If you’ve ever volunteered as a puppy walker and puppy home for a hunting club then you’ll appreciate the incredible ability the hound has for finding trouble. The American Foxhound, a cross between the English and French Foxhound, later intertwined in some cases with the Irish Foxhound, is a prime example of a canine with speed and stamina and a nose for finding quarry.
As a kid my first hound puppy was an English Foxhound called Wizard. During one of many of his naughty antics he managed to score an entire top round of beef that was pledged for our Sunday family dinner. I was busy grooming my neighbors pony in their yard and my mother had stopped by on her way back from the shops to have a chat with the neighbor. Wizard jumped up onto the hood of the car and searched through the bags of groceries where my mother had left them for just a moment to shelve the weight, and was halfway through chowing down on his find, when my mother came back into the garage after sharing a short conversation outside with the neighboring farmer. To say she was not happy was an understatement. But as the farmer explained, we could hardly blame him. Though Mom certainly blamed me for neglect of duties in keeping an eye on the pup. The farmer packed us off home with a leg of lamb from her freezer in recompense. It was for her I was supposed to be minding the hound!
Back then hunting clubs, whether the hounds were working dogs used as pack hounds in the foxhunting field or were other breeds of dogs such as Labradors Retrievers used for duck and game hunting, housed their canines in concrete boxes with large concrete runs outside. Difficult to sanitize and keep hygienic, the dark kennel boxes and pens were regularly hosed down after picking up the waste making clean up an unpleasant task at the best of times.
In my college years, I worked briefly for a dairy farmer and his sporting dogs were woefully kept in a horrid concrete box with wire mesh fencing where they were clearly unhappy. As apparent County champions in the field, these animals were in the glummest of environments when at home. The dank and dark kennel space was hard to hose and clean out as you had to crouch to enter the interior box and it was unlit. It was impossible to escape the stench of lye he would use to clean them. Unfortunately, the old ways are not always the best. Dogs deserve better.
Hounds can be great family pets as well as working dogs, but their need for lots of exercise and their need for social interaction due to their convivial nature can be a challenge for the hound breeder and keeper of hounds. Add to this the famous musical bay that a hound produces that can be heard for miles, and you can see that kennels do need to offer some soundproofing as well as provide some sense of calm and well-being for the occupants with the ability for them to see each other even if due to whelping/breeding concerns they may not directly interact.
What is the best way to cut down on the labor involved in canine care, and how best can you improve the level of hygiene for the dogs while providing a comfortable environment for these hard working animals?
The modern day commercial kennel offers a myriad of solutions.
Clean up is a critical component when it comes to top-notch canine care. A well-built commercial kennel can offer a tear and stain resistant Polyurea® floor with channel drains that run the entire length of the kennel. This channel can be connected to a sewer pipe to take waste away from the structure. This convenient feature keeps unpleasant odors to a minimum and improves the overall hygiene of the kennel. A similar system can be implemented underneath expansive dog run areas to ensure the exterior exercise space is also kept clean. After pick up of solids is undertaken of course. Read more details about how to complete the best kennel cleanup here.
A great commercial kennel build will include washable Glasbord sidewalls and ceilings for easy wash downs and deep cleans, be light and airy with soffit and gable ventilation, and offer an electrical package and interior hose port for easy hook up to necessary services.
A goodkennel construction company will offer a toolbox of options for full customization. Individual requirements are easily accommodated whatever your need, be it big, small or something in-between in terms of number of dogs or in terms of size of your breed of dogs.
Consider what size kennel box is needed for your breed of dog, how big each pen should be and whether it should be covered? What grade of wire mesh do you need and should it be welded? Handy functional features such an interior lobby area or feed room, bathing and grooming area or storage area for training equipment can all be implemented in the design.
If you choose to work with a modular kennel builder, you will also have the distinct advantage of being able to transport the kennel to a new location at a later date if you have to move. The need for sporting clubs to relocate to more rural or remote areas as the neighborhood develops is often an issue, and being able to pick up the kennel and take it with you can save a lot of money down the road.
