Dog lovers are a strange breed. Some pamper their pet with clothing and special pouches, stone-studded leashes and painted nails. Other dog lovers go to different lengths to treat their pet well. My husband loves to give his two Labrador retrievers some TLC with fancy housing fit for a king.
Although the dogs live outside, there are times when they need the extra protection a cozy room off our basement can offer. Most nights of the winter, however, they’re kept sufficiently warm in their dog house thanks to reflective insulation.
Comprised of a thin, highly reflective aluminum skin with a tough interior polyester scrim, reflective aluminum (also known as radiant barrier or reflective foil) is lightweight and tear resistant. Interestingly, it’s easy to handle and cut with a box cutter or scissors.
My husband built our dog’s home of 2x4s with interior and exterior walls of plywood. Sandwiched between was a nice layer of mass insulation and the reflective insulation. We also placed reflective insulation under the floor as well. Because our dogs are puppies, they’re still inclined to tear and chew most things they can get their mouths around. Perhaps if you have older dogs it won’t be necessary to do it that way.
At any rate, the dogs are warm and cozy inside their house thanks to the unique L-shaped construction and two types of insulation. Raised off the ground by several feet, the entry is accessible by a ramp so that snowdrifts down build up and cause the interior to get wet and soggy. So far, the approach seems to be working well on all but the coldest of nights, thanks to reflective insulation.