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Hi my name is Matt. I’m studying Industrial Design here in Auckland, New Zealand. Today we were given a brief to design an outdoor dog kennel for urban homes with small yards. I’m at a bit of a disadvantage here because I don’t own a dog myself and I was hoping I could get some help. Are there any people that own dogs that live in an urban setting on here, as I have little idea about dog ownership?

If there are, I have a few questions for you that would really help:
  • What do you look for in an outdoor dog kennel/house? eg. durability, portability, etc.
  • Where is your dog while you are at work or away from home?
  • If you were to assemble a flat pack kennel, what is the maximum time you would want spend doing it?
  • What about if you assembled it with your daughter or son?
  • On an scale of 1-10 how interested are you in customising kennels colours and patterns to match your home or style? (1 - not interested, 10 essential).
  • How much would you pay for a quality outdoor dog kennel?

Thanks so much for your time really appreciate it :)
 

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Hi Matt,

This is my first post on dogforum. I am an architect, also interested in kennels. I have only found a couple of books on kennel design thus far. I just finished reading Kennels & Kenneling by Joel M. McMains. It details the traditional method for a cinderblock kennel building for about 10-30 runs. A book you may enjoy is Barkitecture by Fred Albert. That has dog houses that were designed by architecture firms. It's mostly pretty pictures, but if you're in school, it will probably give you some good ideas. I also have "Essential Kennel Design" by David Key, which I have yet to read, but the table of contents is divided into sections that include: purchase and construction, ancillary buildings and equipment, Kennel Buildings & Finishes, Infrastructure, Legislation, and suppliers and useful addresses. If your assignment is to produce a more technical design, that might be a good book.

A friend was telling me of an artificial turf that comes out of NZ, which does not get hot in the sun, and is pretty indestructible. Imagine being able to hose down your kennel, but still have soft surface and not have to rely on concrete?

As to your questions above, I think there are a variety of dog owners out there, and all have different opinions about what they would like. Sometimes, these things are great for dogs. If I were in class, I'd define who my idea customer was, and then design for that person.

Good luck, and please let me know how everything goes!
 
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