Using your summerhouse as a home for your pets
28 November 2018| News| Jelle Tienken
Many people enjoy having pets as part of their household, as they can bring a lot of joy into the home, but not everyone wants to keep them inside their house. The reasons for this can be varied – the pet might be too big or too noisy, or it may require specific living conditions that are hard to maintain inside your house. If you’re facing this problem, a summerhouse could be a great solution, allowing you to keep your pets without having to adapt your house for their needs or experience any inconvenience because of the space they take up or the loud noises that they make. In addition, it can be great for your pets as well, as they can have ample space for themselves and various special conditions can be created within a summerhouse if required. Whether it’s a dog, a rabbit, a turtle, an exotic pet or any other type of domestic animal that you want to make a home for inside your summerhouse, there are some things that you must keep in mind to make sure that your pet will feel comfortable. Keep reading to find out what they are, so that you can create a perfect home for your pets!
Insulation and heating
The first and most important thing that you need to think about if you want to create a home for your pet inside a summerhouse is insulation. Of course, some pets, like dogs or rabbits, who have thick fur and are used to living outdoors during the cold months, only require a place to shelter from the rain and snow and, therefore, an uninsulated summerhouse will be perfectly fine for them. However, even these pets might appreciate a warm shelter when the weather is rough outside, and some owners feel better knowing that their pets are warm and cosy, so they might choose to insulate their summerhouse anyway.
Meanwhile, if you have adopted a pet whose natural habitat is a warmer climate, insulating your summerhouse and possibly even installing heating in it is a must, because without insulation it will probably be too cold for them during the winter. Exotic pets are becoming more and more popular nowadays, with many people choosing turtles, lizards or even snakes or large spiders as their companions. If you’re planning on obtaining an exotic pet, you must keep in mind that you might need to ensure a certain temperature for them to feel comfortable. This can cause a problem if the temperature that your pets require is too high for their human owners; therefore, housing them in an insulated and heated summerhouse might prove to be the perfect solution.
It’s also important to remember that insulation will not only keep the heat inside your summerhouse during the winter but will also ensure it stays cool when it’s warm outside. This can come in handy during hot summers, as many pets struggle to cope with the heat – especially dogs and other animals with thick fur. Therefore, your pets might appreciate a cool place to rest when the weather is hot.
Size and layout
It goes without saying that before you set up a home for your animals in a summerhouse, you must first make sure that it’s big enough for their needs. While smaller pets like rabbits or hamsters will require just a little bit of space for a cage, dogs and other large pets will require a lot more space in which to move around comfortably.
The amount of space available will also be important if you’re planning to place a large aquarium or terrarium inside your summerhouse, as you will need to take measurements to ensure it fits. Otherwise, you might find that the aquarium or terrarium you have chosen is too wide for the wall of your summerhouse or takes up too much space, not leaving much room for anything else. And another thing to remember is that such containers should usually be placed away from direct sunlight, so you must ensure that there is enough space between your aquarium or terrarium and the window.
This brings us to another important thing to consider – the layout of the summerhouse – and there are several questions that need to be answered in regard to this. Do you choose a design with a side canopy where you can enjoy your garden, or do you opt for a design that maximises the indoor space your pets can use? Do you want a single room or a summerhouse that can provide several rooms? And, if you choose to have several rooms, do you want to use just one of the rooms for your pets and use the other room(s) for your needs or will all the available space be for your pets? In order to create a place where your pets feel comfortable, you need to decide on these things and find the most suitable design for you and your pets. However, if you can’t find a design that suits you perfectly, remember that the best manufacturers also offer the option of creating a custom design, allowing you to build a bespoke summerhouse that perfectly meets all of your needs.
Doors and windows
If you set up a summerhouse home for your pets, you will want them not only to be comfortable but safe too. Installing quality locks on your summerhouse will ensure that your pets can’t run away and that burglars won’t be able to get in when you’re not at home. This usually applies when storing belongings inside your summerhouse, but it can also be relevant if you have expensive pets – while theft of pets isn’t very common, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Another important aspect in ensuring the safety of your summerhouse and your pets inside it are the windows. The most obvious reason for this is protection from burglars, as high-quality windows will be harder to break, and it definitely won’t be easy for criminals to jam the windows open. However, there’s another safety aspect related to your windows – protecting your pets from themselves. If you have a pet that’s likely to climb out through an open window, you should be careful with tilt-and-turn windows, as your pet might try to climb through the top of the window when it’s tilted and become trapped, which could cause injury or worse. Therefore, even though tilt-and-turn windows are the most popular option due to their flexibility, casement windows or top-hung windows might be a better option if you use your summerhouse as a home for your pets. They will provide the necessary ventilation but can be opened in a way that ensures your pets won’t be able to climb through.
Windows also play a large role in the design of a summerhouse, and the size and position of the windows can also influence the mood and ambience inside it. Therefore, you must choose your windows in accordance with the needs of your pets. If your pet enjoys being in the shade or if you have a terrarium that needs to be placed away from direct sunlight, choose a summerhouse design that has small windows and/or just a few. Meanwhile, if you think that your pet will enjoy the sunlight or a view of your garden, you can opt for large windows or even sliding glass walls, which will bring plenty of sunlight into your summerhouse and provide an excellent view!
While dedicating a summerhouse to pets is becoming more popular, many people don’t realise that it’s also possible to keep livestock like chicken and horses in a summerhouse. The best part is that it’s not even that difficult; for example, if you’d like to keep chickens, all you need is a summerhouse with a canopy – just add wire to the canopy and set up an outdoor run for them. In this way, the chickens can have a warm shelter and an enclosed outdoor area where they can browse for seeds and greens. Meanwhile, if you have always dreamed of owning a horse, a summerhouse can help you to achieve this. A summerhouse can easily be transformed into stables or a shed for cattle. In addition, you can create an enclosure for your animals by adding balustrades to your canopy – giving them both an indoor area as well as a fenced outdoor space. Even a small summerhouse can help you to set up a farm in your garden and start living a self-sufficient lifestyle!
As you can see, there are a few things that you need to take care of before creating a home for your pets or farm animals inside a summerhouse, but it can certainly be a great option both for you and your pets! Hopefully, this article has given you more insight into how to go about it, so you can start setting up your pet’s home in your summerhouse. Meanwhile, if you’re still looking for a summerhouse, take a look at our range of summerhouses or design your own with our 3D-Configurator.
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