Outdoor dog run/kennel questions - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 10-22-2010, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
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I want to get an outdoor dog run/kennel for my pug puppy. He needs more outdoor time and I can't take him out for any length of time because my fibro is really bad with the colder weather. I would get a good size one (maybe 10' by 10' or 5' by 15') and only put him out for maybe 30 minutes a couple times a day. I am just wondering, for when the snow comes, how long can a small dog stay outside? Is 30 minutes too long in the colder weather? Also, DH says we don't need the dog run/kennel because we have a fenced back yard but I am concerned he will get into trouble out there by himself (get stuck under the deck, eat something he shouldn't, dig through by the gate and get out, etc). Who is right? He doesn't want to spend the money on a kennel but I think it's a good investment for years to come.

Shawna, married to Michael, mommy to Elijah 1/18/01, Olivia 11/9/02, and Eliana 1/22/06
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#2 of 9 Old 10-24-2010, 06:14 PM - Thread Starter
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No input at all from anyone? Really?

Shawna, married to Michael, mommy to Elijah 1/18/01, Olivia 11/9/02, and Eliana 1/22/06
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#3 of 9 Old 10-24-2010, 06:29 PM
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Pugs have the smooshed face so I would watch your pet closely in the cold or hot weather outside. I would also get a sweater for him if it gets really cold where you are. I wouldn't just leave my pets in an outside run, kennel or fenced in backyard and realistically expect them to exercise themselves, it doesn't work that way with most dogs. You are right to think he might get into trouble left unattended outdoors while bored and needing to let off some steam, totally agree with you there.
Sorry about your fibro , I do understand he needs more outdoor time/exercise which is important so I would try to get a dog walker who is familiar with pugs, consider doggie daycare for small dogs, set up playdates, or something similar. Also, consider getting some really good durable toys to help occupy his time. Or playing fun games indoors like hide and seek or teaching new tricks.

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#4 of 9 Old 10-25-2010, 12:08 AM
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I have one dog that gets cold easily and one that doesn't. That said I wouldn't leave either outside for 30 minutes in the snow, probably more than 5 minutes would be too long IMO. If they're not running or at least walking they get cold fairly fast (and neither is a small dog). Esp. their feet get chilly and they start holding up their feet because they're too cold. And unless I'm out there playing with them or they're chasing a squirrel (or otherwise getting in trouble, lol) they don't really run around on their own.
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#5 of 9 Old 10-25-2010, 03:19 AM
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You didn't mention how cold it gets where you live. I know some folks who consider 50 degrees F to be cold. I wouldn't think twice about a dog being outside for 30 minutes in that weather. On the other hand, if it dips below freezing, I wouldn't expect the dog to go out for any longer than it takes to potty, and then I'd bundle them up in a warm coat for a small dog.

I do know folks who have a kennel inside their fenced yard. It works well for them. However, the kennel is mostly to confine the dog when they are not around (it does sleep inside and is inside with the family when they are home). For the most part, the dogs do not play in the kennel. I would not expect your pup to exercise himself or play inside the kennel when you are not with him. An outside kennel could be a good solution if say, you need to be gone for a long period of time and there is noone to let the dog outside. It provides extra security from escapes, the kennel is easier to keep free of potentially dangerous items (say, sticks, or potentially poisonous plants). It should include a dog house for shelter and a water bowl. If you do this, I'd also get a run with a top on it. This will keep out predators like hawks or coyotes. With your medical condition, it could be used as safe potty spot for the puppy at times when he needs a bit more time outside. For instance, the last puppies I was around often pottied twice after eating- once immediately after, and then again 15-20 minutes after that.
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#6 of 9 Old 10-25-2010, 11:17 AM
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An outside kennel is probably safer for a pug than a regular fence. However, from reading your other posts I dont think its going to accomplish what you are thinking. A pug does not need outside time, he needs people and playing time. Sticking a dog in a yard or a kennel is not exercise...they will most likely just sit there.

There are all kinds of games that, considering he is small, can be played indoors if you are unable to go outside with him.

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#7 of 9 Old 10-25-2010, 02:03 PM
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I have three pugs.

Heat is a much bigger issue for pugs than cold. If he doesn't have breathing problems (not all pugs do) I think he would be fine as long as it is above freezing - just check on him while he is out, and if he seems to have labored breathing, or to be shivering and looking miserable, bring him in. You will soon get a sense for how much cold affects him and how much time he likes to spend outside. If it is below freezing, I wouldn't expect him to want to be out much longer than it takes to go potty.

As for kennel versus fenced yard, I think you could go either way - the yard would give him more space and more interesting things, but may present more hazards. But you could probably puppy-proof the yard enough for it to be safe (as long as you are nearby - I wouldn't leave a dog outside when you are not at home). Check for places he could get his head stuck, poisonous plants, things sticking out that could poke him in the eye (pugs are prone to eye injury) and places he might escape.

Personally, I put mine out in our fenced yard, and they really enjoy having so much space. But I have had a couple instances where they have jumped the fence and escaped (after heavy snowfalls had turned our three foot fence into effectively a one foot fence) and an eye injury (probably from a nail that was sticking out of the side of our house that I hadn't realized was there).
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#8 of 9 Old 11-01-2010, 12:04 PM
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Our neighbors have a pug, and while she enjoys beig outside with her people, she has no real interest in going outside by herself, except to go potty (and she doesn't even like to do that in the winter). She follows them around the yard, but rarely runs around outside, even when people are out with her.

Our Corgi is the same way. When he's outside by himself, he lays on the steps and watches the world go by, or chews on sticks. He gets exercise on walks, and by playing with us in the house - chasing balls, playing hide-and-seek, doing tricks (roll over is good for long-backed dogs like him).

Why do you think he needs outside time? Is he getting into trouble in the house?

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#9 of 9 Old 11-01-2010, 12:11 PM
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I have a medium mix breed and a mini pin.Our entire 1 acre lot is fenced.My only issue is that they poo all over.Yea,they do dig and chase squirrels(yay) over the fence.The poo is my big issue.

I would recommend getting some plastic fencing and t posts or even bamboo sticks,and mark off a area for the dog.For a small dog like that the plastic fence would be enough.Sometimes craigs will list kennels for cheap.

My dogs like being out in the nice weather,but rush in during rain/cold.They would rather be inside even on super hot days.Spoiled stinkers that they are.
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