If a man’s home is his castle, and man’s best friend is a canine, what about digs for the dog?
Having a garden dog kennel in your back yard can be a godsend when it comes to housing your pooch outdoors in inclement weather and there are many reasons why you’d need to do so.
Perhaps your dog isn’t house-trained and can’t be kept indoors all the time. Maybe you have guests coming over who have an allergy or an aversion to dogs. Or it could be that your pet doesn’t respect the sanctity of the lovely rockery or vegetable patch you’ve just planted and you need to keep them from destroying your work of art.
Of course, dog kennels aren’t just suitable for dogs, regardless of their name. Cats, chickens, rabbits, tortoises – you name it, any pet which is allowed to roam free in your back garden could benefit from a place to shelter when the weather turns ugly… which in the UK, is perhaps more often than we might like!
When it comes to picking out a backyard palace for your pets, there are a few things you’ll want to consider. First and foremost, your decision will hinge upon the type of animal you wish to house in the kennel; this will impact on the dimensions of the structure that you need and any additional features that may be required. You’ll also want to consider the materials from which it is created and how durable they ae likely to be, the ease of construction and maintenance and its aesthetic appearance. Finally, the price tag attached to the kennel is always going to be a factor, as it is with any home improvement purchase.
The dog kennel market is a growing one at the moment, with a plethora of products available to meet your needs. Indeed, the choice is so plentiful that it can seem overwhelming knowing which one to pick – which is why we’ve done the legwork for you.
Last update on 2021-04-22 / All Pricing & Imagery from Amazon Product Advertising API
Below are our six favourite dog kennels available in the UK, each with its own advantages and drawbacks. Have a look over the list and make an informed decision about where best to house your furred or feathered friends outdoors.
Extra-large dog kennel provides robust shelter from elements and is easy to maintain.
This extra-large dog kennel from Easipet is ideal for bigger breeds, with plenty of room for dogs like Labradors and huskies to stand up and turn around inside. With a doorway measuring 62.5cm in height (and an interior height of almost a metre), it should be sufficient to house your canine colossus.
The kennel is constructed from durable plastic, meaning it will hold up well against the elements and should last the test of time. It has a raised floor for better insulation and although the flat-pack panels may feel a little flimsy on arrival, they’re solid enough once assembled.
The assembly job itself can pose a problem, especially if you plan to tackle it alone. The instructions are easy to follow, but the fiddly nature of its construction makes it a challenging task without an extra pair of hands. That being said, it’s incredibly easy to clean once assembled due to the wipeable plastic surfaces and requires next to no maintenance going forwards.
The design of the kennel is simple and unassuming, as is the blue, grey and black colour scheme. This makes it an unintrusive but highly practical addition to your back garden that your pets are sure to make good use of.
- Extra-large size makes it ideal for bigger breeds
- Easy to clean and no maintenance required once assembled
- DIY construction can be difficult if being tackled alone
No screws needed for incredibly easy to assemble waterproof kennel.
Does the thought of DIY furniture give you nightmares? While this dog kennel does come flat-packed and in need of assembly, the simplistic nature of the job involved might surprise you. The ingenious design dispenses with screws altogether; instead, the six plastic panels simply click together to allow for easy assembly within minutes, even when tackling the job on your own.
Don’t think that that straightforward construction process comes at the expense of structural integrity, however. If snapped together correctly, the panels form a watertight seal against wind, rain, snow or anything else the British winter might throw at them. It should be noted that there is no lip at the bottom of the door to prevent water ingress, so it’s advisable to raise the kennel off ground level using bricks or other supports, but that’s an easily achievable workaround.
As for its dimensions, the kennel has a maximum height clearance of 82cm inside (with a door height of 57cm), making it suitable for most dog breeds. It should be noted that the lightweight nature of the panels themselves mean it is a good idea to weigh the structure down with other materials so as to avoid the wind uprooting your pet’s outdoor home, but again, there’s a simple solution to the issue.
The kennel’s plastic construction does make it easy to wipe down when cleaning, while its chocolate and mocha colour scheme offers a retro feel to its appearance. It’s also one of the more affordable products on the market for a kennel of its size.
- Clever design means construction can be completed within minutes (and with no screws!)
- Large enough to house most breeds
- Affordable for a product of its kind
- Lightweight materials make it less sturdy in strong winds
- No lip at door allows puddling if kennel is not raised
Insulated kennel provides extra warmth for pets during colder months.
Cost: Price not available
Does your animal suffer during colder temperatures? If so, this insulated wooden kennel from Pets Imperial might be the solution for you.
The kennel is made from a mixture of wood, Styrofoam and plywood panelling, which makes its walls 150% thicker than most alternatives on the market. That kind of insulation can be all-important for keeping your pets warm and dry during colder months and means it is an ideal option for those who are looking for somewhere where their animal can spend extended periods of time, even when the weather isn’t playing ball.
It is raised on four wooden legs with a ground clearance of 5cm, which not only prevents water from entering through the door and puddling on the floor of the kennel, but also allows for the circulation of air beneath. The height of those legs is also adjustable.
