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Insulating dog barrels in winter?

Does anyone have any tips on keeping dogs warmer in the winter? I use 50 gallon plastic barrels, and have 2x4's front and back to keep it off the ground...I saw a picture where someone had taken a bed liner, and cut circles out to fit the front of the barrels, and made a 3 cut door, so its a swinging flap that keeps in heat but isnt an open hole...any other suggestions?

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Old Post 10-05-2009 03:07 AM
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Plottluvr
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You can use straw bales. Put on on each side and the back also over the top. You can also use some to make a tunnel that will keep the wind, snow etc from blowing in.

Straw is the best insulator in the winter.

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Old Post 10-05-2009 03:23 AM
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mjflores
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Either buy an insulated dog house, such as the ones by K9-kondo or buy one of their swinging doors, mount it to a piece of 3/4" plywood, and mount that onto the front of the barrel. Straw bales are a great idea but I've found that 99% of dogs will just tear them apart...same as plastic doors on their houses. The K9-Kondo doors are metal and wont be chewed.

If dogs would just learn to leave stuff alone...their lives would be sooo much more comfy! lol

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Old Post 10-05-2009 03:29 AM
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Lee Currens Jr.
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i didnt know you could insulate a single wall.i would prob.
use shrink wrap on the outside,or some bubble wrap,
straw on the inside.

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Old Post 10-05-2009 03:32 AM
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larrypoe
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I used to wrap mine in that...........silver insulation stuff........comes in rolls and looks like a big silver blanket....then a black trash bag over that. Of coarse our barrels are outside the kennels and theres no way a dog can get to the outside of them.


We accualy used them for the last time, and are building new boxes with those orange heated pig mats in them.

It always seemed like the dogs prefered those barrels to any other house they had avalible though. I just got tired of having to move them to a different house/kennel to whelp.

Probably should have thought of that BEFORE I got down to 1 female, one I have no intentions of raising a litter out of for several years........

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Old Post 10-05-2009 03:39 AM
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I have 15 extra barrels, I had thought about wrapping insulation around one barrel, cuttin front and back from another, slitting it down the side and wrapping it around the other barrel and insulation....

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Old Post 10-05-2009 03:46 AM
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crazy chasers
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dog houses

almost everyone i know has half a dozen hounds or better. We all use plastic barrells with straw. Frames and plastic houses with straw with a dog door to block out wind. I found that old conveyor belt is the toughest and well secured with lag bolts to house (i havent had a dog ripped that off or up since started doing it). works good and just cut big enough so hound can still get nose in there to open it. Wont freeze or crack either. Just a pointer i found.

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Old Post 10-05-2009 04:00 AM
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mjflores
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I've thought about trying to put those electric pig mats in my houses, but I'm afraid of fire...of them chewing on it. I'll be curious as to how it works out for you Larry.

Remember, The warmer you can keep em, the less feed the'll need during the winter so what ever you do it'll pay for itself rather quickly.

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Old Post 10-05-2009 04:02 AM
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larrypoe
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quote:
Originally posted by mjflores
I've thought about trying to put those electric pig mats in my houses, but I'm afraid of fire...of them chewing on it. I'll be curious as to how it works out for you Larry.

Remember, The warmer you can keep em, the less feed the'll need during the winter so what ever you do it'll pay for itself rather quickly.




Ya its kind of a trial deal. I have them sort of like the barrels used to be though. The boxes are attached to the outside of the kennels, and the coard runs through the side wall, so theres realy not much for them to chew on.

I used them for years at the hog farm and never saw one start a fire even when the little pigs chewed the cords into. So I dont forsee a problem.

The biggest thing is they only heat to about 20 degrees warmer than the air around them. I have used them in the past on newborn litters though and realy liked the results.