If you need help don’t hesitate to reach out to a proven producer of high quality commercial kennels to ask questions. A company with experience in all things canine can answer questions you didn’t know you needed to ask and provide ideas that will help ensure the new kennel fits your particular needs.
Keeping the hounds at bay can also be a challenge for the horse barn owner, especially if their operation is a busy boarding barn with lots of human and horse foot traffic where dogs can pose a hazard to both themselves and others.
Who hasn’t had a riding lesson interrupted by the arrival of a dog, planting itself squarely in front of a fence or on the track, seemingly unaware of the impending peril cantering toward it. As a clinician I can also add that when you are walking back and forth focused on training and teaching riders you do not appreciate, “ clean up on aisle 4,” when you step in a sand covered canine deposit in the arena. Keeping dogs in a contained area with a set bathroom and exercise space can be beneficial to everyone.
The provision of a kennel on site can alleviate issues of liability with less friendly dogs, keep visitors from adding unwanted food to your dogs’ diets and keep your pet from ingesting things it shouldn’t that you inevitably will find later on the living room carpet.
Whatever the canine need, from care and comfort to security and safety, a modern kennel can be a valuable adjunct to business.
Don’t forget to ask about financing options, instant delivery and discounts on kennels that are often available from stock supplies at larger kennel building companies.
KINDLY NOTE: This article is available for use in its entirety without edit, in any media format, on condition that credit, in any media format, on condition that credit is given to Horizon Structures Inc., and author Nikki Alvin-Smith as a byline at the beginning of the article publication and Horizon Structures URL address and Nikki Alvin-Smith URL is included. Horizon would appreciate notification of any publication. Kindly contact Horizon Structures for photos to accompany the article.
This article is brought to you courtesy of Horizon Structures Inc., Atglen PA – Modular horse barn specialists. Horizon Structures also offers both residential and commercial kennels, coops, multi-use structures and playsets. Please visit https://www.HorizonStructures.com to learn more.
About Horizon Structures: One horse or twenty, there’s one thing all horse owners have in common…the need to provide safe and secure shelter for their equine partners. At Horizon Structures, we combine expert craftsmanship, top-of-the-line materials and smart “horse-friendly” design to create a full line of sheds and barns that any horse owner can feel confident is the right choice for their horses’ stabling needs.
All wood. Amish Made. Most of our buildings are shipped 100% pre-built and ready for same-day use. Larger barns are a modular construction and can be ready for your horses in less than a week. All our barn packages include everything you need –
Horizon Structures also sells indoor riding arenas, chicken coops, dog kennels, 1 and 2 car garages, storage sheds and outdoor living structures.
Headquartered in South-Central Pennsylvania, Horizon Structures, LLC is owned by Dave Zook. Dave was raised in the Amish tradition and grew up working in the family-owned shed business. He started Horizon Structures in 2001 in response to an ever-increasing customer demand for high quality, affordable horse barns.
For additional information about the company or their product line, please visit their website at https://www.horizonstructures.com
Horizon Structures LLC, Atglen, PA
Photos are available on request.
About Nikki Alvin-Smith: International published writer and creative content producer. Ghostwriting, blog services, PR/Marketing specialist. Nikki also produces catalog and website copy, white papers, e-books, corporate brochures, advertising copy, photography, videography for a wide range of businesses.
As a Brit who has called the America home for the past 35 years, Nikki brings a unique perspective to the equestrian world. Nikki is also an accomplished Grand Prix dressage trainer/competitor, competing at international level and is a highly sought clinician offering clinics worldwide. She has been a horse breeder/importer of warmblood and Iberian breeds for more than 25 years. Together with her husband Paul who is also a Grand Prix trainer, they run Willowview Hill Farm, a private dressage training operation in the beautiful Catskill Mountains of New York. Please visit https://nikkialvinsmithstudio.com/ to learn more about her affordable services.