Some time ago Debbie Ramey, who rescues dogs and horses was renovating her horse barn and had a bunch of 5 feet wide by 6 feet high American Kennel Club welded wire kennel panels in there that she wanted to be rid of. She asked me if I could make use of them here at Piney Mountain Foster Care. Oh, yes, I could! So she donated them to us and my friend, Trucker Tim, and I went down there with his truck and trailer, loaded all those panels on his trailer, and hauled them back here.
Tim lives near by. Tim also has a barn. A barn with lots of extra space inside. He offered to let me store this trove of panels in his barn where they would be out of the weather until I found ways to use them all. I used 6 of them (one with a door in it) to build kennel 4. The rest went into Tim’s barn.
With the north wall of Kennel 2 Inside complete I just need a front panel for it to make it usable. The 10 foot long kennel panels I have on hand are too long for this application. One of those worked okay on Kennel 1 while I built a proper front panel with door, but in this position it just won’t work. I am rapidly filling up the empty space that was created by selling the stack of white oak lumber. So I went down to Tim’s place and retrieved a few of those 5 foot panels. I mounted 3 conduit hangers, which I use to attach the tubing frames to the concrete walls with concrete screws, in the opening. Then I used those as a hinge for the 5 foot panel. I hold the other end tight to the wall on the other side of the opening with rubber straps to keep the dog inside. This is just until I get a proper front panel with door built.
Then I got Josie’s Karunda dog bed and water bowl out of her outside kennel (K1) and moved it into the new inside space (K2) — leaving the barrier I have over the small door between inside and outside areas because Blade is still in K2 Outside. I took out the small igloo style dog house that was in K1 Outside for Josie and assembled a large one in there for Blade.
Josie had been running in the play yard while I did all this. Now it was time to get her back into K1 outside and let Blade out for his turn. While he played with Blondie Bear I removed his Karunda and water bowl out onto the sidewalk outside the kennels, closed the outside door to K2 and removed the barrier between K2 Outside and K2 Inside. Then I removed the barrier to K1 Outside and moved Josie into K2 Inside through the kennel building and secured the makeshift door/front panel. I put the K1 barrier back into place and went outside.
I moved Blade’s bed and water bowl into K1 Outside and called Blade to come get his treat and go into his room.
He came running, stopped short and gave me the side-eye, “That’s not MY room. What are you trying to pull?”
The short version is that he became Blade the Belligerent and I had quite a time getting him into his new room. But that’s another story.
Josie, on the other hand, was delighted with her new expanded living space.
Now when I give her a treat, instead of munching it down where she stands, like she always did before, she takes it to her inner sanctum, gets up on her bed and noshes on it there. Also, she has been kind of bad about barking at anything that’s moving about in the woods above the kennels at night. Last night she curled up in her “bedroom” and slept all night. We didn’t hear a peep out of her.
I swapped Blade and Josie’s rooms because Kennel 1 does not have an inside room ready yet. Blade has a plush coat of long fur to keep him warm. Josie doesn’t. Josie is still underweight too. She needs this shelter for the cold snap we’ve got coming this week (Low of 20 predicted Tuesday night). It’s just a couple of nights, then it warms up again. By the time it turns cold again I should have Blade’s (new) room done as well. Then everyone can get inside and away from the cold.
I need to sell another lumber pile. That will free up some more space and give me funds to start buying insulation to go in the roof and buy paint for the walls. Getting rid of the bare concrete block will go a long ways toward brightening the place up.
And doors. I need to install guillotine doors that can be opened remotely via a cable and pulleys. These will keep the cold and wind out at night and keep the dog inside or outside when I need to do that.
Step by step, we are getting there.