Dog Kennel to Coop?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Scott H, Nov 3, 2012.

  1. Scott H

    Scott H Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 29, 2012
    Twin Lakes, ID
    My Coop
    I have this dog kennel that the dog no longer uses because he now has a doggy door and prefers his inside bed.

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    It's inside dimensions are 94" x 45" and the sides are 36" with the highest point in the peak being 51". The attached dog house is 45" x 24" and the roof is 28" sloping down to 23". The floor is metal bars supposedly so dog poop will go through but none of our dogs ever went potty in there!

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    There was a cat condo built into the peaked roof which is accessible to the outside but could be sealed and a door could be installed on the inside but I don't know if it's very usable as chicken space.[​IMG]


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    From the inside. They would need a ladder and probably just use it to nest. It's the piece with the triangle front.

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    There is an opening on each side on top off the walls, between the rafters for ventilation if I seal this thing up but I don't know if it's too much or not enough.

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    You can see the rafters sticking out above the wire and below the roof leaving an opening of about 3" the length of the kennel on both sides.

    So here is what I'm thinking about. Put an Pullet-Shut automatic door in where the door is now. Pull all the wire sides and replace with a finer gauge wire that raccoons can't stick their little arms through and is mink proof. Some sort of removable solid siding for the winter months, with windows? Make one end of the dog house removable for nesting boxes? or build another nesting box on the outside of the dog house and let chickens live in the dog house, too?
    For the floor I've been thinking about building up the sides to about 8" and putting a fine wire mesh down then covering it with 6" of deep litter. Any thoughts on that? Seems like it would dry from both sides then, reducing odor and should insulate well being so deep.

    Our yard is surrounded by a 4' chain link fence and I would like for the birds to have free range. We live on a rural lake but on normal sized lots (50' x 130') Our neighbors are chicken friendly but I would like the birds to stay in the yard where they are more protected. Breed recommendations? Maybe that's another thread! How many chickens would be too many in this size coop? We're thinking on 4 for our lot. Wife says no roos but I may sneak one in.

    Anyway, I can build but I would like some suggestions on this conversion. Any help will be much appreciated. Scott
     
  2. Y N dottes

    Y N dottes Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ur idea seems like it would work good....go for it. the inside coop part looks like it could hold 5 chickens...maybe more. and in the day if they free range the run size isnt an issue.
     
  3. Scott H

    Scott H Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 29, 2012
    Twin Lakes, ID
    My Coop
    Yea, I calculate 29 square feet in the run portion, and almost 8 square in the dog house. what about ventilation? Should I seal under the eves and vent higher?
     
  4. Y N dottes

    Y N dottes Chillin' With My Peeps

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    8 sq feet u say? thats about the same size as mine. I have 5 chickens right now, and i know i can fit another 3 in mine easy, so im sure yours will fit around that too. ventilation is important as it could possibly lead to respitory illnes to chickens, but as long as it doesnt get really stuffy or damp, there shouldnt be a problem. If u use some kind of bedding that will dry out their poop twill also help. I have sand at the bottom of mine......i think it works great. Others have pine shavings and such.
     
  5. Scott H

    Scott H Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 29, 2012
    Twin Lakes, ID
    My Coop
    Here's what I done to the exterior so far.

    I removed the rear wire grate and substituted a piece of 3/4 inch plywood. Not shown in pics. Thought it would make them feel more secure to have a wall behind them. Covered two of the front panels with hardware wire and replaced one with 3/4 inch plywood with a hole pre-cut for a Pullet-Shut auto door. Obligatory chicken ramp which was proclaimed "cute" by DW. Panels are in a "slot" so they just lift up and out for total access cleaning.

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    End panel was replaced with a door for more access to the girls, whoever they may end up to be.

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    Everything will be trimmed out and stained in the spring.

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    You can see the plywood "kick panel" behind the wire mesh to hold the litter in. I will try the deep litter method in the winter with the wire mesh bottom. Should dry from both sides that way. I can always put a solid floor if this doesn't work out.
    The wire panels will be replaced in the extreme cold months with plywood panels to block the wind. We only get maybe two months where the temps might dip below zero.

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    I'm trying to think of a way to give them access to the area under the kennel but have yet to come up with a plan. Be a great place to feed them and a dusting area.

    Interior photos to follow. Would appreciate comments or recommendations.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2013
  6. Scott H

    Scott H Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,391
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    Oct 29, 2012
    Twin Lakes, ID
    My Coop
    O.K., here's what has been done to the inside so far.

    I put 1/4 inch hardware cloth over the steel rods to hold in the bedding and keep out the small predators.

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    One of my biggest concerns was the openings under the eves as they would make the perching chickens drafty so the easiest thing to do was screw some 1/4 plywood to the rafters so the air would come in over their head.

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    You can also see the vents I cut into each end of the chicken kennel. Hope it's enough ventilation for 3 or 4 girls.

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    The old dog house in the back I have decided will be the nesting area and I will build a nesting box/drawer that will pull out from the end for egg access. Hope the chickens will agree with this setup.
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    This area is about 30 square feet and the dog house is 8 square feet. I hope 3 hens will be comfortable in this setup. Would be really nice if I can figure out a way to let them access the area under the coop when the door is closed.
     
  7. Scott H

    Scott H Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,391
    137
    178
    Oct 29, 2012
    Twin Lakes, ID
    My Coop
    Here's what the kennel conversion looks like now.
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    Pullet-Shut automatic door installed.
    The two window panels that open for cleaning, are covered with 1/4 inch hardware cloth. Right now they are also covered with a very nice 19 mil clear vinyl til it warms up a bit more.

    Inside we put down cheap linoleum on the floor and up one wall. The clear vinyl is actually tougher than the linoleum!
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    As you can see we have residents. A shipment from ChickenHill arrived today! They seem to be happy.

    Need to get them a dusting pan and figure out the nesting boxes.
     
  8. Toshi

    Toshi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Love it!
     
  9. OCpeep

    OCpeep Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Great job! Looks like the flock is happy! [​IMG]
     
  10. TattooedKeeper3

    TattooedKeeper3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That is really cool. I like seeing other peoples coops. You never know what new things you can learn from what others do.
     

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