you and the family get home for the day you can be assured that your dog will be clean enough to spend the evening curled up with you on the couch… you can’t say that for most dogs who are living outside. 

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In the event that your dog is not house trained yet, an outdoor dog kennel with a good floor will give you the perfect space to work on house training him/her, it is also super easy to clean for the occasional mess.

While there are other potentially creative workarounds to effectively keeping your dog outside, a high quality all-in-one dog kennel with a roof and floor that can easily keep your dog safe, comfortable, and clean is going to be a triple win.

Check out the following gallery for different options that we have hand-built here at Lone Star Structures.  They can be customized in various colors and styles. You will end up with a perfect high-end home for your dog. 

Part of keeping your dog kennel clean includes regular cleaning. Over time, dogs make their kennel dirty, and it will need a good wash. Having the right dog kennel cleaning supplies is crucial to making sure that your dog will have the clean home that you want to give. Overall, you want your dog to enjoy living in a comfortable, clean home!

Honest. Family Owned.

Your Source for Beautiful, High Quality Storage Sheds in Central Texas

Lone Star Structures is family owned and we started building top-notch storage sheds more than 25 years ago! Old-fashioned values of honesty, integrity, and good work ethic are a part of our tradition and our goal is to honor Christ as we interact with our neighbors and community. Our hard-working family and employees are ready to help your dream backyard become a reality. We stand by ready to help you!

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