Advice for Keeping a Dog Outdoors

If you decide to keep your dog outdoors for extended periods of time, you must be aware of the considerations to make and some general guidelines to follow. If you’re putting your dog outdoors for the wrong reasons or not offering the proper essentials, you should consider bringing your dog back into your home. Below, a Carmel vet advises on the dog kept outside.

Ask Yourself: Why?

You should think about why you’re keeping your dog outside in the first place. If you’re doing it to avoid rambunctious behavior, stop furniture chewing, or prevent begging at the table, it’s probably not in the dog’s—or your—best interests. A dog kept outside for most of its life will only become anti-social and more problematic. If you’re keeping your dog outside for shorter periods of time to allow for exercise, playtime, and to enjoy the weather, you’re doing it for the right reasons.

Provide Proper Enclosures

If your dog enjoys being outside and you’re not banishing him to the backyard, you still have to make sure he has the proper enclosures. A doghouse will provide shade and shelter from the wind or rain. Include insulated bedding for the cold months if your dog likes staying outdoors in the winter. Ask your  vet about the proper enclosure type for your pet.

Keep It Clean

Maintain the cleanliness of your dog’s outdoor home. Whether your pet lives in a doghouse or pen enclosure, clean up any droppings or trash regularly. Your dog might like being outside, but he doesn’t like living in an unclean environment.

Keep Food and Water Stocked

Make sure your pup’s food and water dishes are filled regularly. Provide plenty of cool water during the hot summer months. Make sure no backyard animals or pests are getting to the food and leaving none for your dog. Ask your Carmel veterinarian about backyard creatures that might take a special interest in your dog’s food bowl.

You should never leave your dog outdoors for hours at a time unsupervised. Always be sure to bring him back in occasionally—dogs are social creatures that enjoy social interactions! Your vet can advise you further on keeping your dog outdoors and what to consider before doing so.


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