Well, I have never had normal dogs and one of them refuses to sleep in the dog house that is outside.  She also refuses to sleep indoors, and we have to force her into the garage during bad weather.  We rescued her from a shelter, and I think that a lot of her "eccentric" behavior has to do with what she was used to at one time.  So, in my search for the perfect outdoor bed, I saw a picture for a dog bed on Ana White's website that inspired me.  There were no actual plans for the project, so I created my own.  I actually decided to make the sides higher to help block out some of the weather since she refuses to be enclosed:) 

After cutting all the pieces for the bed, I began to assemble the base.  I did this by gluing the boards and then while clamped, screwed them together with 2" long screws.  Once the base was sturdy and dried, I moved on to the next step

7- 1x4
2- 2x4
2- 1x2
1- 4' x 4' sheet of 1/4" plywood (or a scrap piece measuring 24 1/2"x 35")

2" screws
1 1/2" finishing nails (preferably with a nail gun)
Cut List:
24- 23 1/2"  1x4
 6- 11 3/4"  1x4
 2- 35 1/2""  2x4
 2- 21 1/2"  2x4
1- 35 1/2"  1x2
2- 25 3/4"  1x2
2- 11"  1x2
1- 35"x 24 1/2" (1/4"plywood)
Now, for this step you want to ensure that you have the location and size of all the boards laid out to make sure that will fit together perfectly.  Please do not skip this part, as doing so could lead to gaps in the sides or back.  I lined all mine up for a dry fit before moving on to the actual attachment. 

Once you are ready to attach the boards, begin with the back.  Attach 10 of the 23 1/2" 1x4s along the 35 1/2" 2x4 base.  The ends should be flush with the board. (Please view the diagrams below). When attaching the boards, just glue down the side as well as the bottom that will be attached to the base.  Then nail the board onto the base using finishing nails. 

Continue to do this all the way around until you have attached all the sides.

Then, begin attaching the 23 1/2" sides. The side boards should cover the entire side of the base PLUS 3/4" to attach flush to the boards on the back.


Attaching the back.  Make sure it is completely flush on both ends with the back board.


To begin attaching sides, make sure that the side board is flush with the back board as shown.


Now that the sides and back are attached, you will want to attach the front 11 3/4" 1x4s using the same process as you did in the previous steps.  There should be 3 boards placed flush to the side edges.  This will leave a gap in the middle.  (The picture does not show all the boards, it is meant to give an idea of how the front boards are flush with the side).

Note, as you are attaching the sides, especially if you decide to make them longer, you may notice that they do not align perfectly with each other.  This is mostly due to the fact that wood is never perfect and may have some warping or twisting that has occurred.  In order to account for this, I used small clamps to hold adjacent boards together that seemed to want to pull apart.  These boards will all be stabilized once the glue dries and the trim is attached.

Once all the sides were built, I began attaching the trim.  As you can see in the picture, the trim helps also to hold the boards all in place.  I simply attached the trim with finishing nails and some wood glue.  Note the small amount of 1/4" overhang on each end for decorative value.


Once all the trim was attached, I then also attached the bottom of the bed using glue and finishing nails.  Now, you could choose to attach it at the top of the base boards, or below.  I chose below because I wanted it to stay deep, and I wanted room for the pillows I planned on placing in the bottom.

Now the only thing left to do was to sand and stain the dog bed. 

So, after staining and a few coats of polyurethane, I placed some pillows in the bottom of the bed and a nice comfy blanket.  I then took it to my dog's favorite place on the back porch...waiting for her to hop in and enjoy the openness of her new bed...and....

This is my appreciation...

And after much coaxing, the removal of the blanket and a few treats later....I think she'll get used to it:)



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