Doghouse Project

 Text by Blair Korchinski


1- 4″x4″x8′ pressure treated post

1- 4’x8’x3/4″ construction grade plywood

2-4’x8’x7/16″ OSB or plywood sheathing

8- 2″x4″ construction studs

2- 4’x8′ extruded polystyrene insulation

1- large pet door

Asphalt shingles




Circular saw

Framing square

Measuring tape

Spirit level


Cordless drill


In this case we’ll build a large doghouse for a large dog. The outside dimensions will be 32″x32″. The walls, roof, and floor will be insulated. The entrance will be a self-sealing pet door.


Step 1. Building the floor.

 Cut two sections of 4×4 post each 32″ long.

 Cut a piece of plywood 32″ wide and 32″ long.

 Place the 4x4s flush with the edge of the plywood and attach the plywood to the 4x4s using nails.

 Measure and cut 2×4 to fit around the outside of the plywood. Nail in place on edge. Place one additional piece of 2×4 16″ from the front of the doghouse.

 Place a double thickness of insulation in the space between the 2x4s, then measure and cut plywood to fit over the top of the 2x4s. Attach the plywood with nails.


 Step 2. Building the side and back walls.

 Measure and cut two 32″ 2x4s for each wall. These will be your top and bottom plates. Mark the plates on 16″ centres.

 Cut three 27-1/2″ 2×4 pieces for studs. Attach the studs to the top and bottom plate.

 Attach each wall to the floor of the doghouse.

 Step 3. Building the front wall.

 Check the dimensions of the rough opening required for the pet door. Instead of 16″ centres with one stud in the centre of the wall, you will require one stud on each side of the pet door.

 Attach the front wall to the floor of the doghouse.


Step 4. Attaching the double top plate.

 Use a spirit level to ensure your walls are plumb. Measure, cut, and attach a second top plate so that it connects the walls together at the top.


Step 5.

 Measure, cut and install ceiling joists running from one sidewall to the other.


Step 6.

 Measure and cut sheathing to fit the exterior of the walls, including the ceiling joists. Attach with nails. Attach sheathing to the bottom of the ceiling joists from inside the doghouse.

 Place insulation between studs, including ceiling joists.

 Measure and cut sheathing to fit interior walls. Attach with nails.


Step 7. The roof


Measure and cut a piece of 2×4 32″ long. This will be your ridge board. Temporarily support it so that it reaches from the centre of the front wall to the centre of the back wall at the desired height.

 Determine the angle to cut your rafters by scribing a 2×4 along the ridge board. Cut the first rafter along the scribed lines, then use it as a pattern for the remaining rafters.

 Install the rafters by nailing them to the ridge board and to the top of the walls.

 Cut and install sheathing on the roof. Install shingles in the usual way.


Step 8.

Install the pet door as per the instructions that come with the unit. Since the installation of pet doors varies with the make and model, it is important that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

If you choose to install trim and siding, do so in the usual way for the materials you are using.

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