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BHM's Homesteading & Self-Reliance Forum
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Go Back   BHM Forum > Homesteading > Animals > Pets

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  #1  
Old 03-11-2009, 04:58 PM
Chivalry Chivalry is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Menifee, CA
Posts: 12
Default Dog Pen Size?

The first animal we plan to add to our family is a rottweiller pup to act as a guard against predators. I've already built a doghouse for him, and have been told by two friends that have experience with dogs that we also need a pen for him. We plan to generally allow him the run of the property, but apparently we will need a place where we can occasionally lock him up.

I have an area in mind where we can do this, and I have some posts and wire with which to build a fence, and I'll figure out what to do about a gate, but my question is what size should it be? I wouldn't anticipate that he'd be in there locked up for more than a couple of hours and that would be rarely. I stepped out an area that I would put it in, and it's about 18x24 ft. This would seem to be large enough, but I don't want to build it larger than needed.

Also, should I put the doghouse in the pen or outside of it?

Thanks,
Chuck
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  #2  
Old 03-11-2009, 05:16 PM
harvester harvester is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Montana state Capitol
Posts: 372
Default Re: Dog Pen Size?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chivalry
The first animal we plan to add to our family is a rottweiller pup to act as a guard against predators. I've already built a doghouse for him, and have been told by two friends that have experience with dogs that we also need a pen for him. We plan to generally allow him the run of the property, but apparently we will need a place where we can occasionally lock him up.

I have an area in mind where we can do this, and I have some posts and wire with which to build a fence, and I'll figure out what to do about a gate, but my question is what size should it be? I wouldn't anticipate that he'd be in there locked up for more than a couple of hours and that would be rarely. I stepped out an area that I would put it in, and it's about 18x24 ft. This would seem to be large enough, but I don't want to build it larger than needed.

Also, should I put the doghouse in the pen or outside of it?

Thanks,
Chuck
welcome chivalry.
first off is this the first pet your family has owned?
Also I am hoping you have done your research on this breed before deciding to get one for a watch dog as a labrador would work just as well and is not a "power" breed that should be reserved for experienced dog owners.
second the size of the pen will greatly depend on the outside activites the dog gets with the family. walks fetch etc.
and the house should always go on the outside of the pen, not only does this give him more pen space but it also prevents him from jumping on top of his house to jump over the fence and get out.
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  #3  
Old 03-11-2009, 05:30 PM
Chivalry Chivalry is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Menifee, CA
Posts: 12
Default Re: Dog Pen Size?

This isn't the first family pet. I've had many dogs as a child and the family has one cat. My wife has never had a dog.

Our friends went over with us a number of the options, and we considered a few different breeds. We're not absolutely set on a rottweiller, but we have some experience with them from some neighbor friends and have gotten a good recommendation on the breed from others.

Outside activities will include playing fetch and going for walks and he'll generally have the complete run of the property most of the time.

Thanks,
Chuck
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  #4  
Old 03-11-2009, 05:43 PM
harvester harvester is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Montana state Capitol
Posts: 372
Default Re: Dog Pen Size?

so your just looking for a pen size to keep him secure like when ur not home right?

I have three dogs that work my place. One is my predator killer a 150lb american molosser akita, 1 is the lookout and spotter along with avid mouse destroyer and goat herder, a 60 lb pitbull/border collie and one is the i dont know what to do with myself yet dog but i like to herd horses and sleep with baby things. a 75lb black mout cur.
ok plus one more, 3 lb chug whos job it is to keep the chickens off the porch..lol

All of my dogs are housetrained and have their designated places to be in the house, pacing and wandering are not allowed. they are only alone for a max of 3 hours at any given time. in the winter they are left in the house, in the summer they are left out to patroll and do their duties.
I would say, that for this length of time ours are left alone a 10x10 pen would be fine enough to put our akita in for that length of time.
rotts being smaller bodied dogs than our akita would do fine in that space for that length of time as well. However if you are talking about leaving him in there for over night, or hot parts of the day, rainy days etc where he could be in there most of a day or more, I would increase the size to 15/15 and he should be more than happy.
always plan new pens for future unknowns, im sure there is gonna come a day where he will have to be in there all day, at some point. its inevitable. something will come up. so build new pens according to the worst case scenario. what ifs. and you will always be happy with the pen.
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  #5  
Old 03-11-2009, 05:47 PM
Chivalry Chivalry is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Menifee, CA
Posts: 12
Default Re: Dog Pen Size?

Thanks very much. I'll plan on making it 15x15. I don't think he would ever be in there for more than a few hours tops. The rest of the property is fenced off (although I need to make some repairs), so letting him roam should be fine most of the time. I had noticed that our neighbors, who have three rottweillers and a german shepherd, would put all of them in a back pen when we first visited them and the dogs didn't know us. Now they know us and they don't pen them up when we visit. I'm anticipating similar needs.

Thanks again for your valuable help.

Chuck
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  #6  
Old 03-11-2009, 06:00 PM
harvester harvester is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Montana state Capitol
Posts: 372
Default Re: Dog Pen Size?

Yes i have to do the same with one of mine, and the akita accepts no one after dark but will escort you to the valuables during the day..lol..thank gawd for the pitbull!! hahahha..
this is a socializing thing, make sure he is well socialized and he will be fine and you wont run the risk of him biting someone.
Most dogs , esp power breeds dont have to be trained to know what is obvious to them, what belongs to you is to be protected and to know when to protect and not. Training a power breed to do something mechanically will cause problems unless you know exactly what you are developing this animal into and its capabilities. let the dog learn from watching you, they are smart, and they learn common sence from that.
Mostly a power breed is enough intimidation to stop any human predator. My akita is so huge and has such a booming low bark that he will even stop animal predators that are eyeballing my goats. No dog is curious about him, they run from him. however he loves people, adores them and thinks every visitor is there just to see him. thats from good socialization.
once he has met a person or animal and knows they are welcome he will let them onto the property at any time. therefore i try to not introduce him to people i dont know.
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  #7  
Old 04-04-2009, 02:04 PM
Joe's Avatar
Joe Joe is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2008
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Posts: 109
Default Re: Dog Pen Size?

Its funny, I am planning a dog run too, was 8x12 with the dog house inside.

But thanks to you Harvester, the dog house will be on the outside, altough connected to the run with the dog house entrance accessible from the dog run.

thank you


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