How to Warm a Dog Igloo

by Sandra Ketcham, Demand Media
    Long-haired, larger dogs generally do well in cold weather.

    Long-haired, larger dogs generally do well in cold weather.

    While the idea of an igloo-shaped doghouse might seem bizarre, it's actually ideal for keeping your furry friend warm during winter. Igloos are designed to trap heat while providing plenty of space for your pup to move around. Make your dog even more comfortable by warming his igloo this winter.

    Items you will need

    • Hay
    • Doggy door kit
    • Doghouse heater
    • Heated pads

    Step 1

    Place the igloo in a location that shelters it from wind and protects it from flooding. If your ground tends to freeze during the winter, consider raising the igloo a few inches off the ground by placing it on top of concrete blocks.

    Step 2

    Turn the igloo so that the opening faces whichever direction will encourage warming during the daylight hours. This is usually east or south. If your yard gets windy, face the opening toward a wall, fence or garage to prevent wind from blowing inside the igloo.

    Step 3

    Insulate the igloo with hay or straw. These items provide your dog with a soft place to sleep while helping keep warmth in and cold out. The City of Fort Wayne, Indiana, recommends against using rugs and blankets, as these items can become damp and worsen cold. If your dog wants a blanket, choose a lightweight one, place it on top of the hay and check it frequently for dampness.

    Step 4

    Install a doggy door on your igloo if it does not already have one. Doggy doors allow your pup to move in and out at will, but they help stabilize temperatures inside the igloo by keeping most of the cold out. Doggy door kits are available at most pet and home improvement stores.

    Step 5

    Purchase a doghouse heater from your local pet store, or use heated pads to increase the temperature inside the igloo. This is especially important after dark when temperatures drop.

    Tip

    • Make sure your dog has a heated water bowl if he spends a lot of time outdoors during the winter. Otherwise, his water may freeze.

    About the Author

    Sandra Ketcham has nearly two decades of experience writing and editing for major websites and magazines. Her work appears in numerous web and print publications, including "The Atlanta Journal-Constitution," "The Tampa Bay Times," Visit Florida, "USA Today," AOL's Gadling and "Kraze Magazine."

    Photo Credits

    • John Foxx/Stockbyte/Getty Images