Lots of people prefer to crate train their dog, and some pups enjoy their crate even after they are trained, but metal dog crates can be expensive. You can save some bucks if you are a little handy and have some free time by building your own wooden crate.
Decide what size crate you will need. The crate needs to allow space for your dog to stand up, turn around and lay down comfortably. Measure and cut two identical pieces out of the plywood for the top and bottom of your crate.
Cut several pieces of the dowel rod to the height needed to give your pet ample head room when standing. The number of dowels needed will be determined by the size of your pet and the space needed between them. A smaller dog will need a smaller gap between dowels, so he doesn't sneak through.
Take one piece of the plywood (your base) and measure equal spaces around three sides of it. This is where you will drill for the dowel rods. Mark these spaces with a pencil. The fourth side will serve as the door.
Drill into the plywood with your 1 inch spade bit going about halfway through it at each of your marks. Put a little wood glue into each hole and insert your dowel rods. Wipe away excess glue and allow it to dry for the time specified on the label.
Prepare the other piece of plywood in the same way you did the first one. Be sure the measurements are the same before drilling the holes. Drill the holes and dab a little glue into each one. Turn this piece over and place it on top of the existing crate, so the dowels go into the holes. You may need to adjust a couple dowels to get them in. Press down to ensure it is snug. Wipe the excess glue and allow it to dry.
Measure the remaining opening that will be used for the door and cut a piece of plywood to fit it. Screw two hinges equal distance apart into the top edge of this piece using the Phillips head bit on your drill.
Hold the new door piece flush with the top of your crate and screw the other side of the hinges into it. The door should now pull open easily and close the crate completely when you let go of it.
Screw the top part of your latch into the bottom part of the door, then screw the receiver part of the latch into base of the crate, so you can lock your pup inside. Place a dog bed and some toys or treats inside to make him feel right at home.
Courtney McCaffrey graduated from the College of Charleston in 2008 with a B.A. in media studies. She has served as an editor for Blooming Twig Books and the MADA Writing Services publishing company. She is now a writer on various outdoor sports such as snowboarding, skiing, surfing and bodysurfing.