User avatar
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:13 am
Location: Bellingham

Doghouse to compost heap?

I'm thinking about turning this old doghouse into a compost bin. We live near Seattle, so it's pretty cold and rainy most of the year. I was wondering what you guys thought. There is a little bit of treated 2x4's here and there, will this be a problem? should I add a wooden board to the base instead of the spaced wooden floor? Should I take out the floor all together and let the compost touch the ground?



User avatar
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25279
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 6:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

I agree about taking out the floor and covering the entrance. If it were me, I would also screen the top. I have to have my compost completely enclosed or the squirrels, raccoons, possums, and assorted rodents get in to it. Not only do they eat all the kitchen scraps out of it, but they party in there (I suspect especially the raccoons!) and throw things around and drag stuff all over the yard.

If you enclose everything, you can turn your pile, just by lifting the dog house off it. Move all the unfinished stuff to a new spot, putting the newest stuff on the bottom. What's left at the bottom of the old pile will be your finished compost.

Greener Thumb
Posts: 969
Joined: Thu Sep 09, 2010 4:50 pm
Location: MO

If it's a standard wood doghouse with a sloped wooden roof like a little house, you could detach the roof and put hinges along one side, so you can tip the whole roof up and over for adding or turning. Or just hinge one side of the roof, along the top roof line, so you can flip just half of it up. This would require some engineering and tools so it depends on how far you want to go with it.

Have fun!

User avatar
Green Thumb
Posts: 600
Joined: Sun Nov 08, 2009 9:48 am
Location: Northern Rockies

I would definitely drill many holes along the sides near the bottom to allow air to circulate. The wood will rot soon enough and this will keep the good little critters active.

Looks like it will make a great bin!

Full Member
Posts: 19
Joined: Mon Nov 19, 2012 8:22 am
Location: Glossop


I would line the inside with DPC and that should preserve the wood. Holes in the side for aeration are essential and don't forget to turn regularly. I would also take out the bottom to encourage earthworms. Grass clippings are good in thin layers. [/b]

User avatar
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:13 am
Location: Bellingham

Thanks, everyone.

I'm thinking about dividing the center so that I can place finer composted material into one side, and brand new compostable items in the other.

I will remove the bottom, make the top of one side removable and add some small holes to the bottom sides for air ventilation. Then add a screen to the bottom of the roof to keep rodents out.

Oh, and Gkwilsongardens, what is DPC??

User avatar
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 2105
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:53 am
Location: Lafayette, LA

IDK about such a closed space. You really need lots of air circulation and the ability to water or have rain water drain thruogh the pile. I know lots of folks used closed systems for composting - just not my experience. I have 2 4'x'4'x4' bins adjacent to each other made from scrap lumber and chicken wire. It is easy for me to turn my pile from one bin to the other. Plenty of air circulation. On the ground so as it cools the worms can make their way in.

I would certainly find some way to make use of the dog house even if it means cutting it up and using the lumber with chicken wire to make bins.

Good luck with your project.

Love to re-purpose.

Return to “Composting Forum”