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Raised Dog Kennel Coop

By Scott H, Feb 16, 2014 | Updated: Feb 16, 2014 | | |
  1. Scott H
    This is a raised gun dog kennel that I built for my yellow lab almost 30 years ago. She passed on after 16 great years and a standard poodle took it over for a few years until he got a doggy door and decided his bed in the house was more comfortable. It is constructed of redwood and is rock solid but it was just sitting there until my wife said, half joking, "That would make a good chicken coop." Got me thinking....

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    Kennel is 4'x8' in size not counting the rear dog house....Hmmmmm.

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    I did a lot of research on this site and realized that the metal panels, although strong, would allow little raccoon hands to reach through and grab our future chickens with horrific results. I also saw that one side should be solid to prevent drafts. The floor needed to be solid and safe also. Here's what the inside looked like......

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    The triangular shaped thing was a cat "condo" added when two strays adopted us. It was accessible from the outside but they moved in the house eventually too...
    It needed to be removed as that's where the roost was going to be.

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    So I replaced the whole back side with 3/4 inch treated plywood, built doors with 3/4 inch plywood and 1/2 inch hardware cloth. The floor was covered with 1/2 inch hardware cloth and then some cheap linoleum which also runs up the back wall.

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    I added a Pullet-Shut automatic pop door and we stained everything with left over house stain and it came out looking like this....

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    We leave this end window open year round and put clear vinyl over the side windows in the winter. This creates an "open air" coop with no drafts on the roost area which is 8 feet back from the open window. In the warmer months it is all open. It is also well vented up high so even in sub zero temperatures there is no frost on the ceiling or walls of the coop but more importantly, no frost bitten wattles or combs!
    Inside has changed over the last year...We realized that water and food does not need to be offered in the coop because as soon as that door opens in the morning they are out all day in the yard.....Oprah bolting in the AM (before we got around to staining the coop obviously......)

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    Food and water is offered under the coop and it's also a favorite dust bathing area in inclement weather.

    Inside a "poop hammock" was added under the roost. It's filled with Sweet PDZ granules and is a huge time saver. I clean it like a kitty litter box a couple of times a week and don't have to change the pine shavings in the coop for a year at a time.

    The new plywood seen on the ceiling was added because of a 2 inch gap where the roof meets the walls the length of the coop. The plywood added puts the air exchange above their heads while they are roosting. Didn't know if that was going to work but it does!

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    This back wall behind the roost and hammock is now fully covered with old feed bags to seal up the cracks and add a little color to the interior.
    The hammock was constructed by ripping 1x2s on the table saw, putting the ends of a tarp between the halves and screwing them back together. Then I hung it with chain.

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    I added store bought nesting boxes. The girls didn't like the place I wanted them to lay. They took to these immediately....
    One would have been enough for three hens but we had a stubborn broody and two Wyandottes in one of those boxes was too much!

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    So this is what it now looks like nestled under the bridge to our front door....

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    And here are the girls who reside in it.....

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    Oprah....

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    Tina.....the broody.

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    And Juanita...

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    Thanks for looking!

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Comments

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  1. mumofsix
    Love it trying to come up with something old-fashion ...but modern so I don't spent all day cleaning ..love the hammock ! Super Thanks
  2. chickwhispers
    Love it! Especially the bridge! Cool idea!
  3. Jewelwing
    I loved your coop the first time I saw it and I love it still!! And from what I can tell, love your property too! And the birds are very cute. Well done!
  4. Scott H
    I did a write up on my version of the poop hammock HERE.

    Leahs Mom, that reminded me of when those tulips were still buds and my wife was anxiously waiting for them to open.....Tina was eyeballing one and then snipped the head off like she had scissors. Then she looked at another one and my wife bolted out of her chair....... ;-D
  5. Shan30
    Great work! Love it!
  6. chicken-herder
    Really lovely and in such a great sheltered position!
  7. Turkeytruff
    wonderful! what a great job! I want to know about the poop hammock too :)
  8. lazy gardener
    Impressive. So, do the poops roll down the slope of the hammock without it getting too nasty? How much clearance between the hammock and the roosts? Beautiful landscaping.
  9. Bogtown Chick
    I really like this coop! I think I like the landscaping around it equally as much. What a fun place for those chickens to adventure around. Well done on that conversion. The inside of the coop is very homey looking too. Love it!
  10. Leahs Mom
    This is so wonderful. Pretty to look at (I'll bet your wife loves it) and a great re-do on that old dog pen.

    But...all that green and tulips are making me wish it was spring!
    Beautiful :D

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