With four children and a somewhat chaotic household, when we decided to add a four-legged friend to our brood I felt it was important for the dog to have a safe space she could call her own. Somewhere where the children were not allowed, where she could go if she wanted some peace and quiet and where we could put her if we needed to keep her safely out of the way of a hazard.
I could tell by the shape of our staircase that there must have been a large space boxed in beneath it and I felt this would be perfect for a little doggy bedroom. So one day, when I was feeling brave I took a sledge hammer to the plaster board.
The space beneath the stairs was everything I’d imagined and more! So much bigger than I’d estimated but unfortunately it was full of rubbish left by the builders! There was all sorts dumped in there – plasterboard, nail gun cartridges, sweet wrappers, crisp packets, off cuts of wood and more. It took a while to clean up but once it was cleared we were left with a really great, useable space.
We had enough room for a dog-house and some storage, so I set about lining the space with MDF, adding a dividing wall and a shelf. I did all the work myself and I estimate it was about a weekends worth of work (although took me a lot longer snatching an hour or two here and there between kids, work and general household jobs).
Once lined, the entire space was primed then painted with a few coats of white eggshell. Then we added a bed, blankets, a few toys and a water bowl. The shelves at the side house all the dog paraphernalia – toys, blankets, towels, spare leads etc. We added a removable gate so we have the option to contain the dog when needed, but on the whole this is left open so she has access to it whenever she wants.
She sleeps her den every night and often chills out in there in the day too. This is probably my favourite DIY project so far. Its been a really practical addition to our home. To think it was all boxed in before, what a waste!