Homemade Insulation for Doghouses

Cedar mulch is an option for ground insulation, but can cause allergies.
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Standard doghouses provide shelter from the wind and rain, but do not keep warmth in. During the extremely cold winter months, your pooch would appreciate a little insulation to keep him warm. With just a few supplies and a few easy steps, you can create a warm little den for your pooch to cuddle up in when it gets cold.

Step 1

Measure the outside walls of your current doghouse. Take the measurement of the first wall and, using a utility knife, cut a piece of the rigid foam to the same measurement. Repeat with each wall. Using a staple gun, attach the foam pieces to the outside walls of the doghouse. Use a utility knife to remove the foam covering the dog door. Set the cut-out piece of foam aside.

Step 2

Cut the plywood into four pieces, matching the previous measurements. With the piece for the door wall, place the foam cutout on top and trace the shape onto the plywood with a pencil. Cut out the opening with a saw. Staple the plywood onto the foam and original doghouse walls. Paint if desired.

Step 3

Install a vinyl door flap on your doghouse if the design allows. Follow the instructions for installation that come with the door. If your doghouse will not support door installation, cut a piece of vinyl tablecloth to fit the door opening. Using the staple gun, attach the piece of vinyl to the inside wall above the doorway. While neither door option is airtight, both will help reduce the wind that blows in and creates a chill.

Step 4

Place a wooden pallet in the doghouse to create an elevated floor. This keeps your dog off the cold ground. If the doghouse is too small for a wooden pallet, cover the ground with a thick layer of hay or straw.


  • Some dogs do better in low temperatures than others. If your dog is small or unused to cold temperatures, consider keeping her in your house during the bitterest winter days.


  • Before adding insulation, make sure your doghouse is the correct size for your dog. Too large a house allows your dog’s body heat to escape much faster.

  • Choose a location for your doghouse that is in a sheltered location out of the wind.

Items You Will Need

  • Measuring tape
  • 1½-inch thick rigid foam
  • Utility knife
  • Staple gun
  • ¼-inch-thick plywood
  • Saw
  • Paint and paintbrush (optional)
  • Vinyl flap door and installation kit
  • Vinyl tablecloth (optional)
  • Wood pallet
  • Hay or straw