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Old Post 10-05-2009 07:23 AM
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danny eller
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I have one of the igloo plastic houses out a 8 foot 16 inch plastic pipe on the door and 10 yards of dirt on the house. dog in under 3 foot of dirt cool in summer and warm in the winter Dan

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Old Post 10-05-2009 12:33 PM
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Doug Robinson
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Plastic barrells

I had a set up once where I made a plywood box that the barrel just fit in and had a hinged roof so I could take the barrel out and clean it. I made the box about 15 inches longer than the barrel and had a side entrance on the extention so as to have a wind break if you know what I mean. The plywood was on treated 2X4's. I only used this setup for winter as a plastic barrel inside a wooden dog box was plenty warm and filled up with straw. You could even tuck straw around the barrel if you wanted more insulation.
I would say that is as warm a setup as you could get and the cost of plywood was less than the K-9 Condo doors and legs.

Hay Larry I just ordered one of those red pig mats for a whelping box. Can you put a carpet over the mat? I know they said not to put straw on it but thought carpet OK?

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Old Post 10-05-2009 12:48 PM
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I kept my old dog in a plastic barrel last year with nothing over the door and a saddle blanket to lay on. It got down to -22 twice and it never phazed him.

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Old Post 10-05-2009 01:20 PM
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patches9452
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warm

dogs have been living in a pile of leaves,straw, or hollow log since adam and eve and i have not ever found a dead one.... seems like keeping them to warm would make it hard on them hunting when they had to hit really cold water and stuff

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Old Post 10-05-2009 01:28 PM
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J.Hall
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I have a plastic barrel with a plywood fram and roof built around it. It gets plenty cold up here in wisconsin and my dog thats in the barrel has never had a problem. I put insulation inbetween the barrel and wood frame. Seems to work great.

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Old Post 10-05-2009 01:29 PM
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mjflores
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Re: warm

quote:
Originally posted by patches9452
dogs have been living in a pile of leaves,straw, or hollow log since adam and eve and i have not ever found a dead one.... seems like keeping them to warm would make it hard on them hunting when they had to hit really cold water and stuff


I disagree with this philosophy. A dog can survive some pretty rough living conditions, but when they're under our care they deserve the best we can give them. Something that turns my stomach is a term thrown around here called "winter kill". Every year people lose dogs and other live stock to the elements up here in the north and there's no reason for it. A warm house with soft bedding, plenty of feed, and unfrozen water will get any dog through the coldest winter...and they deserve at least that much.

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Old Post 10-05-2009 01:52 PM
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patches9452
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Re: Re: warm

quote:
Originally posted by mjflores
I disagree with this philosophy. A dog can survive some pretty rough living conditions, but when they're under our care they deserve the best we can give them. Something that turns my stomach is a term thrown around here called "winter kill". Every year people lose dogs and other live stock to the elements up here in the north and there's no reason for it. A warm house with soft bedding, plenty of feed, and unfrozen water will get any dog through the coldest winter...and they deserve at least that much.
i agree with taking care of your dog and i have dog houses for all mine with bedding but i also think keeping them to warm is just as dangerous and cruel when you hunt them in the winter... was not trying to be not caring just trying to get people to realize you take a dog out of a 50 degree house and put him in freezing water the shock could be worse than having to live with minamal but
adaquate housing

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Old Post 10-05-2009 02:01 PM
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Justin Smith
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Cut your hole up high , fill the barrel up with sand to the hole ... they'll make a hole to nest in that will be as warm as anything you can find ... if you can , bury the barrel about 6" as well and it will make it even better .

If you do that and your entry hole isn't oversized ... you'd be surprised how warm it will get in that barrel .. their body heat will provide the heat for that space and the sand will be the insulation .

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Old Post 10-05-2009 02:10 PM
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thanks for all the suggestions, I am gonna try a couple of them....thanks again

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Old Post 10-05-2009 02:36 PM
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larrypoe
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Doug,

Im not sure about carpet and the like, but I realy dont think it would hurt anything. These things only get so warm and I have never seen one close to starting a fire.

We did a trial at the hog farm one time where we used those square plastic storage boxes with a hole cut in the lid to put the newborn pigs in from the first pig to the last pig born. The storage box sat on the pig mat and had a bunch of old rags in it. The idea was to keep them from chilling untill they were dry.

Anyway, we never melted a storage box or anything.

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Old Post 10-05-2009 04:49 PM
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s/s
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Where do ya get these pig mats from?