Construction of the kennel is straightforward enough and can be achieved using a crosshead screwdriver with the minimum of fuss. With an internal height of 66cm, it’s not the largest product on the market, but should suffice for most medium-sized dogs. It also offers a removable roof and base for ease of access, which makes cleaning it a doddle.
- Styrofoam insulation offers added warmth during colder months
- Ground clearance of 5cm keeps floor dry
- Removable roof and base are conducive to making maintenance a piece of cake
- Not the largest kennel on the market
All-weather kennel comes with its own internal ventilation and drainage systems!
Quite aside from its delightful name, Dogvilla is equipped with everything your pet might need to keep it warm and dry during the cold and wet weather of winter. It’s constructed from highly durable thermoplastic resin, which makes it shockproof and UV-resistant, while it has also been designed to stand up against the gnawing teeth and scratching paws of dogs and cats.
Better still, the unit comes with its own internal ventilation and drainage systems. The plastic grill at the top of the kennel allows for circulation of air, preventing dampness, while the bottom of the structure contains special slots which channel water away from the kennel and prevent it from collecting. Meanwhile, the designers have even made one of the walls of the kennel collapsible into a raised platform upon which pets can perch, making it equally as suitable in summer as it is in winter.
Construction is easy to follow and can be achieved in minutes, while the detachable roof makes cleaning it simple and straightforward. The whole structure is not exceptionally heavy, meaning you may wish to weigh it down with ballasts in especially strong winds. Those lightweight materials mean it also could be warmer inside, but separately sold accessories such as insulation panels, cushions and a chew-proof plastic door soon solve that problem.
The standard size of the kennel could disappoint in that it’s perhaps smaller than might be assumed from the pictures, but as long as you check the dimensions, you’ll get by without any unwanted surprises. What’s more, the Large and X-Large options mean there’s an alternative to accommodate even bigger breeds.
- Sophisticated internal ventilation and drainage system
- Side wall collapses into a raised platform for use during warmer months
- Easy to construct, easy to clean
- Lightweight nature of materials means it may require ballasts in strong winds
Multi-level “cat condo” provides plenty of places for felines to rest and play.
Although it might be suitable for puppies or smaller breeds of dog, this multi-level kennel has definitely been designed with cats in mind. The two-storey structure consists of an indoor “lounge”, raised balcony area with its own roof and a stairway connecting the two.
The product claims to be constructed from high-quality fir wood that has been treated with a water-resistant substance to protect it against the elements. In reality, many customers have complained that it doesn’t hold up too well over time, especially with regards to the roof, which is prone to becoming waterlogged and rotting. As such, it might be more suitable for indoor use unless you plan to reinforce the structure with your own modifications.
The complex nature of its design can also pose a challenge when it comes to putting the kennel together, especially since the instructions included with the unit are lacking. The same issue also arises when it comes to cleaning; with lots of nooks and crannies, there are plenty of places for dirt and dust to gather, which makes maintenance a mite trickier than other models.
The size is another slight issue for some buyers. With an overall height of just over 70cm – which is split across two levels – it’s a compact product. That can be viewed as an advantage if you’re looking to place it in a room where space is at a premium, but bear in mind that it’s not the biggest kennel (or cattery) you’ll find.
- Two-storey design provides plenty of places for cats to explore.
- Easy on the eye
- Tricky to construct and even more challenging to clean
- Lightweight materials don’t hold up under prolonged exposure to the elements
- Small size not suitable for larger pets
Handsome doghouse comes with its very own veranda.
Cost: Price not available
Whoever said being in the doghouse was a bad thing? This supremely attractive kennel from WilTec provides your pet with a country ranch all of their own – and even a porch from which to survey their lands.
Constructed from wood, the kennel is surprisingly stress-free to assemble given its impressive appearance upon completion. It comes equipped with heightened feet which prevent the floor from becoming waterlogged or overly cold, while the detachable veranda can be removed and stowed if space is at a premium.
Despite its irresistibly cute façade, however, the doghouse is not without its issues. For starters, it’s marketed as XL – a massive misnomer straight off the bat. While the kennel will provide ample room for smaller dogs or other pets such as rabbits and cats, it’s entirely unsuitable for larger breeds.
What’s more, it’s the most expensive option on this list by a considerable distance. In essence, you’re paying for the handsome design, since the kennel is not as robust nor as equipped with special features as many of its competitors. But if you can see past its prohibitive price point and are looking for an attractive outhouse to accommodate your smaller pets, it’s an ideal option.
- Gorgeous design gives your pet their very own palace
- Easy to assemble
- Very expensive for what it is
- Not suitable for bigger animals, despite being marketed as XL
Jonny is an avid writer with a background in tourism, film and literature, but has a penchant for penning articles on all kinds of topics. He's always considered himself an environmentalist to some degree, but in recent times he has found himself shining a greater spotlight on his daily lifestyle choices and how the tiny changes he can make to his routine can have a cumulatively significant impact on the planet.