DIY Dog House: Covered Deck

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The other posts in this series:

Intro | Drawing & Materials ListFloor and Walls | Roof

Building a Covered Deck

A covered deck like the one shown here is a nice touch for a dog house.  It provides a place for your dog to hang out and see what’s going on without lying in flea-infested dirt or being entirely exposed to the sun. It also adds a certain stateliness to the dog house — it elevates it from being just a box with a hole in it to a stylish abode that any self-respecting dog will appreciate.

Figure 1. Your basic dog house with covered deck.

This is a fairly small deck – about 18″ by 26″. I used 3/4″ thick cedar boards for the deck surface and framing. For the roof, I used a piece of left-over T1-11 plywood, hung at a 12 degree slope.  The whole thing – deck and roof – only weighs about 20 pounds.

Figure 2. Underside of house and deck frame.

Begin by building a frame for the deck using 1-3/4″ wide stock. As shown in Figure 2, this is simply a box that is screwed onto the front of the house. It measures 17-1/2″ by 25-1/2″ and is centered between the front corner trim.  The bottom of the deck frame lines up with the bottom of the house frame.

Figure 3. New life for recycled deck boards.

The front roof supports are made from two 1-1/2″ wide boards that are screwed together. For now, cut these boards to rough length (23″); hold off on attaching them until the roof position is established. Same goes for the decking.

Figure 4. Front view of deck.

Create a support header for attaching the roof to the house. This board is 1-1/2″ wide by 25-1/2″ long. Cut a bevel on top of the board to match the pitch of the roof (I went with 12 degrees). Cut two such pieces – the other will be used for the front roof frame. Then create the two side pieces of the roof frame, cutting the ends at the same angle as the roof pitch. I’ll leave it as a little carpentry challenge to you to figure out the proper length of the side pieces so that the front of the roof frame lines up with the front of the deck frame.

Figure 5. The finished deck and deck roof.

Screw the roof frame together and attach it to the house with a few screws; I positioned it as high as possible without getting in the way of the main roof (don’t forget to account for the thickness of the T1-11 plywood on top). Place the house on its side so you don’t have to support the front of the deck. Measure and cut the two vertical roof supports (cutting the top at the same 12 degree angle) and screw to the front corners of the deck and roof frames (Figure 4).

Cut the deck boards to size and screw in place. I allowed about 1/4″ of overhang on the front and sides. Of course, I had to round the ends with a router to make it look legit. Finally, cut the T1-11 roof panel to size (18″ x 26″) and screw in place. Voila, a covered deck!

Figure 5. Final inspection of the deck by the family cat.

Note: if you make the deck roof a little larger and with a little less pitch, it can double as a loft for your dog to observe the world around him from a higher vantage point.