Does anyone have a picture of one?

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Old Post 10-07-2009 05:07 AM
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Okie Dawg
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I use old deep freezers. You can get them FREE they are insulated and you can put some good clean grass hay in them. The dogs body heat will keep it warm. Some even have a place you can put a heat light safely if you want to go that far. They last for ever and if a person wanted to he could burie it about half way and the ground would help keep it even warmer. I just have mine sitting on the ground.
I have allso made houses out of hay bails in years past. Just made a square 2 bales high leaveing one corner open a little. Put plywood over top and 2 bales over plywood. Warm in winter cool in summer. I open the back corner up in the summer so they get a breeze threw it. I like the freezers best though. I have Igloo's with hay in them but when it gets cold they get in the freezer.
$ 140.00 Igloo, free freezer, repairmen have to pay to get them halled off. Mine were even delivered FREE!!!!!!!!!!!

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Old Post 10-07-2009 05:53 AM
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Okie Dawg
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By the way an old ice chest works good for cats or small dogs. Just cut a hole in the end and fix the lid so it stays down good. Both the freezer and ice chest is great becouse you can open the lid and get to a sick or hurt dog. Wors good for whelping too.

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Old Post 10-07-2009 05:56 AM
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larrypoe
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quote:
Originally posted by s/s
Where do ya get these pig mats from?

Does anyone have a picture of one?



There available through Hog Slat. Google it and there website will tell you the closest dealer to you. They ship anywhere. Also might try the company that makes them, Kane. They might have dealers other than hog slat. Seems like Ive seen them at farm supply stores, but Im not real sure. I think (there I go thinkin again ) there made in Sioux City IA, agian just remembering off the top of my head and not certain.

There orange, about 2ft x 4feet, but the ones I have came from.....well lets just say there used ...there cut in half and about 1foot by 3 or 4ft. The heating element is enclosed in orange plastic......hence the color..orange . There is a cord at one end, and they run on regular 110.

Hog Slat went to a different type about the time I stopped dealing with them. Those are white, about the same size as my half ones and heavy as heck. Have a 2in thick concrete filler. They stay warmer and use less electric though. They probably have the old orange type as well.

I could get a picture of one, but it would involve removing it and taking a pic with the web cam. Not real sure where the digital camera is..........................probably ought to find that little dealy...

Anyway, if you cant find a pic anywhere else I would be glad to do it.

Side note, though these things aren't going to start a fire like say a heat lamp, they dont heat things up as well either. There designed to heat to about 20degrees warmer than the air around them. If you stick them outside and its 10 degrees....well you get the idea. They do make a rheostat that makes them heat to what ever temp you want though. Mat plugs into that, that plugs into outlet. Gets kind of expensive though.

That is unless you get the stuff.............used ....like I did.

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Old Post 10-07-2009 07:43 AM
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Lakeland Kennel
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In my area, the local farm supply stores sell heated plastic mats designed for dogs. They cost around $60. They work well in brood boxes. A 100 watt light bulb works better. The colderthe temperature the more wattage, warmer temperatures, use a 40 watt bulb. I have raised lots of winter born pups this way.

I have used plastic barrels for well over 20 years. I have found that if you put plentyof straw in them, have them facing where a direct wind doesn't blow into them, keep plenty of dry straw in them, set them up on a cradle off of the ground, the dogs will winter very well in them. They will prefer these barrels over any plastic box you can buy or any wooden box you can build. The key is plenty of dry straw and excellent food and and plenty of water provided.

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pigsit
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quote:
Originally posted by Blue Style
I have 15 extra barrels, I had thought about wrapping insulation around one barrel, cuttin front and back from another, slitting it down the side and wrapping it around the other barrel and insulation....
I have six individual runs, all with plastic barrels, off the concrete a few inches, I have a wooden deck in them for the dogs to lay on. In the winter I fill them as full as I can get with fresh clean straw and keep them full; they make a nest and stay warm in the coldest of winter. The same with my dog box in the winter, it is full of clean straw; they go from dog box to barrel all full of straw and get plenty of fresh water and good feed; they will winter well. Tom

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